Sts. Peter & Paul Catholic Church

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General Information

The following information comes from page 22 of the book Church Histories of Wayne County, Ohio, compiled and edited by Bonnie S. Wipert in 1987.

The oldest Catholic parish in Wayne County, Ohio and in the Diocese of Cleveland is Sts. Peter and Paul. It is located in Doylestown, Ohio.

Catholic settlers first arrived in Wayne County, Ohio in Fall 1826. The first mass was given by Father Francis Marshall in a log cabin about one mile from Doylestown.

Eighty acres of land was purchased in May 1834. Seventy-nine of those acres were for the church. The remaining acre was sold to Andrew Whitman. The land was situated in the Northeast Quarter of Section 16 in Chippewa Township. The log church was started two years later, in 1836. The first mass was held on the site on 1 June 1837. The log building was completed in 1841. Within nine years of completion, the log church had been out-grown. On 8 July 1850, the Right Reverend Louis Amadeus Rappe laid the first cornerstone of the new brick church in Doylestown. This church was torn down in 1877 and the cornerstone of the new church was laid on 30 September 1877.

A small school was built in 1850. The first parochial school was opened in 1862. The original school was housed in the former priest's house. The present rectory was built in 1869.

Land Deeds

The following land deeds were recorded and filed on 2 June 1834. However, the dates vary on when the sale actually took place.
Robert Lucas, Governor of the State of Ohio, sold the property to Peter Marshall. It was part of the Act of 1827 to set aside section 16 in each township for a school. This land transaction took place on 26 April 1834.

The next two transactions involving the Peter Marshall and his wife Cathrine selling one acre of the property to Andrew Whitman and Peter Marshall and Cat[h]rine selling the remaining 79 acres of property to Right Rev. Dr. John R. Purcell, Bishop of Cincinnati occurred on 19 May 1834. (The Bishop of Cincinnati was contacted since the Cleveland Diocese did not exist, yet.)

The final transaction recorded in volume 11 on pages 415 and 416 involved Peter Marshall Jacob Whitman, Andrew Whitman, Christian Whitman, and Catherine Whitman selling the property to the Bishop of the Roman Catholic Church of the Diocese of Ohio. This transaction took place on 7th of October 1832. The original agreement was to have 2 acres of the property set aside for the erection of the church. The remaining acres were set aside for a burial ground for the church.