Monday, October 28, 2013

Brownhelm Township Schoolhouse

Look north on Morse Road towards the juncture with Banks Street.
 N. Ridge Road is off in the distance.
On Sunday afternoon, I took a short drive out to Brownhelm Township (one of my favorite places) to see how the fall color was coming along. After making the obligatory trip to Mill Hollow, I kept going west on North Ridge Road and turned south on Banks Street, where I found this old schoolhouse (above) at the juncture of Banks and Morse Road.

According to Brownhelm – Its School and Its People (1991) the school was one of 10 district schools that existed in 1890. This was the District No. 8 schoolhouse.

I also photographed the school from the other direction (below).

It's funny how a few clouds and a different angle make the same photo subject look kinda spooky.
In case you're interested, you can see the schoolhouse's location on this 1874 map (below). You can also see N. Ridge Road winding its way through what is now known as the Vermilion River Reservation.
Note the name J. H. Heyman on the map. According to the Lorain County Metro Parks website, German immigrant John Heyman had purchased Benjamin Bacon's mill after he died in 1868. Heyman later sold the mills to Frederick Bacon (Benjamin's youngest son) in 1879. 
Click here to visit the Vermilion Views website, and scroll down to see a nifty photo of what we now call Mill Hollow in 1876. Rich Tarrant also provides a nice capsule history of the various mills in that location.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've seen that old school. It's along a road that almost seems like a dirt one, isn't it? The Facebook page "Firelands Schools Old Buildings" would be interested in those photos.

What a neat picture of Mill Hollow. Would love to see what that view looks like today in a photo.

Anonymous said...


My partner and I love to hike at Mill Hollow and one of the trails leads to the buttresses of the old Cooper Foster Park road bridge. Do you know if any photos exist of this bridge? I think it was taken out in an early Spring thaw/flood in the 1960's? Either then or during the 4th of July Flood in 1969? Looking at Google Earth, and knowing where the road dipped down into the valley where Cooper Foster crossed Vermilion Road I see the lower tree line marking the trail. Not even sure why it is so interesting to me but if you have anything on it please let me know. Thank you!!

Dan Brady said...

Thanks for the comment! I'm sorry I don't have anything in my files about that bridge but I will see what I can dig up through the limited contacts/sources I have for that area.