History & Tourism

Landmarks of Mansfield: The Fraser House

22 Apr , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

On a fall evening in 2016, the setting sun cast a golden glow on western facing buildings in Mansfield. Included among those was the Alexander Fraser House, sitting as it does on a rise on Park Avenue West overlooking the entrance to South Park (see photo above). More…

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Downtown, History & Tourism

Landmarks of Mansfield: St. Peter’s Catholic Church

17 Apr , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

NOTE: This is our traditional Easter Sunday post, which we are happy to share for the third consecutive year.

For the last 100 years, the 125 feet high towers of the landmark St. Peter’s Catholic Church have themselves done double duty, standing sentinel over the central part of Mansfield while at the same time encouraging passers-by to look in a heavenly direction.

The building sits near an intersection that has been home to a Catholic church and school for almost seventeen decades. The first local mass was celebrated in 1850, and the first church, purchased from the Presbyterians, was located on Mulberry Street just north of the current elementary school. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building: Updated

14 Apr , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

UPDATED: The Mansfield Memorial Museum, housed in the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building, kicked off its 2022 last weekend with a new Westinghouse Appliance Exhibit. More information is available here (NOTE – This is behind the Mansfield News Journal paywall).

The Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building, Park Avenue West’s Grand Old Lady, is both a local and statewide survivor. Since it opened in 1889, it has served veterans and the community well. Today it houses an extraordinary museum , provides character and dignity to Mansfield’s principal thoroughfare, and is a remarkable connection to what is arguably the most important conflict in American history.

In the years following the Civil War, the Ohio General Assembly passed laws which facilitated the financing and construction of buildings and monuments to serve and commemorate veterans of that conflict and earlier wars. Some cities, such as Sidney and Toledo, began local efforts even earlier. In total, 14 such structures were erected across the state.

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All About Richland

Landmarks of Mansfield Special: The Kingwood Center Duck Pond

5 Apr , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

This is a special Landmarks of Mansfield post.

A beloved community asset, visited by generations of area residents, has temporarily closed.

Rest assured that that in this case closure is good news, however.

The Duck Pond at Kingwood Center Gardens, that remarkable place of the vending machines with pellets and the resulting waddling of ducks chasing after food, their voices quacking loudly at the same time, is getting a much needed makeover this year. The project began last month and will continue until this fall.

Kingwood shares that this is a repair project for the pond’s concrete liner as well as an effort to improve water quality – including increasing the pond’s center depth. The basic dimensions of the banks will remain the same.

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Richland: Sacred Heart Of Jesus Church

27 Jan , 2022  

By 1812Blockhouse

Approaching this spot in Sharon Township from any direction, its spire can be seen for miles as it rises majestically across the flat plains.

For over 180 years, the church for the parish of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Shelby Settlement, also known as Bethlehem or “The Settlement,” has been a landmark of faith and family. More…

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Downtown, History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: The May Building

19 Jan , 2022  

By the time that the May Building was constructed on the southeast corner of South Main and South Park Streets, facing Central Park, the name “May” had been known by Mansfielders for some 90 years.

The first May to come to this area was Attorney John M. May, who arrived in Mansfield in 1815 from his former home in Dedham, Massachusetts. May, as well as his son, Judge and State Senator Manuel May (1826-1903), lived in a house on this site. When the second May died without issue, the May Realty Company set out to construct a business block on the May House location. More…

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History & Tourism, Landmarks of Richland

Landmarks of Mansfield: The Colonial

10 Dec , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

The Colonial has graced the southeast corner of Park Avenue West and Benton Street since 1905 with its imposing three story front portico.

The building was erected by local businessman Edward William Dann. Dann, who lived from 1869 to 1950, was initially engaged in the fruit business, and moved to Mansfield from Columbus in the latter years of the nineteenth century. He would eventually become a board member and then president of the Richland Mutual Insurance Company. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: The Old Post Office

27 Nov , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

Mansfield has lost much in the way of civic architecture, including its Victorian era courthouse and two former City Halls. The first building specifically built to serve the community as a post office continues to stand to this day, however, over 100 years after it opened to the public.

The city’s first center for mail delivery was said to have been a hollow log located near the intersection of Third and North Main. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: Mansfield Dry Goods Building

4 Nov , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

Sometimes an element of good can come from a tragic event, particularly one that does not involve loss of life or limb.

Such was the case with the Mansfield of one hundred years ago, a place where the economy bustled with activity and investment.

In early 1919, a fire broke out at a downtown establishment housed in the Hartman and Spreng Building at 26 North Main Street. At the time, the building was home to the Mansfield Dry Goods Company.

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All About Richland, History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: Grace Episcopal Church

12 Oct , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

This reposting of one of our Landmarks of Mansfield is in commemoration of the congregation’s anniversary this year.

The stately building on the southwest corner of Third and Bowman Streets near downtown represents a 175 year history of the Episcopal Church in Mansfield.

Established in 1846, the same year that brought railroads to town, Grace Episcopal Church’s first parishioners included members of the Bartley and Sherman families. Two years later, its first church building was constructed on Third Street just east of Mulberry. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield Special: The Princess Theatre

17 Jul , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

Today, we broaden the scope of our Landmarks of Mansfield series by focusing on a landmark that never was.

At least not how it was originally planned.

We take our readers back 113 years, and to the southwest corner of West Fourth and Walnut Street. There, in 1908, owner William Shakespeare Cappeller, founder and owner of The Mansfield News, made plans for something special to take place. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: St. John’s United Church of Christ

26 Jun , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

It’s a building that has had a close relationship with two successive versions of the Richland County Courthouse.

When St. John’s Evangelical Church, now St. John’s United Church of Christ, was built between 1910 and 1912, it was towered over by the Victorian era Courthouse, its next door neighbor to the west. Across the street was a smaller church, designated in maps of the era as the “First United Brethren Church.”

After the demolition of the history courthouse in the 1960s, St. John’s suddenly appeared for travelers driving eastbound on Park Avenue East. More…

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All About Richland, History & Tourism

Landmarks of Mansfield: Central United Methodist Church

21 Jun , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

The former Central United Methodist Church on Park Avenue West, now the Bethesda Fellowship Ministry Center, was dedicated on August 27, 1911.

It was designed by Vernon Redding, Mansfield’s best known and most prolific architect of his era, who was also the architect for the Leland Hotel and Carnegie Library building. Because of its heavy stone massing, it has been described as being of the Richardson Romanesque style, but its sloping roof with exposed truss ends, as well as its date of construction, suggests Arts and Crafts influences as well. The exterior is of Sandusky limestone with Bedford white stone trim. A 14 foot cloister is featured on the east side of the sanctuary. More…

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All About Richland

Landmarks of Mansfield: The Women’s Club Building

5 May , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

There are a handful of structures standing in Mansfield today that very much “connect the dots.” These buildings tie important eras in the city’s history together, serving therefore as important landmarks that continue to inform and inspire.

One such building sits at 145 Park Avenue West, known locally as The Women’s Club. More…

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History & Tourism, Shelby

Landmarks Of Richland County: First Presbyterian Church, Shelby

20 Apr , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

This church building is testament to faith and resilience.

The present First Presbyterian Church of Shelby, located on North Gamble Street, has occupied this spot for the last 115 years. It stands on the lot to the south of the Post Office Building, the subject of another recent post in this series.

The fact that it exists, however, is rather miraculous.

Presbyterians first met in the Shelby area in the early 1820s. After a couple of initial locations, the congregation built a church on South Broadway in 1851. More…

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