The original frame house was built in 1811 and consisted of 4 rooms. It is a fine example of pioneer frame construction at a time when most of the houses in the town were constructed of logs. Judge Charles Sherman and his family purchased the home and added the center frame section in 1816 to accommodate their growing family. It was known as the “little brown house on the hill.” The Sherman family owned this home until 1868.
Judge Charles Sherman was a prominent lawyer and Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of Ohio. He was the father of eleven children including Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman, born in 1820, and U.S. Senator John Sherman (Sherman’s Anti-Trust Act), born in 1823, both of whom were born in the house.
The second owner of the home, Rudolph Seipel, purchased the house in 1868 and added the front Victorian section of the home in the early 1870s. He was in the clothing business under the firm name of Rising, Miller & Seipel. Their store was one of the largest clothing establishments in this part of the country.
In 1897 Ed Schleicher, a local grocer purchased the home. He fought hard to make the home a museum up until his passing in the 1940s. He threatened to raze the home in 1940 and build an apartment building. That caught the attention of the city.
In 1950 the city signed over the house to the state, and in 1951 it was finally made into a State Memorial and Museum. With budget cuts in the 1980s, the Ohio Historical Society ceased to operate the museum, and transfer of ownership was given to the Fairfield Heritage Association in 1982.
It is now owned and operated by the Fairfield County Heritage Association. It serves as a museum with an exhibit of Civil War memorabilia and Sherman family history. Open for tours Wednesday thru Sunday, 12:00 - 3:00 except holidays. Open January, February, and March by appointment only. Group tours can be arranged.
Click here for more information about the Sherman House Museum.
Sherman Trail: Birthplace of General William Tecumseh Sherman in 1820. Nicknamed "Cump" by his siblings who could not pronounce Tecumseh.
Charles and Mary bought this property and moved into the four-room New England style home in 1811 after a 6-week journey from Connecticut with one infant and a pregnant Mary Sherman on horseback. In 1816 the middle section of the house was added to accommodate their growing family of 11 children. The Shermans lived in this home until 1868. The second owners added the front Victorian section in the early 1870s that we see today. The home has been a museum since 1952, but was always known as the Sherman home. A plaque was placed in the front of the home in 1927.
The cannon was donated by Joe Rockey. This 3-inch ordinance rifle known as a Rodman Cannon was accepted by the U.S. Army on March 22, 1863. Of the nearly 1,000 produced, 587 survive today. The cannon number is 592 and was manufactured by the Phoenix Iron Co. in Phoenixville, PA.
137 East Main Street, Lancaster, Ohio 43130, United States of America