CITY OF CRESTLINE -
- ITS GROWTH AND PROGRESS - SCHOOLS
AND SCHOOLHOUSES -
CHURCHES - THE WATER WORKS - OTHER INTERESTS.
A CITY that is set on
an hill cannot be hid, and the original proprietors of Crestline
seem to have acted upon this Scriptural text in the location of
their town, as, at the time of its laying out, it was supposed
to be the highest point in the State. Notwithstanding it
was a flat, swampy country, covered with a dense forest, it is
so far above the level of Lake Erie that no fears are
entertained, by even the most timid of its inhabitants, of
another "Drift Period," or overflow from that inland sea.
Crestline is highly favored as to its geographical location, and
possesses all the advantages necessary for becoming a prosperous
little city. It is in the midst of as rich a farming
community as "a crow ever flew over," its citizens are
intelligent, enterprising and industrious, and its railroad
facilities are unsurpassed in the whole country. When all
this is taken into consideration, there appears no visible
reason for Crestline remaining down in the mud and swamps of the
"Black Forest." A healthy, rousing business "boom" is all
that is required to waft it on to wealth and prosperity.
Some suggestions might be made as to improving and beautifying
the city, and acted on with considerable advantage to its
general appearance. Its architectural achievements, so
far, fire not above the average to be found in towns of its size
and attainments, and, as to buildings of merit, there are but
few, perhaps none, deserving of special notice, except its union
schoolhouse. Sidewalks might be improved as to
appearances, and with some safety to pedestrians, streets
graded, and a few of the old wooden buildings replaced with
substantial bricks. These old wooden buildings, sooner or
later, will terminate in a huge bonfire, and, as often occurs in
such cases, destroy perhaps thousands of dollars' worth of
As shown in the preceding chapter, Crestline is
thoroughly and decidedly a railroad town. It is these
great modern thoroughfares that gave it birth, and to these it
is indebted for its existence and growth. Although it is
situated in a rich farming country, yet, with Gallon, Bucyrus
and Shelby but a few miles distant, there was no special
necessity for Crestline, except the railroads, and, take these
away, it would soon become another edition of Goldsmith's
Deserted Village. Its farming community, though prosperous
and rich, is scarcely sufficient to save it from a lingering
death. The location at this point of the shops of the
Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railroad, and the hands
employed in these shops, have been the life of Crestline.
The Ohio & Pennsylvania Railroad, which was chartered in 1848,
as early as 1850 determined to make Crestline the western
terminus of their road. During the same year, the Ohio &
Indiana Railroad was chartered, and, in September, 1852, the
Directors of this road fixed their eastern terminus at
Crestline. The consolidation of these two roads and one
extending from Fort Wayne to Chicago, in 1856, formed the
present Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railroad, and Crestline
still remained the terminus of two divisions of this road, as it
had been before the consolidation. This caused the
erection of large shops at Crestline, and at present these shops
employ several hundred men, under the superintendence of
George W. Lowe. These shops and men have been the
means of bringing in other lines of business, establishing other
shops and foundries, and adding largely to the building-up of
the place. Of these may be mentioned the Crestline Lock
Works, which were established in 1870. A subscription of
$8,000 was made by the people for the purpose of putting up the
necessary buildings, on condition that a certain number of men
be employed. An excellent building was erected, and the
works opened under the charge of C. A. Faulkner & Co.,
who ran them one year. John A. Thoman & Co. then
bought them, and operated them until 1874, when they failed and
went into bankruptcy. A brass foundry was established in
1871, by G. W. Dyar, and is still in operation, doing
quite a large business.
The Continental Mills, the only institution of the kind
ever in Crestline, were built originally in 1856-57, by
Matthew Reed. These mills were improved at
different times, remodeled, and new machinery put in, until they
ranked among the best mills in the State. In June of the
present year (1880), they were burned to the ground. The
loss to the proprietors, L. G. Russell & Co., was heavy,
but, nothing daunted, preparations are being made to rebuild
them, and doubtless work in that direction will soon be begun.
