July 14th, 2013 Sunday, 12:30 - 5:30 p.m.

Worthington Tour of Homes and Gardens

The Worthington Historical Society Home and Garden Tour 2013 will explore the Riverlea neighborhood. Details on specific sites will be available at a later date.

In June, pre-sale tickets will be available at the Old Rectory and Fritzy Jacobs for $12.00. On the day of the tour, tickets will be available at the Orange Johnson House and the Old Rectory for $15.00


This year we are very pleased to welcome our tour guests to the Village of Riverlea. We will have numerous homes with a variety of architecture and creative interiors, fabulous gardens and offering multiple sites along the Olentangy River. You won’t want to miss this one!!! One of the reasons we chose Riverlea this year was because of this area’s interesting history.


Long before Riverlea came into existence, this acreage was part of the extensive land holdings of the Scioto Company. In December of 1806, Moses Maynard (and his wife, Mary Griswold Maynard) purchased the entire Scioto Company holding of Nathan and Anna Stewart, some 475 acres; 276 acres in Delaware County and 199 acres here in Worthington. Moses paid $2000 for all the acreage and was probably the first to clear land and live on this site.

The Maynard farm, which includes present day Riverlea, was situated adjacent to the Worthington Manufacturing Co. along the river at the west end of South St. During the War of 1812 the Manufacturing Company purchased 32 acres along the river from Moses and joint owner Ezra Griswold, Jr., which became home to a flock of prized merino sheep that would eventually spread into other farms throughout Worthington.


It could be that seeing a young, industrious Orange Johnson come to work in his comb making shop near the Worthington Manufacturing Company, prompted Moses Maynard to encourage his daughter Achsa to marry Orange. Achsa brought her farm origins into the Johnson household. In recent transcriptions of some of Mary Johnson’s (daughter of Achsa and Orange) letters, she refers to their home as the Manor which was a working farm including the sheep they raised and the wool they sold.

Achsa Maynard was not the only Maynard sibling to form a strong alliance in the developing village of Worthington. Her brother Moses Maynard Jr., married Orange Johnson’s sister Crissa.


Achsa’s other brother, Apollos, married Emilia Wilcox and he too became a farmer. His farm and home stood at the corner of what is now North High Street and Maynard Ave.

Her sister, Louisa married Potter Wright. Their son, Horace owned considerable farmland, livestock and operated a sawmill on the east side of town. In 1861 Horace built a home in anticipation of his upcoming marriage. This home is now known as the Wright house, or the Sharon Memorial Hall


The Maynard farm continued to be farmed by his son Moses Jr. and Crissa, and then by his grandson until 1864. They lived in the family home (pictured below) which was situated along High St., built of bricks, a “five over four” and resembled very closely the Orange Johnson House. The home was demolished long ago, probably sometime before the Riverlea development.

Sometime after the Civil War, the Maynards sold the farm to the Noble Family, who continued to farm it until into the 20th century. 

Part 2 of the 2013 Home Tour will appear in the June issue of the Intelligencer.


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