EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is another article on Findlay area history adapted from a series written from 1959 to 1974 by the late R.L. Heminger, publisher and editor of The Courier.
The transformation of the property at 420 W. Sandusky St. into a museum in the last year or so has focused attention and interest on the builder of the residential structure which now houses so much of historical value in the local community. Jasper G. Hull, a Findlay banker and owner of the concern which furnished Findlay with artificial gas prior to the discovery of natural gas, was the builder of the large home.
Mr. Hull was born in Delaware County in 1846, and came to Findlay in 1879 from Morrow County, where his father had moved. His general life story so far as his Findlay residence is well known, but a missing link developed when, at the time of the museum property purchase a few years ago, it was sought to put together a full account of his life, and inquiry failed to reveal where he was buried, or just when he may have left Findlay to reside elsewhere. Maple Grove Cemetery records showed he was not buried there.
An item was inserted in the “Grass Roots” column of the Republican-Courier, this column appearing every once in a while to seek information that is not readily obtainable through sources at hand. But there was no response to the question raised as to the whereabouts of the Hulls after they left Findlay. It was only generally known that they had left not long after the turn of the century.
Light eventually came via a perusal of the files of the newspaper in the early 1900s. It was discovered that Mr. Hull resigned his position as cashier of the Farmer’s Bank in Findlay (later to become the Buckeye Bank) in the summer of 1902 and moved to Marion County to reside. He made known he was going to return to his former vocation of farming. In Marion County, he owned a large acreage of land exceeding a full section.
He announced that his large West Sandusky Street dwelling, which he had built early in the 1880s, was for sale. Henry Flater bought it in 1903.
There were still missing links in the Hull story, however, including when he died and where he was buried.
The suggestion was made that contact be made with the Marion city cemetery in the likelihood that it may have been the place of interment. Inquiry there brought a prompt response. Mr. and Mrs. Hull were, indeed, buried in the Marion Cemetery.
He died in January 1913, while living on a small poultry farm near Cleveland. His wife had died previously. He was 66 years old when he passed away.
He was survived by five daughters, a sixth daughter having died. The five living were Mrs. Frank Winders and Mrs. Max Morehouse of Columbus, Mrs. Reed Metzler of Cleveland, Mrs. Earl Eby of Wilkinsburg, Pa. and an unmarried daughter, Bernadine of Columbus. The deceased daughter was Mrs. C.A. Bond.
At the funeral of Mr. Hull in Marion, the officiating clergyman was Dr. Henry C. Jameson, formerly of Findlay, a longtime friend of Mr. Hull.
There was an unusually interesting story of the Hull death. While one of the daughters, Mrs. Winders, was in Marion attending her father’s funeral, Mrs. Winders’ husband, a physician, was in Findlay attending the funeral of his father, David Winders, who had died of injuries received in an accident in Columbus when his electric coupe collided with a street car. David Winders, known more familiarly as “Thornt” for his middle name of “Thornton,” was mayor of Findlay in the 1890s. The son, Dr. Winders, became the first executive secretary of the Ohio State Medical Board.
Of the other Hull daughters, Mrs. Morehouse was the wife of one of the owners of the large Morehouse-Martin’s women’s apparel store in Columbus; Mrs. Bond’s husband became mayor of the city of Columbus and the founder of the well-known Bond clothing houses; and Mrs. Metzler was the wife of an attorney who first practiced in Findlay and once was city solicitor.
Mr. Hull’s wife, who was Miss Mary Monnett, was a descendant of the family which gave Ohio Wesleyan University its first women’s residence structure, known familiarly as “Monnett Hall” on the OWU campus.
Mr. Hull has a very definite connection with Findlay’s gas history. He was one of the owners of the famous Karg well which “came in” during January 1886 on the banks of the Blanchard River at the foot of Liberty Street, its great flow attracting world attention and launching Findlay’s great boom.
Soon after coming to Findlay, Mr. Hull became the sole owner of the Findlay Gas-Light company, which supplied the city with artificial gas. When the Oesterlen discovery well was drilled in December 1884, he himself drilled a second natural gas well and turned natural gas into the lines of his plant, which was furnishing an artificial brand of gas to the city.