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.

 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Better security Grant available to boost security in district courts

    County officials are looking to quickly upgrade security systems in the five district judge offices, not due to an increase in risk, but because current systems are antiquated and there is a short window to apply for some financial help with the costs.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Officials split over selling older monitors

    What to do with a pile of older LCD computer monitors, keyboards and mice remains up in the air until the third, and often absent, county commissioner makes a decision.

    July 24, 2014

  • Police anxious to talk with victim

    Sharon police want to talk to a West Hill man about several other men who came to his house shortly before he was shot and critically wounded Tuesday.

    July 24, 2014

  • AED presentation Heart-friendly pool

    The Lackawannock-Shenango-West Middlesex Pool has some pretty obvious changes from when it was opened almost 46 years ago.

    July 24, 2014 4 Photos

  • Sharon man 'stable' after being shot in his West Hill home

    A Sharon man was in stable condition this morning after being shot by one of several men he had let into his West Hill home, police said.

    July 23, 2014

  • GJR killer not eligible for parole, court rules

    State Superior Court on Tuesday reversed a local judge’s decision that the sentence for one of two men who killed a night supervisor at George Junior Republic, Pine Township, was unconstitutional.

    July 23, 2014

  • Duplicated files, former worker confesses

    A Mercer woman accused of stealing customer lists, billing information and other data from her former employer headed off trial Monday by pleading guilty to a charge of unlawful duplication.

    July 23, 2014

  • Starved house Vandals vent their emotions

    Vandals kept police busy Sunday and Monday nights at a home in Greenville where the Mercer County District Attorney’s office said a boy was starved and beaten by his mom.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Couple, another man charged in thefts

    Pennsylvania State Police have filed charges of burglary, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief against an East Palestine, Ohio, couple and another man in connection with two robberies in rural Mercer County.

    July 22, 2014

  • Taking stock Where’s the beef? Bull’s still missing

    Is it possible that an alien abduction took place in the Mercer area last week? A solid red, 2-year-old Watusi bull with 3-foot-long horns has been missing since July 14 with no trace of its existence left on earth.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Buhl Day honorees

    The Buhl Day committee has chosen for this year’s celebration five honored guests whose volunteer work they feel best showcases the legacy of philanthropic work left behind by Frank and Julia Buhl a century ago.

    July 22, 2014

  • GC pair not hurt in accident injuring 2

    Two drivers were taken to a hospital after an accident at the intersection of state routes 965 and 173 in Worth Township, police said.

    July 21, 2014

  • WaterFire crowds WaterFire doused

    Sharon’s WaterFire wasn’t lacking either of its elements on Saturday. There was steady, day-long rain but the day concluded with the Shenango River ablaze.

    July 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • ‘Starved’ boy released from hospital

    A 7-year-old boy allegedly starved and beaten by his mother is out of the hospital and ordered out of his Greenville home by Mercer County Common Pleas President Judge Thomas R. Dobson.

    July 20, 2014

  • WaterFire walking tour Time traveling

    A group of more 50 people walked between the raindrops Saturday during an historical tour of downtown Sharon during the city’s WaterFire celebration.

    July 20, 2014 6 Photos 1 Story