The enormous stone house at 329 Fourth Street was built in 1893 for Ellwood City founder Henry W. Hartman. Built at a time when the only other structure close by was Hotel Oliver (later named Hotel Lawrence) the house was Mrs. Hartman’s dream home.
Henry Waters Hartman, born in Huntington County Pennsylvania December 21, 1850, married Mary Holliday in 1876 and had two sons, Holliday Ellwood Hartman and Henry Waters Hartman Jr. Some folks have suggested that Ellwood City was not named after Col. Isaac Ellwood but after Mr. Hartman’s first born son Holliday (who was named after Col. Ellwood).
Frustrated that Ellwood City never got the electrical streetcar system he desired, Mr. Hartman moved to Denver Colorado to start an electric streetcar system there. After Henry Hartman passed away in 1913 in Colorado, his widow Mary lived in the house in Ellwood City until 1923.
Since Mrs. Hartman sold the house on Fourth Street, it has been owned by a handful of people including George Sewall III & R. Charles Stiefel Jr. Over the years the house was also the Ellwood City Public Library, doctor offices, & bridal shops. During the 1950’s, the owners of the house at the time wanted to tear down the building to build a gas station on the corner of Fourth Street and Crescent Avenue. Currently the house is the offices of Century 21 realtors. If you have any memories of the large house or the families that have lived here, please leave a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Eric McAnallen wrote: I have many fond memories of this house. My grandparents, Willis and Alberta Bartle, owned it in the 80s and 90s. I’m not sure of the exact dates.
Alberta and her sister, Kay Paswell ran the aformentioned Bridal House out of the first floor selling formal wear, bridal gowns and prom dresses to the young ladies of Ellwood City. My mother was a seamstress for the shop and I spent quite a few hours running around the back rooms among the dresses as a lad.
There was a large apartment on the second floor and a smaller one on the third and a basement with laundry for the tenants. Also in the basement was the ubiquitous “Pittsburgh Toilet.”
I often had the unenviable task of cutting the grass and keeping the grounds neat and trim. Out front, right on the corner of the lawn, sat a big aluminum wedding bell with the shop’s name on it. I think it might still be in my barn. Over the entrance hung a hand-painted sign that read, “Through these doors walk the world’s most beautiful women.”
My grandmother closed the shop and sold the house not long after my grandfather died.
I’ll look through the family photos and see if we have any of the building during that time.
Bob Baney wrote: Dr Obley had an office there in the 50s and maybe the early 60s aand lived there also.
Jo Ann (Miller) Oxsen wrote: In later years my Mom and Dad, Midge and Harry Miller, on their way to visit me in California, stopped along the way to see Dr. Fred Obley and wife Peggy in Arizona (Mesa, I believe). Mom used to play golf with Peggy when they lived in E.C.
Danny John wrote: I lived right don the block from the Obleys and was very good friends with the daughter I think it was Linda just not sure…I do however remember Dr. Obleys Big German Shepard Dog named Mike he was a very good dog just scary for a kid. I belive that Dr.Obley and family lived on the second floor of the house and the offices was on the first floor
Linda Turner wrote: I loved this house even though I just saw the “doctor’s office” as Dr. Obley was our family doctor. I remember the office quite well. I also remember their German Shepherd. The dog attacked me while walking down 4th street going towards Lawrence Ave.(on my way home). Lucky, my coat was double sided as I did have scratches on my back from the dogs claws, but not serious. Later, Dr. Obley gave the dog away. But that did not make me afraid of or dislike Shepherds. I’ve had 2 of my own and a Doberman. Danny J., don’t know when you lived there, but I probably passed your home many times, since I lived above my Dad’s barber shop at Lawrence & 4th nex to the Oasis.
Bob Stevenson wrote: I lived right across the street from the Hartman House. We lived over my granfather’s funeral home. It was on the corner where later, Jean’s Flower Shop was. And I remember Mike the German Shepard. And yes Dr. Obley did give it away. Their old daughters name was Linda. I never heard what happened with her. Anybody know? Maybe Jo Ann
Danny John wrote: Linda we lived at 305 4th street in one of the apartments above the Knights of Columbus that house was right next door to the city paint and glass and i do remember your dads shop even washed his car a few times I think that was one of the larger barber shop in Ellwood. My Mom (Phyllis Carroza John) worked at the Oasis for many years
JoAnn Raffetto Marsden wrote: Hello everyone, I certainly remember the Hartman Home. My parents, Bill and Betty Raffetto bought the home in 1967 and I lived there until I went off to Pitt in 1969. My Dad lived there until his death in 1977. When er first moved in the Doctor’s offices on the first floor were rented to a Dr. Evangelista, but shortly after, my Mom, along with Helen Mantz of Helen’s dress shop opened the Bridal House. I can say with great memories how I loved trying on all the gowns! It was a beatiful house- I was greatly saddened on my last visit to town, that the beautiful trees on the front lawn had been cut down. I can remember sitting in the third floor balcony feeling like I was in a treehouse.
Tiffini Hartman Brockway wrote: Henry Waters Hartman was my great, great grandfather. My father, James Warren Hartman is the son of Henry Warren Hartman who was the son of Henry Waters. I also have an uncle, Henry Waters Hartman II. Both my Dad and my uncle are still alive.
I have never been to this beautiful home, however I have photos and newspaper articles about my great, great grandfather including this home. If you have any additional information on him that you could share with me, I would appreciate it.