Historic Farmersville, Ohio

“The historic village of Farmersville is located southwest of Dayton, Ohio and is probably most famous for the “Bottle Farm” that was located just outside of town. It was owned by a rather eccentric individual, Winter Zellar (Zero) Swartsel who was considered a hoarder.”

This history was written by Susan Bussard for a report she did on Farmersville in the 1968 school year. At the time she was in the eighth grade at Farmersville School. Her teacher added a preface to the report, upon donation to the Germantown Public Library, that to date it was the best he had seen on the history behind our town. Contained here are excerpts from that report.

The present Village of Farmersville was plotted in 1832 by store and tavern owner Oliver Dalrymple. He named it in honor of his friends and neighbors who were tillers of the soil. On March 7, 1845 the Village was incorporated by a special act of the Ohio legislature.

Two examples of early Farmersville follow, taken from a book entitled, “History of Ohio-Montgomery County”

Henry Gable (1837-?), who was a farmer, married May Jane, daughter of Jacob and Sarah Engle. Their farm consisted of 111 acres, one mile east of Farmersville. Mr. Gable was the school director for 11 years and township treasurer for four years.

Daniel Hoops (1817-?) was a farmer and was raised to the hardships of those early days. Mr. Hoops served as constable and township trustee, but later refused all public offices, believing them unprofitable. Mr. Hoops and the other farmers shared the area with the Shawnee Indians.

The economic development of Farmersville involved the growth of several businesses. About 1900 a spoke and handle factory was built. Also about 1900 a bank was started and located at the site of the present Village Inn on Center St. The population in 1900 was 440 residents. Surprisingly, 10 years later, the 1910 census showed the population at only 447. In 1920 a mill was started.

Its products included chicken and steer feed. Other businesses developed over the years have been Holtzuller Tractor Sales, Holtzmuller Auto, Foreman’s Hardware and Millikens’ Market. Early industries include four groceries, three carriage and wagon shops, three blacksmiths, four shoe and boot shops, two hotels, one restaurant, and 2 cigar manufacturers.