Lake County Ohio GenWeb

The naming of Willoughby

The following article is from the Willouhgby Independent 18 January 1895, page 3. This was transcribed by Cynthia Turk from an article clipped by Sara Evans.

Chagrin - - Willoughby

Editors Willoughby Independent:


"What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."


It would seem, therefore, that a name was of little consequence. It is so in some instances, but these are only the few exceptions to the general rule that it is of great importance. In thousands of instances it is the passport of the possessor in all the situations to be met in the journey of life. Hence, it is so true that


"Good name in man or woman, dear my lord
Is the immediate jewel of their souls."


Reputation is one form of name --
"O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part, sir, of myself."


But this is name as it relates to persons. But many times it is of quite as much consequence to things. The writer, a native of little Lake county and also of Cuyhaoga, was reminded of the foregoing extracts by the change of name of a town in the county, -- Chagrin, a synonym of which is mortification. This was the name of the town in which he was born in Cuyahoga and it was Chagrin in the town in which he was born in Lake; and now about the change of the name of the town.


Willoughby always had, under which ever name, from the earliest time down to the present, a citizenship noted for its enterprise and public spirit. Early the people sought to make a name for the town - sought for something that would increase also its population. They determined to build up a University. The first department of it was to be a medical one. Going down into their limited pockets, in a pecuniary sense, but generous, they raised the means to erect a creditable, commodious, three-storied brick edifice, to be known nomenclaturally, by amended charter, as the Willoughby University of Lake Erie (- medical department). When this was done I cannot say. I have a catalogue bearing date 1842, and the name then was University of Lake Erie.


But how and for what reason the name Chagrin changed to Willoughby? The story is short. Among the many changes in the professorship from time to time there were sundry gentlemen eminent in their profession. Many of their names I still vividly remember, but I do not deem it needful to name here. There was one by the name of Dr. Willoughby. He was the possessor of wealth. The college was in need of money. A scheme was devised which it was thought would stir the Doctor's heart with a generous impulse, and the result would be an endowment fund for the college. So the Legislature was petitioned to change the name of the town to Willoughby, and that of the Institution to Willoughby University of Lake Erie. I do not remember the date when this was done - it was before 1842. But the Professor didn't give "worth a cent." Well, the town by the transaction parted with a discreditable name and obtained a very pretty one. It was an appreciable gain after all.       L.S.A.


West End, Va., January 8, '95.

New Pianos in Willoughby.

Mr. Thos. Jopling of Willoughby has recently purchased from Mr. A. D. Coe, Nos. 172 and 174 Euclid avenue, Cleveland, a parlor grand piano made by Steinway & Sons, of New York. The instrument has been delivered at Mr. Jopling's Willoughby residence, and is said to be one of the most artistic and beautiful grand pianos ever produced by these celebrated manufacturers.


Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Wallace also visited Mr. Coe's ware rooms a few days ago and purchased a Steinway, style X, cabinet grand upright piano, in a handsome walnut case. The instrument is one of the Messsrs. [sic] Steinway & Son's latest and best productions.


Another Willoughby resident who lately patronized Mr. Coe, is Mr. Sidney S. Wilson, who bought one of the celebrated Colby upright pianos - a lovely instrument in a very fine case.


Mr. George Hoose of Waite Hill bought a piano from Mr. Coe shortly before the holidays.

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