Feature articles in Grandview ThisWeek Newspaper
Weekly Moment in Time Column

February, 2020 - August, 2020

View previous 6 months
August, 2019 - February, 2020

Click on an image to view a larger version

3/4 Marble Cliff Station 3/11 Boys in Roadster 3/18 Cleo Margaret Swaim Boardman 3/25 Long's Pharmacy

4/1 Custom Coaches

4/8 Gowdy Field 4/15 Grandview Schools 4/22 No Publication
4/29 Sanford Belden Residence 5/6 Elizabeth Ohnsman Residence 5/13 Delta Gamma Pi Sorority 5/20 Merkles on Horseback
5/27 Stew Harrison's Restaurant 6/3 Orson Dryer Residence 6/10 Italian Enclave 6/17 Third Avenue Auto Repair
6/24 Mineshaft Restaurant 7/1 QUBE 7/8 Howell Residence LR 7/15 Amicon's
7/22 WPA Stadium Project 7/29 Polka Dot School 8/12 John Chester 8/19 Caroline Harnsberger
8/26 Methodist Church
  Marble Cliff Station
This early twentieth-century photo shows the Marble Cliff Station (earlier called the Scioto Depot) of the Pennsylvania Railroad. It was located at 2057 Dublin Road, at the SW corner of the railroad crossing and West Fifth Avenue across from the present-day entry to Upper Arlington's First Community Village.  In the 1930s, the depot building was moved about 3/4 mile across the Scioto River to 2057 Old Dublin Road, just north of Trabue Road, to become the office of the Marble Cliff Oil Company. The building still stands. The Pennsylvania railroad (built in this area in 1868 as the Columbus, Chicago, Indianapolis Central Railroad) had several lines in and out of Columbus. This portion of the Railroad became know as "The Pan Handle” and connected Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis. The route that this station served was known as the “Piqua Line” of the Pan Handle. It had a "flag stop" depot on Grandview Avenue, where the NAPA store is currently located, and later this busy Marble Cliff station. A post office and general store were co-located with the depot building.


Back to top
  Boys in Roadster
This photograph was taken in 1923 at the northwest corner of Oakland and First Avenues. GHHS graduate Bob Fields (back right, class of 1922) and three unidentified friends sit in and on a Chevrolet roadster having a cigarette break in the parking lot of the Red Crown gasoline station. The station replaced the Hinterschied grocery and general store, which had occupied this corner since 1896. The air pump at the station is visible to the left behind the car. The former Celeste Building (originally Gutches Grandview Market, and later Gaudieri's Cleaners and Tailor Shop), visible at the right, was razed to build the four condominiums presently occupying the northeast corner of the intersection. The 1923 yearbook alumni updates indicated that Bob attended "office training school after graduation and was a full-fledged businessman" and planned to enter OSU in the fall of 1924.


Back to top
  Cleo Margaret Swaim Boardman
Cleo Margaret Swaim Boardman is shown in this photo from 1922 with two of her three sons, Charles H. Boardman III and James (on her lap). The third son Jack was born a year after this photo was taken. Cleo was the wife of Charles Boardman II, who was the owner and manager of Murray City Ice and Coal in Grandview and mayor of Marble Cliff for 22 years. Cleo was born in 1893 in Wilmington, where her family owned a canning company in nearby Sabina. The company used toddler Cleo as the model for the label on their canned corn (shown at the left.) Charles and Cleo married in 1917 and moved first to West Virginia to coal country, and then to Grandview. They lived for several years in the home that became the Deyo-Davis Funeral Home, and in 1926 moved to Arlington and Third Avenues to the home later owned by Martha Agler (featured in the Historical Society Tour of Homes in 2001.) In 1955 they moved to a new home on the curve at 1304 Arlington Ave. Cleo died in 1986, ten years after the death of her husband Charles. Charles III was a decorated Korean War veteran, retiring as a Lt. Col. He was chosen as an Olympic torch bearer in Florida as it made its way to Atlanta. He died in 2013. James became the President and General Manager of Murray City Ice and Coal. He died in 2015.


