The Little Miami Railroad Company was organized under charter of March 11, 1836, to construct and maintain a railway from Springfield to Cincinnati, by way of Xenia. Work was begun in 1837, and the road was open for traffic from Cincinnati to Milford, in December, 1842; to Xenia, in August, 1845; and to Springfield, in August, 1846.-a length of eighty-four miles. Originally, the track was laid with strap iron, but was relaid with T-rail in 1848. November 30, 1853, a partnership contract was made with the Columbus and Xenia Railroad Company, by which the roads of the two companies were united, and worked as one line. January 1, 1865, the companies jointly leased the Dayton and Western Railroad, and purchased, February 4, 1865, at judicial sale, the Dayton, Xenia and Belpre Railroad, from Xenia to Dayton, sixteen miles. November 30, 1868, this partnership was dissolved, and an intercontract made, by which the Columbus and Xenia was leased to the Little Miami for ninety-nine years, renewable. December 1, 1869, this company leased its road, property, and leased lines, for the term of ninety-nine years, renewable forever, to the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and St. Louis Railway Company, by whorls it is now operated, constituting the Little Miami Division of that company's line.

The Columbus and Xenia Railway Company was chartered March 12, 1844, and was opened for business February, 1850; formed a union contract with the Little Miami Railway, November 30, 1853; finally became merged in the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and St. Louis, as above explained.

When this county was first settled, and for many years after, the only thoroughfares known to the pioneer were the meandering trails through the woods, whose course was marked by blazes upon the trees. These were succeeded by cutting out the trees, and clearing out a passage wide enough for a wagon, spanning the swamps


with corduroy bridges. As the population increased, regular roads were laid out and worked. The next step in progression was the pike, succeeded by the railroad, the acme of rapid and easy transportation. Then, the shipments were made to Cincinnati, and other points, by the ox team, requiring many days; now, produce is sent in a few hours. Then, the postmaster, on his pony, carried the mail in his hat; now, we have all the facilities of intercommunication, which enables us to speak to friends thousands of miles away in a few seconds.


In 1826 this county had the following:

Xenia Factory, near Xenia-Spinning, weaving, fulling, and carding.

Oldtown Factory-Carding and fulling.

McFarland's Factory, on Massie's Creek-Spinning, carding, and fulling.

Bradford's Factory.

Smith's Factory, on Beaver Creek. Sayers & Wells', on Little Miami.

Laughead's, on Yellow Springs branch.

Petham's, Xenia.

Bonner's, near Xenia.


It was the custom of the early inhabitants of this State, to engage their poor and destitute-that is, when application was made to the township trustees, for the keeping of one in destitute circumstances, he was bound for a certain terns to the lowest bidder ; it was the duty of the successful applicant, to feed, clothe, and properly care for his charge. This was not strictly in accordance with the old abolition idea of the people, but, owing to the very few who required public aid, could not be remedied. Time, rolled on, and with the tide of immigration, did the number of destitute, and helpless in-


crease, making it apparent that measures must be adopted to provide for their care and comfort. To this end, a bill providing for the "Establishment of County Poor Houses," was passed by the Ohio Legislature. Any county, having within her limits a sufficient number of paupers, was empowered to purchase grounds, and erect suitable buildings thereon, to which all the infirm and needy were to be admitted. Thus was the former custom of selling human beings, as so many articles of furniture, abolished forever.

The commissioners of Greene County, in compliance with the above mentioned act, purchased in 1827, one hundred acres of land, on what is now known as the Dayton pike, one and one-half mile west of Xenia. The lands were located on both sides of the road, being about equally divided by the same. The net cost of the ground was seven hundred dollars. The commissioners appointed the following to serve as directors : George. Galloway, George Townsley, Josiah Davidson. On the tract located north of the road, just in front of a small brook which crosses the northern and eastern portions of the farm, and immediately to the rear of the site of the building now used as a " Children's Home," was erected the first building. The object of locating the house on that remote spot was due to the fact that water could here be obtained in abundance, and without much exertion. The building was constructed of brick; its length sixty feet, its breadth eighteen feet, and one story in height. William Ellis, a benevolent Quaker, was elected superintendent, although called keeper in those days. Under his careful management, the affairs of the institution were well conducted, and the inmates properly cared for. In 1831, William McIntosh was elected superintendent; he served until 1833, when B. T. Marshall was elected, who was in 1834 succeeded by John Crowl. Mr. Crowl continued in office until 1838, at which time John Gibson was appointed. The gradual increase in the number of inmates necessitated the erection of a more commodious building. In 1840, a brick structure, 40x100, and two stories high, was erected in front of the old building, and the latter torn down. Some years later a wing was added to the east end of the house; a "crazy" building, to be used for the confinement of insane inmates, was erected a few steps east of the new building. A considerable portion of the farm had been improved,, and was under cultivation.

John Bowers was appointed superintendent, and served five years, and was succeeded by Jonathan Adams. During the time inter-


Vening between 1846 and 1874, the following gentlemen served in the capacity of superintendent, at stated intervals : Jonathan Adams, John Gibson, William Mayner, John W. Mayner, George Barnes. Mr. H. Gram was appointed in 1874, and has occupied the position to this day.

The constant increase in the number of inmates ere long proved the inadequacy of the old building; in view of which fact a new building was erected in 1870, on that portion of the. farm south of the Dayton pike, at a cost of $75,000, including out buildings, steam fixtures, etc.


The grounds of the Greene County Infirmary are located on both sides of the Dayton pike, one and one-half mile west of the city of Xenia, and contain one hundred acres of land, sixty of which are in a state of cultivation, the remaining forty being used for the lawns, building sites, etc. Upon arriving at the grounds we pass through the entrance on the north. Proceeding on the graveled avenue, we reach the old Infirmary building. Since the completion of the new structure this has been used by colored inmates only, but has recently been converted into a " Children's Home."

A number of destitute children have found a home within the walls of the Infirmary. Besides supplying the bodies with the essentials of life, it has ever been the aim of the Christian and philanthropic gentlemen composing the board of directors, to provide for their educational and spiritual wants as well. The daily intercourse of the children with that fallen class of humanity which is found in all charitable institutions, was damaging in the extreme, and could not fail but to lead to evil results. It was obvious that the younger inmates should be separated from the bad influences surrounding them. At, a recent session of the board, it was decided to transfer all the children to 'the colored infirmary, while the older inmates of the latter institution were removed to the main building. Before the change was carried into effect, numerous alterations were made in the old buildings.

The building now serving in the capacity of a " Children's Home," is one hundred feet long and forty feet wide, containing a basement and two stories. The basement is used for a bakery and store-room. On the ground floor are located the kitchens, dining-


room (with a seating capacity of forty), matron's apartments, reception room, and sleeping rooms. On the. second floor are the children's dormitories. From the porch in the rear of this floor, a splendid view is presented of the surrounding country, which is traversed by the rival railroads running to Dayton. The rooms are models of neatness, being cleaned by the inmates under the supervision of the matron, Mrs. E. Bryant. This lady is the relict of the late Rev. Bryant, the first colored Baptist minister that ever occupied the pulpit in Xenia; an exemplary Christian and esteemed citizen. Mrs. Bryant was appointed matron of the colored infirmary in March, 1875, and has continued in that position to this day, to the full satisfaction of the directors. She will assume control of . the " Children's Home." The old " crazy " building has been converted into a chapel and school house. This building is 33x33, and two stories high. The lower floor is used for a school room. Religious services are held on the upper floor each Sabbath. A very fine orchard has been planted on the tract between the buildings just described and the pike.

We return to the pike, and crossing it, enter the grounds where now is located the main building. The graveled avenue. over. which we pass is bordered on both sides by shade trees. In front of the main building is a rich and profuse display of flowers, in the midst of which a fountain throws up a steady stream of water. The Infirmary, proper, is one hundred and fifty feet long, and about fifty feet wide, to which is added a wing. The building contains three floors and a basement. The floors are divided into sections by halls, running east and west and north and south. To the left of the main entrance is the superintendent's office, where the meetings of the directors are held; to the right is the reception room. The west side of this floor is occupied by female dormitories and dining room; the east side is similarly arranged for the males. The family dining room, and a number of smaller apartments, are also located on this floor. On the second floor is the chapel ; services are held in the same every Sabbath afternoon. The superintendent's private apartments are located in the center of north side. To the rear of these are several apartments called "flower rooms," in which are kept the flowers and plants in cold weather. The superintendent and matron understand perfectly how to care for plants, and all lovers of the beautiful, would certainly be benefitted by a visit to the floral de-


partment of the Infirmary. The sewing and linen rooms, several private bed rooms, and male and female dormitories, constitute the remainder of the floor. The third floor is occupied principally by the inmates. The wing attached to the south side of the main building is divided mainly into cells for the insane patients-those incurable, and those awaiting transportation to one of the State Insane Asylums. An old lady aged 97 occupies one of the rooms, although being allowed the freedom of the buildings and grounds ; apparently she has a passion for the one room she occupies, which she calls her home.

