Editor’s note: This article is part of a three-part series leading up to Friday’s publication of the Daily Citizen’s Home & Garden Tour Preview. The Champaign County Preservation Alliance’s annual Historic Home & Garden Tour will take place in St. Paris on June 23 and 24.
A bridge is closed on West U.S. Route 36 between Zimmerman and Kite roads through Aug. 10, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation. The official ODOT detour from the Urbana area to St. Paris is state Route 560 to state Route 29 to state Route 235.
This is the third and last installment reporting on the interconnections of St. Paris sites that are part of the Champaign County Preservation Alliance (CCPA) Historic Home and Garden Tour in St. Paris June 23 & 24 . Robert Pollock, the researcher for the CCPA, uncovered many new connections that had been lost to history. The third set of connections links two businesses and covers over 100 years..
The CCPA Historic Home and Garden Tours are made possible by the generous support of the entire community. The benefactors, home sponsors, local merchants and donors play an important role in the success of the tour. One of the home sponsors this year is the Atkins-Shively Funeral Home of St. Paris. “We are excited to have the Atkins-Shively Funeral Home and many other St. Paris businesses supporting the tour this year,” said Sandy Gonzalez, the chairperson of this year’s tour.
When the Atkins-Shively Funeral Home became a home sponsor, they were worried that current home owners may not be pleased to have their home associated with their industry. They did not have to worry, because research found that one of this year’s tour sites was the first dedicated funeral home in St. Paris. Connection made, and concerns were averted.
The stunning three-story brick Italianate home at 202 N. Springfield St., St. Paris, was once owned by the Benjamin F. Baker family, who lived there for over a century. From 1918 until 1979 it served as a funeral home and a residence, first as the Frank funeral home, then under several names, serving longest as the Baker funeral home, and lastly as the Cisco Funeral Home. All during those years the ground floor served the public and the families lived in the upper story.
The house is now owned by Gina Verlaney, who is lovingly restoring the home to its former glory. The house has had many firsts in St. Paris. It was the first three-story home, first home with a “motor shed” and it was the first dedicated funeral home. Now it is open on the tour.
The Champaign County Preservation Alliance (CCPA) is looking forward to the 26th annual Historic Home and Garden Tour and is excited to be featuring the village of Saint Paris. The tour will be held June 23 & 24 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the village.
Pre-sale tickets are available at local banks and retailers. A complete list is available on the web site www.ccpaurbanaohio.com
Pre-sale tickets are $12 and tickets tour weekend will be $15 and may be purchased at the Welcome Tent located at the old junior high school, 370 E. Main St., Saint Paris. For more information please call 800-791-6010.
Submitted by the Champaign County Preservation Alliance.