Toledo Talk

The Wonderful, Odd, and Obscure of Toledo

There are many interesting, but overlooked locations to visit in the Toledo area. With spring (hopefully) upon us soon, I'd love make a day trip or two to visit some unappreciated, but fascinating sites in Northwest Ohio. Nothing is too little to be worth mentioning. Here are my offerings.

Dynamite Dock - Point Place

A social group known as the "Dynamiters" are shown at what remains of the dock at Carland Beach. About 1905.


I don't have any modern-day pictures of this, unfortunately. But I've been told that when the water is low at 346th and 145th street in Point Place, the decaying poles of what was known as Dynamite Dock can be seen. Below is a description found from a Geocities page about the location (author unknown):

Dynamite Dock was located in back of Johnson's on Edgewater (land east of 326th near 145th).and owned by A. J. Rummel Company, a gunpowder and sporting goods store. The dock was used to load rowboats with nitro which was then rowed across the Ottawa River for shooting oil wells for 50 cents a trip. A city of Toledo Ordinance prohibited hauling the explosives through city streets.
Part of the story was that on November 13, 1884 a hunter aimed wrong and hit a box of nitro and blew up the dock and storehouse. Yet nothing in the Toledo Blade account mentions a hunter. The Blade account reads in part "At a few minutes past 10 o'clock this morning a terrific explosion startled everyone in Toledo. In the business section, windows rattled--everyone thought it was an earthquake....Rummel's powder workers on Delaware Creek had blown up...On the south side of Delaware Creek, situated on the side hill, was Rummel's Powder Mills, consisting of a packing house, drying house and storage rooms. These were located about 200 feet apart.
This morning a tub of nitroglycerine which had been out of doors had frozen and it was necessary to thaw it out. N.C.Clark, the foremand, had rolled the keg to within five or six feet of the coal stove--but R. Gaul moved it closer. Since nitroglycerine will not explode except at a temperature of 360 degrees or more, it is thought that the tub caught fire. When it was discovered that it was on fire, one of the men threw it outside...South Toledo, Maumee and Perrysburg saw an immense cloud of smoke. Shock was felt in a radius of at least 40 miles. Fremont, Ann Arbor, and a dozen towns reported by telephone that they had heard the crash. The glass in a Monroe Street saloon shattered. One side of Grasser & Brand's ice house, west of the scene of the accident, was completely blown out.
The report of the explosion was plainly felt at the Court House. Officers and clerks rushed franticallhy out into the park,...Total loss was estimated by Mr Rummel to be about $10,000."

Silo Tree - North Toledo
Found at the intersection of Matzinger and Benore, this silo tree now stands alone ó no longer adjacent to a deteriorated ivy-covered barn, as shown in the Google Street View image above. This is an example of a Midwest phenomenon that has even been sought after by some photographers. When silos are abandoned, seeds within them take root and are able to obtain enough sunlight to grow. The walls of the silos protect saplings from harsh winds and serve as a sort of nursery.

Demonic Metal Sculptures - Holland

At 8246 Angola Road in Holland, one can stumble upon what appears to be a demented fairground (once referred to in a Toledo Talk post as "The Evil Disneyland on Angola Road"). Owned by Thomas J. Anderson, this property has been the subject of legal debate over whether the metal sculptures were allowable on what was zoned as agricultural property. (See this WTOL article.) Anderson won the right to keep them on display, and has since erected signs that criticize local politicians and allude to a custody battle over his grandchildren. Despite their demented appearance, the sculptures are worth admiring.

What unique, obscure locations do you know about?

created by MsReason on Feb 03, 2018 at 09:53:24 pm     Comments: 20

source      versions      1 person liked this


Comments ... #

My mother in law lives in the house that sits on the corner of 145th and 326th. When the water is low enough you can see the remains of Dynamite Dock.

posted by justphillips on Feb 04, 2018 at 08:33:51 am     #  

These were the only photos I could find in my camera roll, unfortunately the water wasn't down this day to see the remains of Dynamite Dock.

