Wischmeyer Hotel Cook House, 26566 Lake Road, c. 1874

The former cook house (kitchen) for the Wischmeyer hotel, 26566 Lake Road, c. 1874. Photo by Will Krause

The 18th in a series of articles to be published as a walking tour of Lake Road by the Bay Village Historical Society in 2026.

The 1879 Crisfield Johnson “History of Cuyahoga County” states: “Henry Wischmeyer came out from Cleveland in 1874, and began to raise grapes upon a tract of fifty acres.… In 1874 he built upon his land a wine cellar with a capacity of ten thousand gallons, and manufactures considerable wine every year.”

“Bay Village: A Way of Life” states: “A resort hotel was built above the Wischmeyer wine cellar in 1874 which could accommodate seventy guests. His hotel became a regular stopping place for business men traveling from Sandusky to Cleveland, who could not return the same day after making their wine purchases. The hotel became a popular resort for affluent Clevelanders and guest[s] arrived who traveled not only on the interurban but also from out of state via the railroad.”

The 1880 United States Census lists Henry’s occupation as farmer and his agricultural production in 1880 included butter, eggs, oats, rye, potatoes, apples, peaches, grapes and 400 gallons of wine (quite different from 10,000!). An 1880 Auditor’s map curiously only shows the Wischmeyer family home on the 50 acres. The hotel was demolished in 1962.

William Krause

William R. Krause, retired as the Assistant Planning Director of the City of Westlake in 2020 after over 30 years with the city. He also served on the Bay Village Planning Commission for 9 years. He was a trustee for the Bay Village Historical Society from 2020 to 2021 and a former board member of the Westlake Historical Society. He was chair of their Lilly Weston Committee and was a member of the Reuben Osborn Learning Center Steering Committee. He is currently a Trustee of the Western Reserve Architectural Historians and the Gates Mills Historical Society. He has been married to Debra for 42 years and is the father of three grown children, grandfather of six and co-owner of a Yellow Lab named Sadie.

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Volume 15, Issue 19, Posted 9:13 AM, 10.17.2023