North-side Public Square #117-#122

North-side Public Square #117-#122

North Public Square Landmark


#117 North Side Public Square: I.O.O.F. Bldg.-1904

Home of the Medina Morningstar Lodge 26 of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. 

Building built by Curtis and Brown for the sum of $11,675.

Dodge Brothers Automobiles, C. C. Cheney, (1905-1916)

Dodge Bros. Motor Co..jpg

Medina County Telephone Company, (1911-1926)

1.  Medina County Telephone Co. purchased the Bell Company in 1911 and moved to this location on the Square.

2.   In 1926 Medina County Telephone Company was bought out by Frank Knapp and Associates and in 1927 moved to their new building at #218 East Washington Street.

3.  1931-The Odd Fellows are rapidly completing the remodeling of the rooms in the temple building formerly occupied by the Northern Ohio Telephone Company's exchange for recreation rooms for lodge members.

Prichard Ford Parts Company, Arlie and George Prichard, Props. (1923-1928)

Motor Sales Company, Hudson, Essex Dealers, (1929–1932)

Ohio Edison Store, X.L. Hess, Manager, (1933-1995)

Vacant, (1996–2004)

Marie’s Restaurant, Brian Hilberg, Prop. (2005–2018)

1.  Marie's Café was established in 2005 and has been providing guests with outstanding breakfast and lunch ever since. Our specialty is in the area of breakfast items, homemade soups, gourmet sandwiches, and fresh salads.

2.  Regular customers particularly value unique twist on menu items, use of fresh and local ingredients when available, andauthentic ethnic items.

3.  When you sit at one of the tables in the front alcove of Brian Hilberg’s restaurant, Marie’s Cafe, you are surrounded by two walls of murals representing the east and west sides of Medina’s 1870’s- era Square.  Gaze out the front window and you see the real thing.


#118 North Side Public Square: Letterly House,-1869,  I.O.O.F. Bldg.-1904

Jacob Letterly Residence (1869-1870)

Foltz Residence and Restaurant, W. B. Foltz, Prop. (1870-1885)

In 1885, W. B. Foltz moved to North Dakota, but returned in 1886.

Foltz Restaurant, W. B. Foltz, Prop. (1897-1902)            

1.  The establishment is entirely new with the lunch counter and cigar cases located on the east side and tables on the west side.

2.  All sort of lunches such as sandwiches, pie, and pork and bean soup are prepared all times during the day.

3.  The restaurant is provided with a ladies entrance.

4.  As a further accommodation for the public, Mr. Foltz is building sheds back of his restaurant for stabling houses, the charges of which will be five and ten cents.

5.  Mark Spillman sold the Letterly house and part lot 84 to the I. O. O. F Lodge 26 in 1903.

6.  In 1904 the old Letterly home was torn down to build the 3 story IOOF Hall. Built by Curtis and Brown for $11,675.with a front of concrete stone and plate glass 44’ wide and 80’ deep with indoor toilets and a Georgia pine interior stained in different colors.


I.O.O.F. Lodge No. (1844–2016)

Morning Star Lodge No. 26 was instituted January 18, 1844 by Thomas Spooner, Grand Master. The charter members were S. B. Logan, S. H, Bradley, Joseph Whitmore, H. G. Blake, C. A. Drake and H Torbett.

1.  The Independent Order of Odd Fellows began in 18th Century England, it was deemed odd to find people organized for the purpose of giving aid to those in need without recognition and pursuing projects for the benefits of all mankind.

 2.  Our deep history began in North America, with the United States and Canada in 1819, and is continually expanding throughout the World where we are a worldwide fraternity in 26 countries. The Odd Fellows and Rebekahs are striving to make the world a better place in which to live, seeking To Improve and Elevate the Character of Mankind.

3.  The members of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows are sometimes referred to "Odd Fellows" or "Rebekahs." Odd Fellows have also become known in many areas as "The Three Link Fraternity" which is evidenced by our worldwide "Three Link Emblem" which stands for Friendship, Love and Truth. These three links symbolize the chain that binds our members together and illustrates that our Communities, States, Provinces and Nations are strongest when joined together.

