Ward-Thomas Museum Buildings

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Front Walkway View

Front Walkway View

Stately Trees on the Grounds

Stately Trees on the Grounds

Built in 1862, the Ward Thomas House was the home of two prominent Niles industrial families. James Ward, who built the house, was a pioneer in the iron industry in the Mahoning Valley. He built puddling plants, Falcon Nail and Iron Company and the Russia mill for manufacturing steel.

The second owners were John and Margaret Thomas who came to this country from Wales. The Thomas family founded the Niles Firebrick Company and later, Mahoning Valley Steel. The Thomas family occupied the house until 1969 when the property was deeded to the City of Niles. Through the efforts of Clare Westenfield, a local attorney, the house became the home of the Niles Historical Society

The house is now a museum consisting of fourteen rooms, many furnished in the style of the period, some with furniture owned by the Thomas family and donated to the museum. The museum collection has more than 5000 items, including many from the two families. Throughout the museum, mannequins wear life size replicas of the White House ladies’ gowns displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C..

Also on the five acre property are a recently restored barn and a 1925 green house as well a various gardens and 56 varieties of trees in the arboretum. Care of the house and gardens is done by volunteers and the house is decorated appropriately for each season.

Proceeding from the back porch of the Ward-Thomas house, a walk-way leads to a secondary building, the garden house. This building is used as a workspace for the greenhouse.


Main Entrance

Main Entrance

Main House

Main House Front

Main House Back

Main House Back


Main House Left Side

Main House Left Side

Garden Work House

Garden Work House

Greenhouse

Greenhouse


Barn with Cupolas

Barn with Cupolas

Gazebo

Gazebo

Greenhouse Patio

Greenhouse Patio


 
 
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