Isaac Horning Detwiler
Isaac Horning Detwiler was born on March 15, 1820 in Pennsylvania. Isaac was one of ten children whom his mother raised alone without the benefit of a father. He left his family at an early age to work on a farm. While on the farm he learned to mill grain. When he left the farm he became involved in the grain business and interested in milling flour. In 1865 he became a resident of Toledo and he continued in the grain business as part of the commission firm of Detwiler and Bashare.[Nevin O. Winter, A History of northwest Ohio, vol. 2 (Chicago and New York: The Lewis Publishing Co., 1917). 1105.] He married Hannah Yoder Knabb and they had four children, two of whom Abraham and George Detwiler, remained in Toledo.(Ibid.)
In 1872 Isaac started a new firm, I.H. Detwiler and Company, with his two sons, Abraham and George. The firm quickly assumed a leading position among real estate firms in Toledo.Ibid. The business was known for subdividion of land and thousands of homes were built on the lots that were put on the market by the Detwilers.[Harvey Scribner, Memoirs of Lucas County and the City of Toledo, vol.2. (Madison: Western Historical Association, 1910). 192.]
The two Detwiler projects that helped shape Toledo of were the additions made to Fitchland Avenue and those in East Toledo.George K. Detwiler Dies," Toledo Blade 11 January 1938. The Fitch 280 acre farm was bound by Bancroft and Dorr Streets, Detroit Avenue, and the old county fairgrounds. In this area lies the Ransom, Englewood and Fair Ground additions. The firm also completed the Virginia Street and Norwood additions.Winter, 1116. Isaac Detwiler helped found the Toledo Building and Loan Association and with the help of this Association many people in Toledo were able to purchase their own homes for the first time.Scribner, 192. Isaac Detwiler was one of the influential figures in the creation of the Toledo Loan Company, now the Toledo Savings Association. The Association was founded on January 1, 1885, and Issac Detwiler continued to be identified with it for the remainder of his life. He died on November 26, 1889.
After their father died, the George and Abraham continued to run their father's business. In September of 1925, George and Abraham announced that they would give the city 200 acres of land adjoining Bay View Park."George K. Detwiler Dies" This began a tradition that saw many prominent families donate land or former family estates to the city. The land that the two brothers gave to the city was later developed into a public golf course which was given the name Detwiler Park in the 1960s.Ibid. It was the first course designed by now famous golf architect Arthur Hills who has gone on to design over a hundred courses, many along Michigan's gold coast.Ibid.
George K. Detwiler was born on August 3, 1855 in Pennsylvania. In 1879 he graduated from Cornell University. After he graduated George became the president of his father's company. Abraham was made vice-president. George was a member of the Toledo Real Estate Board for more than 20 years and was also president for some time. He was a member of the Park Planning Commission as well as a member of the City Planning Commission. He died on January 10, 1938.
Isaac Horning Detwiler's grave
(Photography of Woodlawn Cemetery by Josef Schneider.)