Back to top
  Long's Pharmacy
Long's Pharmacy, located in the Bank Block at 1275 Grandview Avenue, was a local landmark in the years prior to and just after World War II. Shown on the right is a segment of a full page cartoon published prior to 1950 that has caricatures of owner Bob Long, OSU and Grandview Heights students, loyal patrons, local business leaders, and pharmacy employees (the entire cartoon can be viewed on the Historical Society website at http://ghmchs.org). It depicts the very popular soda fountain area of the store, as well as the pharmacy and general store sections. The photograph on the left, taken for the ad section of the high school yearbook, shows high school students with product promotions from the pharmacy. The storefront no longer exists - half of the pharmacy was removed to construct the breezeway in the Bank Block.


Back to top
  Custom Coaches
This 1974 aerial photograph is looking east across Dublin Road, at Cardigan just south of Fifth Avenue. The arrow points to the location of Custom Coach. Custom Coach was founded in 1955 at this location at 1400 Dublin Road by Miles Elmer. Mr. Elmer was from Clintonville, and owned a company called Agricultural Laboratory, Inc. which made products for Monsanto. One of the products was a low-suds laundry detergent, now known as "all". Elmers modified a trailer so that he could travel with his family to sell the product, and this led to his new business modifying large bus shells for luxury travel use. The bus at the lower left was a modified 1952 Flxible bus using the Custom Coach "Land Yacht" conversion. The bus at the lower right was a 1964 Flxible that was modified for A.E. Knowlton, the Ohio businessman and benefactor for whom the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State is named. Custom Coach was internationally known, creating conversions for rock bands, politicians, world leaders, sports figures, and industries. The company was sold in 2002 to Farber Specialty Vehicles and moved the following year to Reynoldsburg. The Quonset building at the upper left was part of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources facility. 


Back to top

Gowdy Field


This photo, looking southwest from above Grandview toward downtown Columbus, shows Olentangy River Road running from left to right in the center of the picture, with the trees lining the river. Just below the road, west of (below) the road and east of the railroad tracks, is an open space, known as Gowdy Field. Just after the turn of the century, the open area was used as a community garden that provided food to poor families around the Great Depression. In the mid-1940s, just before this photo was taken, it was known as Goodale Field and consisted of many (at its maximum, around twenty) baseball and athletic fields. In 1952, Columbus City Council renamed it Gowdy Field after the city's most famous baseball player and war veteran, Hank Gowdy. In 1964, Columbus allowed the Service Department to use the field as a "clean" landfill. It was filled with construction debris and trash until the mid-1980s when it was covered in dirt and ceased use as a recreational space. In 2005, a study by Urban Growth Columbus determined that the 25 acre space could be used as a commercial office space and recreational area for the Harrison West neighborhood. Time Warner Cable became the first new office tower on the site, followed by the Ohio State's Eye and Ear Institute and the Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center. At the far left center is the Third Avenue bridge, and just below are the four silos of Murray City Coal and Ice which was on Edgehil. At the right of the photo, just below the city skyline, near the smokestack, is the roundhouse for the Pennsylvania Railroad. At the center left just over the river is the Capital City Dairy Company on West First, or what was commonly called the Margarine or Butterine Plant.


Back to top
  Grandview Schools

An aerial view (looking south) from the early 1950s shows the Grandview Heights Schools complex. At the top is the Edison Intermediate/Larry Larson Middle School building, which was built in 1911 (the west side was added in 1930). This photo does not have either of the south additions, which were completed in 1957 and 1971, nor the multi-purpose addition (added in 1995). The High School was built in 1923, and this photo does not show the gymnasium or the industrial arts additions (also 1957 and 1971). The Stadium was a WPA project that was completed in 1938. This photo shows the tennis courts at the south end of the field on Third Avenue, but no track around the field. Note the houses located on the football field property at the north end of the field, and the commercial auto shop to the east of the Grandview Library at the top-center of the photo.

