Prosecutors Office

Within the walls of many buildings in Medina, there are stories of people, families, and businesses. Some harbor more than others but one thing's for sure, as the residents of Medina built from the ground up in the late 1700s, the history started to grow as well. Today, on the south-east corner of the square there stands a brick building which has been there since 1872. George Gruninger built the building where a wooden one once stood for Lucius Cook Sturges. Sturges and his wife, Caroline, made their economic contribution to Medina as much as one could back then. While Mr. Sturges sold tin and cookware before becoming the county sheriff, he also, along with Mrs. Sturges, worked in the real estate business, often negotiating new shops with the same customers. Going back further, before the bricks were even laid, there stood a white, wooden house, the childhood home of Dr. H. Durham. Who, remembering Medina fondly around the year 1843, wrote a letter to the Gazette in 1898. Charles Castle, another inhabitant of the previous home, other than being associate judge for some time, also functioned in the politics of Medina, having signed a petition to repeal an act that contributed to the desegregation of Ohio in 1846. The outside of the building has never been changed much until the mid-1900s. However, a renovation that may have caught the eyes of a few in 1904 was the addition of electric light bulbs to the house, lighting up Medina as a new hub of industrialism.
By the time the ownership of the house had been passed to the Gensemer’s, the walls had seen two doctors offices who also used the building as their residence. As the Second World War came to a closed, the use of funeral homes became widespread in America bringing hospitality to an event that was once held in the front room of the home. The importance of funeral homes and their business was brought out by those who lost their loved ones but wanted to keep them close and cherish them forever. Also during these times in Medina, economic rivalries between business owners tensed, many entrepreneurs found themselves adding other businesses onto their already existing ventures. For example, many funeral home directors, such as Glenn Gensemer, would also sell furniture, adding an economic edge. After 30 years of keeping the building in good shape, as well as working for his father until 1972, Richard Gensemer, sold the land to the First Federal Bank of Wooster. However, Mr. Gensemer didn’t lose hold on keeping the building in it’s original appearance. Through the 1970s as Medina went through modernization Mr. Gensemer’s willingness to renovate but still uphold the original character led to many other buildings becoming restored to what they once were.

Images

Audio

Memories of the Gensemer Funeral Home
The vivid memories of Linda Conley recreate what the inside of the Gensemer Funeral Home looked like over 40 years ago.
View File Record
The Gensemer Family
The Gensemer's, as described by Linda Conley, were extremely friendly and all around great people. Her account brings to light who the Gensemer's were as people living in Medina and how much they cared for the town they lived in.
View File Record

Map