 4.  The Independent Order of Odd Fellows began in 18th Century England, it was deemed odd to find people organized for the purpose of giving aid to those in need without recognition and pursuing projects for the benefits of all mankind.

 5.  Our deep history began in North America, with the United States and Canada in 1819, and is continually expanding throughout the World where we are a worldwide fraternity in 26 countries. The Odd Fellows and Rebekahs are striving to make the world a better place in which to live, seeking To Improve and Elevate the Character of Mankind.

6.  The members of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows are sometimes referred to "Odd Fellows" or "Rebekahs." Odd Fellows have also become known in many areas as "The Three Link Fraternity" which is evidenced by our worldwide "Three Link Emblem" which stands for Friendship, Love and Truth. These three links symbolize the chain that binds our members together and illustrates that our Communities, States, Provinces and Nations are strongest when joined together.

7.  On November 15, 1916 a fire in the upper floors of the I. O. O. F building caused extensive damage.

8.  The I. O. O. F, block on north side of the square was partially destroyed by fire on Wednesday morning.

9.  The building is a concrete block and brick structure and Is owned by Morning Star lodge No. 261, I. O. O. F.The third floor was occupied by the lodge room proper, with a well-appointed dining room occupying the rear or north half of the second floor. The front 'half of the second floor is occupied by the offices of the Medina Telephone Company, while the ground floors contained the grocery store of D. R. Pelton on the west side and C. C. Cheney and Son's auto sales room on the east side. The roof of the entire block was practically all burned and of the third story of the building there is nothing left but the four walls and the floor. The two lower stories were not damaged to any extent by the fire, but were flooded with water and somewhat damaged by smoke. The building was well covered by fire insurance.

10.  The origin of the fire is unknown, the first indication of fire being, at 7:20 A. M. Wednesday morning when smoke was discovered issuing from the northeast window on the third floor this being a window of a small room used as the property room of the Odd Fellows bodies. The encampment had a meeting in the rooms on Tuesday night, and degrees were conferred upon several candidates from Wadsworth. There was a lunch sorted in the dining rooms and it was about 1; 30 o'clock when the last ones left the hall and everything was apparently all right at that hour. The rooms on the third floor are furnace heated and electrically lighted.

11.  The Medina Fire Department responded quickly and the new chemical engine which is provided with 200 feet of hose, was given its first real test, but the fire had gained considerable headway and could not be extinguished by that alone though it held it somewhat in check, while the steamer was being fired up to a working head of steam. Some difficulty was had by bursting hose, there being, numerous leaks In. the line from the east side of the park. The A. I. Root-company came to the rescue with two reels of hose, a very much needed addition to the present city equipment. The firemen worked like heroes and made a splendid fight, a very practical demonstration of the wisdom of Medina's maintaining a fire department and also of giving the department better equipment with which to fight. For instance, ladders that can be quickly adjusted to reach the third floor of a building.

12.  The Medina Telephone Company continued to give prompt service even after the whole top of the building was on fire, the operators leaving the switchboards only after being compelled to do so by the water drenching them from the floor above. Fortunately, the fire did not break through the third floor, and the telephoneequipment, except for some damage by water, was not seriously damaged, and though there was no local telephone service on Wednesday and not until Thursday afternoon, long distance service was given on Wednesday evening, and It Is thought that within a day, or-two everything at the local exchange will be in good order. The local service, when it started shortly after noon Thursday, was excellent.

13.  On Thursday D. R. Pelton was moving back his stock of groceries, and not heavy, from $100 to $200. In addition to the losses of the Odd Fellows, the G. A. R and W. R. C. lost all their belonging, including many pictures and other souvenirs. The damage to the building is estimated at $5,000. The work of permanent repair will be started as soon as possible, workmen being now at work putting on a temporary roof. It will be necessary to re-plaster and redecorate the entire Interior of, the block. Practically everything on the third, floor, Including, the furniture and regalia of the I. O. O. F. bodies was destroyed. The building was erected in 1904

