Historical Dates for Norwood, Ohio.

  • 1880
    Norwood's population is estimated at 423 persons.

  • 1880 (February 11)
    Because of the legal and financial problems of the Miami Valley Railroad, the Court appointed Robert G. Corwine, Lebanon; John M. Millikin, Hamilton, and Grant H. Burrows, Avondale, as Appraisers to determine the valuation of the property and franchises of the company.

  • 1880 (February 15)
    The Appraisal Board of the Miami Valley Railroad assigned a value of $60,000 to the road-bed, bridges, right-of-way franchises, etc. This was considered a low appraisal by some people, who expected this to ensure the sale of the road.

  • 1880 (February 24)
    The trial of John B. Benedict vs. The Miami Valley Railroad Company was on Common Pleas Court Judge Longworth's docket today.

  • 1880 (March 20)
    The Miami Valley Railroad is sold this Saturday. Some of the bondholders wer upset that the business sold for a low price and were determined to find the sale. Previously these bondholders had been asked to join together and buy the company, but refused.

  • 1880 (April 7)
    After a contested legal battle, the ownership of the Miami Valley Railroad was given to Samuel Thomas, C. S. Brice, Charles Foster, Ozro J. Dodds, A. D. Bullock, John Ryan, George Hafer and M. S. Forbes. Later reports indicate that the road will be completed as a standard gauge road and will be called the Cincinnati Northern Railroad.

  • 1880 (August)
    George A. McGowan drowns in Lake Chautauqua. He is a member of The Ganowanian Archery Club of Norwood.

  • 1880 (November 29)
    The John B. Benedict vs. The Miami Valley Railroad trail was now in Common Pleas Court of Judge Moore.

  • 1880 (December 21)
    At the annual meeting of the Cincinnati Northern Railroad Company (formerly the Miami Valley Railroad Company), it was stated the work on the road would go as fast as the weather would permit. They expected to allow in-bound passengers at Oak Street, Walnut Hills, in early spring, but more time was required to complete the tunnel at Walnut Hills. The contract for the section between Court Street, Cincinnati, and Norwood had been given to R. G. Huston & Company.

  • 1880 (late December)
    The Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce's 32nd annual report detailed the promising railroad situation in Cincinnati. Concerning the Cincinnati Northern Railroad, it was written that expectations were that by January 1, 1881, the 22-1/2 mile track from the Marietta & Cincinnati Railroad, at Norwood, to Lebanon would be finished. The 5-1/2 mile section from Norwood to Cincinnati should be completed by April 1. This date was later changed to June 1, and by April 1881, the completion date was changed again to August 1.) This southern part was made of steel double tracks, to accomodate the planned suburban traffic and for connection with other railroad lines —the Cincinnati, Eastern and the Cincinnati & Portsmouth Narrow Gauge Railroads may use the Northern line as their entrance into the heart of downtown Cincinnati. Also, on this section, a 1,100 feet tunnel was constructed.

  • 1880 (December 31)
    A stockholder's meeting of the Miami Valley Railroad was held at Washington Hall, Lebanon, Ohio. There were several lawsuits pending against the company and there was concern that the stockholders may be made liable. Those 300-400 original stockholders were asked to donate $500 total to pay for legal costs. Many of the stockholders were farmers who balked at this new expense, but finally the amount was raised.

  • 1881 (January 5)
    A list of all the right-of-way deeds in Hamilton County conveyed to the Cincinnati Northern Railroad was published. Some were made to the old Miami Valley Railroad and some to the Northern. The total price was $116,205.34. The amounts for the individual deeds ranged from $270 to $22,000. A couple of well-known Norwood landowners and their compensation were Hiram Smith, $1,175.76 and Joseph G. Langdon, $2,265. George Hafer, Trustee of the railroad, said the road would be completed as soon as the weather allows. He said the tracks were ready to be laid from Norwood to Lebanon and he expected to have the trains running between Lebanon and Cincinnati by May 1.

  • 1881 (February 2-3)
    The several cases concerning the Miami Valley Railroad were brought forth to Judge Gilmore at Lebanon.

  • 1881 (February 11)
    In a listing of the miles of railroad constructed in 1880, the Cincinnati Northern was recorded at 24-1/2 miles from Norwood to Lebanon.

  • 1881 (February 12)
    Talk that L. C. Hopkins, one of the real estate developers of Norwood and other local communities, had resigned his position as the General Sales Agent of the Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York caused a lot of questions. It was said that he was making $20,000 to $30,000 a year from the collections of insurance policies. It was also said that he was generous with the agents under him, giving them 50% of the commissions.

  • 1881 (March)
    George Hafer donates the land for Norwood Hall. The deed requires that the town hall be built within two years. (The donation may have occurred on March 4.)
    Mr. Hafer is a prominent Cincinnati businessman, resident of Avondale and the last mayor of that village, when it was annexed by Cincinnati with Hafer's encouragement.

  • 1881 (April)
    A newspaper account of the Norwood railroad station at the junction of the Marietta & Cincinnati and Cincinnati Northern Railroads describes the "Union Depot" as not being entirely constructed of Baltimore pressed brick and that the open work was modeled after the style of a station at Kansas City.

  • 1881 (May 28)
    The track of the Cincinnati Northern Railroad was nearly all ballasted and the grading south of Norwood was being made. Work on the tunnel was continuing. The first train was to run on Monday, May 30, leaving Lebanon at 6 a.m., traveling on the Northern tracks to Norwood and from there to Cincinnati, beteen 9 and 10 a.m., on the Marietta and Cincinnati tracks. The train would return from the Pearl Street Station at 5 p.m., getting back to Lebanon between 7 and 8 p.m.

  • 1881 (May 31)
    A train with one passenger car ran this day. It held fifty passengers, but about as many could not ride. A newspaper column complained about the slow pace of the building of the Cincinnati Northern line. It said that the company had, beside the right-of-ways, track, etc., only 4 locomotives, 1 passenger car, 1 baggage car, 2 cabooses, 8 box cars, 29 platform cars, 10 coal cars, 2 water tanks and 1 station-house.

  • 1881 (late June)
    The United States Express Company was operating from the Cincinnati Northern Railroad to Norwood and then from there to Cincinnati by use of wagons.

  • 1881 (August 1)
    Reports stated that the Cincinnati Northern was being pushed to completion, with work on the roadbed between Lebanon and Dayton and a large work force on the tunnel and grading between Norwood and Cincinnati.

  • 1881 (August 6)
    Legal actions continued against the Miami Valley Railroad Company as the legal liability of stockholders versus creditors was discussed in Judge Avery's Court of Common Pleas.

  • 1881 (December 21)
    Thomas Brownbill, who lives next to the Marietta and Cincinnati Railroad's depot, filed a petition in the Court of Common Pleas against dairyman Frank E. Wiehe and the Receivers of the Marietta Railroad and the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railrod. Wiehe purchases rotting corn refuse from a glucose factory in Tippecanoe, Ohio, to feed his cows, and the odor is so bad that it makes his home uninhabitable. Judge Buchwalter issued a temporary restraining order.

  • 1881
    The Cincinnati, Lebanon & Northern (C.L.&N.) Railroad is built, connecting Norwood with Cincinnati, to the south, and Lebanon and Dayton, to the north. Passenger services were provided until 1933.

  • 1881
    L. C. Hopkins develops his East Norwood Subdivision from 46 acres fronting Harris Avenue. He acquired the property from the Charles Woolley heirs. The location of the C., L. & N. R. R. may have influenced Hopkins to build here. The subdivision is later turned over to L. G. Hopkins.

  • 1881
    H.A. & K.B. Ford's 1881 book, History of Hamilton County, includes a map titled "Outline - Township Map of Hamilton County, Ohio." On it are four names that are to become the village and city of Norwood: "East Norwood", "Sharpsburg", "Norwood", and "Norwood Heights."

  • 1882
    The Cincinnati & Eastern Railway begins running passenger trains on its narrow gauge tracks. The rail service runs from a downtown terminal at Court and Gilbert Streets to Norwood's Cleneay Station at the southern edge of Norwood, and then to Hyde Park's nearby Mornington Station at or near Wasson Avenue, which parallels the tracks. (Note: At the time the area later known as Hyde Park is called Mornington.)

    The other names for this railroad are the Cincinnati, Portsmouth and Virginia Railroad and, later, the Norfolk & Western Railroad.

  • 1882 (May 22)
    Adolph C. Strobel pays Lewis G. Hopkins $2,500 for four lots (numbers 26, 27, 28 and 29) of L. C. Hopkins Subdivision of East Norwood. In December, Strobel buys adjacent lot 24 for $625. The lots are located between Highland and Harper Avenues, across from Pine Street. With these lots and lot 25, he builts a home for his family. His brother-in-law, Henry F. Farny, the artist, lives with them soon after. (The house still stands on Harper Avenue, at the end of Pine Street.)

  • 1882 (November 6)
    Over a year and a half after George Hafer donated the land for Norwood Town Hall, the first meeting of the Norwood Hall Association's Board of Directors is held in the newly constructed hall. The hall immediately becomes a center for religious, civic and business meetings. In 1890, the village bought the site and hall.

  • 1882 (November 14)
    The Norwood Building and Loan Company is organized.

  • 1883
    The McFarlan Lumber Company opens a lumber outlet in Norwood. At the turn of the century the name is changed to The Dexter Lumber Company. Its location is at today's Frisch's.

  • 1883
    The first phone in Norwood is installed at The McFarlan Lumber Company by The City & Suburban Telephone Association.

  • 1884 George Hafer is appointed receiver of the Cincinnati-Northern Railway Company after it goes into bankruptcy. Later, after turning it around financially, he is made President of the company, renamed the Cincinnati, Lebanon and Northern Railroad.

  • 1884
    Adolph Charles Strobel and his wife Marguerite (nee Farny) move from Cincinnati to their new home on Harper Avenue, opposite Pine Street in East Norwood. (The year may have been 1883, but 1884 is the first directory listing.)

  • 1884 (August 31)
    A group of Catholic men meet at the home of J. Stephen Bokenkotter on Allison Avenue in order to promote the building of a church. The foundation for that church is laid at the end of October on land donated by real estate developers Mills & Kline. The church, St. Elizabeth, is not completed until the end of September 1886.

  • 1884 (late)
    Construction begins on replacing the Sharpsburg School District's 2-room school house with a 4-room building. At some point, it would take the name of "Central School."

  • 1884
    John Thomas Lloyd, son of John Uri Lloyd, is born in Norwood, Ohio.

  • 1885
    Henry Farny, the artist, moves to live with his sister and brother-in-law, Marguerite and A. C. Strobel, at their Harper Avenue home in East Norwood. He probably travels to his studio in downtown Cincinnati by riding the Cincinnati, Lebanon and Northern Railroad passenger trains from the East Norwood Station located three blocks down Pine Street.

  • 1885 (summer)
    According to Ren Mulford, Jr.'s 1887 column, this is when the first "new" homes are built in South Norwood, i.e. the first homes built in the subdivisions of South Norwood — any homes built before this are before the developers acquired the land.

  • 1886 (February 26)
    The Cincinnati, Idlewild, Ivanhoe and Norwood Cable Company is incorporated by Powel Crosley, George F. Meyers, Richard T. Durrell, George H. B. Cleneay and R. B. Brooks. The purpose of the incorporation was the construction and operation of a horse and cable street car line between Cincinnati and Norwood. The capital stock of the company was 500 shares totaling $50,000.

  • 1886 (September)
    The new four-room school house is opened.

  • 1886 (October 3)
    St. Elizabeth's first church, at Mills and Carter Avenues, is dedicated.

  • 1887
    One estimate for the combined population of South Norwood, East Norwood and "old" Norwood is over 3,000.

  • 1887
    The Norwood Central School is enlarged from four to eight rooms. Since the new four-room school was built a year ago, the number of students has doubled.

  • 1887 (May 1)
    The Norwood Presbyterian Church is organized with twenty-four members. Thirteen come from the Third Presbyterian, one from a Kentucky church, and the others from the Pleasant Ridge Church and the First of Walnut Hills. The church has services at Norwood Town Hall.

  • 1887 (October 31, Monday)
    Ren Mulford, Jr., moves into his East Norwood home on the west side of Beech Avenue, north of Norwood Avenue. This sportswriter also reports on the community affairs and development of early Norwood.

