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Orchard Park in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Orchard Park

Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway

 

—Johnson-Jolls House —

 
Orchard Park (Johnson-Jolls House) Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, January 28, 2015
1. Orchard Park (Johnson-Jolls House) Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway Marker
Inscription. Ambrose C. Johnson (1823-1894) and his wife Mary Abbey (1826-1901) of Hamburg came to Orchard Park about 1855. In 1858 Ambrose began a partnership with Charles Hewson, founding Johnson & Hewson's Dry Goods. The store, located immediately north on the corner of S. Buffalo and E. Quaker Roads, was a successful mercantile endeavor.

Enamored with Italianate architecture, the Johnsons built this gracious home in 1870, where it stands proudly today. They spent their remaining years in residence.

Johnson House - 1900.

After the death of her parents, daughter Ava Johnson rented the house to Dr. Willard Burton Jolls (1870-1963) and his bride of four years, Ida Markham (1869-1958), both from Cattaraugus County.

Dr. Willard Jolls made house calls. Note the barn which replaced the barn lost in the 1902 conflagration at the Four Corners. Dr. Jolls' frantic efforts saved the house. The metal framework supports a windmill which pumped water for the homestead.

Dr. Jolls, a graduate of the Univerity at Buffalo Medical School, soon thereafter opened practice in Orchard Park, a community of 350 residents at the time.

In 1902, Dr. Jolls purchased the home, first using the front hall and south front room as his waiting room and office, but eventually creating an office at the rear. He served as a beloved country
Northward image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, January 28, 2015
2. Northward
Note the directional signs for the Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway.
doctor for some 65 years, during which time he delivered more than 1,200 babies amongst his other duties. He served as Orchard Park Health Officer for many years, and was a vigorous proponent for improved sanitary conditions. This eventually led to the development of the community's modern sanitation system. For years he was a contributor of a weekly health column to the Orchard Park Press.

Dr. Jolls donated a portion of his land to the Town of Orchard Park for construction of a new municipal building, which stands today to the south. The building was dedicated in 1949.

Governor Thomas E. Dewey honors Orchard Park at the Municipal Building dedication, 1949, built on land donated by Dr. Jolls. Left to Right: Mrs. Willard B. (Ida) Jolls, Supervisor Clarence F. Henning, Governor Dewey, Mayor Loren G. Roth, and Dr. Willard B. Jolls.

Having no children, they left their house to long-time friend and housekeeper Millie M. Michelfelder, whose estate subsequently sold it to the Town of Orchard Park in 1979. The Town anticipated providing for future expansion of the Municipal Building, but after several months, consultants advised the the Jolls House was unsuitable for conversion to a governmental facility. Sections of the building were rented to professionals until March 1996. It was then determined to be in the town's best interest to convert the entire building
Johnson-Jolls House image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, January 28, 2015
3. Johnson-Jolls House
to a museum.

The Orchard Park Historical Society was named as its operator. This wonderful property is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The home of Dr. and Mrs. Jolls for many years, this house stands as a tribute to an important part of Orchard Park's history.

The Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway is a 70 mile route encompassing five towns and three villages within Erie County, New York. For a listing of points of interest along the byway, go to www.wnyssb.org .
 
Erected by Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway.
 
Location. 42° 46.005′ N, 78° 44.623′ W. Marker is in Orchard Park, New York, in Erie County. Marker is on South Buffalo Street (New York State Route 240) 0.1 miles south of East Quaker Street (U.S. 20A), on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4287 South Buffalo Street, Orchard Park NY 14127, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Jolls Homestead (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of Erie County Agricultural Fair (approx. 0.2 miles away); David Eddy (approx. ¼ mile away); a different marker also named Orchard Park (approx. 0.6 miles away); Village of Orchard Park (approx. 0.6 miles away); Orchard Park Depot (approx. 0.6 miles away); Obadiah Baker Homestead (approx. ¾ mile away); Site of Erastus D. Webster Homestead (approx. 1.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Orchard Park.
 
Also see . . .  Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway. (Submitted on February 10, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
 
Categories. Charity & Public WorkScience & MedicineSettlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 10, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 177 times since then and 20 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on February 10, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.
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