Posts Tagged ‘Beechwold’
The zoo in Beechwold may have been one of the earliest sites of the Columbus Clippers!
According to Joe Santry, Historian at The Columbus Clippers, “In 1895 the Columbus Statesmen opened the season playing at The Zoo Baseball Grounds. The grounds were owned by the Zoological Garden company. Could this be the old zoo grounds in Clintonville? …The team played at the Zoo Grounds for a couple of months before moving to Recreation Park in German Village…
“In 1895, according to the local papers, Columbus played at ‘the Zoo Grounds’ (May 21), ‘Zoo Baseball Park’ (May 4), ‘Zoo Park’ (May 5). There are stories about temporary grandstands, then a ‘new grandstand’ (May 12).
“By June 1, however, the OSJ reports that the club now ‘holds the lease on the Schiller street grounds’ and the club ‘will play the last game on the Zoo grounds this afternoon and the work of removing the grandstand, bleachers, and fences to Recreation Park’ will follow.
“The problem is how inconsistently the papers reported the games that season. The more I research this the more I think the Zoo Grounds park was in or near some type of amphitheatre on the zoo grounds. The park had other smaller attractions prior to 1905.”
Scott Caputo, librarian at the Columbus Metropolitan Library, found this article in the 8-8-1904 Ohio State Journal. It mentions a drill field and a ball game used by several masonic groups at the Zoo. This, shortly before it closed down.
Also linked here is a image/map of the old zoo, courtesy of Mary Rodgers of the Clintonville Historical Society.
Frank Sweigart worked for Charles F. Johnson for eight years. Sweigart was a sales manager, treasurer and then advertising manager under Johnson. He was also on the educational committee of the Columbus real estate board for two years. and a member of the state educational committee. He eventually resigned from Charles Johnson’s employ to become vice president and general manager of J. E. Martindill Inc., and was in charge of Marburn, a country estate development on Olentangy River Rd. This is a picture of him in 1923, given to me by his granddaughter Karen.
He eventually owned the house which stood just south of the southwest corner of Henderson and High Street. Here’s a picture of his wife, Anna Sweigart, and six of her children on the porch of that house at 22 Aldrich Rd. Her sister is also in the picture. Frank Sweigart is the one taking the photo. (Photos courtesy of Karen Sweigart Longava.)
Sam Roshon, a former history department librarian at the Columbus Metropolitan Library, wrote this article about the original zoo for the present Columbus Zoo. The two zoos aren’t related except by sharing in the happy memories of Clintonville residents.
This wonderful arts and crafts-styled home on West Beechwold Boulevard was the gatekeeper’s house for the Columbus Zoo, originally located where Old Beechwold is today. It was renovated in the 1990s in the Arts and Crafts style and still has the original cistern.
Joseph A. Jeffrey, a Columbus manufacturer, built this house around 1906 as a summer home. The land had previously been a zoo. Jeffrey’s wife called their estate Beechwalde, meaning “beech forest.” Jeffrey sold his property in 1914 to Charles H. Johnson, a Columbus land developer, who changed the name to Beechwold (because it was easier to spell) and sold plots for $1200. (Photo courtesy of the Columbus Metropolitan Libraries)
The old barn, an outbuilding of the Columbus Zoo, and eventually the Jeffrey summer home in Beechwalde, still stands and was remodeled, on the request of the homeowners, by students at the Interior Design Institute in 1983 for use as a guest house. (Photo courtesy of Terry Miller)
The photos you are seeing here are lovely images of the Beechwold area (west side of High Street) before, or as, the land was being developed into the housing subdivision we know today as “Old Beechwold.” Some of these photos were later used in a promotional brochure–a lovely brochure called “Beechwold the Beautiful,” with a dark green heavy paper cover tied with dark green string with engravings by the Bucher Engraving Co., illustrations and text by Stacy G. Taylor, and printed by the Stoneman Press Company. This same brochure has recently been reprinted by the TWIG organization for use as a fundraiser.
Why the spelling change? Previous owners Joseph Jeffrey had named his country estate “Beechwalde,” and it was changed to “Beechwold” for marketing purposes (=easier to spell) when the land was subdivided and sold for housing units by Charles Johnson.
These photographs were given to me by the granddaughter of Frank Sweigart; Frank worked for Charles F. Johnson for eight years. I am mounting the Beechwold photos in several postings to facilitate some comparisons.
(Images courtesy of Karen Sweigart Longava)
Compare these two images–a photo (albeit reversed) from the collection of Karen Longava Sweigart (granddaughter of Frank Sweigart), and a watercolor print from the promotional brochure from the early days of Old Beechwold. Did the photo inspire the watercolor? (Images courtesy of Karen Sweigart Longava)
Compare these two images of this wooden structure located somewhere on Beechwold property as the property was being subdivided into a housing development. You can click on the thumbnails to see them in a larger format.
The first photograph shows tire tracks driving right up to the opening between the two sections of the structure. In that photo there are window panes in the windows, and the structure is surrounded by brush and foliage.
In the second photo, the windows and the foliage are gone. A different photo of the structure during this era is found in my book, Clintonville and Beechwold.
I have been unable to find anyone who remembers the structure first-hand. (The first photo is courtesy of Karen Sweigart Longava; the second photo courtesy of Amy Westervelt.)