  • 1887 (November)
    The East Norwood Improvement Society places 18 street lamps about the suburb, paid for by 50˘ monthly subscription dues from residential members and donations from businesses, such as the real estate developers — Bofinger & Hopkins gives a check for $100 and promised $15 for every $100 collected, while Moessinger, Fritsch & Co. donates $25 in cash and $75 in three quarterly installments. They are lit for the first time on the evening of November 3, 1887.

    Since the Cincinnati suburbs' street lights are gasoline, it is reasonable to assume that the Norwood lights are gasoline versions, also.

  • 1887 (November 11)
    The South Norwood Musical and Literary Society meets for the first time this evening, at the home of Mr. and Mrs. George W. Gale. This may be an organizational meeting, since no record of entertainment is found. The social club plans to have semi-monthly meetings this winter.

  • 1887 (November 17)
    It is reported that 71 trains passed through Norwood on the Cincinnati, Washington and Baltimore and the Cincinnati, Lebanon and Northern tracks today—possibly a record.

  • 1887 (November 25)
    The South Norwood Literary and Musical Society meet for the second time, at Robert Leslie's Floral Avenue home. This is probably the first time there was entertainment, which is provided by quartets, duets and solo singers, and a couple of recitations.

  • 1887 (December 2)
    The Ladies' Circle of the Norwood Presbyterian Church holds a bazaar at the Norwood Town Hall. Even though there is a cold rain, the hall is crowded (a list of names indicates there are at least 80 attendees) and at least $190 is collected for the cause.

  • 1887 (December 9)
    The South Norwood Musical and Literary Society meet for what is said to be the second time (for entertainment), at Mr. & Mrs. Jackson Slane's. Over 60 people attend for a full evening of entertainment, which consists of readings and music for piano, trombone, and vocals.

  • 1887 (December 12-19)
    A plank walk is laid about the school house, by order of the School Board.

  • 1887 (December 16)
    While visiting Norwood relatives, the William Wallace family, from near Gallipolis, miss the East Norwood station and have to walk in the dark from the tracks at Highland Avenue. Mr. Wallace stumbles into a railroad guard and breaks his leg.

  • 1887 (December 22)
    Sometime between 6:40 a. m. and 7:00 a. m., about 100 feet north of the railroad trestle crossing at Bloody Run (Victory Parkway) between the Idlewild and Avondale Stations, a southbound Cincinnati, Lebanon & Northern "Montgomery Accomodation," with four cars containing many East and South Norwood residents, collides with a northbound Ohio & Northwestern train caring one passenger headed to the Mornington Station (Hyde Park). Both engines come off the tracks, but the cars stay on the tracks. No one is critically hurt. A miscommunications with the Avondale operator, both trains running late, and no operator at Idlewild are considered factors in the accident.

  • 1888 (January 10)
    The South Norwood Fire Brigade is organized at a meeting of citizens. This is the first record of a fire brigade in the Norwoods. The elected officers are F. A. Zimmerman, Captain, Dr. H. P. Hopkins, First Lieutenant, and J. H. Bosse, Second Lieutenant. Other members recorded at that first meeting were R. Thompson, Caspar H. Rowe, F. McHugh, H. P. Smith, C. E. Slane, Morris Wickersham, J. McQueety, E. Frick, W. E. Wichgar, C. F. Rust, R. M. Wickersham, Richard Evans and A. R. Kruse.

  • 1888 (January 16)
    Only six days after its creation, the South Norwood Fire Brigade was called to action by a gasoline fire in the basement of the Floral Avenue home of Robert Leslie. The members were alerted by Charles E. Slane firing his revolver four times as an alarm call. Using buckets of water, the brigade extinguished the fire, saving Mr. Leslie's residence, which survives today.

  • 1888 (February 1)
    A petition, signed by Casper H. Rowe and 116 others, requests the incorporation of the Village of Norwood. A Hamilton County Plat Book contains the signed petition with a map of the area of incorporation, which was Section 34 of Columbia Township. On that map there are several differences in street names compared to today. For example, Slane Avenue is marked Maple Street, Williams Avenue (at least the part in Section 34) is Locust Avenue, Forest Avenue from Harris Avenue north is Locust Street, and Ash Avenue is named Forest Street. There are no streets between Harris Avenue and Smith Road.

