In August of 2018, we finally got a chance to go over and tour the Strock Stone House in Austintown, Ohio. This is the building that sits next to the Meander Creek Reservoir that most people drive by every day and don't even realize it is there.
Free Open House tours are available at the Strock Stone House the first Sunday of every month from 1-4 p.m (and other times by appointment). We stopped and took the tour of the building the same day we went to the Austintown Log Cabin. The Strock Stone House is located at 7217-7269 Mahoning Ave, Youngstown, OH 44515.
The Strock Stone House, also known as the Judge William Shaw Anderson House is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and is a single dwelling constructed in 1831 using huge blocks of sandstone, some weighing as much as 750 pounds, quarried from stony Ridge on South Turner Road in Austintown, Ohio. Today, the house is maintained by the Austintown Historical Society with the help from the Mahoning Valley Sanitary District.
It is believed that this house was a stop along the "Underground Railroad" system. This claim has yet to be proven, but some evidence appears to support it. Austintown was listed in Galbreath's History of Ohio as part of the path of the Underground Railroad that included "Salineville, New Lisbon, Canfield, Austintown, Edinburgh, Warren, Bloomfield, Rome, Lenox, Austinburg, Ashtabula Harbor." William Strock's brother, John Henry Strock, was described as one of the first abolitionists in Mahoning County. Additionally, Francis Henry appears on William Seibert's 1898 list of known underground railroad operators in Mahoning County. Finally, Heffelfinger's unpublished History of Meander says that slaves were hidden in a tunnel that connected the house basement with the barn. Henry lived in the Strock Stone house with his wife, Mary, and their four children.
One thing we found to be very odd and interesting at the same time on the day that we visited these locations. Our last name "Donley" is a shortened Irish surname from "O' Donnnelley," and very rarely to we find those who share our last name. There are a few in our area, but I do not know of any relation to us; however, on this same day, when we walked into the Austin Log Cabin, we saw a seed bag on the wall from the Donley Bros. Seed Company. That in itself is a bit amazing, but later on that same day, we go to the Strock Stone House and up in one of the second floor bedrooms there was a ledger book sitting on a table. Marianne, just casually flipped it open to see what it was and opened the book right to a page that had the name, "Hugh Donley" written in the book. Both of which were quite interesting finds that happened the same day, within about 5 miles from our house.
Another thing that we found to be interesting as well is the brick road that runs in front of the house, used to be part of the original Mahoning Avenue that ran through the area and down into downtown Youngstown. Although the road is a little weathered and tattered, it still exists.
If you would like to learn more history about the house and some of the reported paranormal activity that we have found, please watch our following video.
If you have been to the Strock Stone House, please share with us any of your experiences below in the comments section. You can find some more photos from our visit by clicking on that "More Photos" button below as well.
Find out more about Shawn and Marianne Donley on our About Page.