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GEHRING HOME FIRST HISTORIC OHIO HOMESTEAD
September 12, 1985


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Pix #1 - The Gehring home at 612 Cherry Street, has become Fostoria's first Historic Ohio Homestead.

Pix #2 - Joseph and Marge Gehring, proud recipients of the certificate which permits their home to receive honor from Ohio Historical Preservation Office.

Pix #3 - Visitors and others passing by can see the brass plaque mounted beside the front door, recognizing the house as a Historical Ohio Homestead.

Sunday, June 30, 1982, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Gehring, 612 Cherry St., celebrated an event that few families are privileged to do...living in the house that has been continuously owned and lived in by them and their earlier generations for 100 years.

At that time, Potluck carried an article about the family, the celebration and the house that is more than 100 years old, but it was erroneously called a Centennial Home. Actually as of 1982, the house had been possessed by the family and lived in for 100 years, but was to be officially recognized as a Historic Ohio Homestead (the correct name) requires some investigation and certification by The Ohio Historical Society, which was finally completed for the Gehrings in 1984.

FOSTORIA'S FIRST OHIO HOMESTEAD

Fostoria and the Gehrings now have a Historic Ohio Homestead, the first one in town. The program is authorized by the Ohio General Assembly.

The Gehring house has been in the family since 1882 when Michael Lannen bought it from Robert C. Cables and his wife Mary E. The Caples lived in a brick house that stood where The Church of the Nazarine is now.

Lannen paid Capled $850 for two lots with the house already on them...the same house that exists there today, but it was updated in recent years. No one knows the date the house was built.

Michael Lanne, born in Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1850, came to the U.S. in 1871, and was naturalized in 1876.

Lannen and his wife Margaret Anne (McFaland) reared five children in the house. They were William, Mary Ellen, Alice, Joseph and James.

Mary Ellen married Edward John Gehring. At the death of Lannen and his wife.

Mary Ellen and her husband acquired the property and reared their family of two. Edward and Joseph, in the home to make three generations living there.

HOUSE NOW OWNED BY THE GEHRINGS

Today the house is owned by Joseph Gehring and his wife Margie. They reared three of their children (a fourth generation) in the house. They are Kathleen, Michael and Jeffrey. Three of their children died at birth or shortly thereafter.

The reason Michael Lannen bought the house was because he thought it was a good location close to his work. He was section foreman on the Atlantic & Lake Erie Railroad, which was located just south of the house a few roads. That railroad in later years became the Lake Erie & Western.

Joseph and Marge take great pride in having the first house in Fostoria to be named as a historic homestead. The honor carries the privilege of having a plaque (shown in one photo taody) and a certificate for display.

OTHERS MAY QUALIFY FOR AWARD

There are other Fostoria homes that may be entitles to the same honor if they can meet the qualifications. Here is the address to write for complete details: Ohio Historical Preservation Office, 1985 Velna Ave., Columbus, OH 43211. Telephone: 1-614-466-1500. Briefly, the house must have been in existaence for 100 years, and it must be owned and lived in by someone in that family for that period of time.

Centennial Homes have nothing to do with Heritage Houses, a program sponsored by The Antique Study Club, a group in Fostoria that awards plaques to home- owners who meet the guidelines established.

READER FEEDBACK: ILER SERIES STILL BRINGS COMMENTS

For such a small village, the Iler articles have drawn an exceptional amount of comment from readers. In fact, I have lost count of the number and names of so many people who stopped me in my trips about town to twll me how much they enjoyed reading about that small village.

One person, whom I won't name, rebuked me for contacting him when writing the article because of the many things he could have told me. Too late now.

INTERESTING WEATHER DATA FROM THE PAST

On the bottom of a data sheet I used in writing the Iler articles, there was some information about the weather, compiled by John Crocker in the 1800's.

According to Crocker, Feb. 7, 1835, was the coldest temperature ever recorded. Other interesting note:

January 26, 1826 - 21 below
April 10, 1826 - 5 inches of snow
January 20, 1827 - 31 below
March 29, 1828 - great flood
December 22, 1830 - 31 below
February 7, 1831 - 42 below.

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