Since the little stores were established by Newman,
Hall and Thoman, the mercantile business has grown to
be rather voluminous. Several very large dry goods and
general stores are now in operation upon a sound business basis,
while other lines of trade, common to a town of the commercial
standing of Crestline, are well represented by stirring and
energetic men. A large and growing business is
successfully carried on, and, to the casual visitor, there seems
absolutely nothing in the way of Crestline's future commercial
A bank was established in the town in 1867, by
Riblet, Hayes & Co., the gentlemen com-
prising the firm being Jacob Riblet, William Hayes
and John Newman, with E. Davis as cashier.
In 1869, they sold out to John A. Thoman & Co., who
organized the Citizens, Bank, an institution that continued in
operation until 1873, when it failed. In 1870, a bank was
organized by Daniel Babst and Jonathan
Martin, under the firm name of Babst, Martin &
Co., J. Babst, Cashier. In June, 1878, they sold to
Daniel Babst, Jr., and Jacob Babst, who have since
operated it as "Babst's Banking House," J. Babst,
Cashier. In 1876, the Farmers & Mechanics' Bank was
established by Booth & Stewart. It was
carried on by these parties until 1878, when they sold to
Stewart & Son, who continue still under the same name.
In addition to its business men, the place may boast of a number
of professional characters, who did, and do still, rank high in
their respective callings. Of the medical profession.
Dr. William P. Kernahan is mentioned as the first
physician to locate in Crestline. He came about 1851, and
practiced medicine until his death, which took place in 1859-60.
Dr. A. E. Jenner was the next physician. But,
as both the medical and legal professions are appropriately
written up in a preceding chapter of this work, we will not go
into details here. Among the gentlemen composing the bar of
Crestline, Daniel Babst, Jr., is ranked as one of the
ablest lawyers. He is Mayor of the town, and a downright
good fellow generally. To him we are indebted for the
principal part of the information and historical data from which
these chapters on Crestline are written, and whatever the reader
finds to be wrong or incorrect in them, he will attribute to
Dan; whatever is correct and good, we claim as our own
As Crestline grew in population, wealth and importance,
it began to dawn upon the good people that they displayed
sufficient style and greatness to allow of their village being
incorporated. This movement was effected March 3, 1858,
and the town was incorporated under the law regulating such
matters. Under this new phase of affairs, David
Ogden was elected the first Mayor, and William Knisely
the first Recorder; William P. Kernahan, E. Warner, Robert
Lee, M. C. Archer and William Boals, the first
Board of Trustees. The following is a list of the Mayors
who have served, in the order named: Next after Ogden, Silas
Durand, Samuel Hoyt, Jacob Staley, Dr. J. MoKean, George W.
Pierce, Nathan Jones, A. E. Jenner, Nathan Jones, Dr. Edwin
Booth and Dan Babst, Jr., the present (1880)
incumbent. P. D. Meister is the present Clerk.
The first school taught in the town of Crestline was by
a man named Edgerton, it is believed, and was taught in the old
log school house. We quote the following on educational
matters from a published article furnished us by Mr.
Babst: "In education, the town has not been neglected.
Before the arrival of railroads, a district log schoolhouse
stood about one and a half miles northwest of the present site
of the town, on the Leesville road. This had been
sufficient for educational purposes for many years, and a school
was taught there as late as 1850. In 1853, when Crestline
began to grow, a two-story frame school-building was erected in
the east part of the town, and, shortly aftreward, a
similar one was erected in the west part. These two
buildings served the purpose until 1868, when the present
union-school building was erected. This building, which is
an honor and an ornament to the place, was designed by Mr.
Thomas, and built by Miller, Smith &
Frayer, contractors. The Board of Education, under
whose supervision it was erected, were: Jacob Staley,
President, D. W. Snyder, John Berry, S. P. Hesser, C. Miller,
and Nathan Jones.
As an evidence that the people were satisfied with the manner in
which the board was conducting the work, the two members whose
terms of service expired before the building was completed, were
re-elected. The cost of the building and furniture,
together with the two lots upon which it stands, was $30,000;
and seldom, if ever, was there a better job done for this amount
of money. It is located on Columbus, between Union and
Cross streets; is of brick, three stories above the basement;
seventy-two feet in length by sixty-five in greatest breadth;
contains eleven schoolrooms, besides six smaller rooms, used for
offices, library, etc., and will accommodate 500 pupils.
