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NB Historical Society Newsletter Spring 2016

North Baltimore Historical Society Newsletter

Knowing where you’ve been, helps you see where you’re going.

A Periodic Publication of the North Baltimore Ohio Area Historical Society

Spring 2016

CLICK HERE for pdf – NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 (READ below of text)

HISTORICAL CENTER HOURS:  Tuesday mornings 9:00-12:00 or by appointment

Topsy Hartsel Played Here Then in Horse and Buggy League

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 Topsy Hartsel, Former Toledo Mud Hens Manager
Topsy Hartsel, Former Toledo Mud Hens Manager

Old timers in baseballdom will remember the gent whose picture is shown (left) as Topsy Hartsel, second baseman on the famous North Baltimore team in the Horse and Buggy league of 1896.

Hartsel, whose picture is reproduced here through the courtesy of the boys on the News-Bee sports staff, has just been named commissioner of the new Ohio-Michigan league of the National Amateur Baseball Federation.

Here in ‘96

His first assignment in baseball was in North Baltimore in ’96, when “Cap” W. J. White, manager of the outfit, and Nort Davis picked him up with several others after the Lima team had broken up.

Those were the heydays of big-time athletics in North Baltimore and surrounding towns, “Cap” White here on his return from the East to the Philippines, recalls. Cygnet, Prairie Depot, Bowling Green, Baltimore, Grand Rapids, Tontogany and Portage had teams in the “Horse and Buggy” and most of them thrived quite well, and the North Baltimore park, on East Broadway was the center of many a hot battle. Plenty of liquor flowed in those days.

Many Made Good

Many of the boys on the North Baltimore team in ’96 made good in the big city leagues, and several of them already had been gathered from Louisville and other larger cities.

The roster during Hartsel’s term here, the captain recalls, included Bert Inks, Jack Harper, Wisner and George Mullen, four of the best pitchers who ever hit the town, Frank Carr was catcher, Eddie Castle first, Hartsel second, Frank Wilson, shortstop, Charlie Edwards third, and Jinks France, Frank Shatzel, Frank Carrol and Charlie McFall were in the outfield.

Joined Majors

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 Topsy Hartsel 2
Topsy Harsel

From North Baltimore Hartsel went to Grand Rapids in the Michigan league, and in 1899 to Louisville in the old National league. From there he traveled to Indianapolis in the Western, then to Cincinnati, Chicago, and to Philadelphia, where he played in three World Series and one year lead the American league in stolen bases, 54, a record that stood for seven years.

At the end of the 1912 series Hartsel returned to Ohio as the manager of the Toledo Mud Hens. He retired from the professional sport in 1914.

This article was originally printed in the Weekly Beacon on February 19, 1926.

NBAHS Editor’s Note: Tully Frederick “Topsy” Hartsel was born in 1874 in Polk, Ohio. After retiring from baseball he remained in Toledo and died in October 1944. Hartsel never lost his interest in baseball and watched the 1944 World Series on his deathbed. He is buried in Toledo’s Historic Woodlawn Cemetery.

WELCOME NEW MEMBERS Amanda Baltz, Mary Bobb, Ruth Derrick, Voni Detamore, Holly Emahiser, Cheryl Heilman, John Kelley, Allyson Murray, Art Patterson, Gary Slaughterbeck, Doug Troutner, Ed Wymer, and Life Member Sam Bretz


By Margaret Bobb, NBOAHS Vice-President

The North Baltimore Ohio Area Historical Society recently acquired the builder’s cornerstone from the one-room schoolhouse that once stood on the northeast corner of Rudolph and Freyman roads (Sec. 12) in northern Henry Township. The school was built in 1883 on land owned by Henry Freyman, an early settler in the area. The cornerstone reads, “Henry Twp. Dist. No. 1 / Oct. 30, 1883 / J. Lozier, Builder”.

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 Henry Twp. No. 1 - Freyman School Cornerstone
Henry Twp. No. 1/Freyman School Cornerstone

The school was constructed of brick and measured 27’ x 33’. There were four windows on each side with a narrow 12’ high front door on the south side of the building. The belfry was located at the front of the structure, but slightly off center to the east. The school was located approximately 10 feet from the runoff ditch on Rudolph Road. Interior walls were plastered and had brown wainscoting and chalkboards on the front and side walls. The ceilings were very high and had a stencil pattern border at the top. Heating came from a coal-fueled stove in the center of the room. Students were grouped by grade and sat on cast-iron and wood seats facing the teacher’s desk.

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 Interior of Freyman School ca. 1905 (NBOAHS)
Interior of Freyman School ca. 1905 (NBOAHS)

According to the Commemorative Historical and Biographical Record of Wood County, Ohio; It’s Past and Present, which was published in 1897, at that time there were twenty-one students from nine families enrolled in the school; including William and Christian Freyman. Harold Bechtel and Eleanor Bechtel, both of whom later taught in the North Baltimore school system, taught at the Freyman School in the early 1900’s.

In later years the building was used for farm storage. The cornerstone was purchased by Ray Vandersall at an auction several years ago and is now on display in the School Room at the North Baltimore Historical Center.