  • 1888 (February 2)
    Twenty-five citizens of Norwood and property-holders in the vicinity and abutting on Montgomery Pike meet at 2:00 PM at the office of Hill & Stricker, United Bank Building, Cincinnati, to discuss the building of an electric road through Norwood. The plan is to connect to Kerper's road and run up the (Montgomery) pike, for which exclusive right for railroad purposes have been acquired, then onto Ashland avenue to the C. W. and B. R. R.

  • 1888 (March 5)
    The petition for the incorporation of Norwood is presented to the County Commissioners. The hearing is set for May 9.

  • 1888 (May 9)
    A resolution is adopted by the Hamilton County Commissioners requesting sealed proposals for the construction and operation of a street railroad beginning at the north corporation line of the city of Cincinnati, on the Montgomery Pike, to a point in Norwood where the pike intersects the Cincinnati, Washington and Baltimore Railroad. The line is to be a double track and can be powered by horse, cable, electricity or other improved motive power. Also required is the rates for a single cash fare, the number of tickets sold as a package for one dollar, 50˘ and 25˘. The bids are to be received by 12 o'clock noon, on Saturday, June 2, 1888.

  • 1888 (May 10)
    The Village of Norwood is incorporated with V. C. Tidball and Casper H. Rowe named as agents. The village initially encompasses only Section 34 of Columbia Township. It is said that a main incentive for incorporation was to provide public street lighting, but this is probably only one of many reasons for incorporation. The election for village officials has to wait at least two months, as required by state law.

    The incorporation was probably overshadowed by Cincinnati's centennial celebrations, which included the biggest exposition in that city's history — the Cincinnati Centennial Exposition of 1888. One of the celebrations that year was a large parade through Cincinnati streets. A drawing of the Grand Procession of the Order of Cincinnatus, in that parade, was made by Norwood resident Henry Farny.

  • 1888 (August 6)
    The first municipal election is held in Norwood with 199 votes cast. Dr. John C. Weyer is elected the village's first mayor.

  • 1889
    The first electric interlocking switch employing dynamic indication, invented by John D. Taylor, is installed at East Norwood, Ohio, at the crossing of the Baltimore & Ohio Southwestern RR and the Cincinnati & Northern RR. (According to "American Railway Signaling Principals and Practices, Chapter 1, Association of American Railroads, Signal Section," 1954.)

  • 1889 (January 12)
    The South Norwood Musical and Literary Society meets at the home of Mr. R. M. Wickersham. For a newspaper account of the party and a description of the participants click here.
  • 1889 (February 13)
    The Elsmere Syndicate purchases the old Cavagna farm for $320,000. It is said that the only things on the 160 acres property are "many handsome forest trees, four rustic-appearing dairy barns and a 13-room brick house of ancient architecture." The property is developed as the Elsmere Subdivision. Five days later Norwood Council passes an ordinance to annex the northern part of this development.

  • 1889 (February 18)
    The village council passes Ordinance No. 26 to petition its first annexation. This expands Norwood to include "all that part of Sharpsburg School District ... not now within the Village of Norwood ..." Actually, this description is not considered accurate, so a very detailed description of the territory is given to the County Commissioners. That section north of Hudson Avenue of the recently acquired Cavagna Farm being developed as Elsmere Subdivision is part of this annexation.

  • 1889 (March 29)
    The Musical and Literary Society of South Norwood holds its tenth regular meeting. Miss Alice Mills, Miss Alice McQueety and C. F. Rust make up the committee. The entertainment consists of a choral presentation, recitation, violin solo, reading and a vocal solo followed by an intermission. Afterwards the entertainment continues with a piano and violin duet, cornet solo, piano solo and a vocal solo—all, it appears, performed by members of the society.
  • 1889 (April 12)
    A welcome rain fell this Friday evening, providing a needed replenishment of the Norwood cisterns. It is reported that 1.26 inches had fallen at the weather station in Cincinnati, and for 2˝ minutes the rain fell at the rate of 6 inches/hour. The station also reported that the temperature was 83° at 2 p.m., but had fallen to 48° by the next morning — "a pretty good fall."

  • 1889 (summer)
    The Platting Commission is established to try to correct the problems created by uncontrolled real estate development.