Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens Offers a Glimpse into the Past

Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens Offers a Glimpse into the PastStan Hywet Hall & Gardens

Historic Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens in Akron, Ohio is a legacy of the Industrial Age when wealth created by the flourishing rubber industry was displayed in remarkable examples of extraordinary architecture. While many homes from this time were felled by the wrecking ball, Stan Hywet stands as a testament to a bygone era—as well as the vision of a family who understood the importance of preserving and sharing Stan Hywet with future generations.

About 32 miles south of Downtown Cleveland, Stan Hywet is the former home of the family of Frank “F.A.” Seiberling, the co-founder of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. Completed in 1915, the 64,500 sq. foot, 65-room Manor House is the sixth largest home open to the public in the country. Architect Charles S. Schneider, designed the Manor House, which is considered one of the finest examples of Tudor Revival architecture in America.
The Seiberlings named it Stan Hywet—Old English for stone quarry—after the property’s most prominent natural feature.

F.A. and Gertrude Seiberling built a beautiful house on a grand scale, but it was first and foremost a home to be enjoyed by their large extended family and friends. “It was a very close-knit family where holidays, birthday celebrations and life events were lively, warm and frequent affairs,” said Linda Conrad, President & Executive Director of Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens.

Boston landscape architect Warren H. Manning designed the gardens and grounds, working with Schneider so that the landscape and house would complement each other, complete with five different vistas of the Cuyahoga Valley.

“Mrs. Seiberling passed away in 1946, and after the death of F.A. Seiberling in 1955, it was the Seiberling children who had the vision to transfer ownership of Stan Hywet to a non-profit foundation,” Conrad said, “so that all of us benefit from the cultural, educational and inspirational treasures of this house and family.”

Indeed, above the Manor House entryway, the crest bears the motto Non Nobis Solum (Not for Us Alone), and welcomes guests as warmly today as it did a century ago.

The Manor House is filled with treasures from around the world, and an astounding 95 percent of the furnishings are original to the house. The house is currently undergoing a room-by-room restoration, so that future generations will continue to enjoy this magnificent historic house museum.

The historic gardens have all been restored, including The English Garden, redesigned in 1928 by noted female landscape architect Ellen Biddle Shipman. Restored in the 1990s, the English Garden is the only restored Shipman garden open to the public.

Stan Hywet is a place of history; one story is particularly noteworthy. The Gate Lodge, just inside the Front Gate and originally home to the Estate’s superintendent, is where, in 1935, two admitted alcoholics met and talked long into the night. Their discussion is the basis of the principles that still serve as the cornerstone of Alcoholics Anonymous today. The Gate Lodge at Stan Hywet was formally dedicated as the “Birthplace of Alcoholics Anonymous” in 2000.

Stan Hywet was recently named the #1 historic home tour in the country by readers of USA Today and 10best.com. Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens is Akron’s oldest National Historic Landmark and is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.

Visit stanywet.org for tour information, operating hours and more Stan Hywet history.