The basement of the main building, is used for a store-room, laundry, kitchen, and for general industrial purposes. In the basement of the wing, are the huge engines, and boilers, to which are attached all the modern improvements. Steam is used in heating the building, and pumping water to all parts of the same. Here also, are stationed tanks, containing gasoline with which the building is lighted. Bathtubs are stationed in various parts of the building, in which, to prevent the contraction of disease, the inmates are bathed at stated intervals. To the rear of the main building, are .the various out-buildings.

As all of the new buildings are located on a knoll, a perfect system of drainage has been established, and the infectious waters are conveyed from the premises. The farm is beautifully located, very productive, and surrounded on all sides by forests.

The management of the Infirmary is in the best of hands. One of the directors, Mr. J. C. McMillan, has held this position for a period of nearly thirty consecutive years, consequently has much experience which is beneficial. The other directors are gentlemen of real worth.. The superintendent, Mr. H. Gram, and his estimable lady, the matron, are thoroughly acquainted with the duties of their offices. They are kind, Christian people, beloved, and esteemed by the inmates. Greene County is in possession of an Infirmary and Childrens Home, of the management of which she need not be ashamed. From the semi-annual report of the directors to the county commissioners, submitted September, 1880, we extract the following

Expense of conducting Infirmary, six months, - - $4,458.

Paid for out-door relief, - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1,016.

Average number of paupers, - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 114.

Board of Directors: Brenton Baker, president; J. C. McMillan,


secretary; Robert. Gowdy; superintendent, H. Gram; matron, Mrs. H. Gram.



When peace was declared by the opposing factions of the "late unpleasantness," the northern, or Union armies had great cause for rejoicing. They had fought for liberty and equal rights, and their cause was triumphant. And yet the participants of the late rebellion did not escape the horrible scenes of bloodshed, suffering, and death, the inevitable results of strife between rival governments. When the victorious soldiers returned to their homes, they were met by a throng of grateful people, and accorded a cordial reception. The horrors of the war were forgotten ; every heart was filled with rejoicing at the safe return of the "brave boys in blue." But, in the midst of that joyful assembly, there was many a mother's heart saddened by the cruel reflection that her brave and noble boy was not there. The wife sees her fond and doting husband in imagination only. His body is buried in southern soil, his spirit has been wafted through the heavenly portals. Children realize that, on this earth no more will they see the familiar face of "father;" that they are orphans, thrown on the cold charities of the world. Peace and prosperity fled from the cottage of the soldier's widow and orphan ; poverty and misery alone remained. Oh ! how cold and dreary was the future ! Bereft of husband, money, and friends, who can wonder at the despondency of the soldier's widow? The existence of this dreary state of affairs, however, a country, grateful and magnanimous, would not long permit. Appropriations for temporary relief were made by congress ; homes for disabled soldiers were established by the same authority. The different states took it upon themselves to care for the orphan, while the widow had her temporary wants relieved by pension. Our own state, which answered so promptly the call for defenders of our country, recognized at once, the invaluable services rendered by her patriotic citizens. Second to none in point of gratitude and magnanimity; she has ever accorded her citizens that care and protection required for their


welfare. To-day she points with pride to her many charitable institutions, excelled by none other in system and management. As has been intimated, this state, upon recovering from the devastation produced by the late war, proceeded to make provisions for the maintenance of those whom the implements of war had rendered incapable of self-support. Prior to 1870, however, no definite action had been taken by the legislature of the state. The initiatory steps toward the establishment of a home for soldiers' and sailors' orphans, were taken by the Grand Army of the Republic, a society which had for its object the protection of disabled soldiers, and the widows and orphans of those who gave their lives that their country might live. Greene County, and the city of Xenia, also rendered material aid in the- good work. To the Grand Army of the Republic, the philanthropic citizens of Xenia, and Greene County, and the state at large, do we award the honor of establishing, and maintaining, one of the grandest institutions known to civilized nations. The Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home.


The establishment of a permanent home for soldiers' orphans was first agitated by the Grand Army of the Republic, in 1869. It was the object of the society to procure the funds necessary for the purpose from individual sources, believing that' the state would take the matter in hand at the proper time. On the 31st of June, 1869, a meeting was held at the City Hall, at Xenia, the object of which was to devise ways and means for the furtherance of the plan then under consideration. The address was delivered by Chaplain Collier, agent for the Grand Army of the Republic, in which he. vividly portrayed the duty of the citizens of this state, insomuch as it was involved in the question now before them. On. the 13th of July another meeting was held at the same place, which was largely attended. Speeches were made by Governor Hayes, Congressman Winans, Captain Earnshaw, and others. Subscription books were opened, and the sum of $16,500 guaranteed before the close of the meeting. Of this sum, Eli Millen, Lester Arnold, and J. C. McMillan subscribed $1,000 each.

In the meantime, citizens of Xenia, assisted by representatives of the Grand Army of the Republic, were actively at work. The press favored the project, and advocated the erection of suitable


buildings at once. It was ascertained that a favorable location, situated in the immediate vicinity of Xenia, could be secured, and the friends of the cause continued in the good work. The annual convention of the Grand Army of the Republic was held at Sandusky City, on the 21st and 22d of July, 1869. Nine delegates from Xenia were in attendance. The "Home" question was earnestly discussed, although no definite action was taken. The Xenia gentlemen, however, were encouraged to believe that the lauds located near their city would eventually be selected as the permanent location of the Home. Subsequently, a resolution -providing for the acceptance of the real estate, and funds offered by the citizens of Xenia, was passed by the Grand Army of the Republic, the initiatory steps toward the establishment of a Home at Xenia.

The Board of Control, consisting of General George B. Wright, Major M. S. Gunckel, Colonel H. G. Armstrong, Eli Millen, Esq., Judge White, Mrs. R. B. Hayes, Mrs. H. L. Monroe, and Mrs. Ann E., McMeans, met, on the 11th of October, and agreed to accept the location offered by the people of Xenia. Contracts for the erection of four cottages were made with Drees & Thornhill, Norris & Mcllwain, and Smith, Howard & Co., at a cost of about $1,650 each. Meanwhile, in anticipation of the early establishment of the "Home," a number of children had been gathered at Xenia. To provide for their temporary wants, the board leased the premises of the Messrs. McMillan, on Main Street, lately occupied by Rev. W. T. Findley. Mrs. A. McMeans was elected superintendent, January, 1870;. Dr. John G. Kyle, of Xenia, was appointed surgeon. To supply the spiritual wants of the children, a non-sectarian Sunday-school was formed, which was to be conducted by a committee, appointed by all the orthodox churches of the city. The following gentlemen constituted the committee : T. Drees, J. W. King, D. Millen, J. C. McMillan, A. Trader, W. Keller, A. H. Baughman, W. C. Hutchinson, J. C. Cooper. They met, January 3, 1870, and elected J. H. Cooper, superintendent; William Smith, assistant superintendent; Ewing Hannon, secretary; A. H. Baughman, treasurer; Thomas Moore, librarian. The school was opened at the Young Men's Christian Association rooms, on the following Sunday. During this month, eighty-one children were being cared for in the temporary quarters. Major M. S. Gunckel was appointed acting superintendent, vice Mrs. McMeans, resigned. Additional appointments had been made, as follows : Mrs. Edgington, of Chicago, matron;


Mrs. S. A. Brockaway, Zanesville, assistant; Miss Della Johnston, Bellefontaine, teacher; Miss Ensign, Berlin Heights, teacher; Miss Buchanan, Clifton, superintendent sewing department.

January 23, 1870, a meeting of the Executive Committee was held. Present: Gunckel, Wright, Armstrong, and Millen. It was decided to construct, at once, a large frame building, for the purpose of furnishing a temporary dormitory and dining-room for the children, who were coming in rapidly. Contracts for the construction of five more cottages were awarded as follows : Two to Drees & Thornhill, two to Norris & Mcllwain, one to Smith, Howard & Co. It was ascertained that about one hundred children were in the temporary quarters, and that applications were on file for many more.