This is the third house of the kind, as to size, in the county,
and the first in point of architectural beauty. The
children, proud of this gift, were admitted within its walls,
without formal ceremony, April 12, 1869. Adjoining the
lots on which the building stands, is the school park, which
consists of six town lots, and is beautifully diversified by
gravel walks, evergreens and shade-trees. In the center of
these grounds, an elegant fountain, topped with reactionary
wheels, which scatter refreshing showers, forming miniature
rainbows, affords illustrative lessons in natural philosophy, as
well as a cooler atmosphere on sultry days. Around the
base of the fountain are six hydrants for drinking purposes.
The building and its surroundings are, indeed, well calculated,
with an efficient corps of teachers, to improve the mental
faculties of its pupils in a superior manner. The members
of the Crestline School Board furnished a very important factor
to the problem of mental culture when they laid out these
beautiful grounds; and for this, the generation that is now
entering on school life will rise up and call them blessed.' "
The following are the names of the teachers now
employed in the Crestline schools, according
to grade: Mrs. Anna M. Mills, Superintendent; Joseph
H. Snyder, High School Department; John M. Talbott,
Senior Grammar; Nancy Jane McWhirter, Junior
Grammar; Isabella Lovejoy. Intermediate;
Emma Scott and Laura Stable, Secondary;
Lillie Kuhn, Ina Roger, Melissa
Culver, Mattie S. Robinson, Primary; J.
J. Beichler, Languages, principally German. The
present Board of Education of the town: "William
Robinson, President; F. M. Anderson, Secretary;
Benjamin Heffelfinger, Treasurer, and Reuben
Stahle, George Stoll and Louis
In concluding the school history of Crestline, we
append the following statistics of this special district:
|Balance on hand
September 1, 1879...................
|Local tax for schools
and schoolhouse purposes...
|Balance on hand
September 1, 1880......................
Not only has the
intellectual training of the children been well provided for,
but the spiritual needs of the older people of Crestline have
been well attended to, there being at this time no less than
seven churches in the town, occupied by as many different
denominations. The Gospel was introduced into the
community by those pioneer Christians, the Methodists.
They have the oldest organization in the town. In 1844, a
society of the Methodist Episcopal denomination was formed in
what was then called Minnerly's Schoolhouse (now
McCulloch's), and, as will be seen, some years before the
Crestline. The moving spirit in this religious enterprise
was John Lovitt, and, owing principally to his
influence, was the organization of a society effected. The
church which is standing on Thoman street was the first one
erected by this denomination. It was built in 1854,
through the personal exertions of Mr. Minnerly,
David Thrush, David Kerr, Francis
Conwell, Mr. Howland, Francis
Peppard and David White, who, with their wives
and portions of their families, were a few of the first members.
The present membership is about 250. The Sunday school
connected with this church is one of the largest and most active
in the town, with an average attendance of over 200.
The Trinity German Lutheran Church was the next in
chronological order in formation. It is located on Main
street, and was organized about the year 1851, in the
schoolhouse. The original members of this society were
Michael Webber, Henry Lambert,
George Hass, B. Faltz, John Keller and
others. In 1861, they erected the present church edifice,
at a cost of $3,000. The first minister was the Rev.
Mr. Meiser, who was followed by Rev. Hatsberger,
H. Smith, Haley and Martin Berkley, in the order
named. The latter, Rev. Mr. Berkley, is the present
Pastor, and his society comprises about seventy members.
An active Sunday school is connected with the church, conducted
by the officers, with a membership of about sixty. Its
organization as a Sunday school is coeval with that of the
Recently, a division occurred in this church, on the
ground of a difference of opinion in some matters of belief or
usage. This resulted in the formation of a new church.
