Passavant House, Zelienople Historical Society
Passavant House is home to the Lester Mohr Library which holds a thousand letters and documents belonging to Zélie Passavant and her family. The house is also home to the Zelienople Historical Society's museum. The society maintains a large collection of books and one-of-a-kind original manuscripts related to the Passavant Family and the history of Zelienople. Guests can also tour the Buhl House, which is located just across the street. The Buhl House has rooms with museum exhibits that also relate to the early history of Zelienople and its early residents.
Backstory and Context
The Lester Mohr Library, located in the Passavant House, is named for the man who saved the house from destruction and willed his personal library collection to the Society. Many of the older books, some very rare, were from this original donation. The library is open for genealogical and historical research by appointment only.
Baron Dettmar Basse (1764-1836) came to the New World from Germany in 1802. He purchased 10,000 acres of Depreciation Lands in western Pennsylvania, built a home which he called Bassenheim (Basse's home), established a sawmill, brickyard, and an iron furnace, and laid out a town which he named Zelienople for his eldest daughter Zélie.
The historical society gained use of the Passavant House in 1975 and it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977. It contains historical artifacts that are related to the Passavant family such as articles of clothing, furnishings, family portraits and household and personal items. The Buhl House, on the other hand, displays artifacts that relate to the general history of Zelienople.
"Our History." Borough of Zelienople. Accessed November 17, 2016. http://zelieboro.org/history.htm
"The Passavant HOuse." Visit Butler County. Accessed November 17, 2016. https://www.visitbutlercounty.com/attractions/passavant-house