The hearts of the managers, and the children as well, were made glad by the many donations, consisting chiefly of wearing apparel and bed clothing, from all parts of the state. A committee, appointed by the legislature, and consisting of Senators John Cowan, H. S. Prophet, H. McKinney, and Representatives J. D. Callen, William A. Parr, W. H. Enochs, N. H. Van Vorhes, J. K. Mower, John Bettelon, and John P. Williamson, on February 28th, visited the "Home," and examined its surroundings. A public meeting was held at the City Hall, which was attended by the children in a body. Master Howard E. Gilkey, of Cleveland, stepped forward from the crowd of children, and delivered a touching little speech, introducing his orphaned brothers and sisters, and presenting the claims which they had on the state. The entire audience was much affected by his bathetic recital. Other speeches were made by members of the committee. They returned to Columbus; fully convinced that the Soldiers' Orphans' Home should be placed under the care and jurisdiction of the state.

During the month of March, that contagious disease known as measles, prevailed in the temporary quarters, causing much suffering. On the 18th, a little girl, named Rebecca Swift, succumbed to the ravages of the epidemic. This, the first victim of the grim destroyer, was an interesting child, fourteen years of age, who had been at the "Home" since its opening. Her funeral services were conducted by Revs. Hypes, Beddell, and Prugh, of Xenia, and Bales, of Yellow Springs.

Meanwhile, a bill "to establish Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphaus' Homes," was introduced in the Ohio Legislature. Following, is the full text of the measure


SECTION I. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Ohio, That the governor of the state shall, immediately upon the passage of this act, appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, seven citizens, who shall constitute the Board of Managers of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes, whose term of office shall be for five years, and until their successors are appointed and qualified, except those first appointed, one of whom shall hold his office for one year, one for two years, one for three years, two for four years, and two for five years, commencing from date of confirmation, the length of the term of service of each to be designated in his appointment. Whenever a vacancy shall occur in said board, by death, resignation, or removal, the same shall be filled by appointment by the governor, and the person so appointed shall serve to the end of the unexpired term, subject to the approval of the senate.

SEC. 2. The first meeting of the board shall be ordered by the governor, and thereafter shall be fixed by the members thereof. Before entering upon the discharge of their duties, the members of said board shall take and subscribe an oath of office, which shall be entered upon their journals of proceedings.

SEC. 4. That the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, now located and established at White Sulphur Springs, in Delaware county, in this state, together with all the real and personal estate, and property thereon, belonging to the state, except such as belongs to, or is necessary for said school, shall, on the passage of this act, be transferred to this Board of Managers, whenever they shall be appointed, and qualified, as hereinafter provided; that said premises, after such transfer, be known, used, and occupied as an Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home, provided that so much of said farm at White Sulphur Springs, not exceeding five acres, adjoining land on which the building known as the Burnet House is situated, shall be retained by the trustees of said Industrial and Reform School for Girls, for the use of said school, until other provisions can be made for them by the state. The managers herein provided for, shall have authority for making such necessary and needful repairs, alterations &c., in the buildings on said farm, as shall be required for the purpose of such home, and to produce such furniture, and equipments, as shall be necessary for the proper establishing, and opening of said home thereon; but in no case shall the costs, and expenses


of such changes, repairs, alterations, furniture, and equipments exceed during the first year of said home, at said Springs, the sum of $13.000. Whenever the said managers shall ascertain that the capacity of the home, as herein located, shall be insufficient to accomodate comfortably, and well, all of the children, as contemplated by this act, in said institution, they shall be authorized, and empowered to accept, and receive by donation, or bequest, a suitable tract of land, not less in any case than one hundred acres, at a convenient, and accessible point, with the necessary buildings and equipments thereon, for the accommodation of not less than two hundred and fifty orphans, and with power, and authority, to open and establish upon said premises, a home or homes for Ohio soldiers' and sailors' orphans intended to be provided for by this act, as soon as said tract of land, with its appurtenances, and the property thereon, shall by good and sufficient deed in fee simple, without any incumbrance or condition, other than that the same shall be used by the State for that, or some other elemosynary purpose, be conveyed to the State of Ohio, and the title to which shall have been examined and approved by the Attorney General.

SEC. 6. There shall be received into said homes, the children residing in Ohio, of deceased, indigent, and permanently disabled soldiers and sailors, who served in the land and naval service of the United States, during the late rebellion, that are by said board, ascertained to be destitute of the means of support and education, and they shall be furnished a support, and education at said homes, for such length of time as said board may determine, not beyond the age of sixteen years ; provided, that other indigent orphan children resident of this state, and under the age of fifteen years, may, at the discretion of the Board of Managers, be received into said homes, and there supported, and educated as the' other children hereinbefore mentioned, if there be room in said homes, more than sufficient for such children, first above mentioned, as may be received therein.

SEC. 7. The Board of Managers shall make such rules and regulations for receiving into and discharging from said homes the inmates thereof, as shall not conflict with the provisions of this or any other law of this state. They shall also make all the needful rules and regulations for the government of the homes, and shall have authority to employ a superintendent and matron for each of


said homes; and such teachers and other assistants as they may deem necessary for the education of the inmates, and the proper management of such homes, and fix the salary and compensation of the same; and they may at any time dismiss any officer or employe thereof; provided, however, the salary of the superintendent shall in no case exceed one thousand dollars, and that of the matron four hundred dollars, each per annum. Nor shall any officer or employe of said board receive a greater compensation for services than one thousand dollars per annum.

SEC. 9. Said Board of Managers shall not receive any compensation for their services, but shall be paid their necessary expenses, incurred in attending the meetings thereof.

SEC. 10. The Auditor of State is hereby required to draw his warrant in favor of the treasurer of said board, upon the treasurer of the state, for any money appropriated for the changes, repairs and alterations of buildings, and other purposes in the establishment and maintainance of said homes; the same to be done upon the estimate of said board, attested by the president and secretary; provided, the aggregate amount to be drawn for establishing and equiping such homes shall not exceed, during the ensuing year, thirteen thousand dollars; and provided, also, that the sum to be drawn for the carrying on of such homes shall not exceed the rate of one hundred and fifty dollars per annum for each inmate to the number of one hundred, and one hundred and twenty-five dollars per annum for each inmate in excess of one hundred; the number of inmates therein to be certified to the Auditor of State by the president, secretary, and superintendent. Provided, further, that the directors or managers of such children's homes, or other associations as may now exist, or hereafter be organized and conducted pursuant to law, not including any county infirmary in any county or city, for the care and maintainance of indigent orphans, shall be paid annually, by the Treasurer of State, on the warrant of the Auditor of State, for the support of said orphans of soldiers and ,sailors who served in the Union army, in their charge, the same amount per capita that it may cost the state per capita to maintain the orphans kept at the said Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home, including all expenses except the original cost of lands and buildings, and the repairs thereof; provided, the amount so drawn


shall in no case exceed the sum of one hundred and fifty dollars per annum per capita.

SEC. 11. The board, in devising plans for erecting buildings, fitting grounds, and otherwise preparing and equipping said homes, shall have careful reference to the limitations of appropriations hereinbefore made.

While the bill was pending before the senate, Senator Odlin, of Montgomery, offered an amendment to substitute "Xenia" for "White Sulphur Springs." Hon. M. D. Gatch, 'senator from this district, favored the amendment by an able speech. From the Xenia Torchlight, dated April 13, 1870, we extract the following:

"Let us examine into this matter. There are one hundred and eighty-nine acres of this White Sulpher Springs property, for which the state paid $55,000. By the new provisions of this bill it seems that five acres of this is deemed quite sufficient now for the girls of the Reform School: this leaves, as surplus for other purposes, one hundred and eighty-four acres. Now, sir, if this was a judicious purchase, the property is valuable, and the one hundred and eighty-four acres which is still left would command a fair price in the market; if it was not a, judicious purchase, and the land is not valuable, and consequently not saleable, would it be either economy or retrenchment on the part of the state to expend money upon it in the way of buildings or improvements? Would not even the $13,000 which this bill proposes to expend there, be in a great measure thrown away? It is very true, as is said by the senator from Butler, that this property already belongs to the state, and that something might have to be expended should the home be continued at Xenia. But let us take a rational view of this matter. The friends of the Xenia Home have tendered to the state over thirty thousand dollars in property and money. Now, if it be true, as this bill assumes, that. this surplus of one hundred and eighty-four acres is not required for the girls, and is as valuable as claimed by the gentleman from Butler, it would bring in the market at least $50,000, which, added to the $30,000 which Xenia has f tendered, would make $80,000, and would secure for these children a home equal in point of location, and all that is essential to their.` comfort and happiness, to-any in the state, and without a dollar of appropriation for buildings or improvements to be raised by taxation. Then why reject the offer that Xenia has made, when


with it the state becomes possessed at once of $80,000, and without it, of only $50,000 at most? Why tax the people now for even $13,000, when more than three times that amount is available without it? I trust, Mr. President, whatever else may be said or done in furtherance of this scheme, it will not be done in the name of retrenchment or economy. I trust that common sense is no longer to be outraged in this way."