IMG_4201

IMG_4200

posted by justphillips on Feb 04, 2018 at 09:05:53 am     #  

Delaware creek is in south Toledo, I remember seeing it in the environmental report on one of my tower sites. I wonder if the dock on the Ottawa river was a different explosion. https://www.google.com/maps/place/Delaware+Creek/@41.6075187,-83.6076731,15z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x883b87882b419893:0x90379c0a738d967!8m2!3d41.607519!4d-83.5989184

posted by jhop on Feb 04, 2018 at 09:51:37 am     #  

That explosion was a dynamite factory and was different from the Point Place one. I remember reading something with warming up nitro glycerin near a wood stove started that one.

posted by OldTimer on Feb 04, 2018 at 10:33:16 am     #  

I should read before I post as the Point Place one was the nitro story.

posted by OldTimer on Feb 04, 2018 at 10:35:08 am     #  

Ottawa Hills just capped off a 100-year-old abandoned oil well in the floodplain. The shaft was over 600 feet deep, rediscovered by a dogwalker. Locals had reported a petroleum smell and oil slicks in the Ottawa River over the years.

http://www.vvoh.com/orphan-oil-well-project-complete-cms-133

posted by viola on Feb 04, 2018 at 02:05:26 pm     #  

From what Iíve heard living in the area , the Delaware Creek had to be re-routed when they built the Canal where the AW Trail is now. I saw a map where the creek was in my backyard.

posted by marving on Feb 04, 2018 at 08:50:33 pm     #  

At Woodlawn Cemetery, near the corner of Jackman and Hillcrest and very visible from Jackman Road, is a headstone that says All of Us.

I remember seeing it as a college student and being completely creeped out. Turns out, it was for a family that had a lot of marriages and divorces and everyone had a different last name, so the lady who paid for it directed the stonecutter to simply put "all of us."

posted by Anniecski on Feb 05, 2018 at 12:00:45 pm     #  

marving posted at 08:50:33 PM on Feb 04, 2018:

From what Iíve heard living in the area , the Delaware Creek had to be re-routed when they built the Canal where the AW Trail is now. I saw a map where the creek was in my backyard.

You know the place where the Anthony Wayne Trail crosses the railroad tracks near Emerald Ave? When the Anthony Wayne Trail was a canal, the canal went OVER the tracks. They built a concrete basin that held the water as it passed above the railroad tracks below. Like a big tub or a water ride at an amusement park. Much of that superstructure is still present below the modern day overpass.

The Delaware Creek runs in a significant ravine. Major moves would seem unlikely, except on the other side of the old Bowsher maybe, but there is still quite the ravine.

posted by justread on Feb 05, 2018 at 12:07:15 pm     #  

^^ I am on the other side of the old Bowsher. If they did , in fact ,re-route the creek , I donít know where they re-routed to.

posted by marving on Feb 05, 2018 at 07:28:23 pm     #  

Lots of fun, fascinating info here, thanks MsReason and fellow TT folks !

posted by foodie88 on Feb 05, 2018 at 08:27:24 pm     #  

And speaking about the ravine. There must have been at one time a lot of water in there. Some friends bought a home on Watova overlooking the ravine. Big home , ornate carved woodworking ,sizable fountain in the back yard along with a walk in bath. They had the original sales brochure for the area and it touted hydroelectric power for the area , platform tennis and gondolas for rides through the ravine. The house was owned by the man who owned the concessions at Walbridge Park amusement park. All I remember about the amusement park is it being a rusted relic ,overgrown and falling down .

posted by marving on Feb 05, 2018 at 09:00:58 pm     #  

This info is all really interesting. Thanks for sharing!

From Justread:
You know the place where the Anthony Wayne Trail crosses the railroad tracks near Emerald Ave? When the Anthony Wayne Trail was a canal, the canal went OVER the tracks. They built a concrete basin that held the water as it passed above the railroad tracks below. Like a big tub or a water ride at an amusement park. Much of that superstructure is still present below the modern day overpass.

Is this the overpass you're talking about? I'm curious to see what's underneath this thing.