This letter, dated July 6, 1855, was one of a series of letters sent to North Baltimore resident Sarah M. Peters by David Hough. Sarah was the daughter of Abraham and Edith Peters and the sister of Bassett Lewis (B.L.) Peters, founder of North Baltimore.

Dear Miss Sarah,
I can inform you Dear Miss Sarah that my health is good at present and do sincerely trust these lines may meet you cheerful and happy. I do inform you that I received your letter and it gave me great pleasure and comfort to hear from you. Not long before that I received your first letter, also I think it must of traveled slow or slept sometime on the way. Dear Miss, I promised to write some about the way I would like to live in times to come if my life is spared and we would be so happy as to be united in wedlock. Oh! may the day shortly roll around that we might meet and never part as long at one time as at the present time till death would separate us, let that time be long or short for we know not.

In the first place, as I am a carpenter and brickmaker it is not likely that I could be at home every night and as I wouldn’t stay by myself or wouldn’t leave you, therefore, I have chose to live in some village. At the present I have chose on Charlotte at the present time for it is as nice a place as I ever looked at. I will have good buildings if labor or money will buy. I want everything handy and nice in the house and outside. I am no lover of filthy houses and it is not likely that I could stay in these parts without prospects would be better for a man to make a living.

It would be likely that you would have to leave home. Now I sincerely think if a man ever used a woman right it ought to be done when she leaves father, mother, sisters and brothers and follows him far from home. But I can say, fear not, or think that you will not be used right for if you leave father and mother and follow me that I will lay nothing in the way to make you regret that you ever left home that we might comfort each other in sickness or health as we journey here below. That when we leave we might leave bright evidence that we are gone to rest from all our toils and labors where the weary soul cease from troubling and the weary are at rest. Dear Miss Sarah, if you have got no notion of living a joyous and religious life let me know now and not hereafter. I tell you that I want to live a joyous and religious life, if you don’t seek for another companion. I have seen enough of husbands and wives living together; the one wanting to live a joyous life, the other not, and what contentions I have seen in families it is enough to make a tender-hearted person shed tears. I say…with love and peace or not at all. I know that most of this we have talked over and know most of this you have said aloud, but think it not…again to see it in print as I think it won’t be no loss to see it so that we might know the intentions of our minds, whether they are good or evil. And what I write, I write to be faithful and true. I want you to do the same.

You requested in your last letter to let me know when I was coming back. I can’t tell at the present time. But, it is not likely I will be there before the snow flies in the fall. If I live I will be there but I must go to Pennsylvania some time next winter.

I must inform you that I am going to go in the plains to harvest wheat. I was last harvest. I thot’ I would get rid of going. It appears not. Mr. Dean is coming next week after us boys. Levy Edginton is going along. The prospects is good for a merry time and sixteen shillings a day, if we have good health.

If I have wrote anything that don’t look right to you let me know and I would love to see a few lines from you and let me know the intention of your mind.

Direct your letter to Eaton P.O., Eaton County, Michigan.
Nothing more at present, but remain your lover. Farewell, David.

* * * * *

David Hough and Sarah Peters were married on January 17, 1856 in the Peters home in North Baltimore. In his letter David told Sarah that it would be likely that, if they were married, she would need to move away from her family in North Baltimore. The same year of their marriage they moved to Charlotte, Michigan where David had a job as a carpenter and brick layer. David and Sarah raised six children: Edith, Jonathon Franklin, Catharine, William Lewis, Eva Ann, and David Elunda. All of the children remained in Michigan except William Lewis.

William Lewis Hough married Mary Elsie Lambert in 1889 in Michigan and they moved to North Baltimore shortly after they were married. She died in childbirth in January 1895. He then married Sarah Jane Showman in 1897. William was a prominent local business man beginning with opening a grocery store in the Henry Opera house building which he operated until 1909. He then went into the real estate and insurance business and maintained an office at 111 E. Broadway until his death of a heart attack in 1937.

David Hough died in 1873 and Sarah (Peters) Hough died in 1883. They are buried in Maple Hill cemetery in Charlotte, Michigan. William Hough is buried in Maplewood Cemetery (NB).

President …………………. Courtney Mays
Vice-President …………………………………. Margaret Bobb
Secretary …………………………………………. Paula Miklovic
Treasurer ……………………………………………. Gwenn Mauk
Newsletter Editor – Margaret Bobb

Board Members – Thomas Boltz, Janis Dukes, Janice Emahiser, Phyllis Mercer, Pam Seiler, Larry Slaughterbeck, and Rick Van Mooy

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016 An early picture of the Jefferson Richcreek home (229 N. Main) which was built in 1879. Richcreek built the home with his oil boom earnings.
An early picture of the Jefferson Richcreek home (229 N. Main) which was built in 1879. Richcreek built the home with his oil boom earnings.(Currently the home of the NBOAHS)

The North Baltimore Ohio Area Historical Society
229 North Main Street, P.O. Box 174
North Baltimore, Ohio, 45872
(419) 257-2266

Email: nboahs@nbpubliclibrary.org

Web address: www.northbaltimorehistory.org

Check our website at northbaltimorehistory.org for other history articles and Society news

NB Historical Newsletter Spring 2016

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