After a protracted discussion, the bill was passed without the senate amendment, and became a law, April 14, 1870. According to the text of the bill, White Sulphur Springs was fixed as the permanent location of the home. The chances for Xenia were small, indeed. The law provided that, in case the Springs property should prove insufficient, the board is authorized to consider donations from convenient and accessible points. For the time being, it was the purpose of the law, to establish the home at White Sulphur F Springs.

The following gentlemen were appointed a Board of Directors, by the governor: R. P. Buckland, Fremont; James Barnett, Cleveland; J. Warren Kiefer, Springfield; Benj. F. Coate, Portsmouth; W. F. Force, Cincinnati; J. S. Jones, Delaware ; H. G. Armstrong, Cincinnati. Subsequently the board met at Columbus, and effected a permanent organization by electing the following officers : President, Gen. R. P. Buckland ; secretary, Col. H. G. Armstrong; treasurer, Maj. M. G. Gunckel. The latter gentlemen declined the honor, and Eli Millen was elected. At this meeting (held April 21, 1870) it was represented to the board, that there were collected at Xenia about one hundred and twenty-five orphans, who should be furnished support, and education, and who were being, and had been supported for several months, by private contributions of citizens of the state, and unless provided for by the state at once, the children would have to be dispersed, though many of them were without homes or friends. It was resolved that the children be accepted by the board, and furnished education and support. On the 29th of April, 1870, the board met at Delaware, and visited and inspected the property at White Sulphur Springs, and found a portion of the same, occupied by the Reform and Industrial School for Girls. They found also, that the buildings on the premises were not suitable for the purpose of an Orphans' Home, without great and material alterations, which would involve large expense and many weeks delay. The board further found that the main buildings,


and those best suited for occupancy, were being used by the institution before mentioned. Determined upon fulfilling the spirit of the law, the directors addressed a communication to the trustees of the Reform School for Girls, inquiring at what time they could obtain possession of the property,. and buildings set apart by law for an Orphans' Home. At this meeting, Dr. L. D. Griswold, of Elyria, Ohio, was elected superintendent, and V. T. Hills of Delaware, O., treasurer of the White Sulphur Springs Home. It being intimated that no reply could be given to their communication to the trustees of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, the board adjourned to meet at Delaware, on the 13th of May. No reply to the communication was received at this meeting, and a majority of the board, satisfied that the White Sulphur Springs property was inadequate for the accommodation of the children of the state, entitled to the benefits of the law establishing the home, adopted the following

WHEREAS, In the opinion of the board, the White Sulphur Springs property will not accommodate comfortably and well, all the children of diseased and disabled soldiers and sailors of the class contemplated by the law of Ohio as orphans, to be provided for at a Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home; therefore,

Resolved, That in view of the above opinion, the board will accept and receive, under the law of the state, by donation or request, a suitable tract of land, of the number of acres required by law, at a convenient and accessible point, with the necessary buildings and equipments thereon, for the accommodation of not less than two hundred and fifty orphans, and upon such acceptance, open, and establish a home for Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans, as is prescribed by law.

By this action, the clouds which had gathered so darkly around the prospects of the "Ohio- Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans Home, at Xenia," were broken, and the promise was favorable for as bright a future as its most sanguine friends could have anticipated.

Another meeting of the board, was held at Xenia, May 25, 1870, when the following communication was received

COLUMBUS, OHIO, May 24, 1870.

Gen. M. F. FORCE, and others, Committee Board of Managers of the Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes:

GENTLEMEN:-Tour communication inquiring when the' trustees of "the Reform and Industrial School for Girls" will be prepared to surrender possession of the White Sulphur Springs property to


your board, under the law passed April 14,1870, has remained unanswered longer than we desired, in order that we might more fully acquaint ourselves as to our rights and duties under that law.

The first clause of the fourth section of the law referred to, transfers to your board " the Reform and Industrial School for Girls," together with all the real and personal estate and property, except such as belongs to or is necessary for said school. The law further provides that the trustees of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls shall also retain exclusive possession session of five acres of ground, including what is known as the Burnet House, for the use of said school, until other provisions are made by the state.

As it is utterly impossible to provide for said school in said Burnet House, even for a single day, we are compelled to fall back upon the exception made in favor of said school in the first clause, and retain possession of such, and so much, of the real and personal estate and property as belongs to, and is necessary for said school.

After very carefully examining the premises, and viewing the whole question in all its bearings, we have decided that so much of said real and personal estate as is now used by said school, superintendent, matron, teachers, and employes of said school, is necessary for its use, and must be retained until the state makes further provisions. The balance of said White Sulphur Springs, property belonging to the state, we are ready to surrender to your board whenever so desired.

In support of our decision and our construction of the law, we herewith hand you an official communication on the subject from the Attorney General.

Permit us to say, in conclusion, that the cause for which your board of managers was created, has our hearty sympathy, and we deeply regret that we are compelled to lay a straw in your way. The law was evidently left incomplete, and was passed so hurriedly as to throw the two institutions somewhat athwart each other. But the opinion of the Attorney General, we think, makes our duty clear, and will also open the way to your success.

By order of the trustees of the Reform and- Industrial School for Girls.


F. MERRICK, President.

A. THOMPSON, Secretary


The following is the opinion of the Attorney General of Ohio, referred to in the foregoing communication



COLUMBUS, May 24, 1870.

His Excellency, the Governor:

SIR-I have carefully, at your request, examined the communication addressed to you by the trustees of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, and the statutes relating to such sChool, and the Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home, and have arrived at the following conclusions

1. It was not the intention of the act of April 14, 1870, for the present to impair the full right of the trustees of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, to use so much of the White Sulphur Springs property as such trustees might think necessary for the full and complete success of such school, as contemplated by the act establishing the same, passed May 5, 1869.

2. The act of April 14, 1870, does contemplate that the trustees of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, and the managers of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes, shall both use the Sulphur Springs property in the interest of their respective institutions, (they agreeing upon the suitable division,) always reserving the five acres and the Burnet House for the Reform and Industrial School for Girls, so far as such joint use shall not conflict with the use of the same with the successful conduct of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls.

3. Whenever the managers of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes shall ascertain that the capacity of the property above spoken of, consistently with the use thereof by the school for girls, as above indicated, shall be insufficient to accommodate, etc., * * * they will be authorized and empowered to accept and receive, etc., * * * as indicated in that part of section four, in the act of 1870, applying to the location of the children of the soldiers and sailors at some other point.

It has been difficult for me to make good sense out of some portions of the act of 1870, especially the first part of section four, and the above is the best judgment I can arrive at in giving a construction to the legislation on the subject.

Very respectfully, F. P. POND, Attorney General.


Upon receipt of this communication, the board 'adopted the following

WHEREAS, The Board of Trustees of the Ohio Reform School for Girls have refused to yield possession of the Ohio White Sulphur Springs property, under the recent act of the General Assembly of the State of Ohio ; therefore,

Resolved, That a committee of three, to consist of Messrs. Buckland, Force, and Burns, be appointed, to report at our next meeting what steps are necessary for the board to take to acquire possession of said property under the law.

The committee thus appointed, subsequently forwarded the following communication to the trustees of the Reform School: Dr. F. MERRICK, President Board of Trustees, Reform and Industrial School for Girls:

DEAR SIR:-Your letter, with the accompanying opinion of the attorney general, was read at the late meeting of the Board of Managers of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes.

We are unable to acquiesce in that opinion, and are unwilling to waive any rights by seeming to acquiesce in it.

Neither board can have any desire but to have an authoritative determination of the law. We therefore propose that an amicable suit be instituted, to have our respective rights determined at once by the Supreme Court.

On behalf of the Board of Managers of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes, we suggest that your board waive process, enter an appearance, and submit the question to the Supreme Court, upon the statute, upon our filing a petition for a mandamus for a turning over of the White Sulphur Springs property.