IOFF Fire 11-15-1916.jpg

 8.  In 1925 the members remodeled and renovated the interior and exterior of the building.

IOFF Bldg. 1925.jpg





#115 North Side Public Square: I.O.O.F. Block-1904

Home of the Medina Morningstar Lodge 26 of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Built by Curtis & Brown for the sum of $11,675

Nichols Grocery Store, O. E. Nichols, Prop. (1905-1912)

Bowman Grocery Store, Roy Bowman, prop. (1912-1914)

Wyman Restaurant, Jack Wyman, Prop. (1914-1916)

1. Jack Wyman put in a restaurant and was glad to sell out to Dan Pelton and put the tables, chairs and dishes
in the cellar.

Pelton’s Market, Daniel Pelton, Prop. (1916-1958)

1.  Dan Pelton moved his grocery business from 21 west Side Public Square where he had been in business with Hobart Edwards since 1906.

2.  When the history of Medina is written, one of the longer and more interesting chapters in the narrative will deal with D. R. Pelton farmer, school teacher, merchant, letter-writer, political analyst, civic-spirited citizen - and yet more than the sum total of all these.


Editor: The Medina Sentinel, August, 1956

That's me, Dan Pelton.  In 1906 I bought Hiram Hunsberger's interest in the grocery of Hunsberger and Foote on the westside of the Public Square here in Medina, where Rickards are now. (21 west-side Public Square) Foote sold to Hobart Edwards, then I bought Edwards out and had full, control until Foote determined to go into business again, so I sold to him and started up in the I.O.O.F. Building where we now have a complete food store operated by D, R. Pelton & Sons.

When I started in business, not a street in town was paved. Goods came to town on the B, & O, railroad and were hauled to places of business by draymen Ben Watters and Dave Yocum.

Where parking meters stand to get your money today for the privilege to trade with us, hitching posts were free to tie their horses. No time limit.  Most hitching was done next to the sidewalk as streets were terrible in wet weather mud, mud, mud!

George Reinhardt had a bakery, candy store and soda fountain where Abrams handles dry-cleaning. I had the same on the west side with groceries and a dining room. You start at the Gazette block, go west to Court, south on Court to the Farmers' Exchange, cross the street, go north all the-way up to liberty, west on Liberty to Stouffer's Creamery, cross the street, go east to Court, then north to Bishop's Buggy Shop across from where A. B. Bishop lived, now Waite's Funeral Home, go back to Liberty, then east to the Congregational church and the only other business man left with me is E. B. Spitzer. All the rest have gone where only one report will be demanded and looked over which will determine our destiny forever.

When I started in business eggs were 12 cents a dozen, butter 15 to I8 cents a pound. I bought so much from the farmers I had to send to Cleveland and have it made over by melting and re-churning it into fresh milk, all refuse was strained out and it looked like creamery and some was sold for creamery. Finally a law was passed demanding it be labeled "Process Butter."  Barrels of butter were made over. All I got for it was 15 cents a pound.

I had a soda fountain and sold big sodas for 10 cents. We served about 25 dinners each day for 25 cents each; meat and potatoes, bread, butter and gravy, one side dish, coffee and pie for only 25 cents. A piece of pie like I served then would cost 25 cents extra today. You see. I had no church to pay for.

We baked in an old brick oven heated with wood; cooked with wood and coal. No gas, no electric refrigeration, just cooled with ice brought from Chippewa Lake.

Mr. Waltz peddled milk for Bill Fitch at 5 cents a quart, 3 cents a pint and many had to get only a pint, or more would spoil. I had to buy a horse and wagon so I could meet competition. The smallest order I ever delivered was a 3 cent cake of yeast, and that ended that kind of ordering.

Rural Food Delivery.jpg

Store opened at 6:30, closed when the loafers left around 8 or 9 o'clock; 7:30 for special occasions. Those were the good old days.

When I moved to our present location on the north side of the square it was a poor location. The only business worth mentioning was the Savings Deposit Bank. Roy Bowman had tried a grocery in the same store weare in today. Jack Wyman put in a restaurant and was glad to sell out to me and put the tables, chairs and dishes in the cellar. Doc Freeman, I.O.O.F. trustee, told me I could have the room as long as I wished for at $25.00 a month — seven times that now, and I didn't know how things would turn out.