In 1879, Peter Sleenbecker, Michael Reh,
Charles Christman, C. Morkel and others,
becoming dissatisfied regarding some matters, we believe, of
church government, withdrew from Trinity Church, and organized a
second German Lutheran society, and erected a church on East
Mansfield street, at a cost of $4,000. Their first
meetings, before the erection of their new church, were held in
the old German Reformed Church, which kept its doors open for
them. Rev. Mr. Shultz, of Galion, was
their first minister, and was followed by Rev. Mr.
Voegele, their present Pastor. Their Sunday-school
was organized about the same time as their church, its present
membership being about thirty. Numerically, the church is
The English Lutherans were the next in the field.
In 1854, a society of this denomination was organized by the
Rev. A. F. Hills. The original members of this
organization were David Lichtenwalter, A. W.
Stine, William Knisely, David
Keplinger, E. Warner, David McCartel,
D. Minich, Jane McCartel, Hannah Stine,
Elizabeth Warner and Isaac Miller.
Their early meetings were held in the private residences of the
members, though the present frame church was erected about the
same year the organization of the society occurred.
Rev. Mr. Hills was the first Pastor, followed by Revs. A.
B. Kirtland, D. I. Foust, H. K. Fenner and B. F. Crouse, the
present minister. The membership at this time is about
170. The Sunday school is large and active, numbering
about 160 pupils, under the superintendence of Henry
The German Reformed Church was organized in 1858, by
Rev. M. Stern, of Gallon. It is situated in the
northwest part of town, is of brick, and was built in 1862, at a
cost of $1,900. Of the original members, we may mention
David Bluem, Philip and Frederick
Eichorn, and Joseph Bender. Their
meetings were held in the English Lutheran Church until the
erection of their own building, in 1862. Their first minister
after Rev. Stern was Rev. John
Rettig, followed by Rev. John
"Winter. The present Pastor is Rev. F. W. Marcus,
and his flock consists of about 130 members. The
organization of the Sunday school was cotemporaneous with that
of the church, and now numbers 125 pupils, under the
superintendence of "William Lampert.
The Presbyterian Church of Crestline was organized
February 20, 1855, in a small schoolhouse, by Rev. I. N.
Shepherd, of Marion, Ohio, and Rev. Silas
Johnston, of Bucyrus. Previous to this, however,
Rev. Luke Dorland had collected the Presbyterians of the
place, and preached to them at various times and places for six
or eight months. After the organization, meetings were
occasionally held in the different church buildings already
erected. The principal original members were John S.
and Jane Smith, Alexander, Martha
J. and Margaret Patterson, John and Mary White,
Sampson Warden, John and Eliza Jane Banbright, P.
and Mary Mansfield, and Samuel E. and Isabella
Graham. The present church was erected in 1866-67.
Rev. J. P. Lloyd was the first minister after the
organization was effected, and continued in charge thirteen
years. He was succeeded by Rev. James Shields, who
remained seven years. The present Pastor, Rev. "W. W.
Macamber, succeeded Rev. Shields, November 18,
1879. The church at this time has a membership of about
200. A. M. Patterson is Superintendent of the
Sunday school, which is a large and active one, embracing 175
pupils, and was organized August 12, 1862.
The St. Joseph's Catholic Church is located on North
street, and dates its organization back to 1858, though services
were held by different ministers of the church many years before
this organization, in the houses of Catholic members. The
few Catholics scattered among the early settlers of this place
were frequently visited in this way, meetings held, and their
spiritual wants administered to before they were gathered into a
church. The church was organized by Father
Gallagher, of Cleveland, who was Pastor at Mansfield at the
same time. The early meetings were held principally in the
houses of Mike Dunn, Laurenz Raindl,
who, with Patrick Dunn, Mr. McNamara, J. A. Barrel and
Thaddeus Seifert, were the original members. The
present frame church was erected in 1861, at a cost of S1,000.
The membership numbers about 100 families, and the Sunday school
about 200 children. There is a day school in connection
with the church, with 170 pupils in daily attendance.
Those secret and benevolent orders which exert so great
an influence for good on society, are fully represented in
Crestline. Freemasonry, the oldest of all the benevolent
institutions, originated so long ago that no history tells of
its beginning, is highly moral in its teachings, its main
constituents being, a " belief in God, hope in immortality, and
charity to all mankind." It is represented in Crestline by
Arcana Lodge No. 272, and Crestline Chapter, No. 88. The
former was organized under its charter October 26, A. L. 5855.
This instrument of authority from the Grand Lodge of Masons of
Ohio, was issued by M. W. William B. Dodds, Grand Master,
and John D. Caldwell, Grand Secretary. The
following are the charter members: J. K. Straughan, Erastus
S. Spencer, Matthew Elder, J. McCluny, E. C. Gregg, J. J.
Bening, George Bewson, A. P. Cann, John Newman,
John Franz, John A. Thoman, J. Warden, J. Eldington, H. A.
Donaldson and H. Gusleman. The first officers
were, J. E. Straughan, Worshipful Master; E. S.
Spencer, Senior Warden; and Matthew Elder, Junior
Warden. The lodge now numbers sixty-one members, and is
officered by J .C. Williams, Worshipful Master; John
Donnelly, Senior Warden; Hugh Harrop,
Junior Warden; E. T. Cox,
Treasurer; David Ogden, Secretary; and J. J.
Crestline Chapter, No. 88, was chartered October 15,
1864, by M. E. Thomas J. Larsh, Grand High Priest, and
John D. Caldwell, Grand Secretary. The charter members
were, M. C. Archer, David Ogden, John H. Berry
William Boals, Benjamin Eaton, K. Lee, John McGraw, William
McGraw, Thomas Boorman, J. S. Potter, W. H. Shamp, H. W.
Stocking and J. H. Brewster. The first officers
were: M. C. Archer, High Priest; David Ogden, King;
J. H. Berry, Scribe; and Robert Lee, Secretary.
The Chapter has, in connection with Arcana Lodge, an excellent
hall, well appointed and furnished. The present officers
are: David Ogden, High Priest; Nathan Jones,
King; T. B. Fowler, Scribe; and D. W. Snyder,
Secretary. There was a Commandery of Knights Templar in
Crestline at one time, but this body has been removed to
Amici Lodge, No. 279, Knights of Honor, was chartered
on the 5th of September, 1876, with the following charter
members: S. E. Graham, C. W. Jenner, G. B. Edwards, H.
A. White, D. L. Zink, W. H. Carlisle, E.-S. Bagley, D. H.
Caffell, Daniel Babst, Jr., O. S. Campbell, E. M. Freese, G. W.
Zint, Truemen Daily, B. F. Miller, J. J. Kirtland, C. A.
Spencer, C. F. Frank, William Jones and E. M. Games.
Odd Fellowship, although far more modern in its origin
than Freemasonry, made its appearance in Crestline some time
before it. Crestline Lodge, No. 237, was instituted under
charter February 23, 1854 The charter members were, John I.
Kert, G. W. Keplinger, W. P. Kernahan, William
Knott, William Boals, M. C. Archer, Elijah
Johnson, William McGraw and Daniel Laugham. The
first officers were: William Knott, N. G.; W. P.
Kernahan, V. G., and G. W. Keplinger, Secretary.
There are now seventy members in good standing on the books, and
the officers are: David Brandt, N. G.; F. Delp,
V. G.; George Stoll, Treasurer; W. Ladd, Recording
Secretary, and H. Ogden, Permanent Secretary.
Crawford Encampment, No. 187, I. O. O. F., was instituted
June 15, 1875, by J. W. Parch, Most Worthy Grand High
Priest. The charter members were F. C. Berger,
G. G. Cruizen, F. Newman, J. W. Sanders, E. Davis, John Snyder
and J. H. Becker. The first officers were:
John H. Becker, C. P.; F. C. Berger, H. P.; George
G. Cruizen, S. W.; E. Davis, S.; John Snyder,
Treasurer. There are on the rolls the names of twenty
members, and the following is the list of officers at present:
D. W. Brant, C. P.; M. Shumaker, H. P.; J. P.
Sheelrud, S. W.; J. Taggart, S.; J. H.