Very respectfully and truly,





To which the following reply was received:

DELAWARE, OHIO, July 7, 1870.

Generals R. P. BUCKLAND, M. F. FORCE, and Hon. B. BURNS, Committee Board of Managers, Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes

GENTLEMEN :I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication, addressed to me as president of the Board of


Trustees of the State Reform School for Girls, referring to my former letter addressed to your board, with the accompanying opinion of the attorney general, and as to which you say you "are unable to acquiesce in, and unwilling to waive any rights by seeming to do so."

You add that neither board can have any desire but to have an authoritative determination of the law, and propose that an amicable suit be instituted, to have our respective rights determined at once by the Supreme Court, and suggest, to that end, that our board waive process, enter appearance, and submit the question to the Supreme Court, upon the statute, upon your filing petition for a mandamus, etc.

We reciprocate entirely the spirit of your suggestion, and, 'as both boards are merely acting in the discharge of public trusts, readily agree that there is no room in their controversies or differences for any but public motives and amicable sentiments. At the same time, our board conceives that its duty requires that, in the adjudication of the present differences, we should maintain a part entirely passive, and while throwing no obstacles in the way of the assertion of your views of the law, and seeking no delays not required by the interests of justice, not waive any of the formalities usually required in such proceedings, nor voluntarily hasten a decision which, if finally against us, and while the General Assembly is not in session, would destroy the institution under our charge.

Very respectfully,


President Trustees Reformed and Industrial School for Girls.

As will be seen by the foregoing correspondence, the board were placed in an awkward position. The law which created them provided that the home should be located at White Sulphur Springs. The managers of the institution located on the latter place refused to surrender all except a small portion of the property involved. Meanwhile, one hundred and twenty orphans, gathered by a philanthropic but over-zealous people, were awaiting the action of the board at the temporary and insufficient quarters in the city of Xenia, with the hope and expectation that they would be transferred, at an early day, to the White Sulphur Springs. The refusal of the managers of the Reform and Industrial School for Girls to waive any formalities in a suit before the Supreme Court, threatened much loss of time, if such suit were undertaken, and in view


of all the circumstances, a majority of the board did not deem it advisable to commence legal proceedings to obtain possession of the White Sulphur Springs property.

At the meeting of May 25, 1870, General George B. Wright, Major M. S. Gunckel, and Colonel H. G. Armstrong, representing the Board of Control of the Xenia home, promptly came forward and offered to complete the work already commenced under their auspices, and have the same ready for occupancy by the first. of June, if' the Board of Managers would accept the same for a state home. After a lengthy and spirited debate the proposition was accepted, there being but two negative votes. Messrs. Burns and Jones refused to vote for the proposition, because, with their view of the law, they could not concur in the action of the board ,in abandoning the White Sulphur Springs property.

A large force of men were engaged at once, and resumed work on the large frame structure commenced some months before. On Friday, August 16, 1870, a quorum of the board met at Xenia. Several members of the Grand Army Board of Control were present. Before the transaction of business, the whole party proceeded to the home farm, and inspected the buildings and equipments just completed for presentation to the state. General satisfaction was expressed at the manner in which the work had been done.

When the Board of Managers were called to order, etc., Dr. Griswold, superintendent, who had returned from an inspection of similar institutions in western states, submitted a report of his

observations. Of the institution under his own charge, Dr. Griswold reported, that when he entered upon the duties of superintendent, the inmates were eighty-three boys and thirty-six girls, of an average age of nine years. On the first of August the number of inmates was one hundred and twenty-three, of whom forty-eight were absent sent on a furlough. The health of the children has been good, and no deaths have occurred. Though some have had attacks of diarrhoea and fevers, the diseases have readily yielded to treatment. The children are happy and contented, those absent among friends showing a desire to return to the home before the expiration of their furlough. But two boys have run away. One of them returned voluntarily ; the other, an incorrigible fellow, has since turned up at the reform farm.

The superintendent nominated Mrs. Della Johnston, of Bellefontaine, for principal of the school, and Mrs. M. M. Gilbert, of Oberlin,


Miss Mary L. Loofborrow, Miss Phoebe Ensign, and Miss Agnes E. Griswold as teachers; Mrs. Sallie Buchanan, Mrs. Jane W. Pennington, and Mrs. Amanda Gillis, as cottage managers, all of whom were confirmed.

The following resolution was offered by General Coates, and adopted after a full and free discussion

WHEREAS, In the opinion of this board, the lands heretofore tendered to the State of Ohio as a donation, and situated near Xenia, consisting of one hundred (100) acres, now have the necessary buildings and equipments thereon for the accommodation of not less than two hundred and fifty (250) orphans, as contemplated by law ; therefore,

Resolved, That upon said lands being conveyed to said state, a, home for Ohio soldiers' and sailors' orphans be, and the same is hereby, opened and established upon said premises for the care and accommodation of such orphans as are intended to be provided for by the act "to establish Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Homes," passed April 14, 1870.

Resolved, That said lands, buildings, and equipments be accepted and received upon the title to the same being conveyed to the State of Ohio, in accordance with the law of said state, and as soon as the title shall have been examined and approved by the attorney general of Ohio.

Resolved, That as soon as the property aforesaid is conveyed to the State of Ohio, all the orphans belonging to the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home at White Sulphur Springs, be transferred to said Xenia home, and that all orphans hereinafter received be sent to the Xenia home, until proper accommodations can be provided at White Sulphur Springs.

An election of officers for the Xenia home was then had, resulting in the choice, without opposition, of Dr. L. D. Griswold as superintendent; Mrs. Griswold, matron; and Eli Millen, of Xenia.

The Board of Control of the Grand Army of the Republic adopted the following resolution

Resolved, That the Executive Committee be, and they are hereby, instructed to convey to the State of Ohio, by deed in fee simple, the land held by said committee, as representatives and trustees of the Grand Army of the Republic, together with all the buildings and equipment-, thereon contained, placed there by direction of this board, or any committee thereof.


On the 25th of August the title to the land was examined and approved by the attorney general, and the same was duly conveyed to the State of Ohio. About that time the children were transferred to the home farm. Prior to the transfer of the children, applications had been received for the admission of more than two hundred and fifty children, and the board passed upon applications for more than that number, including those already collected. The children were quartered in three cottages and a large frame building (the present workshop). They were comfortably provided for, furnished ample food, and educated by a corps of competent teachers, employed for that purpose.

The whole number of applications for admission received and approved, including the children already collected at Xenia, amounted to three hundred and thirty. There were accommodations on the home farm for but two hundred and fifty, and the board found it necessary, for the present, to discourage applications for admission. It was estimated that the whole number of children in the state, entitled to the benefits of the law establishing the home, exceeded eight hundred. In their first annual report to the governor, the board reported that they had laid the foundation for a main central building and three cottages. They estimated that the completion of the main building, and the erection of twenty additional cottages, would be required to accommodate the children which in contemplation of the law should be provided for. The plan of dividing children into families in cottages, was considered an excellent one, for the reason that they were more easily governed, less liable to sickness and epidemics. The purpose of the main building, the erection of which was earnestly recommended by the board, was to provide a suitable dining hall, culinary department, school rooms, rooms for the superintendent, matrons, teachers, and for other uses. The board suggested to his excellency, the governor, that the home farm at Xenia, be equipped for the accommodation of all the Soldiers and Sailors Orphans, for in their opinion one home could be maintained with more economy to the state, than two or more with the same number of children.

The main building and the three cottages under construction, could not be completed until a further appropriation was made by the legislature. The lateness of the season at which the appropriations for building purposes was made (May 2, 1871), and the time required to complete plans and specifications, etc., prevented the


letting of building contracts until July 3, 1871. By the terms of the contracts, eleven cottages were to be completed by October 15, 1871, the domestic building by November 15,1871, and the administration building by January 1, 1872. On the 13th of October, 1871, contracts were awarded for the erection of a hospital, to be under cover and enclosed by January 1, 1872, and fully completed by June 1, 1872; for a farm house and barn to be completed by December 1, 1871 ; for a heating apparatus to be completed for the uses of the domestic buildings and cottages, by the first of December, 1871, and the entire work to be finished as soon as the other buildings are ready. On the 30th of October, 1871, contracts were awarded for the construction of a boiler house and smoke stack, to be completed by January 1, 1872. Capt. Levi T. Scofield of Cleveland, was appointed as architect and superintendent of the work. Mr. Tobias Drees, of Xenia, a skilled carpenter and builder, was appointed assistant superintendent of the work. In their annual report for 1872 to the governor, the board of managers expressed their high appreciation of the valuable services rendered by Dr. L. D. Griswold as superintendent of the home, and reported the institution in a prosperous condition. The necessary confusion, incident to the erection of buildings, had in some degree prevented the home from being made all that was hoped for, in providing for the care, comfort, moral, mental, and physical training of the inmates. Many of the larger children were required to work-the boys in the cultivation of the ground, and the girls in the domestic department.

