Island History

The Lake Erie Islands are rich in local and American history. Our 6,000 square foot museum has displays depicting early life on the islands and many aspects of life at the turn of the 20th century.

Put-in-Bay has prospered as a tourist destination since 1864 and the Victorian era saw literally hundreds of thousands of visitors each summer. That was when the tourist season didn't begin until July 4th and ended promptly on Labor Day.

The History Page Project is currently underway and we hope to fill many pages with stories devoted to the history of Put-in-Bay and the Lake Erie Islands.

You will find stories written by Susie Cooper using documents at the museum, and excerpts from Isolated Splendor by Robert J. Dodge. The Lake Erie Islands Historical Society owns all rights to Mr. Dodge's island history book.

Above and Left

Excerpts of Toledo and Indian Lake-built Dart runabouts romping about the Maumee River near Toledo, and Lake Erie near Put-In-Bay. This 8mm film footage is from the Admiral Webb C. Hayes II family. Hayes was the grandson of President Rutherford B. Hayes and the head of the Dart Boat Company, which built quality mahogany speed boats in Toledo, Ohio until the early 1930's, when they were claimed by the Great Depression.

Posted by RamseyBros
Courtesy of the Admiral Webb C. Hayes II Collection Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center Spiegel Grove Fremont, Ohio


The Mayors of Put-in-Bay over the years

1877-1878 Andrew Hunker 1878-1880 Dr. C.H.J. Linsky
1880-1889 Valentine Doller 1889-1890 Andrew Hunker
1890-1891 F. W. Burggraf 1891-1892 J. B. Ward
1892-1894 F. W. Burggraf 1894-1898 Henry Fox
1898-1908 J. C. Oldt 1908-1910 J. J. Day
1910-1913 T. B. Alexander 1913-1914 Dr. P. B. Robinson
1914-1918 Thomas Conlen 1918-1919 Walter S. Ladd
1919-1936 T. B. Alexander 1936-1938 Lucas Meyer
1938-1949 Henry Fox 1949-1956 William B. McCann
1956-1963 Earl Parker 1963-1971 James A. Poulos
1971- ? Richard Fox ? - ? Robert Ladd
? - ? Steve Z. Urge 1996-2002 John W. Blatt
2002-2009 Bernard M. McCann 2009-2009 John Scarpelli
2009-2015 Margaret Scarpelli 2016- Present Mack McCann