Founded 1973

Spitler House
Spitler House Community Museum 14 Market Street
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Brookville Historical Society Exhibition Building at 3 Hay Ave.
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Samuel Spitler House
Community Museum

Spitler House Community Museum
14 Market Street

Donation:
Adults - $2.00
Children 6 to 16 - 50 cents
Children under 6 - free when accompanied by an adult

Special group tours can be arranged any day of the week with advance notice for a $25.00 minimum fee.
The community museum is open for tours on the 1st Sunday of each month from 1 to 5 P.M.
except holidays and inclement weather

Write to the Brookville Historical Society, P.O. Box 82, Brookville, Ohio 45309-0082, or telephone (937) 833-0285 for more information for group tours and research appointments. Special group tours can be arranged any day of the week with advance notice for a $25.00 minimum fee.

The Queen Anne architecture is the most important feature of the Spitler House. It is a unique three-story frame Queen Anne (High Victorian) style house erected by Spitler, a miller and plumber, in 1894.

Judith Kitchen, architectural historian, described the house in the Ohio Historical Society’s publication, Echoes, as “A fantastic building, with an octagonal tower, profusion of porches, and imaginative use of ornamental detail.” She stated, “It is rare to find a house of this style in a small town.” (Brookville’s population in 1894 was about 600). Judith wrote that she knows of no other (like it) in existence today. 

Warren Rasor, a local builder and craftsman, using plans (Design No. 60) of architect George F. Barber, built this beautiful house for Samuel Spitler. According to family members, the material to build the house cost about $1,700.00 and the labor cost was approximately $500.00. All of the rooms have been restored to original state. The exterior is painted in the original colors of light cream and green.

Samuel Spitler was born in Clay Township in 1861, the son of Daniel and Prudence (Litten) Spitler. Ettie Pearl (Weaver) Spitler was born in Perry Township in 1872, the daughter of Josiah and Sarah Ann (Baker) Weaver. Their daughter Anona was born in Brookville in 1904 and married Floyd Fred Stoner.

The Spitler House was saved from demolition through the leadership of the Brookville Historical Society and the contributions of numerous individuals and groups.

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Gilbert donated the house to the society. A “Save the Spitler House” fund drive was conducted, a lot was purchased, the basement completed, and the house was turned around and moved across the alley to its present location in August of 1974. Restoration work proceeded until the Spitler House was opened to the public on May 15, 1976.

Oak stairway with metal statue of Shakespeare

Oak Stairway

 

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The Main Halls run the full width of the house down-stairs and upstairs. The woodwork on the arched divider in the downstairs hallway and the open, golden oak stairway is delicately carved. The metal statue on the newel post is of Shakespeare. The Clio Club, a local literary group, started Brookville’s first library in the Spitler House. A bookcase was kept in the downstairs hall, and the books were loaned to Clio Club members and to other persons.

The Parlor is the formal room of the Spitler House. The beautiful golden oak woodwork shows up in the sliding doors. The formal arrangement of the furniture is typical of this period. The parlor is in memory of Henry and Be1le Miller for a generous contribution, to preserve the Spitler House, made by the Edd and Christena (Miller) Leiber family in 1976.

The Dining Room glows with the golden oak woodwork and beautifully carved fireplace. Lincrusta, an embossed paper composition substitute for wallpaper, is on the lower half of the walls and is still in excellent condition. The serving cupboard is unusual in that it can be reached from the kitchen, the pantry, and the dining room (this was Mr. Spitler’s own design.) The dining room is in honor of Kappa Xi Chapter of Delta Theta Tau Sorority for their generous contribution to preserve the Spitler House in 1976.

The Kitchen and Pantry are typical of this period. The large kitchen was the center of activity in this house. Mr. Spitler designed the tank system that has pipes running through the kitchen range. The stove heats the water in the pipes and provides hot water in the bathroom upstairs. The kitchen is in memory of Russell and Ellen (Lutz) McNelly, for a generous contribution to preserve the Spitler House and Community Museum, made by the McNelly children in 1984.

The Library was used for a variety of activities by the Spitler family. The Library is in memory of Ralph and Thelma (Apple) Unger for their generous contribution to preserve the Spitler House and Community Museum, in 1992.

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Rare Animals

The Upper Hall is spacious and features an interesting display of folk art of the l800s, crafted from hair, shells, beads, feathers and yarn.

The Tower Room, at the top of the stairs, is unique in shape and it adds architectural interest both inside and outside. The Tower Room is in memory of Ralph O. (Jake) Wentz, Jacob E. and Orilla Wentz, and Fred and Carrie Koch for the donation by Lucile K. Wentz.

The Master Bedroom is a large, airy room with a huge window and a door leading to the original seventh porch.

The Large Room upstairs to the back of the house is currently being restored to a bedroom using some furnishings recently received from the Helen Bryant Hill estate. This room is in memory of Roy and Marie (Cassady) Somers for the generous contribution to preserve the Spitler House made by Roy Somers in 1978.

The Bathroom is the first indoor bathroom in Brookville. The tub and the towel rack are original fixtures.

The Basement has not been restored to its original state for washing, canning, and heating facilities, but contains a variety of interesting exhibits. A balloon basket belonging to Warren Rasor, builder of the house and a nationally known balloonist, is located there. An early dental office and a barn area featuring two rare farm animals are on exhibit. One area of the basement displays memorabilia of the Brookville Bridge Company, and its owner, Herman S. Fox. This area is in memory of Herman S. and Lillie (Turner) Fox for the generous contribution, to preserve the Spitler House and Community Museum, Made by their daughter, Robert and Joanna (Fox) Weitkamp in 1983

 *This building is not wheelchair accessible*

©1999 - 2011 Brookville Historical Society, Inc.