The first death since the institution was placed in charge of Dr. Griswold, occurred on the 13th of October, 1871. Charles G. Smith, of Cambridge, Guernsey County, died of inflammation of the stomach and bowels, in the fifteenth year of his age. He was considered one of the best boys, and his death cast a gloom over the house. At frequent intervals since the house was established, the hearts of the inmates had been gladened by donations from philanthropic people throughout the state. On Christmas of 1870 the following was received: A $200 organ from Mr. Wright, of Cincinnati; splendid boxes of holiday presents from Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Springfield, Elyria, Wilmington, and Xenia; $125 cash from Mr. Bur, of Ashland ; $100 from Mr. W. S. Furay, of Columbus (money expended for the benefit of the children) ; two tenor drums, one bass drum, and two fifes from Post G. A. R.

Early in the spring of 1872, the inmates were alarmed by the sud-


den appearance of that mysterious and fatal disease, cerebro spinal meningitis. Minnie Brizendine was the first victim. She was partially paralyzed and much emaciated. After nine months of suffering, during which she was subject to frequent convulsions; death came to her relief on the 24th of December. She possessed a sweet and loving disposition, and had endeared herself to all. The second case was that of Eva Andrews, aged fourteen, from Cincinnati, which proved fatal on the 14th day. The name of this victim of the dread disease, was on the roll of honor at the time of her death. This was the second death in the last two years and a half, since the home became a state institute.

On the 15th of September, possession was taken of the new domestic building; and the dining room of the old domestic building was converted into school rooms. The matron, Mrs. L. D. Griswold, was compelled by prolonged ill health to tender her resignation, which was accepted by the board, with many regrets, on November 7th, 1872. On the same day, Mrs. Adelia A. Nelson, of Lebanon, Ohio, was appointed to fill the vacancy, and entered upon her duties at once. Additional lands were joined to that originally donated, thus enlarging the farm, and furnishing employment for the inmates. About one-half of the land was being cultivated. Piazzas had been constructed in front of fourteen of the cottages-a much needed improvement. The water-tower, gas works, and old cottages were also completed satisfactorily. Toward the close of 1873, the laundry was ready for occupancy and use. Much progress in grading and beautifying the grounds had been made. For the steam works, two new boilers were secured, and the building enlarged. In the spring . of 1873, two hundred additional apple trees, two hundred peach trees, six hundred grape vines, and a large quantity of blackberry, and raspberry roots were planted by the superintendent. At the close of the fourth year of the existence of the institution, the friends and supporters of the good work, had sufficient cause for congratulation. The justice and wisdom of maintaining an institution for the benefit of indigent orphan children had been fully demonstrated the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Home was enjoying an era of prosperity.

The General Assembly by act of April 20, 1874, entitled, "An act to regulate the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home, located at Xenia, and to repeal a certain act therein named," provided for the appointment of five trustees for the management of such home.


The governor made the following appointment : Durbin Ward, of Lebanon ; J. Warren Keifer, of Springfield ; George Keifer, Troy ; Oscar White, Toledo ; Jacob Haynes, Bellbrook. The board met at the home at Xenia, on May 1st, 1874, and organized by the appointment of Durbin Ward, president, and Jacob Haynes, secretary. On the 15th of the same month, they met and appointed Dr. A. E. Jenner, of Crawford County, as superintendent for three years, and he gave bond and entered upon his duties accordingly. Under the new administration but few changes were made, and the matron, cottage managers, and teachers were retained in the positions they then occupied. The statute provided for the appointment of a steward for the home, and on the recommendation of the superintendent, the board appointed Mr. James Hoyle, of Xenia, for the position, and fixed his compensation at fifty dollars per month.

The affairs of the home ran smoothly for some time after the entrance of the new superintendent on his duties. Toward the close of the summer, however, rumors of certain improprieties on his part toward the female inmates and employes of the home were in circulation, and they assumed such magnitude that the board concluded to have them investigated. Accordingly a committee, consisting of General J. Warren Keifer and Jacob Haynes, was appointed, to make inquiry concerning the matter, and to prefer formal charges against the superintendent. Charges in writing were reported to the board, and the matter was fully investigated. Distinguished counsel appeared for both parties. A month transpired from the time the board took its first action. After a full and patient hearing, the case went to the board for decision. Before any final action was taken, Dr. Jenner tendered his resignation as superintendent, and the board at once accepted it, and dismissed the charges and specifications against him. There is no necessity for the pollution of the pages of this history by publishing the charges preferred against Dr. Jenner; the nature of the offense will be readily understood.

On the morning of the 22d of October, the board placed the temporary internal management of the home under the control of the matron, Mrs. Adelia A. Nelson, a lady of high character and long experience. The external affairs were placed under the superintendence of the steward, Mr. James Hoyle. Under this arrangement the home was conducted as harmoniously, and with as much success, as could have been expected under the circumstances.


Numerous applicants were recommended for the vacant superintendency. The board finally chose, as superintendent, Hon. W. P. ; .Kerr, of Granville, Ohio, on the 17th of November. Mr. Kerr was ,absent on business in Utah when the appointment was made, and did not take charge of the office, and assume its duties, until the :15th of December.

In the month of May, 1875, the term of service of Mrs. Adelia A. Nelson, having expired, Mrs. W. P. Kerr was appointed as her successor, a position which she, as wife of the superintendent, was entitled to, according to the usages of the institution. O. C. Brewer ,was appointed clerk, vice John P. Kellogg, who had for years served in that capacity. As a matter of economy, Mr. Brewer was also appointed steward, and Mr. Hoyle relieved of the duties.

The General Assembly of 1874-'75, took steps to enable the inauguration of a system of industrial education and employment at the home. Shops were established to teach printing, telegraphing, tailoring, dress-making, knitting, carpentering, blacksmithing, shoemaking, and tinning. Gentlemen well versed in the different branches were placed at the head of each department. A telegraph school was established, and placed in charge of Mr. Crowl, who taught thirty to forty boys and girls each day. A line 'was erected from the library room to the school house, thence to telegraph office in the city. All departments were conducted with commendable energy, and the institution had attained a high degree of prosperity. The health of the-inmates had been good. During the year (1875) there were but four deaths, although the number of inmates was in the neighborhood of six hundred. The prevalence of sore eyes, from the opening of the institution, and during the first two months of 1875, was especially noticeable, and the physician, Mr. C. B. Jones, sought for some means of eradicating the troublesome disease. The manner in which the inmates washed their hands and faces was fixed upon as the cause of contagion. This washing was done in tin wash basins, three in each cottage, and the drying of hands and faces was done on one large towel in each cottage. The physician caused fixtures to be introduced, at slight expense, whereby all the children washed in running water, and dried their faces on separate towels. This arrangement had its desired effect. There were no new cases, and those then affected made rapid recovery. The measles and scarlet fever }ad been epidemic every winter since the opening of the institu-


tion. The physician determined to make a careful investigation as to the cause of these prevailing diseases. He soon discovered that in both cases the diseases originated within the institution, and were not imported from the outside. By examination into the usage, as to the quilts, blankets, etc., it was ascertained that in the spring of each year, when the heavier articles were no longer necessary, they were taken from the beds, and, without airing or disinfecting, stowed in the closets during the summer, and on the coming of winter were taken therefrom, and again placed upon the beds. And the breaking out of these dangerous epidemics was coincident with the use of winter bedding. Thus the malady was packed away each spring in the quilts and blankets, and carefully preserved until the approach of winter, when it served to occasion a new epidemic. The superintendent, in connection with the physician, caused every article of bed clothing to be thoroughly washed, dried, and aired in the spring. This had its desired effect.

