The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Breaking News

Local News

May 13, 2013

History on the hill

Once stately homes grace neighborhood

SHARON — Step by step, block by block, house by house, the stories of Sharon’s West Hill were celebrated Sunday during a walking tour sponsored by the Sharon Beautification Commission.

“I’ve always wondered what they looked like” inside, city resident Marcia Moyer said, referring to the multi-story edifices that fill the south side of West State Street on the steep hillside.

About 30 people gathered on a sunny but brisk Mother’s Day evening at the foot of the hill in the parking lot of Church of the Sacred Heart along North Irvine Avenue. There they began their turn about the neighborhood that is but a shadow of what it was in its halcyon days of the early 20th century, when the Victorian mansions were occupied by members of the local aristocracy.

The tour included stops outside the Perkins Mansion, which resembles an English estate but now is home to a halfway house for wayward men, and its hillside neighbor the Stevenson Mansion, a stone monument that once graced New Castle’s North Hill before being disassembled and moved to Sharon.

History buff and retired political sachem Bob Lark shared a bit of trivia about the mansion.

Spurned by his colleagues in New Castle, John Stevenson made good on a vow to “take his house and money” with him. He moved to Sharon – he’s one of the founders of Sharon Steel Corp. – and he died here in 1934, Lark said.

Stories like that entertained the crowd as people happily strolled up and down the hillside.

Tom Misko, who’s made a hobby of restoring the old homes on the hill, let the group explore some of his holdings there.

A self-described architectural and building buff, Misko has been buying up the once-stately but now neglected homes on the hill and restoring them to their former glory.

Walking inside them is like visiting a work site on the popular television series “This Old House” and Misko’s a willing guide.

Outrage at the way former owners and tenants had neglected the properties inspired him to start buying the homes, he said.

He’s either restored or in the process of restoring nine houses in the neighborhood.

They include the McIntire House at 357 W. State, the Laurie House at 387, and the former Samuel DeForest abode at 395 W. State St.

The DeForest home proved to be a crowd pleaser with the raw, unrestored beauty of its brick walls and original fixtures enthralling those who walked through its rooms.

Brian Kepple, chairman of the beautification commission, led the tour. He shared information preserved by Bill Cowan, who didn’t attend but left detailed notes for Kepple.

The tour was the third to be sponsored by the group. “This is my third time and I learned a lot,” Moyer said.

More tours will be scheduled as interest allows, Kepple said.


Text Only
Local News
  • Doss: Public has right to know

    A major part of Farrell council’s work session Monday was spent deciding whether or not to inform the audience about an unofficial police proposal from the City of Sharon.

    July 30, 2014

  • Budget falling short despite tax hike

    Farrell residents may have seen an income tax increase this year, but the city isn’t seeing the extra dollars City Manager Michael Ceci budgeted for.

    July 30, 2014

  • oakwood graves 1 Resting together

    Visitors to Oakwood Cemetery would see many  familiar local names if they looked down the hillside to the left just inside the gate on Sharon’s North Oakland Avenue.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Police: Kids in car were OK

    The mother of two young children was drunk and passed out when police found them all in a car parked along a city street, Sharon police said.

    July 29, 2014

  • To talk – or not – about police

    The mysterious agenda item, “No. 10,” at Farrell’s council meeting Monday became the center of a heated workshop and business session.

    July 29, 2014

  • Community thanks its first-responders

    Sharpsville honored its emergency responders Sunday at an event that included Mertz Towers residents as special guests.

    July 28, 2014

  • Drilling boom challenges state inspectors

    The state’s 83 well inspectors face a daunting enough challenge keeping tabs on 120,000 active oil and gas wells that have been drilled over the last century.

    July 28, 2014

  • Kidds Mill Covered Bridge A span of time

    Four generations of the Cadman family have enjoyed the Kidds Mill Covered Bridge, which is in Pymatuning Township near where the family’s ancestral farm is located.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Intruder hurts woman, takes $5

    A home invasion in Hermitage Friday night sent an elderly woman to the hospital and netted the robber $5.

    July 27, 2014

  • national night out March against crime set for Aug. 5

    At the last Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Commission meeting, Chief Riley Smoot Jr. presented the number of incidents for each of the four communities in May.

    Farrell topped out at 819.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • high street trail Peaceful pathways

    History buffs and picnickers in the Shenango Valley won’t have to drive to Sharpsville to hang out at the old Erie Canal extension lock. They’ll soon have the option to walk or roll in on bicycles and even powered chairs to visit Canal Park near the outflow of Shenango Dam.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • balloonquest1 Balloon Quest celebrates 25 years

    Today is the final day of the 25th annual Western Pennsylvania Balloon Quest at Scotland Meadows Park.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • News briefs from July 26, 2014

    Man faces bomb threat charges

    June building tops $4 million in Hermitage

    July 26, 2014

  • Elderly man survives plane crash

    An elderly man survived wrecking his plane into a bank, then landing into a wetland, about 200 feet south of Runway 28 at Grove City Regional Airport in Springfield Township on Friday.

    July 26, 2014

  • Dontae Rashad Pinkins Man arrested for April gunfight

    Federal marshals and local police arrested Dontae Rashad Pinkins Thursday on a warrant accusing him of involvement in an April gunfight with another man in a Sharon alley.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo