Tiffin history

Tiffin Historic Trust celebrates 40 years

historic-trust-invitationThe Tiffin Historic Trust is inviting the community to celebrate with them their 40th anniversary with an open house at the Grammes-Brown House Oct. 27, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

From the Tiffin Historic Trust:

A Brief History of the Tiffin Historic Trust in Celebration of its 40th Anniversary

In the fall of 1976, during the nation’s celebration of its Bicentennial, a group of citizens met at the Tiffin-Seneca County Public Library.  Harold Hossler presided at the meeting during which Kenneth E. Davison, chairperson of the local Bicentennial Commission, made the motion to create a new organization, the Tiffin Historic Trust.  In mid-October 1976, William D. Fletcher, Mary Lewis, and Barbara J. Howe signed the Articles of Incorporation.

The stated purpose of the organization was to “promote historic preservation in Tiffin by meetings, publications, tours or whatever other means may be chosen by the corporation.”  The articles stated it would be a non-profit organization, with the goal of raising funds through grants, donations, etc., in order to promote and develop a total plan for the preservation and restoration of Tiffin, and to work with all interested groups or individuals to put this plan into effect.

172-jefferson-st-grammes-brown-house-jpgSince its founding in 1976, the Trust has done the following:

  • Compiled an inventory of Tiffin’s public and private buildings; the entries were submitted to the State and National Register of Historic Places.
  • Funded and had the city install signs designating the Historic Districts within Tiffin.
  • Worked with college interns who prepared studies of Tiffin Architecture.
  • Influenced a streetscape project that led to the Court Street design with a booklet published with grant support.
  • The Court Street Extravaganza event led to the creation of a Tiffin Heritage Festival with architecture as the theme.
  • Submitted a bridge design to the Ohio Department of Transportation and convinced them to install historically compatible replacement bridges over the Sandusky River in Tiffin.
  • Sponsored architectural workshops, seminars and conferences, including two Building Doctor Clinics.
  • Prepared various publications, including a set of walking tour brochures focusing on Tiffin neighborhoods, sidewalks, streets and alleys.
  • Created a revolving fund to assist owners with their restoration needs.
  • Established the Annual Dinner Meeting in May, during National Preservation Week/Month.
  • Created the Annual Preservation Awards program.                                                   -cont-
  • Applied for Tiffin to be an early “Main Street” community and narrowly missed being selected, until it was achieved in 2016!
  • Wrote a design review program for downtown Tiffin; although not accepted, Tiffin did eventually implement similar legislation.
  • Accepted the bequest of the Grammes-Brown House from the late Rosina Brown, restored it to its Victorian grandeur, and now use it as its headquarters and for events.
  • Purchased a threatened downtown building and later found a retail business buyer for it, thus saving it from destruction.
  • Arranged for the cleaning of the William Harvey Gibson statue in front of the Courthouse.
  • Fought to preserve major architectural buildings within Tiffin, including the East Junior High School/Old Columbian building, and the 1887 Courthouse.
  • Assisted with the preservation of the Spiva-Manley House.
  • Hosted tours of historic homes and the annual Holiday House tour.
  • Created a series of wooden replicas of historic buildings made by the Trust volunteers. The replicas, along with note cards, were an important fundraising project for many years.
  • Held summer garden tours, and Victorian teas as fundraisers.

GRAND OPENING: Granny Ballreich’s Company Store opening on Thursday, September 10, 2015

<<Ballreich’s Press Release issued today>>

OGrand Openingn September 10, 2015 at 9 a.m., the doors will open to Ballreich’s Potato Chips’ long-anticipated retail store, Granny Ballreich’s. Events for the day include raffles, product sampling, coffee tasting and a coloring book signing from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. by Illustrator/Artist, Jodie McCallum and Author Kathy Mersch. The two have collaborated with Ballreich Bros., Inc. to develop an exciting 24 page Coloring and Activity book, which will be available for purchase along with child’s t-shirts featuring the same artwork.

In addition, nostalgic Ballreich custom created artwork prints and T-shirts from Tampa Bay artist, Mike Williams, previously from Port Clinton, Ohio will be available for purchase. This amazing Tampa Bay artist is recognized for his vintage illustrations of times past.

Appropriately named Granny Ballreich’s after Emma “Granny” Ballreich, one of the company’s founders, the store will be located at 180 Ohio Ave., the previous home of Carl and Emma Ballreich.

The history of the location, said Haley Thomas, director of sales and marketing at Ballreich’s, adds to the nostalgic feel of the store, which she says will be a “destination” for Tiffin residents and visitors to the area.

The focus at the store, will be Ballreich’s, with Ballreich’s products and history featured throughout the store, with local and Ohio-based products and potato-themed items. Granny Ballreich’s will offer a “wide range” of products and prices to customers, and will include an eclectic mix of memorabilia, merchandise and apparel.

A virtual tour room is to be featured at the store, which would provide images of Ballreich’s history, the art of its potato chip production and a glimpse of various media from throughout the country that have featured Ballreich’s products.

For almost 100 years, Ballreich’s has been a strong name of tradition in the Tiffin community, and 2015 will be a celebration of the company’s history and nostalgic beginning, as well as its future, as new products are added and the showcase of Granny B’s opens to the public.