So, I thought that the canal was built before the railroad. Does that mean crews had to first install this concrete basin, and then dig beneath it to allow trains to pass? That would be quite the undertaking (pun intended).

posted by MsReason on Feb 05, 2018 at 09:34:22 pm     #   1 person liked this

Yep! That's it. I may have to give The Blade credit for the original story. http://www.toledoblade.com/local/2011/10/09/Area-still-connected-to-its-canal-history.html
The article says it was a steel tub but I have looked under and there are remaining concrete or stone works. I guess you have to support a steel tub. It was a long time ago when I looked under that bridge. Like the 80s. It is not a great neighborhood. The safest way would probably be to look at it from the pedestrian bridge just east. Don't go alone. Or unarmed.

The canal did indeed predate the railroad but not by much, I suppose. Google says the Erie Canal was built between 1817-1825. Railroads were popping up in the east by that time. Would be interesting to know if the canal reached Toledo first, or the first set of tracks were laid. As far as digging under, not a big deal. In PA and NY, the railroad went through mountains and hills.
Men were cheap and dynamite was available.

I know you were looking for places that could be visited. Sorry for the hijack.

posted by justread on Feb 06, 2018 at 05:11:20 am     #  

marving posted at 09:00:58 PM on Feb 05, 2018:

And speaking about the ravine. There must have been at one time a lot of water in there. Some friends bought a home on Watova overlooking the ravine. Big home , ornate carved woodworking ,sizable fountain in the back yard along with a walk in bath. They had the original sales brochure for the area and it touted hydroelectric power for the area , platform tennis and gondolas for rides through the ravine. The house was owned by the man who owned the concessions at Walbridge Park amusement park. All I remember about the amusement park is it being a rusted relic ,overgrown and falling down .

Somebody posted a map app at one point that let you overlay current map with a map from the 1800s or something. That would be interesting to check RE: Delaware creek. It is one heck of a cut through the landscape. From the Watova side, all the way to the Maumee, especially over by the short stretch of Wildwood that runs from River Rd.
I wonder if the historic flow of the Delaware was changed by the canal (They intersected each other) and in the end, that flow ended up in Swan Creek? In other words, the moved some of the water. The ravine remains.

posted by justread on Feb 06, 2018 at 05:19:32 am     #  

Here is the link to the map overlay site, but be careful...you'll find yourself here for quite some time! Really fun to see the changes over time: http://www.oldmapsonline.org/en/Toledo,_Ohio

posted by breeman on Feb 06, 2018 at 01:46:58 pm     #  

Somewhere east of the Stranahan, visible from the westbound lanes of the turnpike, is a house with a mannequin bolted to the roof. She is wearing a hardhat, safety vest and sitting above a sign that says "ODOT - QUIET." My best guess for an address is Ogontz Ave or Dorian/Devonshire area.

I would love to know what that's all about.

posted by viola on Feb 06, 2018 at 05:05:13 pm     #  

breeman posted at 01:46:58 PM on Feb 06, 2018:

Here is the link to the map overlay site, but be careful...you'll find yourself here for quite some time! Really fun to see the changes over time: http://www.oldmapsonline.org/en/Toledo,_Ohio

There was a different one. It didn't have as many maps, (Maybe even one, an old one) but it overlaid on the current map with variable transparency, so you could track detailed changes easier.

posted by justread on Feb 07, 2018 at 06:07:14 am     #  

Your are talking about this one
https://www.historicaerials.com/viewer
Use the slide function and put different years on each side and slide to watch neighborhoods and shopping areas appear and disappear.
Now this one is addicting.

posted by OldTimer on Feb 07, 2018 at 07:42:58 am     #  

justread posted at 06:07:14 AM on Feb 07, 2018:
breeman posted at 01:46:58 PM on Feb 06, 2018:

Here is the link to the map overlay site, but be careful...you'll find yourself here for quite some time! Really fun to see the changes over time: http://www.oldmapsonline.org/en/Toledo,_Ohio

There was a different one. It didn't have as many maps, (Maybe even one, an old one) but it overlaid on the current map with variable transparency, so you could track detailed changes easier.

1888 Map of Lucas county from the post of the same name.
http://www.georeferencer.com/maps/366276726537/view

posted by TrilbyGuy on Feb 07, 2018 at 12:56:37 pm     #