Becker, T., and P. Delp, J. W.
Jackson Lodge, No. 516, I. O. O. F. (German), was instituted
July 3, 1872, by Henry Lindenberg, Grand
Representative. The charter members were F. Newman,
Jacob Staley, George Stoll, J. P. Zimmermacher, J. H.
Becker, Adam Neff, John Bauer, John Ecinger and
John Cook. The first officers were: George
Stoll, N. G.; Jacob Staly, V. G.; J. H. Becker,
Secretary, and F. Newman, Treasurer. The present
officers are: John Schart, N. G.; John
Herbertshauser, V. G.; Philip Grinenstein, Secretary,
and J. H. Becker, Treasurer.
The people of Crestline take great pride in their
water-works, and, indeed, it is an enterprise to be proud of.
There is nothing like a bountiful supply of good, pure water.
No poison bubbles on its surface, no blood stains it, nor does
its foam bring madness and murder. Pale widows and
starving orphans weep not burning tears in its depths. But
everywhere it is a thing of beauty, and gleams in the dew-drop,
sings in the summer rain, and shines in the free ice gems, until
turned to living jewels. And always it is beautiful—that
beverage of life, health-giving water. The tomb of
Moses is unknown, but the weary traveler slakes his thirst
at the well of Jacob. The gorgeous palace of the
wisest and wealthiest of monarchs, with cedar and gold and
ivory, and even the great temple of Jerusalem, hallowed by the
visible glory of the Deity himself, are gone, and of the
architecture of the Holy City not one stone is left upon
another. But Solomon's reservoirs are as perfect as
ever, and the pool of Bethsaida commands the pilgrim's
respect at the present day. The columns of Persepolis are
moldering into dust, but its cisterns and aqueducts remain to
challenge our admiration. And if any work of art shall
still rise and flourish, we may well believe that it will be
neither a palace nor a temple, but some vast aqueduct or
reservoir, built for the benefit of of human kind. And, if
any name is deserving who, in everlasting honor, it is that of
the man, his day, sought the happiness of his fellow-men rather
than their glory, and linked his name to some great work of
utility and benevolence.
In 1871, the necessary legislation was obtained to
enable the town to issue bonds for the construction of the
works. In September of the same year, the work was
commenced by constructing a dam at the springs from which the
water is brought. These springs are in Richland County, of
the very purest water, and in sufficient volume to afford a
supply to a much larger city than Crestline, the actual
discharge of the springs being ninety gallons of water per
minute. The water is brought a distance of about four
miles from the springs, through wooden pipes, into a reservoir,
and supplied by mains laid through the city. The springs
are at an elevation of about 170 feet above the level of the
town, which gives sufficient power and pressure to carry into
the highest buildings, or throw a stream over them, through hose
attached to hydrants. The total cost of construction, in
round numbers, was little short of $100,000. There were
bonds issued to the amount of $80,000, which, with three years'
interest, increased the cost to very nearly the sum first
The enterprise of furnishing Crestline with pure water
was due mainly to G. H. Lee, Henry Shoman and G. W.
Pierce, and to their energy and exertions the work stands an
en- during monument. The average expense per annum of
furnishing this water supply is $450, while the income amounts
to about $1,600. Not the least of the benefits accruing
from this public-spirited enterprise, is the advantage afforded
in case of fires, when all that is necessary is to attach hose
to the hydrants, and a stream of water can be thrown far enough
and high enough for all practical purposes. One of the
beauties, if it is no special benefit, of the reservoir, is that
it is well stocked with goldfish.