East Liberty Street Horses.jpg

I had to build a bake shop in the back lot which was torn down two years ago and the bakery was put in a new addition. I had no trouble getting to our back lot and bakery on three sides back then.  Now it looks as though we would have to get a helicopter to get to the bakery. Brotherly love is wonderful, we hope, with liberty and justice for all under God.

Well, I have had the grandest help all these years. Our children have all helped in the store ever since theywere big enough. All pulled out and established homes of their own and are busy at their own work. The two youngest boys, Maynard and Dan Jr decided to stay with Dad and take over the management and hard work as partners in a going business on the Square in Medina.

Daniel R. Pelton

Pelton’s Grocery and Bakery, Dan R. Jr. and Maynard Pelton, Props. (1960-1977)

1.  Pelton sons took over management of the grocery on the passing of Daniel Pelton, Sr.

Pelton’s Food Store, Linda and Don Westling, Props. (1977-1978)

1.  Dan and Melba Pelton, who operate Pelton's Foods on Public Square in Medina, have sold the business to a Richfield couple, Linda and Don Westling, who intend to keep the name Pelton's.

2.  Long time employees who plan to stay on after the Peltons leave are Frank Moore, meat-cutter,
baker Bob Edwards and Mary Hathaway and Eleanor Riffner.

Pelton's Store 2.jpg

 Liberty Deli, Jerry Gunner, Prop. (1978–1990)

Gunners Deli, Jerry Gunner, Prop. (1990–1993)

Ah Good Pizza, Jerry Gunner, Prop. (1993–1994)

Gunners Pizza and Deli,  Jerry Gunner, Prop. (1995–1997)

Joe’s Big City Deli, (1998–1998)

The Diner, (1999–2008)

Eli's Kitchen, Eli Fayad, Prop. (2009–2018)

1.  A breakfast and brunch Restaurant.


#119 North Side Public Square: Spitzer Bldg.-1891

Building designed by Bacon & Huber of Toledo and built by George F. Grunninger. Berea stone windows, exterior walls of pressed firebrick lay in black mortar.

Savings Deposit Bank, C. J. Warner, Amherst L. Spitzer, E. B. Spitzer, Amherst L. Spitzer II, Russell Thomas, Presidents, (1892–1981)

 1.  "The business affairs of the new Savings Deposit Bank opened up in a very auspicious manner Oct. 29, 1892 and the little incident that occurred at the opening meeting showed that even bank directors and plutocratic stock holders may be very much taken by surprise. When President Warner had rapped for order, Ceilon M. Spitzer on behalf of himself and his cousin, A.L. Spitzer, announced that for the consideration of $1 they would turn over a deed in fee simple of the new building, representing a cost of $12,000 to the organization."

2.  1890 – Ceilon Spitzer, father of Elbert B. Spitzer, who failed 11 years ago and settled for 20 cents on the dollar, astonished his former creditors by making good all that they then lost. We know of only one other instance of this kind in this locality: the Hon. Hiram Bronson a few months ago paid the last of his creditors by the Railroad liabilities of 30 years ago in full."

3.  Interior design: One large room with 25’ coved ceiling decorated with elaborate frescoes. In 1906 Akron Artists painted the 24’ high 28’ wide 65’ long ceiling and walls. In 1919 the Savings Deposit Bank was remolded inside: a smaller lobby, 2 teller stations increased to 4, with new counters and lights. In 1948 redecorated, linoleum floors 1940. Window & door lights glazed with delicately tinted chipped & plate glass,

4.  In 1938 Mose Sypher, 86 years old, threw boulder through the plate glass bank window.

5.  This Bank was incorporated and organized in November, 1892.

6.  It was the first Savings Bank in Medina County, and prior to its organization no bank in the county paid interest regularly on deposits.

farmers bank23.jpg

7.  The necessity of such a bank in the vicinity at once manifested itself to the people, and it has been liberally patronized, few banks having built up so large and successful a business in so short a time, its individual deposits having reached $150.000 00.