Back to top
  Sanford Belden Residence

The home in this photograph is the 1248 Cambridge Blvd. residence of Sanford B. Belden (inset) and his wife Bessie May. Sanford Belden was the Vice President and general sales manager of the Jeffery Mining Company in Columbus. The house photo is from a circa 1916 brochure published by the King Thompson Company, "The Country Club District," created to showcase the new development called Upper Arlington. Mr. Belden graduated in 1895 from Engineering at Ohio State. He was born in 1872 and was a classmate of Orville Wright in high school in Dayton. Jeffrey Mining was the largest manufacturer of heavy coal mining equipment and electric locomotives in the world. Mr. Belden was very important in the business world and was touted as one of the highest salaried industrial executives of his day. He and Bessie travelled the world and their comings and goings were often reported in the New York Times Society pages. 

Back to top

Elizabeth Ohnsman Residence

Excerpts from the GHMCHS publication Sheltering a Heritage indicate that this house at 1226 Broadview was built for Elizabeth Ohnsman in 1892. Her husband John (a local farmer), died a year earlier, leaving Elizabeth and her six children to fend for themselves. Records indicate that the house was the only house on Broadview for nearly a decade before others were built south of First. The date of the photo this is unknown but it shows an addition that was reportedly added to the back of the original structure. Elizabeth's youngest child John Levi built his home and office just to the south on the northeast corner of West First and Broadview, now the site of National City Bank. John was a prominent cement contractor. The 1930 edition of History of Franklin County states that practically all the sidewalks in Grandview and Upper Arlington were laid by his firm.

Back to top
  Delta Gamma Pi Sorority

Sororities and fraternities were a part of the social network for Grandview High School students from 1915 until they were disallowed in Ohio by an action of the state legislature in 1960. Although they were never sanctioned by the school, they provided a structure for service, activities, events, and meetings for students. The oldest boy's organization was the Brotherhood of the Rook, established in 1915, joined later by the Adonis Club in 1953. The girls had two sororities, the L.A.L. sorority, started in 1922, and the Delta Gamma Pi, which started in 1929. This 1932 photo shows girls from DGP on a "rush" party for new members, which was a 7:30 a.m. bike ride up and down Riverside Drive. Shown are Kay Field, Betty Booth, Alice Beaman, Jane Harmount, Ruth Shoemaker, and Dolly Brock.

Back to top
  Merkles on Horseback

Marble Cliff residents William J. and Ada Boyle Merkle had three sons and three daughters. Mr. Merkle and his daughter Jessie are shown riding their horses together in Florida. From 1910 to 1922 the Merkles lived in the home originally built by Silvio Casparis at 1539 Roxbury. It was later the convent on the property of Our Lady of Victory Catholic church. Mr. Merkle inherited the family business, which operated retail stores in many railroad terminals throughout the midwest. The Merkles often vacationed in Palm Beach, and had their Packard automobile and their horses shipped by rail so that they had them there. Mrs. Merkle was originally from Cincinnati and was the daughter of the secretary to Ohio Governor and U.S. President William McKinley.

Back to top
  Stew Harrison's Restaurant

In 1932, the northeast corner of Grandview Avenue at Fifth Avenue was a miniature golf course, built with cinder fairways. Stew Harrison was a 34 year old with an appetite, as he indicated in a 1981 interview. "I figured that since I got hungry in the middle of the night, so did others," he said. So the entrepreneur bought the golf course and erected a 12'x12' building on the property, which he called the Hamburger Construction Company. With his two-burner hot plate, he began making 4" hamburgers which he sold for 10 cents. He was eventually more successful than his first-day take of 67 cents, and over the next 24 years he expanded the small building 4 times and renamed the business Stew Harrison's Restaurant. In 1956 he tore down all but 3 rooms and created a dining room (shown here), and by 1981 had 25 employees serving over 400 meals a day. The restaurant finally closed in 1984. The site has since been the location of a series of restaurants, including Sister's Chicken and Biscuits (started in 1979 by Wendy's), Spaghetti Shoppe, Hoggy's and the Winking Lizard. Cleveland-based build-your-own-taco joint Barrio will soon be taking over the Winking Lizard space. The inset photo shows graffiti-carved planks from the early days of Stew's. The planks contain initials, college names, devotions to sweethearts, and other messages. The Historical Society now has several of these planks in their archive.

