NOTICE: This site will go offline July 1st, 2024.
Please contact if you are interested in maintaining this site after July 2024.


User Rating:  / 0

  ChurchesService Clubs & OrganizationsArea SchoolsHistoryInnovations
PoliticsWeb Links


July 12, 1979


PIX #1 - These two houses were the American House before it was moved and divided into two separate dwellings.

PIX #2 - The American House, when it was located on site where Masonic Temple is now, on East Tiffin Street.

Prior to the Masonic Temple's erection on East Tiffin Street, that site was occupied by the American House, one of many hotels which Fostoria boasted during the "boom years" in the later part of the last century.

The accompanying photo shows a partial view of the old hotel. Presumably, the man in the photo is John G. Kirschner, the proprietor.

The cornerstone-laying of the Masonic Temple took place in 1913. The removal of the American House from the site presumably took place in 1912.

When the American House was built is not known positively, but the first time it was listed in available city directories was in 1877, when John Hollinger was proprietor. After that there were other proprietors: F. Gotwallis, 1889- 90; Yochum and Co. 1893-96; Geo. T. Yager 1902-03. It appears John G. Kirschner was the proprietor from 1903 until 1912, when it was purchased and moved by John Longacre.

Lonacre purchased the hotel and had it moved to the 400 block of East Tiffin Street, where it was divided into two parts and remodeled into separate houses.

Today, those houses are still un use, and carry the house numbers of 420 and 426. William Risner and his wife Margie reside at 420. Risner is a machine operator at Bendix. William J. Goddard and his wife Jo Ann reside at 426. He is a wire drawer at Seneca Wire.

Originally, Longacre rented the houses for a period of time, but later sold them, according to Edna (Longacre) Gilhuly, his daughter, a Fostoria school teacher for many years who still resides here.

The Longacre family lived on East Tiffin Street at that time and Mrs. Gilhuly recalls walking past the two houses on the way uptown. She also recalls that as a girl she had the job of cleaning out the attic of the old hotel after her father purchased it.

Longacre was a well known Fostoria back then, having been in the plumbing and heating business, and consequently was busily engaged plying his trade for all the houses that were built during that period, many of which had hot water heating systems.

Two interesting aspects of the photo of the American House are the window sign, advertising rooms at $1 per day. and the Pabst Milwaukee emblem at the right hand corner of the building.

In 1835, a hotel was built of logs on Tiffin Street, according to a Seneca County history published in 1896. It was called the Dutch House. Possibly it was replaced by the American House in later years.

Occasionally, the Potluck column will report on other hotels that existed in Fostoria in past years.


That article brought a letter from Joe Arnold, former Fostorian named in the story, living in Longmont, Col., for the last 19 years. A photo enclosed with the letter verifies he hasn't changed much in appearance.


Dorothy Vanderhodd, after reading the dairy story, remembered a humorous incident. A large number of western horses had been brought to the Jim Kelley farm, west of town. The Union Dairy bought a couple of them. Dorothy's uncle, Bob Heckman, was driving one of the horses on the milk route. As he delivered to a customer, something scared the horse and it took off down North Street, spilling milk in every direction as it ran wildly.

LeRoy Rhoades called to say that O.D. Wells, who owned the dairy by the same name, lived in Arcadia. He picked up milk from farmers in the Arcadia area, then brought it to Fox Dairy for pasteurizing and bottling under his name. He delivered to his customers in Fostoria and also in the Arcadia area.

L.O. Kisabeth called to remind me that I had not listed Rowe Dairy with others. As soon as he mentioned it I remembered but it was not on the list furnished by Kaubisch Library because it was located on the Rowe Farm and thus was not in the city directory.

Kisabeth also reminded me that Mrs. John (Leila) Dreitzler, still living in Fostoria, is the daughter of E.W. Kipka, one of those in the dairy business back in 1896. I telephoned her. She enjoyed the articles and had sent copies to her daughters.

