343 West Indiana Avenue
The Yeager House
Supporting the preservation and appreciation of Perrysburg's historic architectural heritage
The Yeager House:
At one time 343 West Indiana Avenue was on the outskirts of town. But it was there that a German settler by the name of Yeager chose his homestead. Because of their later prominence and the fact that as many as four generations of the family lived there right up until 1985, this article will focus on more than just the builder -- who is unknown.
The first Yeager occupant of the house, built in the 1830s, was John J. Yeager, a farmer immigrant from Alsace, France, who came to Perrysburg in 1842. His name is listed as the owner of the property in county records of 1848.
343 West Indiana Avenue
When he arrived here he stayed at the Spafford Exchange Hotel and the next day went to work for John Hollister, an influential merchant and businessman in town. Later, two of Mr. Yeager's grandparents arrived here from Alsace just eight weeks before the cholera epidemic of 1854 and both were victims.
Exactly what occupation he pursued is not clear, but at the outbreak of the Civil War he organized a company of infantry of which he was captain, a local title kept for the rest of his life. The group became a part of the 111th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and Mr. Yeager was present at the siege of Knoxville and several other engagements. He was discharged in 1864 due to illness.
He later became a Wood County commissioner, was a founder of Wolford Post, G.A.R., and an elder in the Methodist Church. He died in 1891, passing along the house to his son, Frederick.
The house is a frame Greek Revival of two and one-half stories and is described as a "temple" style farm house. The front entrance is of simple Greek composition without sidelights but with a recessed door. The front pediment contains a triangular light (window), the roof has a shallow pitch (it was originally tin) and there is a broad fascia. Their return at the gable ends are characteristic of its style. The house formerly had shutters on all windows.
Frederick Yeager, who was born here in 1844, operated Yeager Dry Goods for 22 years. He attended Baldwin-Wallace College and when the call to arms came he, like his father, joined the Union army and saw combat. Upon his return he farmed for three years before embarking in the mercantile business. During his long lifetime (he died at 85 in 1929), he was Perrysburg's mayor and postmaster, township clerk, township treasurer, county treasurer and served on the school board for 11 years.
Next in line was Frederick's son, John O. Yeager. He was born in 1870 and during his 75 years here served as mayor and the superintendent of the Methodist Church Sunday school. His daughter, Madelyn (Mrs. Lee Hartshorn), was born in 1893. She was the first registered nurse to graduate from Ohio State University and she lived in the family house until making her residence at Heartland of Perrysburg where she died at 95 in May of 1990, leaving no immediate relatives.
The Yeager House is another Perrysburg property on the National Register of Historic Places.