Back to top
  Orson Dryer Residence

Mr. Orson D. Dryer was offering two lots (that were adjacent to his home on the Wyandotte Rd. hill) for sale in this ad in the Sunday, July 3, 1910 Columbus Dispatch. The advertisement does not mention any affiliation with a real estate company so one can assume that Mr. Dryer was one of many land speculators that resided and had invested in the area. The plat shows the location of his residence at 1083 Wyandotte, shown in the inset (taken from the Country Club District brochure produced by King and Ben Thompson, which can be found on the Historical Society website.) Lots at the time were priced at approximately $500 per acre (equivalent to $13,500 in 2020, an increase of about 2600%). Note that Wyandotte Road, south of Bluff, was named "Dale Ave" in 1910. Lincoln Road was named "Paul Avenue", and Elmwood, south of Bluff, was known as "Elmer". None of the above named streets were paved at the time. Mr. Dryer was the owner of O.D. Dryer & Co., a Columbus interior decorating and curtain and wallpaper supplier. Mrs. Dryer was very active in Columbus cultural and political affairs, serving as Chair of the Franklin County League of Women Voters, Daughters of the American Revolution, the Columbus Art League, and the YWCA.

Back to top
  Italian Enclave

In the late 1800s, the local community experienced an influx of Italian immigrants. Many came to the area to work in the quarries located west of the village called Arlington, later to be known as Marble Cliff. Families settled in the San Margarita community, and in the northwest side of what would become Grandview Heights. The original Italian community in Grandview dates to around 1900 and was located on Westwood and Glenn Avenues between Third and Fifth. This map was published 25 years ago in the GHMCHS publication, The Italian Heritage, and lists the resident families and the locations of their homes in the community around 1910-1915. At the time, a large pond was located to the west of Glenn Avenue. Assimilation of many of these immigrant families was neither immediate nor easy. Letters in the GHMCHS archives refer to the building of an eight to ten foot high fence, painted dark green, that was erected between Wyandotte and Glenn Avenues. It traversed the entire block and was ostensibly built to confine the Italian community's chickens, goats, and other farm animals. It was constructed around 1910 when Wyandotte Avenue was being developed. It is not known when it was removed.

Back to top
  Third Avenue Auto Repair

This building at 1381 W. Third Ave. was built and purchased in 1925, and has always been a business that cares for cars and their owners. Previously owned and operated as an auto repair business , never as a gasoline station, it was purchased in 1969 by George W. Burchfield (inset). His sons Ted and Larry worked for their father throughout their high school and college years. After serving in the Army, Larry came back to the garage to help his father and eventually took over the everyday operation in 1982. The business flourished as the Burchfield reputation grew. Repairing cars and dealing with customer's concerns about their vehicles became second nature with the business. This led to Larry offering advice to and purchasing cars for his customers.

Back to top
  Mineshaft Restaurant

This photograph, taken in 1984 by a Columbus Citizen Journal photographer, shows the construction of what would be the home of the Columbus Mineshaft Restaurant, on the bluff overlooking the quarry on the south side of West Fifth Avenue. The Mineshaft was owned by Carlos Garcia, who also had interest in the 94th Aerosquadron and the Confluence Restaurant. The restaurant was renamed the Miner's Den, and later became one of several Baby Doe's Matchless Mine restaurants across the country. They used a mining theme, which included an "entrance made to look like a mineshaft, flanked by various mining-related artifacts such as tipple cars on narrow gauge rails and rusting hoist machinery." The dining room had large windows that provided an excellent view of the quarry lake below. The Daimler Group razed the building in the mid 1990s.

