Industrialist Earl W. Oglebay, of Cleveland, Ohio, in 1900 purchased a 750 acre farm northwest of Wheeling, West Virginia. Elizabeth Sprig and her husband, Hanson Chapline, had taken title of the property in 1846 after building a brick Greek Revival home there. Oglebay hired architect Edward Bates Franzheim to transform the house into a Neo-Classical Revival estate. Upon his death, Oglebay gave his property to the City of Wheeling “for use as a park and for recreational and playground purposes for the people of the City of Wheeling and vicinity.” Oglebay also established an experimental farm and agricultural programs at Bethany College and supported those at West Virginia University. The mansion has since become a principal landmark at Oglebay Park and, since 1930, has been used as a museum of West Virginia social and industrial advancement.
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