NEW MADISON — The Fort Black Buffet building at the corner of Main and Washington in New Madison was razed several weeks ago.
Doing the teardown was Joe Aikman.
Undoubtedly those who patronized the building over the years will miss its presence in the community and many will surely have numerous stories to tell.
The building, according to the book, “Events of Yesteryears of New Madison, Ohio,” penned by the late Glen Hindsley indicated the W. R. “Billy” Hagemen grocery, dry goods and shoe store was located in the southwest corner of Main and West Washington streets.
“As the Darke County Court records show late in 1888, village lot No. 29 was purchased of Elydie Snodgrass by James and Wm. R. Hageman, father and son. Wm. R. Hageman being given a deed for 24 feet of the north side of this lot and James Hagemen the remaining south portion of this lot. A small business building stood on this lot at this time, it being removed shortly after. In 1889, the large frame building still standing and intact was erected. At that time it had a frontage of 45 feet.
The south 21-foot-wide room belonged to James Hageman. A two-story dwelling was connected to this room. In 1890, James Hageman sold his property, including the store room to Eli Wilson, who operated a carpet, rug, window curtains and blinds and various other kinds of dry goods and household furnishings store.
It has been the home to quite a few businesses in days gone by.
Kenny Baker, a longtime New Madison resident, submitted a list of businesses that were in that location over the years.
Businesses that were located in the “Fort Black” building in recent years have been:
•W. R. Hageman – Dry Goods.
•Stutz and Sando – Furniture Store and Funeral Home.
•David Hale – Furniture Store and Clyde Crickmore Dairy Store – 1950 through late 1960s.
•Ned and Ruthanna Downing – Ft. Black Buffet, guessing about 1970. -George Washington – Ft. Black Buffet.
•Bill Drew – Ft. Black Buffet.
•Ruby and Ron Turner – Ft. Black Buffet (through 2003?).
•Adam Hollinger/Scott Downing -–Donatello’s (Italian) – (2006-07).
Then it sold to Farmers State Bank across the street. Darke County Media was unable to get any information on the bank’s intentions for the empty lot.
Contact Staff Writer Linda Moody at email@example.com or at (937)569-4315 ext. 1749. Read more news, features and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.