Monday, July 19, 2010

Blue Sky

From the Blue Sky Project and our own Peter B.
"Of a River"
Live Performance Installation
Shaw Pong Liu & Rodney Veal
Thursday July 22, 2010
7 PM & 9 PM
WinterGarden @
The Benjamin & Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center
free to the public
Check it out!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Free Office Desks (2)

I have 2 nice office desks, contemporary, that were left in our rental in Butler Township,

free to anyone that can come and pick them up.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Pew for You

Looking for something unique for your home?  Maybe you would like to buy a church pew!  Here's a note from one of our members who is renovating a former church and making it their home:

We are finally beginning the renovation of the former sanctuary. Part of our plan is to remove most of the original pews. The original size was 20’ but we can reduce them to any size like 4,5,6 feet. Price is $250.00.
We can take mastercard/visa and hold for a few days. You pick up. Call Harry at 344-8501. We will place them on Craigslist next week, so let us know asap.

For more information, you can also contact the Historic Society at or stop by our next meeting on Tuesday, August 3 at the Liederkranz building on High Street in Dayton to learn more.


Monday, July 12, 2010

Odd Fellows, Part 2

So,we learned last time that the stately building at the corner of Fifth and La Belle Streets belonged to the International Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) until 1982.   Today, we will learn about the building itself, and its history since the Odd Fellows sold the property.

The Montgomery County tax records indicate the building consists of 16,235 square feet of space that sits on 0.1235 acres of land.   According to the Sanborn Insurance maps, available online from the Dayton Metro Library, here's what that southeast corner at Fifth and La Belle Streets looked like in 1918:

Now we'll see what the property looks like today.  In the following map, note that the surrounding properties have changed, except for the corner property, which today is the St. Anne's Hill Violin Shop.   Here is an overhead map, courtesy of Google:

Tax records indicate that the building has changed hands a number of times in the 28 years since then.   Several of the owners appear to have been faith-based organizations.    The sales were as follows:
21-APR-84      unknown       individual
02-APR-85      $21,000        individual
09-NOV-90    $35,000         individual
10-OCT-03     $175,000      HORIZON HOPE MINISTRY
05-JAN-05      unknown        JESUS COMBINE NETWORK INC
11-DEC-07     $0  (gift)        WHITE DOVE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
Recently, things have not gone well for the turn-of-the-century building.   The current owner appears to have done little to maintain or renovate the building.   As of this writing, there are over $43,000 in delinquent property taxes dating back to 1997.   Somehow, this property has transferred 3 times without anyone paying their taxes!

It is interesting to note that the last two owners shared the same mailing address on Indianola Avenue.   The property located there is today owned by "Family Home Church, Inc." which itself owes over $55,000 in delinquent property taxes on that property as well.   Although the Oddfellows Hall may seem abandoned, rumor has it that several people have talked to the owners over the last few years, so someone is watching.

Unfortunately, it appears that the only way to save this building is for an investor to apply for the City of Dayton "Lot Links" program, formerly known as the "Reap" program.    This program allows an individual or company to force a tax foreclosure in order to remove the taxes and ultimately purchase a property through the Sheriff's auction process.

If you or someone you know might be interested in taking on this challenge, please contact the City of Dayton Planning Department at (937) 333-3670 or contact us with the St. Anne's Hill Historic Society at today.


Thursday, July 8, 2010

Odd Fellows, Part I

There is an especially odd building in St. Anne's Hill.   It has tall arched windows and strong brick foundations.   It has a curious history and a prime location overlooking downtown Dayton.    Many people have noticed its stately shape; its looming presence casting long shadows across the street.  

It is known as the Oddfellows Hall.

It may surprise you to learn there are still Oddfellows in Ohio.   First let's explore some history, from the Independent Order of Odd Fellows website:
In 17th century England, it was odd to find people organized for the purpose of giving aid to those in need and of pursuing projects for the benefit of all mankind. Those who belonged to such an organization were called "Odd Fellows"... 
The Independent Order of Odd Fellows was founded on the North American Continent in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 26, 1819 when Thomas Wildey and four members of the Order from England instituted Washington Lodge No. 1.
By 1861, there were over 200,000 Oddfellows across 42 states, according to Wildey's biography.   So that leads us to wonder when they came to the Dayton area.   The "Special Collections" archives at Wright State University Library has extensive files documenting Dayton's history, including our own St. Anne's Hill Historic Society archives.   

The Oddfellows Archive at WSU establishes their presence in the Dayton area, saying "The first Independent Order of Odd Fellows in Dayton, Montgomery Lodge #5, was instituted under a charter dated April 19, 1833.  The Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Dayton Lodge # 273, was instituted April 20, 1855, and later became the I.O.O.F. Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen."  

Side Note: According to, the "Dayton Encampment" of Oddfellows wrote their Constitution in 1838, which provides some insight into their organizational structure.

Eventually, the local Oddfellows found their home in St. Anne's Hill.   Montgomery County Deed records indicate that the Oddfellows Hall in St. Anne's Hill was owned by Dayton Lodge #273 until the building was sold in 1982 - representing over 127 years of Dayton history.  Additional deed records reveal that several local lodges consolidated in 1983.

Stay tuned for Part II:  The Oddfellows Hall.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

World Cup

Message from the Liederkranz German Club...

I'm sure that Germany will be in the final. Even if they are not, we will be watching the World Cup Final at the club on Sunday, 11 July 2010. The doors and bar will open at 2:30 pm. Please bring a dish to share with all the other soccer fans. It should be a good time. Bring the kids. Let's cheer Germany all the way to the world cup!!!!!  Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooal!

Don't miss the semi-final match against Spain, Wednesday at 1:30pm on ESPN!  Go Germany!!

See you at the club.


Dayton Liederkranz-Turner
1400 E Fifth St, Dayton OH 45402