« Back
 
Search:
History of Manor House & Estate
 

The first half of the twentieth century proved an uncertain, but exciting time in American history. From the turn of the century through the 1920s, the United States fostered unbelievable economic and industrial growth. Inventors and innovators introduced the world to amazing new concepts in the fields of transportation and energy. As bright and promising as those times were, the Great Depression and war years that followed equaled them in despair and foreboding. The prosperous years allowed men of genius and vision to accumulate incredible wealth and influence, while the lean times tested these new American leaders.


During this era, amazing industrial accomplishments transformed Toledo and northwest Ohio into leaders in the country’s good times, but left the region in desperate circumstances when the Depression hit. The story of one prominent Toledo family, the Stranahans, encapsulates these times and continues to shed light on how the country went from economic feast to famine; and finally emerged to lead the world through the remainder of the twentieth century.


Founders of Champion Spark Plug Company, brothers R.A. and F.D. Stranahan became wealthy beyond their greatest imagination and then used their money and influence to help see Toledo and the nation through the troubling times of the Great Depression and World War II. R.A. Stranahan’s impressive mansion and sprawling estate, now part of Wildwood Preserve, stand as a testament to the great business success the brothers enjoyed. The Historical Programs Department at the Metroparks of the Toledo Area are dedicated to utilizing Wildwood to explore this important era in national and local history for this and future generations. Please follow the links below to learn more about the history of the Manor House and Estate and the special programs we offer both at Wildwood and beyond:


Researched and Written by Patrick T. Johnston, Metroparks Historian



About The House
About The House
 

In the 1930s, R.A. Stranahan and his wife Page invested their vast fortune on a lavish estate and mansion. Constructed during the heart of the ... (more)

 
Shipman Garden
Shipman Garden
 

Page Stranahan loved flowers. When it came to choosing a garden designer for her new estate she settled for nothing less than the best, Ellen ... (more)

 
Champion Spark Plug Co.
Champion Spark Plug Co.
 

Brothers R.A. and F.D Stranahan officially founded Champion Spark Plug Company in 1908. In reality, the company’s roots trace back at least ... (more)

 
Stranahan Family
Stranahan Family
 

Because the Manor House and Estate were home to R.A., Page and their two children Frank and Barbara, this section will focus primarily on these ... (more)

 
Preserving The Estate
Preserving The Estate
 

R.A. and Page Stranahan resided at their Toledo estate for the remainder of their lives. For six years after Page's passing in 1968, only a ... (more)

 
 
 
My Metroparks