Back to top

A former appliance store on Olentangy River Road at Third Avenue near Grandview became the new home of Warner Communication's QUBE interactive television effort in 1977. QUBE was a revolutionary approach to television, marrying cable and computer technology to give viewers the opportunity to interact with their TV. Viewers used a set-top box and remote with "five interactive buttons which were used to play games, shop at home, and answer questions" to send responses to the cable service. QUBE was the home of several groundbreaking shows, including Flippo the Clown's Magic Circus, America goes Bananaz, Soap Scoop, and Talent Search. Programming included what is now called Pay-Per-View, interactive games, children's shows, and local shows such as Columbus Alive. QUBE went out of business in 1985, and was replaced in the building by Lyon Video. The facility and an adjacent former bank were recently razed to make room for commercial developments, including Miller's Ale House. Photos and more extensive information on QUBE can be found online at http://www.qube-tv.com/qube-tv/index.html )

Back to top
  Howell Residence Living Room

A common practice in the late 1800s and early 1900s was to make personal photos into postcards, and they have become very common as historical records of the time. In March of 1910 Adrienne Frame Howell of 1100 Broadview Ave. (upper right) sent the picture postcard (left) of her new "living room" to her brother Augustus Frame of Athens, Ohio. Adrienne was obviously a devotee of the Arts and Crafts style of the period. She used the new term "living room" in her message on the postcard, and she sparsely furnished the room with mission style, craftsman oak furniture like the library table and rocker in the foreground. Her dining room (lower right) included simple oak furniture, an authentic Tiffany hanging lamp, and built-in cabinets typical of the period and style. An avid china painter, Adrienne maintained a studio on the second floor of her home for that creative purpose.

Back to top
  Amicon's Market

Gus Amicon (above in white apron) stands outside of the Amicon Market in 1938 waiting to be interviewed by a local radio station for a Taystee Bread promotion. Gus and his brother Rocco Amicon immigrated to the United States in the early 1920s, and built the store at the corner of Fairview and Fifth Avenue in 1930. The building is currently occupied by the One More Time clothing store. Starting with an inventory of only vegetables and fruits, they added refrigeration and over the next few years became known throughout the city as having some of the best meats in town. A chicken coop behind the store provided fresh birds, and steaks and bacon were cut fresh daily. In 1931 Rocco and his family moved into one of the two apartments on the second floor, and Gus lived in the other. In 1940 Gus opened his own store at First and Oxley, and in 1946 Rocco opened a popular restaurant in an addition next door. The restaurant closed in 1956, the store in 1958, and Gus retired from his store in 1969.

Back to top
  WPA Stadium Project

Started during the Great Depression, the federal WPA (Works Progress Administration) provided funds for construction, renovation and other projects across the country until the postwar boom in 1943. In Grandview the WPA was responsible for constructing, renovating and maintaining city school district buildings and grounds. The program earmarked $28,000 for the construction of a new stadium on the athletic field north of the GHHS on the condition that the district could contribute $3,000 towards the construction effort. The top photo shows WPA workers doing site preparation by erecting a barbed wire chain link fence. They are standing at the northwest corner of Fairview and Third Avenues. The bottom photo shows the athletic field just prior to construction of the stadium. The 1250 seat stadium was completed and dedicated on October 7, 1938. The construction was not without considerable political drama and controversy, including additional demands from the federal government. Visit the "History of the Grandview Schools" link at the GHMCHS web site at www.ghmchs.org for additional details.

