Dover Center Road, Bay Village, circa 1920
Thanks to John Peterson, the Bay Village Historical Society is in the possession of a picture of Dover Center Road in the 1920s. This is the only picture I know of, and it tells a story. It reminds me of a friendly street with all the trees.
The two Blaha/Peterson buildings are on the left. Bill Blaha, John’s granddad, built the two-story brick building in 1926 after running the Edwards Foods grocery store in the old Cahoon Store since 1914. In 1926, Marie Blaha, Bill’s daughter, opened a beauty parlor in the clapboard building Bill had built next door for his meat market. Behind the beauty parlor was the first building Bill built on his new property. It was a double-bay auto garage. Out by the curb on Dover Center was a Standard Oil gas pump.
Traveling south toward the railroad tracks on the east side of Dover Center at East Oviatt Road was Mr. Murroto’s strawberry patch. Then we come to the beauty parlor and grocery store. Just south of the Blaha grocery store was the Miller/Gillespie house and next door the Horning family lived. Across the lane was the Kick family house.
The Cahoon Store, known as Sylvester’s, was next to the tracks and the Dover Train Station. Across the street from the Cahoon store was the Zipp family home and Manufacturing Company. West Oviatt Road faced the two Blaha stores as it does today. (Not visible in the picture.) The Bott Chrysler Dealership, which became Harvey's, was on the northwest corner (Malley's today). Going north were family homes on both sides of the street.
Notice all the trees. What a friendly street it was. Selling cherry drinks at a stand, baseball in the Zipps' front yard, putting on plays for charity, and drinks at Harvey’s are just a few of the good memories in the neighborhood. The boys and girls who grew up here in the 1930s and '40s claim the neighborhood as "the good life."
Still standing on the street today are the two Blaha/Peterson buildings. They are getting a makeover. The clapboard building is being remodeled and will become a beauty parlor again. The two-story brick building will become a music studio with family living upstairs. The beauty parlor is the oldest business in Bay Village and is still going strong after 80-plus years.