8.  Its officers being men of known business integrity and ability, numbering among its stockholders men of the highest financial standing in the community, and being subject to examination under the laws of Ohio, it at once furnishes a place of investment as well as a place of safety for money.

9.  The bank building, a cut of which appears above, is located on the north side of the public square, was built specially for banking purposes, being large, commodious, and having private rooms for the use of its patrons, making it especially convenient for ladies desiring to do a banking business.


Savings Deposit Bank, (1892-1981)

1.  In October of 1892,  the late Amherst T. Spitzer and a group of 'Medina Countians which Included A. I. Root, C. J. Warner, A. A. Bostwick, J. N. Brogan, J. T. Graves, C. M. Spitzer, Amos Gardner, A. L. Spitzer, and J. N. Hatch, founded the Savings Deposit Bank.

2. The Spitzer family has guided the bank since its founding. A conservative firm which has never failed to pay on demand to any of its depositors, The Savings Deposit Bank has also pioneered new banking practices now widely accepted in banks across the country.

3. The late A. T. Spltzer initiated the payment of interest on savings accounts in I892. Until then banks in the area paid no interest on savings deposits. Savings were held for safe keeping only.

4.  E. B. Spltzer followed in his father's footsteps. While inaugurating new banking practices he has at the same time continued the sound principles of his predecessor. Fondly known as “E. B.", he moved up to be Chairman of the Board in 1955 and turned the reins of the President to his son, A. T. Spitzer II.

5.  New officers were appointed in January, 1955 to fill the increasing needs of the bank. They were Erwin H. Eastwood, Vice President and Cashier; Virgil D. Burris, Vice President and Secretary; Dwayne C. Weber, Assistant Vice President; and Russell S. Thomas, Assistant Cashier.

Savings Deposit Directors 1955.jpeg

6.  The bank building itself underwent extensive modernization so that services to depositors could be more efficiently rendered. A building was annexed to handle general accounting operations. The American House Hotel was raised to make way for the free parking lot opened in 1955.

Ameritrust Bank, (1981–1992)

Society National Bank Office, (1993-1996)

Key Bank of Medina, David Fletcher, Prop. (1997–2011)

Vacant, (2012-2014)

P. J. Marley’s Restaurant, John and Patty Stahl, Props. (2014–2018)

1.  P. J. Marley's opened their doors on Sunday, August 24th, 2014.

2.  Located at 119 Public Square in the former Key Bank, the 87-seat restaurant is the first restaurant venture for Jon Stahl and wife, Patty. "I chose this location because I grew up in Medina," said Jon Stahl, who graduated from Buckeye High School in 1990.


3.  During remodeling, the couple worked to maintain the historical turn-of-the-century ambience of the location's first occupants: First Savings Deposit Bank of Medina County was founded by the Spitzer family in 1891.

 4.  The Stahls left much of the original bank building intact, including the crown molding, the filigreed bank teller wall, the security portholes where armed guards sat watching the doorway during the bank-robbing days of the Depression, and the original vault and its safety deposit boxes. The vault seats four and is the only area in the restaurant where reservations are required.

PJ'S ad.jpg

 5.  The couple found P.J. Marley's expansive bar at Medina Antique Mall. Originally installed in a New York pub around 1900, the polished-wood bar now features 13 beers on tap from local, traditional American and national micro-breweries, plus 45 bottled beers and a shelf of Ohio-made whiskeys, bourbons and vodkas. For kids, Frost Top Root Beer is on tap.


#122 North Side Public Square: Gruninger Block, c.1880, T. J. Farr Bldg.–1887, 1st and 2nd Floors

Medina Bakery, Ulrich Ossinger, Prop. (1852-1861)

Dr. S. Hudson, Physician and Surgeon, (1865–1886)

1.  Dr. Hudson moved to the Alden House at #108 East Liberty Street in 1886.

Edward Cohen, Professional Barber, (1875–1880)

1.  Located one door east of the American House on 1st floor.

A.  R. Whiteside Paper Business, (1880-1887)

G. D. Billings, Dentist, (1880-1887)

1.  "T. J.  Farr has leased from Dr. Hudson a lot 14 feet front between the Doctor's office and the American House, on which he will erect immediately a two story frame building, to be used as a provision and grocery store, we understand. There are so few grocery stores in town that a new one will be hailed as a blessing."   Gazette - Oct 7, 1887.

