Clock Tower

Out of the Clock Tower



Hello and welcome to the Greene County Archives' blog, "Out of the Clock Tower".  Please join us as we share information on archival issues, news, special events, and highlights from our collection.

Before the archives program began in Greene County in 1996, permanent records were stored in every conceivable space, in basements, garages, and closets. Usually they were in boxes of various shapes and sizes, although seldom adequately labeled, but occasionally they were just in loose piles of books and papers. Most notable were the old records stuffed into the clock tower of the County Courthouse, where they shared their home with pigeon droppings.

Now, there is a clean, environmentally controlled, well appointed location for the county archives, where our historical records are housed in standard sized boxes on steel shelves. We have taken note of their journey in the name for our blog.

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Feb 01

History of the Galloway Cabin

Posted on February 1, 2019 at 2:10 PM by Melissa Dalton

Our series on historic buildings of Greene County continues this week with a look at the Galloway cabin (Fig 1).

Fig 1. Sketch of the Galloway Cabin by Robert L. Mauck (JPG)
Fig 1. Sketch by Robert L. Mauck of the Galloway Cabin (Greene County Archives)

The Galloway cabin is probably one of the most well-known structures in Xenia, and probably Greene County. The cabin was constructed by James Galloway Sr. in 1799, after he and his family moved from Kentucky to the area. The Galloways settled near Goes Station, which later would become part of Xenia Township.

The land, including the cabin, stayed in the Galloway family for many years. After James Galloway Sr. died in 1838, the property went to his heirs. However, in 1841, Anthony Galloway, one of Galloway’s sons, took full ownership of the land. Anthony held the property for many years, but in 1854, sold to David Gish. Gish and his brother had bought a few properties around that time, but they did not keep them long. In 1857, the land changed hands three times – it went from David Gish to Dennis Cosley, Cosley to Basil Lucas, and Lucas to George, William, and Andrew Holland – and this is where we have a little side story…

George, William, and Andrew were children of Daniel and Maria Holland. Daniel was a slave owner from Charleston, South Carolina, and Maria was one of his slaves. Daniel fathered three children with Maria, and after freeing Maria and their sons, he brought them to Ohio to live (Fig 2). He purchased a large tract of land near Wilberforce, which is where the children gained an education (although not all of them graduated). The brothers did well for themselves, and as previously stated, together bought the large piece of land that included the Galloway cabin. Hallie Q. Brown makes mention of the Holland family in her book, Pen Pictures of Pioneers of Wilberforce (Fig 3).

Fig 2. Article from the Xenia Daily Gazette, dated July 9, 1965 (JPG)
Fig 2. Article from the Xenia Daily Gazette, dated July 9, 1965 (JPG)
Fig 2. Article from the Xenia Daily Gazette, dated July 9, 1965 (NewspaperARCHIVE.com)

Fig 3. Excerpt from Pen Pictures of Pioneers of Wilberforce (JPG)Fig 3. Excerpt from Pen Pictures of Pioneers of Wilberforce (JPG)
Fig 3. Excerpt from Pen Pictures of Pioneers of Wilberforce (Greene County Archives)

The brothers shared the land for many years, but when William died unexpectedly in 1870, he left the other two to decide how to parcel the land. George and Andrew split the land in 1871, each taking full ownership of their individual parcels. Andrew, along with his wife Sara, raised their family in the Galloway cabin (Fig 4). One article claims that of their nine children, all but one was born in the cabin.

Fig 4. 1874 Greene County Atlas with A.J. Holland land circled in red (JPG)
Fig 4. 1874 Greene County Atlas with A. J. Holland land circled in red (Greene County Archives)

Andrew Holland and his family moved to Yellow Springs, but he kept his land near Goes Station. In 1874, George Holland sold his tract to the Miami Powder Co. Andrew sold off pieces of his land over the years, and in 1881, sold 20 acres to the Miami Powder Co., and we believe that it is this tract that housed the Galloway cabin.

Over the years, the Miami Powder Co. changed ownership many times. When the site closed for good in 1925, the site was known as the Hercules Explosive Corporation. The 1927 tax records indicate that they sold all their property to E. H. Hunt (Fig 5).

Fig 5. Article from the Xenia Evening Gazette, dated October 8, 1936 (JPG)
Fig 5. Article from the Xenia Evening Gazette, dated October 8, 1936 (NewspaperARCHIVE.com)

Although the property changed hands over the years, the cabin remained. In the 1930s, there was a push to make the cabin part of the Greene County Museum Association (now the Greene County Historical Society). To make this dream a reality, two women were of vital importance – Emma King and Alice Galloway Eavey. King donated the land at the corner of Second and Monroe streets, and Eavey purchased the cabin and donated it to the Association (Fig 6).

Fig 6. Galloway cabin in 1938 (JPG)

The cabin remained on the premises for a couple decades, but in 1965, the Historical Society moved to a new complex. At that time, the cabin was relocated to West Church Street (Fig 7), where it remains today. The cabin did sustain serious damage in the 1974 tornado, but the Society was able to salvage it, preserving it for future generations.

Fig 7. Galloway cabin being moved in 1965 to current location (JPG)
Fig 7. Galloway cabin being moved in 1965 (Courtesy of the Dayton Daily News Archive, Wright State University)

Until Next Time…

Sources:
Greene County Archives
NewspaperARCHIVE.com
Wright State University, Special Collections & Archives

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