Back to top
  Polka Dot School

This circa 1900 photograph shows students from what was at the time called the "Polkadot School" standing outside their one room schoolhouse. The school (inset) was located on the west side of Virginia Avenue near Chambers Road and got its name from the fact that it was equally integrated. It served the residents of Sellsville, an unincorporated community bordered by the King and Fifth Avenues (north and south) and the Olentangy River and Virginia Avenue (east and west). It was a vibrant, racially mixed community comprised of blacksmith shops, saloons, truck farms, slaughterhouses, and most notably the winter home of the Sells Brothers' Circus. These photographs are from the 1971 book, Sellsville Circa 1900, written by Carl Weisheimer. It is a rich, detailed compilation of the early history of the community. The names of all the students in the photograph are listed in the book.

Back to top
  John Chester

John Jonas Chester was a prominent Columbus attorney. Born in Newark Ohio in 1860, he was also an enthusiastic outdoorsman and real estate developer. In 1892 he purchased over three hundred lots in what would become in 1906 Grandview Heights. His development was called "Chester Heights", and its boundaries were present-day Elmwood Avenue to the east, Lincoln Avenue to the west, First Avenue to the north, and Goodale Boulevard to the south. In 1892 he also became a charter member of the "Bit and Bridal" riding club, whose members used the Urlin farmhouse, where Summit Chase is located today, as their club house. It was the first country club in central Ohio. John's son John Jr. also was an attorney and gained notoriety as the prosecuting attorney during the 1929 murder trial of Dr. James H. Snook, a prominent O.S.U. professor who was executed for murdering his mistress, an O.S.U. medical student.

Back to top
  Caroline Thomas Harnsberger

Caroline Thomas Harnsberger, born in 1902, lived with her family on her great grandfather's 358 acre farm covering most of the east side of what is now Grandview Heights. Their home was located on the hill above Goodale and Northwest Boulevards. Caroline was one of six children born to James O. Thomas and Edith Margaret Hiss Thomas. Caroline, pictured here sitting on the running board of her 1920's car, was an active swimmer in the "old swimming hole" located near Dublin Road and Grandview Avenue. She won several diving competitions held there. Caroline went on to garner many more accomplishments in her lifetime. She was educated at The Juilliard School of Music  and became a professional musician playing violin for the Chicago Women's Symphony and later with the Evanston Symphony, which she also helped establish. She was married at 23 in 1925, and as wife and mother she became a prolific author, publishing nine books on Mark Twain. She was one of the world's foremost Twain scholars. Among her published books was "A Pilot's Ready Reference Manual" . She obtained her pilot's license at the age of 50 in order to fly as co-pilot with her husband, Audley Harnsberger, and her two sons. That book sold more than 30,000 copies with 12 editions. Caroline returned to Grandview Heights after her husband's death and took up painting. She died in 1991 at the age of 89.

Back to top
  Methodist Episcopal Church

The parcel of land for this church was legally recorded as the West Fifth Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, which at the time was located at the north west corner of West Fifth Avenue and North Star Road in April, 1891. This new land was provided by The Reverend James S. Ricketts.  At the time the church was originally formed it met in private homes, until the Methodist Conference appointed the Reverend William C. Holliday as the first official minister. The membership grew and a chapel was built on the corner of West Fifth and North Star in 1902. The population of the area and the membership grew and this new church building was erected in Grandview Heights near the corner of West First and Ashland Avenue. The name was changed to Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church. The time at this location covered World War l and the depression years and a name change to Grandview Methodist Episcopal Church. This congregation continued to grow under the leadership of Frederick Ross, who was appointed in 1922. 1939 brought Paul Rugg to the steadily growing congregation and in that year the decision was made to buy two lots at the corner of Cambridge and West Fifth. In the next ten years the lots were paid for and construction was started on the now Trinity Methodist Church, renamed once more. The first service in the new building was held September 30, 1951. Today's congregation enjoys new additions to the building and updates to offices and a still growing attendance to the church that started with 64 neighbors and is still named Trinity Methodist Church.

Back to top

View next 6 months
August, 2020 - February, 2021

Go to Main ThisWeek Listing