Canavan Grocery and Provision Store, John Canavan, Prop.(1888-1900)

1.  The Canavan Grocery sold stock, bakery, supplies and fixtures in 1901 to Jacob F. Kramer.

Kramer Grocery and Provision Store, Jacob F. Kramer, (1901-1914

1.  Grocery room in American House block painted and papered by Jacob Kramer 1901.

2.  Jacob Kramer American House Hotel grocer bought goods of the W. L. Sargent Grocery Store in the Barnard Block and will consolidate them with his goods here in 1902. 

McDowell Brothers New Model Clothing and Tailor Shop, (1915-1920)

Snedden and Anderson Haberdashery, Ralph Snedden and Warren J. Anderson, Props. (1921–1926)

Snedden and Anderson Men’s Wear, Ralph Snedden and Warren J. Anderson, Props. (1927–1933)

1.  Warren J. Anderson sold the building to Ralph. E. and Julia Snedden in 1928.

Streett and Snedden Dry Cleaning, Joe Streett and Ralph Snedden, Props. (1934–1937)

1.  Ralph Snedden gave up active participation in the business when he passed the bar exam and became a lawyer and Medina County Prosecuting Attorney.

Streett Dry Cleaning, Joseph Streett, Prop. (1938–1940)

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Mercer’s Haberdashery and Dry Cleaners. (1941-1942)

Allen Cleaners, (1943–1955)

Allen Cleaners.jpg

Ralph. E. Snedden and Robert. L. Johnson, Attorneys 2nd Floor, (1939-1959)

Twinkle Cleaners, (1956–1956)

Spitzer Insurance Agency, Gus Ebely, Agent, (1956-1962)

Johnson and Jeandrevin, Attorney’s. Robert L. Johnson and John Jeandrevin, 2nd floor, (1960-1974)

Brubaker, Helfrich and Taylor, CPA, William Downey, Partner, (1963–1979)

Lawrence Brandel, Attorney, (1976–2011)

1.  Julia Snedden sold the Snedden building to Lawrence S. Brandel in 1979.

2.  Mr. Brandel was forced to sell his law office due to a fire in the building. While the exterior of the building remained unscathed, the interior was destroyed.

3.  The building has been in place since the early 1900's when it was part of the American House Hotel and the bricks that made up the building when it was part of the hotel are still there today.

4.  In 2011, a fire occurred at 122 Public Square, At the time, the building was the law office of Larry Brandel. Nothing besides the law office was burned, but the Key Bank was closed the next day due to the smell of smoke.

122 E. Liberty Street fire photo.jpg

5.  A candle and a computer were placed in the area where the fire is said to have started. Because the building dates back to the early 1900s, the fire destroyed most of what was inside and it forced Mr. Brandel to sell the building.

6.  Second Sole then took up his offer and moved their business from the other side of town to the square. Despite the internal destruction of the building, the outside remains untarnished.

Medina County Board Children’s Services, (1981-1981)

Kreiner Uhlinger and Marie Mirro Edmonds, (1982–1982)

Marie Mirro Edmonds, Attorney , (1982–1985)

Professional Counseling, Howard Schrock, Owner, (1986-2010)

Studio 7 Medina, (1988–1991)

Cereal Food Processors, (1992–1994)

John B. Cameron, Attorney, (1994–1995)

Barbera Richard, Attorney, (2000–2003)

AFC Title Agency, (2004–2005)

Vacant, (2012–2013)

Second Sole Shoe Store, Steve Hixson, Prop. (2014-2018)

1.  Second Sole is a Running Specialty Store with locations all across the state of Ohio.

2.  The store has been in place since the year of 2011 when the former owner, Larry Brandel, sold his law office to Steve Hixson, the franchise owner of Second Sole.

A Joel Foose Photo

A Joel Foose Photo