Sylvania Then & Now – Highland Meadows Gof Club

Gayleen Gindy

In honor of the golf tournaments taking place in the Sylvania area we are going to look at the history of two of Sylvania’s country clubs. Then we will head back to Summit Street to finish up the 100 plus year old houses.

In three years, the Highland Meadows Golf Club will be 100 years old. In 1925, a group of Ottawa Park golfers got together and decided they wanted to establish a low-cost, no frills, golf-only private club. They hired the necessary attorneys to handle the purchase and the formation of their organization. Then a charter was formed, and the group was incorporated. They purchased an 80 acre parcel of land on Erie Street in Sylvania from Edwin B. Parker, and 43 acre parcel from Fred O. Peak, which led to the start of the Highland Meadows Golf Club. At first, both properties were transferred into the name of Charles B. Scott. The dues were set at $25 per year, payable semi-annually. Its inaugural meeting was held in February of 1926.

The 80-acre parcel acquired from Parker had the family farmhouse on it, which was used as the clubhouse for a period of time. This home, at that time, was known in Sylvania as “Hi Parker’s Place” because Hiram and Latitia Parker lived in and built the home. In fact, the name Highland was derived in part from Hiram’s first name. In 1925, when the group purchased the land, the Toledo & Western Railway line, a passenger and freight train, still ran right in front of this property.

The Parkers lived in this home, and farmed the land. Family records said that they kept horses and livestock. A small article in the Toledo News Bee in 1888 said, “Hiram Parker, Jr., lately sold a pair of Hanbeltonian colts, 4 and 5 years old, weighing 1,200 and 1,250 pounds, well matched, and of a dark bay color, for $450. One of the pair at birth had a fifth leg hoof. Mr. Parker had the extra leg removed when it was a young colt.”

The Parkers lived here until Feb. 15, 1908, when he was killed in a Toledo & Western Railway accident. Mrs. Parker died eight months later from the effects of this same accident. A Big Four Railroad engine crashed into the Toledo and Western passenger car that they were on, killing them and six other people at the Phillips Avenue crossing in West Toledo.

After going through the courts, in 1910, the 80-acre farm transferred to their surviving children: Frank O. Parker and Edwin B. Parker. Later that same year it transferred into just Edwin’s name.

It was Edwin B. Parker who sold the 80 acres to the golf club organization. He lived on Maplewood Avenue, where the Sylvania Police station is today, with his wife and daughters. From 1910 until 1925, when he sold the property, he must have rented the house and farmland to tenants. An old newspaper article in the 1920s showed that Mr. Parker allowed a company to do some exploratory drilling for oil on the 80 acres, but no oil was found.

The 44 acre parcel the golfing group purchased in 1925 from Fred O. Peak was all farmland, with no structures. Peak was the president of the Sylvania Savings Bank when it was founded in 1901, and lived at 6742 Maplewood Ave. until he died in 1919. Peak had been a stock dealer, farmer and served as the Mayor of Sylvania from 1885 through 1888. The 44 acres was still in his name in 1925 when his widow, Belle Peak, sold it to Charles B. Scott, who was her brother.

Harold Weber was Toledo’s premier golfer and seven-time Toledo District Golf Association champion who won four Ohio Amateur titles and played in 12 U.S. Amateur tournaments. He was also the Inverness Club champion 14 times, including the first in 1903.


In the summer of 1925 this group of golfers hired Weber, who was also a golf architect.

Weber took his golf clubs and 50 golf balls out to the “Hi” Parker farm and teed off from the farm’s pig sty area, and played the entire layout, through fields of alfalfa, driving in stakes to mark the greens as he went. It is said that the course was laid out just as he played it that day, with the exception of the first green which was just a few yards to one side. Weber died of a heart attack in 1933 at the age of 51. Construction on the new clubhouse was started in 1926 with Steven Jokel as the architect. The original 1950s in-ground pool was replaced in 2001.

In 1962 the mortgage on the property and clubhouse was fully paid and at that time the property officially transferred into the group’s name. The club was incorporated and ownership was now in the hands of active dues-paying members.

In 1989 Highland Meadows Golf Club hosted the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic Ladies Professional Golf Association tournament for the first time and has hosted it since. This event gave Sylvania national attention. The people who started Highland Meadows Golf Club probably had no idea that someday their club would grow to such magnitude and prominence.

Today the website boasts that Highland Meadows is a highly acclaimed 18-hole golf course with manicured fairways and greens, and dedicated to providing a quality golf and recreational experience to its members.

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