The Case-Barlow Family
Case-Barlow Farm, Inc. has a rich history in the Western Reserve. In May of 1814, Chauncey and Cleopatra Case began their journey from Grandby, Connecticut to Hudson, Ohio. They had purchased virgin land in Northeast Ohio from the Connecticut Land Company. The journey westward was by covered wagon and the family numbered five children and one expected in the next few months. Their milk cow completed the group.
Six weeks later on the Fourth of July, the party arrived in Hudson and moved into a log house that had already been constructed for them. In the late 1820's, the family built a brickyard and kilns to construct their new Farmhouse. The Greek revival home was completed a short time later. In 1853, Chauncey and Cleopatra transferred ownership of the home to their son, Henry, and his wife, Mary. During the 1880's, the Farm grew to 483 acres.
Proceeding and during the Civil War, Case-Barlow Farm was a site for Abolitionist meetings. Abolitionist John Brown, a friend of the Case family, shared a close friendship with Chauncey and Cleopatra's son, Lora. The homestead served as a stop on the Underground Railroad.
Upon Henry's death in 1890, the ownership of the property was shared by a group of his heirs and operated by their daughter Hattie Susan Case (1861-1898) and her husband, Franklin F. Barlow (1858-1934). Hattie and Franklin Barlow were married in December of 1883 and had three children named Henry Case Barlow (1885-1958), Harley Edmund Barlow (1887-1894), and Clara May Barlow (1891-1932). In 1897, the Case-Barlow family assumed ownership of the property. During Hattie and Franklin's operation and ownership of the Farm, the bank barn was built. After Hattie's death, Franklin met and married Cynthia Belle Fern in June of 1990.
Henry Case Barlow and his wife Isabel Flora Sacketts married in 1910, and became the fourth generation of owners. Their family included three sons, Franklin Sacketts Barlow (1912-1996), Harold Edmund Barlow (1914-2002), and Donald Charles Barlow (1915-2001).
The next transfer of the Farm occurred in 1946, when Henry and Isabel Barlow conveyed ownership to their son, Donald Charles Barlow and his wife Emily Fisk Pierce. After retiring, Henry Case Barlow became the Mayor of Hudson and served for twelve years. Don and Emily were married in 1941 and sadly, Emily passed away in 1990. In January of 1993, Don married Helen. The Barlows donated the homestead to the First Congregational Church of Hudson in 1996.
The Nonprofit Organization
Case-Barlow Farm, Inc., located in Hudson, Ohio, is a nonprofit corporation that was initiated with the purchase of the homestead previously owned by Donald and Helen Barlow in November of 1996. It received its 501(c)(3) status in that same year. The original goal of the organization was to rescue the farm and surrounding historic buildings from demolition by a housing developer. In addition, the founders' intent was securing the property for the future as an education and cultural center. Because of the melding of restoration and community use, this Farm has become a model for adaptive reuse.
Today the Farm consists of a Farmhouse, Bank Barn, Carriage House, and miscellaneous outbuildings situated on 4.2 acres and surrounded by a 60-acre city-owned park called Barlow Farm Park. The Farm is listed on the Ohio Historical Inventory, has received recognition by the Hudson Historical Society and is designated as an official Underground Railroad site by the Friends of Freedom Society.