The spring that supplies the water to the city, as
already stated, is in Richland County. It is mentioned at
some length in Howe's " Historical Collection of Ohio," and also
in Butterfield's "History of Crawford's Campaign against
Sandusky." The latter work, in describing the march of
Crawford's army, thus refers to it: "Thence they passed
near the spot where was afterward the Indian village of
Greentown, in what is now Ashland County. From this point
they struck across the Rocky Fork of the Mohican, up which
stream they traveled until a spring was reached, near where the
city of Mansfield now stands, in Richland County; thence a
little north of west, to a fine spring five miles further on, in
what is Springfield Township—a place now known as Spring Mills,
on the line of the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railroad,
east of the town of Crestline, in Crawford County -
where, on the evening of the 1st day of June (1782), the army
halted and encamped for the night." Thus, to sum up in a
word the Crestline water-works, there are few cities, perhaps,
in the State, as well supplied with water — pure water—as the
thriving and energetic little city of Crestline. It is not
the water from some lazy river, reeking with the filth of a
hundred towns and cities upon its banks, and filtered through
charcoal and sand to purify it, but it is brought pure and fresh
from the fountain head, as it were, from a flowing spring,
bursting fresh from the ground.
The most destructive fire that Crestline has ever known
occurred in September, 1867. The entire block from the
Continental Hotel to Bucyrus street was burned out, and a heavy
loss entailed upon the property-owners of the district burned,
though the full extent of the loss we could not learn.
There have been numerous other fires, but none so destructive as
the one just mentioned. The burning of the Continental
Mills, last summer, was quite a blow to the town, as well as to
their owners. The city has a regularly organized fire
department, two engines, with a full supply of hose, etc., but,
since the building of the water-works, the engines are not used,
the force of the water being sufficient to throw a stream, when
hose is attached, 120 feet high.
The hotel business has been overdone, and some of them
are standing idle, or have been converted to other uses. The
Continental, kept by Russell & Co., is a first class
house. It is heated by steam, lighted by gas, manufactured on
the premises, has every convenience for the comfort of its
guests, and charges accordingly. One excellent feature is
the establishment in the building, above the gentlemen's
waiting-room, of a reading-room, where the waiting passengers
may while away a pleasant hour, among the latest magazines and
papers, in a comfortable room.
"At present, there are five dry goods stores, three
drug, one book, three jewelry, and a large number of grocery
stores and saloons; two banks, one publishing-house, an
iron-foundry, employing half a dozen hands, two wagon and
carriage shops, one planing-mill, five lawyers, six physicians,
besides the usual number of mechanics in every department of
labor. The Continental Flouring-mill was erected in 1860
(now burned). Two saw-mills were erected in an early day
(between 1850 and 1856), one by Lang & Miller, the
other by S. B. Coe; both were within the limits of the
present corporation; both have disappeared. From these
observations, it will be seen that the town is a live and
energetic business place.''
The press of Crestline, the "art preservative of all
arts," is at present represented by the Crestline Advocate.
Several other newspapers have been established in the town,
which flourished for a season and then died. The first
newspaper of Crestline was the Express, a weekly paper,
and was started in 1853, and edited by C. M. Kenton.
The office was over Brewer's store, and the publication
of the paper was continued for about six months, when for some
cause, most probably a lack, either of appreciation or financial
support, it "gave up the ghost."
" The Crestline Advocate issued its first number
in July, 1869. Its size was 16x20, and it was folio in
form, edited and published by Adam Billow.
About six months after the establishment of the Adcocate,
it was enlarged to six columns to a page, and from that to eight
columns—its present size. It was first published in
Billow's dwelling, and then removed to its present quarters, in
the second story of the Masonic hall building. Adam
Billow died. May 20, 1876, since which time the paper has
been owned and conducted by D. C. Billow. The press
is operated by power
received from the water-works. The Advocate is independent
in politics, has a good patronage, is ably managed and
conducted, and may be termed a flourishing country newspaper.
About the year 1875 or 1876, a Democratic paper was
established by A. E. Jenner, called the Crawford County
Democrat. It continued about three years, when it followed
the Express to that "bourne from whence no traveler returns."
We believe there have been one or two other efforts in the
newspaper line, in Crestline, but we have no facts of a definite
character in regard to them.
The burial of the dead is a sacred duty, and in all
ages and all countries more or less respect is shown the memory
of the departed. Abraham said, "Let us bury the
dead out of our sight." A cemetery was laid out a few
years after the laying out of the town. Efforts have been
made by a few persons to have the grounds beautified, but so
far, they have failed, and only slight improvements have been
made by private individuals.
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