A law, passed March 14, 1876, provided for the appointment of a new board of trustees, consisting of seven members. The governor, on March 15, 1876, appointed the following gentlemen: J. Warren Keifer, Springfield; W. S. Furay, Columbus; R. P. Buckland, Fremont; A. M. Stark, Xenia; J. W. Reilly, Wellsville; Thomas Ewing Lancaster; M. F. Force, Cincinnati. Pursuant to call of the governor, the board met March 23, 1876, and organized by electing J. Warren Keifer president, and W. S. Furay secretary. On <March 29, 1876, Major William Shaw, late of Eaton, Ohio, was appointed superintendent of the home, (vice Prof. W. P. Kerr,) and on the 8th of April he entered upon the discharge of the duties of his position. On the 9th of April, on the nomination of the superintendent, the board appointed Mrs. Rachel J. Shaw, matron; A. H. Brundage, M. D., physician ; John P. Kellogg, clerk ; and Prof. Edward Merrick, principal of the schools.

During the year, a reservoir sixty-five feet long, twenty feet deep, 1 and fifteen feet wide, was constructed, by which the managers were enabled to run a supply of clear, fresh water through the cottages. A new system of sewerage was also introduced, and several much needed improvements were made in the engine room. Nearly four'; hundred stumps were removed from the grounds, immediately in front of, and in the rear of the main building and cottages, and around the laundry and farm-house. The channel of the creek running through the northern part of the grounds was changed by


straightening it, which prevented the cutting away by water of a beautiful embankment, and afforded a way for a drive much needed in that part of the grounds. The progress made by the boys and girls in the five industrial departments already established was highly satisfactory. The results, pecuniarily, were all that could be expected. The farm comprised two hundred and seventy-five and one-half acres, divided as follows : seventy-nine acres timber land; eighty-four acres occupied by garden, home buildings, and lawn; sixty-three acres under cultivation; and forty-nine and one-half acres in grass.

During the session of 1876-7, the general assembly appropriated $30,000 for building a new school house upon the home grounds, as the old buildings had become inadequate to the wants of the institution, and besides were greatly needed for workshops, to be used in prosecuting and developing industrial pursuits.

In the year 1877 a steady improvement was made in the management of the home. Four hundred feet of four-ply rubber hose, (making in all six hundred feet,) and an excellent hose-reel were purchased, to be used in case of fire. One of the most extensive and needed improvements was the laying of one hundred and thirty-four rods of bouldered gutter, of an average width -of two and one-half feet, along the main drive in front of the administration buildings and cottages.

Under the act named, on the 14th day of May, 1878, a new board of trustees, consisting of five members, was appointed by Governor Bishop, as follows : B. Burns, Mansfield ; A. M. Stark, Xenia; John Kirkpatrick, Cambridge; R. C. Blackburn, Roscoe; A. M. Stimson, Washington C. H. The board met for organization on the 20th day of May, 1878, and accompanied by the governor examined the condition and workings of the institution. The board elected Barnabus Burns president, and A. M. Stark secretary. A general committee was also chosen, consisting of B. C. Blackburn, A. M. Stimson, and A. M. Stark. On the 20th day of July, 1878, Dr. George Keifer, of Troy, Miami County, was appointed superintendent, a vacancy in the office having been made by the act reorganizing the institution. He began the duties of the office within a few days after his appointment, and on the 23d day of August, 1878, he nominated Miss Henrietta Keifer, his daughter, for matron; Dr. C. B. Jones, for physician; David M. Brelsford, for steward ; and Prof. Mansel Hartly, for superintendent of in-


struction. These appointments were duly made by the board of trustees. A full corps of teachers was also appointed.

The board, soon after its appointment, was, in the discharge of its duties, required to construe those portions of the late legislation as to this institution which relate to the admission of its beneficiaries. The act was carefully examined and tested by the usual rules of legal construction, and the legislation of the general government on the subject of pensions was compared with its provisions. Sections four and five of the act of reorganization provided that a portion of the pension be paid to the superintendent, and used for the maintenance of that portion of the beneficiaries who were inmates of the home. After mature deliberation they decided that pension grants by this and all other governments were regarded in their laws, and the departments charged especially with the execution of those- laws, to be given or withheld as the law-making power choose; and that no right, based upon a prior claim or service, existed as to a pension. Hence, the government, in granting pensions, had the right to attach limitations and conditions to the gift. The board found, also, that the government had exercised the right, in attaching to the grant of all pensions allowed by it, and especially those based upon services in the war of 1861, the condition that every attempted pledge, barter, sale, or transfer of any part of the money due upon such pension, forfeited the certificate of its allowance. The fourth and fifth sections of the reorganization act required a pledge of pension moneys. Such pledge would forfeit the claim to the gratuity. The board, therefore, as to the condition of admisson of the children to the home, decided that so much of the act of May 13, 1878, as was in conflict with the laws of the United States, upon the subject of pensions, was inoperative. The third section was regarded as preliminary and introductory to the fourth and fifth sections. The sections referred to, read as follows

SEC. 3. Said board of trustees are authorized to receive into said home, the indigent children of deceased soldiers and sailors, who lost their lives in the military or naval service of the United States, during the late rebellion, or have since died by reason of wounds received, or disease contracted while in said service, and in the line of duty as such soldier : provided, however, that no child of such deceased soldier, shall be received into said home under the age of twelve years, during the life time of the mother of said child; and


provided also, that no child shall be received into said home, except the child of a deceased soldier, on account of whose death the United States has paid, or is paying a pension.

SEC. 4. That, after the passage of this act, the said board of trustees, shall admit, and continue in such home, no child or children, unless the mother or guardian of such child or children, shall pay over to said board of trustees, for the purpose of clothing said child or children, the money paid by the United States as a pension on account of the death of said soldier.

SEC. 5. The superintendent shall keep an accurate account of the amount of pension received, on account of each, and every of such children, and the amount of pension so received, on account of such child shall be used for no other purpose, except for the clothing of such child, and if a greater sum than is needed to properly clothe such child, shall be received as a pension on account of such child, then such balance shall be paid said child or the guardian thereof, when said child leaves said home.

There were two cases of death during 1878. Anna Scoby, of cottage No. 15, died February 10, and Nettie Bowen, of cottage No. 11, September 23, 1878, both of consumption.

On the 16th of February, 1879, the administration and domestic buildings were destroyed by fire. A number of the officers and employes were slightly injured, but none seriously. The loss to the 'state was nearly $75,000. The officers and employes lost various suns, ranging from $10 to $500. The cottages escaped the ravages of the fire; and the children were therefore unharmed. The superintendent and his assistants took up their residence in some' of the cottages, the hospital, and the school building. The legislature with commendable speed and unanimity, authorized the re-building of the destroyed structures, and made the necessary appropriation a therefor, and for the furnishing of the same. The walls of both buildings, to some considerable extent remained standing and sound. The board of trustees adopted the plans of D. W. Gibbs, architect, which provided for thorough fire-proofing, for the reconstruction of the buildings. The domestic building was pushed rapidly to completion, and was ready for occupancy in about three months after the fire. It has since been occupied for its purpose, and also or the accommodation of the officers of the home during the proess of work on the administration building, which is nearing completion. During 1879 the school house was completed, and occupied


by the schools, and the old school building had been assigned in its various divisions, to occupancy by the different industrial pursuits which were practically taught to the beneficiaries of proper age and advancement.

During the spring of 1879, rumors of improprieties on the part of the superintendent toward the female employes became rife. To avoid the publicity of an investigation, the superintendent at the request . of the board, tendered his resignation to take effect on the 1st of April, 1879. Until the election of a new superintendent, the affairs of the home were carefully and satisfactorily managed by Hon. A. M. Stimson, and Hon. A. M. Stark of the board of trustees, and Prof. M. J. Hartley, superintendent of the schools; having authority to do so by resolutions of the board of trustees.

N. R. Wyman, of Shelby county, was chosen superintendent on the 17th day of April, 1879, and entered upon the discharge of his duties on the 23d day of the same month. He, on the 9th day of May, 1879, appointed Mrs. Mary Wyman, his wife, matron of the home. The board confirmed the appointment.


The home grounds are located about a quarter of a mile southeast of the corporate limits of Xenia, and contain two hundred and seventy-five and one-half acres. That portion on which the buildings are erected is slightly elevated, making altogether a very pleasing contrast. The grounds are inclosed by a neat board fence. At about the center of the south side is the main entrance, through which travelers in conveyances pass, while foot passengers may mount the steps and tread the boarded walk. Upon ascending, the first object presented to view is the handsome chapel on the right. In this building are held services on each Sabbath, except during the warm summer season, being conducted in turn by the ministers of Xenia. Mr. J. H. Cooper, of Xenia, is superintendent of the Sabbath-school, which position he has held since the, opening of the institution. Thus do loving hearts administer to the spiritual wants of the children, preparing them for a brighter home through the beautiful portals above. To the rear of the church, surrounded by evergreen shrubbery, is located the ' little cemetery. The angel of death, whose grim features are visible in every portion of the universe, has penetrated even this


secluded abode of six hundred of the rising generation. Nineteen slabs of wood, erected at the head of nineteen mounds, with simple inscription of name and age thereon, tell their own sad story. The bodies of nineteen former inmates of this institution are sleeping the sleep that knows no awakening-their souls have gone to join their Maker. 'Tis sad to die so young, and so full of promise. Some who are here sleeping so sweetly had lived in suffering and misery. To them death was sweet relief. The fathers and mothers of others have long since crossed the dark and bloody chasm. Thither are they going, with hurried steps, to participate in an everlasting and glorious reunion.

