Harris House. PO1.425
The southwest corner of Main and James (now Park Avenue) streets
was built as a hotel in 1842 and purchased by the Harris Family
in 1865 who occupied it until 1904. From then until 1920, it was
used as a store and warehouse.
Pictured in the photograph taken in 1866:
Marth J. Robbins, Sarah A. Pew, Hannah M. Taylor, A.F. Harris,
C.G. Harris, Mrs. James Harris, F.W.Harris and H.J. Harris.
Stores Furnished Supplies for Pioneers of Nilestown As Early as
Butter sold at 6 Cents per pound; First
Hotel in 1836.
Special Edition Niles Daily Times 1934
Pioneer village though it was, Nilestown before
the end of the Heaton period already possessed the beginnings
of those institutions which give strength and permanence to a
new community. Industry came first; business, the church and school
Quite early Heaton had established a store at
his mill for the convenience of his workmen; but his store apparently
carried a very limited stock and was not his primary interest.
The first separate store was established by Robert Quigley
in 1836 on the corner of Mill(now State) and Main Streets. Three
years later a second store, located where the old Crandon Building
now is, was opened by Josiah Robbins and Ambrose
Mason. This store continued until 1864. An aged record book
record book of a store operated by H.H. Mason in 1842
reveals the wide variety of stock sold by these general stores.
Wine sold at one-dollar per gallon, a wagon for
a down payment of $45.00. Other common articles were sparables,
bombazine and calico. Wheat sold at sixty-six cents per bushel;
apples, 25 cents per barrel; butter, six cents per pound; eggs,
7 cents per dozen; and a suit of clothes was sold to James
Heaton for $23.78.
Birth home of President William
Photograph dated 1895. PO1.697a
early as 1836 there was need of a hotel or tavern in Nilestown;
and in that year one was opened by Jacob Robeson on the corner
of James (now Park) and Main Streets where the Hotel Heaton now
stands. There seems to be no record of other businesses before
1840 but it is probable that a number of houses, such as the Mckinley
home stood on the streets of the present business section during
The home of William McKinley Sr. on
the west side of Main Street. In 1843 William McKinley Jr.
was born on January 29th.
Sometime before 1875 the house was enlarged and
converted into a store owned by J. S. Benedict.
In the 1890's half of it was moved to Riverside
Park and half to the back alley. A bank and the Benedict building
were constructed on the site.
From 1836 when the Sandford House or Inn first
opened until the Allison Hotel was built in 1906, the mode of
local transportation was generally by horse-drawn carriage or
on horseback. Postcard dated 1908.
trains arrived in Niles in the mid-1850s and provided city-to-city
travel. Streetcars became available in the late 1880s and provided
point-to-point transportation. However, horses still provided
the main transportation to locations that were unavailable to
trains and streetcars.
The Sandford House provided livery service whereby
travelers could rent a carriage or horse for travel, parties,
According to several 'old-timers', the Sandford
House was not actually torn down; instead the new hotel was built
around it and the old Sandford Inn became part of the new Allison
Comparing the Panoramic View of
Niles map above to the postcard on the left, it appears that
the previous entrance on James Street, now Park Avenue, was
changed to face North Main Street with areas for shops on the