5835 Summit Street
This house was built in 1897 while the property was owned by Margaret Shaffer. Ms. Shaffer purchased other lots on Summit Street that same year, and this was one of the first houses that she built. She owned it until 1914 and then sold it to Ethel Cooke. Ethel’s husband was Dr. Uriah Cooke, Sylvania’s local medical doctor. The Cooke’s lived in the house that is now the Heritage Museum on Main Street while Ethel owned this home, so she rented this house out through 1921. In the 1920 census Doris Follas , 34 years old, was living in the home with his wife Ethel, 30 years old. He was employed as an auditor for the federal government. Living at home were their daughters Helen, 9 years old; Gertrude, 8 years old; and sons, John C. , 9 years old; James T., 2 years old; and Joseph B. , 7 years old.
Property records show that in 1921 Doris and Ethel Follas took ownership of this house, so there may have been a land contract agreement between Ethel Cooke and the Follas family. They are shown selling it one year later, in 1922, after they purchased the home across the street at 5840 Summit St. from Lottie Cook. That same year George and Lottie Cook purchased our subject house, but only owned it for seven months before selling it to Lorinda Comstock. Two years later, in 1924, Lorinda sold it to her son and daughter-in-law, Ara and Lana Comstock. They owned it until 1972.
In October 1924 a building permit was issued to Ara Comstock to build a garage. The March 15,1928 issue of the Sylvania Sentinel printed this classified ad: FOR SALE – German shepherd police pups, eligible to register, highly pedigreed. Luella Comstock, 5835 Summit St., Phone 677.
The 1930 census shows Ara and Lana Comstock living in the home as follows: Ara Comstock – owned home valued at $5,000, 51 years old – foreman at the cement plant; Lana Comstock – wife – 49 years old; Arba C. Comstock – son, 22 years old – single – car puller – cement plant; Edward Doley – son-in-law, 23 years old – married – car driver – automobile industry; Luella Doley – daughter, 18 years old – married; Anita Doley – granddaughter, 1 month.
The 1940 census shows the Comstocks still living in this home and listed as follows: Ara Comstock, 61 years old – plant foreman – cement company; Lana Comstock – wife, 59 years old; Arba Comstock – son, 32 years old – single – electrician at cement company; and Jean Hobling – niece, 20 years old – maid for private family.
Ara Comstock died in 1943 while living in this home. His obituary notice said, “Mr. Comstock was born in Toledo on September 23, 1878 and moved with his parents to Silica, Ohio, as a small child. He moved to Sylvania 20 years ago. For 21 years he has been the quarry foreman at the Medusa Cement plant at Silica, and previous to this was a stationary engineer. Surviving are his wife Lana Kroll Comstock, son Sgt. Arba Comstock in North Africa; daughters Mrs. Marion Brooks and Mrs. Luella Doley of Sylvania; and grandchildren Jean and Donna Lou Brooks and Anita and Kay Ellen Doley. Funeral services will be held at Reeb Funeral Home with interment in Memorial Park Cemetery.”
In 1945 the home transferred into Lana Comstock’s name. That same year the home at 5747 Summit St. also transferred into her name. As of the 1950 census Lana was living on Summit Street with her son Arba who was listed as the head of household, 42 years old – foreman at Medusa Cement Co. His mother Lana was listed as 69 years old – widowed.
Lana Comstock passed away in 1971 at 90 years oof age, and was living at 5747 Summit St. Surviving were her daughters, Mrs. Marion Brooks, and Mrs. Luella Doley, and son, Arba. In 1972 our subject house transferred to her daughter Luella Doley, while her house at 5747 Summit St. transferred to her daughter Marion Brooks.
The first Suburban Directory was published in 1957 and shows that Edward C. Doley was living in the home. Edward is listed living here in the directories through 1962. The 1963 through 1986 directory listed Mrs. Luella Doley living in the home.
In 1986, Robert and Joy Armstrong purchased the home. In 1987 they added an above ground pool, and then in 1990 a dining room addition was added on the rear of the house. They are known for their roles in helping to found and run the Sylvania Historical Museum and Village on Main Street. Joy was employed by the city of Sylvania as the Curator from 1993 until 2015. Bob oversaw the construction of all the buildings in the historical village, among other duties, which he did all on a volunteer basis. We owe them a big thank you for all they did to preserve Sylvania’s history! The educational school programs that Mrs. Armstrong set up are still being used today.
Bob was also employed by the city of Sylvania as a police dispatcher from 1980 to 2009. He passed away in 2021 and his obituary, in part, said that he entered the U.S. Navy after high school and earned his Dolphins qualification for Submarine service in 1972 and was stationed in the Pacific. He returned to Sylvania at the end of his enlistment as a Navy recruiter. Joy Armstrong still lives in the home.