"There is sweet rest in heaven."

We return to the walk, and resume our journey. Ere long we arrive at an imposing structure


This commodious building was erected at a total cost of $30,000, and was completed in 1878; is constructed of brick, and consists of three stories and the basement. A fountain is seen playing on each side of the front entrance. During the school months the building is occupied by upward of five hundred children, and in charge of instructors of rare ability.

We next turn to the cottages, of which there are twenty-ten on each side of the main building. They are built of brick, and two stories in height. Each floor is divided into three apartmentsthe large sitting-room for the children, the matron's parlor, and the wash-room. The children's sitting-room is handsomely carpeted; on each side is a row of chairs, sufficient for the accommodation of thirty persons. In the center is a table loaded with books, or, in some cottages, covered by a miniature aquarium. On the upper floor is the children's dormitory, the matron's sleeping apartment, and the bath-room. The cottages are kept scrupulously clean by the children, under the direction of the matron. Each cottage is numbered-those south of the main building, occupied by the girls, in odd numbers; those north, occupied by boys, in even numbers. In the front of each cottage is a piazza, which continues from the first to the last building. At the sides of the piazzas and


the cottages, vines of ivy and morning-glory have been planted, presenting, during the summer season, a beautiful aspect. On the space between the rows of cottages is. located the


Which contains the officers, teachers, and children's dining-rooms, dormitories, parlors, reception-rooms, superintendent's office, and private apartments. The main building is constructed of pressed brick, and elegantly furnished throughout. The addition to the rear is built of material less pretentious. In the basement are the mammoth stoves, used for culinary purposes, the bakery, storerooms, and a refrigerator. To the rear of the administration building is the water tower, in which is a massive tank. Water is forced into this, and thence to all parts of the grounds.

We next arrive at the engine house, containing four large boilers. Two are in constant use during the warm season, while all of them are pressed into service in cold weather. The steam is used for heating purposes, running the pumps which force the water into the tower, and for the laundry. There are also several force pumps, which are held in reserve, to be used in case of fire; one of the rooms in this building being a receptacle for the hose reel and an abundant supply of hose.

A few rods east of the engine building is the laundry, a large, two-story building-the first floor being used for washing purposes, the second divided into sleeping apartments. The establishment is fitted out with the latest improved washing machines, a steam wringer, and a mangle for pressing sheets and- table-cloths. In one corner of the main room is a fine engine, which supplies the power for the various machines. Steam for running the same is conducted by pipes from the engine house. Miss Ann Harvey, a lady who has been employed at the home for upward of eight years, has charge of the laundry. The building is surrounded by a lawn, on which are planted beautiful flowers of various kinds.

Proceeding yet further east, we arrive at the hospital. Upon entering, we are greeted and cordially welcomed by the matron, who kindly volunteers to show us through the building. To the right, as we enter, is the cozy reception-room; to the left, the physician's office; adjoining the reception room is the dining-room ; in the immediate rear of this room is the kitchen. Meals are prepared here


for the inmates, under the supervision of the hospital matron. Opposite the dining-room is the ward for the sick. The second floor contains a ward for the sick, the matron's apartments, and a spare room. Thirty-four children can be treated conveniently at one time. During a recent prevalence of measles, however, more than one hundred were accommodated in the building. This building is surrounded by a lawn, on which are planted evergreen trees and flowers.

We next proceed to the old school house, or "industrial building," as it is now called, a long, frame structure, two stories in height. The rooms formerly used for school purposes are now converted into workshops, and various vocations taught therein. On the lower floor is the shoe-shop, where are manufactured all the shoes worn by the inmates. Here eighteen boys are employed, under the supervision of a foreman. The tin-shop, where are employed a number of boys, is also on this floor. All the tinware and spouting used by the institution is manufactured in this department. On the second floor is located the paint shop, sewing-rooms, and the printing office, from which a neat little paper "The Home Weekly," is issued. West of this building is the gardener's cottage, a lovely spot, which is almost hidden from view by flowers. South of this is the home stable, a large and commodious building, well stocked with horses and milch cows.

Half way between the industrial building and the "L" of the female cottages is the hot-house, for the cultivation of flowers, which is surrounded by handsome floral designs, one of which, a magnificent star composed of many colors, never fails to attract the attention of the passer-by. A fountain sending its spray high into the air adds to the beauty of the scene. Here several men and boys are kept constantly employed.

In front of the main building is an extensive display of flowers which are beautiful to behold. In the center is a fountain, from which numberless sprays of water issue spasmodically. Artistic hands have formed the letters " S. O." by the tasty arranging of flowers. The gas-house, in which is manufactured all the light used by the institution, is located at the foot of the knoll, near the main entrance; in the immediate vicinity of which an ice house has been erected.

The vacant spaces between the respective buildings are sodded, and shaded by trees. They are divided by graveled avenues for


vehicles and foot-passengers. Groups of little ones spend much of their unoccupied time on the lawns, and their childish prattle falls sweetly on the ear of the passer-by.

The farm, proper, surrounds the grounds just described on the east, south, and west. A portion of it consists of timber land, The larger part however is in a state of cultivation ; potatoes, corn, cabbage, and all crops cultivated in this section, are produced each year for the consumption of the inmates.


Superintendent of Instruction.-O. J. Thatcher.

Names of Teachers. No. Grade. No. Enrolled.

Miss Helen M. Nave, . . . . . . . . . . . 12,. . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Miss Sarah A. Jones,. . . . . . . . . . . . 11,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

Miss Stella Gray,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Miss Sallie B. Pearce,. . . . . . . . . . . .. 9, . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40

Miss Fannie Weeks, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8, . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Miss Kate M. Gardner,. . . . . . . . . . . . .7,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

Miss Ames Steigner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6, . . .. . . . . . . . . . . 46

Miss Mollie M. Guthridge, . . . . . . . . . 5, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Miss Mary E. Bell, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56

Miss M. Lute Carson,. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . 3,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Miss Carrie R. Dohrman,. . . . . . . . . . . . 2,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51

Miss Lide Hutchins,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59

Total enrollment,. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 556


Board of Managers.-Hon. John Little, Xenia; Dr. B. C. Blackburn, Roscoe; Col. I. A. Bope, Findlay ; Dr. J. H. Rodgers, Springfield.

Superintendent.-Major William L. Shaw. Matron.-Mrs. Rachel J. Shaw.

Clerk.-John P. Kellogg.

Physician.-A. H. Brundage.

Heads of Departments. - Hospital matron, Mrs. E. Hardesty; housekeeper, Miss Young; printing, George W. Dodds ; tinning, George W. Toeros; shoemaking, Joseph G. Rust; laundry,


Miss Ann Harvey; butcher, Albert Gest; baker, A. G. Miltner; gardener, T. E. Nichols; farmer, James McNeal; engineer, David Evans; seamstresses, Mrs. Anna Pilkington and Susan Pitsford; tailor, Clarence Smith ; painter, James Liddle.

Cottage Matrons.-Cottage No. 1, Miss Kate Wiley ; No. 2, Miss Amanda Stokes; No. 3, Miss Elizabeth French; No. 4, Miss Kate Sparger; No. 5, Mrs. Martha A Foos; No. 6, Mrs. Anna M. Dunbar; No. 7, Miss Lillie Hoyle; No. 8, Mrs. Amanda Harper; No.9, Mrs. DeBruin; No. 10, Miss Alice Welsh; No. 11, Miss Effie McMorrow; No. 12, Mrs. Mary Burroughs; No. 13, Mrs. L. Edwards ; No. 14, Mrs. Clara John ; No. 15, Mrs. M. J. Coburn ; No. 16, Mrs. Elizabeth Bazzle; No. 17, Mrs. Mary Smith; No. 18, Mrs. Mary Lain Miller; No. 19, Mrs. H. A. Watson; No. 20, Miss Rose Mathews.