The Union Dairy was not located in the building where Danielak Electric is now on East North Street as I said in the story. In fact I had placed Union Dairy there in an earlier story and it had been called to my attention, but I could not substantiate another location. since the dairy story appeared I have dug into it and must admit an error on my part I was relying on my memory, plus listings in old city directories. I have found errors in the old directories.

In about 1938, Hummel Motor Sales occupied the building where Danielak Electric is now. I am told in earlier years a hatchery was in the building. Union Dairy was located next to what is noe Danielak Electric. Sorry!

Many other readers stopped me on the street to express their appreciation for the dairy story and remind me of some incidents not included in the story...too numerous to mention.


In 1927, after Jack Wainwright's band finished a spring tour, they recorded three records for the New York Phonographic Record Company. Betty Bossler, West Ridge Drive, called to say that recently she caught one of the records at a garage sale. She reported that the record was in good shape and sounded good.

Don Kinnaman, Phoenix, Ariz., reported some anecdotes which were not in the series of articles. He recalls his day, Floyd, and his uncle Bill Franke, telling this one:

"After Fostoria had gotten into the active bands competition, it seems that the size of the school put Fostoria in a class "B" or "C" rating, and Jack wanted to produce a band large enough to qualify for an "A" rating. He asked some kids who were in study hall if they wanted to learn to march and wear a uniform. He was overwelmed with more than enough to swell the ranks. He gave them "plugged" instruments and taught them to march and wiggle their fingers like playing. Eventually all of the kids took lessons and got to play for real. That's how Jack got rated "A".

Park Burtscher got credit for this trick, according to Kinnaman. When the Joliet, Ill., band won first place in the 1926 national contest here in Fostoria, their trophy came up missing. For some unknown reason it found its way into Fostoria's trophy case for some time, before it was returned to its rightful owner. Ask Burtscher about the accuracy of this story.

One of Burtscher's favorite antics whenever band photos were taken was to get into the picture twice, according to Kinnaman. Photographer Weaver had a scanning camera that moved over the length of the group. As soon as it passed Burtscher he would hurry to the goup and get in the picture again.

Kinnaman continues: It was through the efforts of "Uncle" Jack that I learned to like music so well, and I can still whistle some of the stuff we used to play at Limberlost camp in Indiana. Most of it I have been able to acquire for my personal library of classical music, but some of it I have been unable to locate. We used to play an overture by Felix Mendelssohn, called the Military, but I have never heard it performed by any band or orchestra since, and can't find an opus number in any bibliographies of Felix. The band used to play the Wedding Bride's Song, from Karl Goldmark's Rustic Wedding and it was not until recently that I got it to enjoy once more.

Quoting from a letter from The American Bandmasters, Association, where Wainwright memorabilia is stored and displayed:

"Thank you so much for sending us your excellent series of articles in The Review Times. Mr. Heutte, our music librarian and I enjoyed very much reading the articles, and we will add them to our growing collection of information on Jack Wainwright"

"Of course the Wainwright material will be on display. Mose of our collections are on display periodically and we will show the Wainwright Collection when band oriented organizations are planning to visit. At other times it is carefully shelved and available to scholars for research".

"Thank you again for your gift and for your interest in American Bandmasters Association Research Center".

Pearl Tubiash

ABA Research Center


The following excerpted from a letter from Carolyn (Kinnaman) Hyte, after the Potluck article about Don Kinnaman was published:

"The Review Times sort of keeps us in touch and we look forward to each issue expecially when it is time for Potluck. You will never know how much we love your column, Paul. It is so well-written and we have gleaned a lot of knowledge from it. I appreciated the one you did on Don and believe me, how he was thrilled".

Among other things, Carolyn's letter told about their friendship with "Miss Kitty" of "Gunsmoke" fame. More about that later.

Mrs. Hyte and son Jim, moved to Phoenix, Ariz., four years ago, to be near her brother Don and family.

Top of page

Hosted by Noguska Computer Center Serving Fostoria's computer needs since 1973!