Dacey's Norwood Inn

Dacey's Norwood Inn.

   John C. Dacey's Norwood Inn was more than another Norwood drinking spot. Athletics events were common on the inn's field at the northwest corner of Edwards Road and Williams Avenue. Today, all that remains of this location is a small triangle of land bounded by the two streets and I-71. A medical facilty is being constructed there now. Most recently a Gold Star chili restaurant and, until just a few years ago, an apartment building occupied that property. Prior to that, the Bronze Lantern was located at this corner in a 3-story brick building.

   The Inn sponsored at least one baseball team that played at the ballfield. Eddie Kolb was the team's manager. More information about them is on the Norwood Baseball page.

   According to a 1953 article in the Cincinnati Times-Star, the St. Xavier College (now Xavier University) football team, under coach General P. Lincoln, used the Inn's field as its home grounds. Also, the article said that featherweight boxer Terry McGovern used the site as his training camp in the winter of 1901-02.

   In the days of the street cars, customers were instructed to take the Madison Road Car to Edwards Avenue and transfer to the Edwards Road Car. The Edwards Road Car was a short double track line that ran from Erie Avenue in Hyde Park to the Oakley Race Track near the end of Edwards Road. Obviously other businesses on the line were helped by this access.

   In the earlier years, John C. Dacey and his wife Mary A. Dacey, lived at the site, but later moved to 4117 Smith Road, just north of the northwest corner of Smith, Williams and Duck Creek Road. A reminder of them is Dacey Subdivision and Dacey Avenue a street divided by I-71. Both the Subdivision and the street are becoming history as the property is being commercially developed as Rookwood Exchange.

    The first proprietor of the Norwood Inn may have been Frank McCord. When he owned it in 1896, the Village of Norwood raided the inn several times for gambling violations. We haven't determined when the Norwood Inn was first built and opened. However, the athletic grounds of the Norwood Inn opened on Sunday afternoon, August 16, 1896. The location was directly across from the entrance to the Oakley race track, adjoining the Norwood Inn, and at the end of the race track extension (on Edwards Road) of the Madison pike (Madison Road) electric cars. It was reported that regular Sunday afternoon game would be played and that the park would be available for weekday and Saturday afternoon games. No charge was to be made for admission to the Sunday games.

    Games at the Norwood Inn Ball Park were mentioned in newspapers in the summer of 1896. A grass fire from Duck Creek came up the hill and severely damaged most of the buildings on November 8, 1908. The Park and Picnic Grounds was listed in the 1909-10 and 1913-14 directories. However, the Norwood Inn was not listed in the 1915-16 Williams' Norwood Directory or the 1915 Williams Cincinnati & Hamilton County Directory. But the Dacey's involvement in real estate was noted in the 1915 directory. This may indicate the end of the ballpark and the inn. The last newspaper article we have found with the Inn still operating was dated Wednesday, September 23, 1914. The Cincinnati Second Ward Democrats were holding a meeting at the Norwood Inn on the upcoming Friday. A September 30, 1917, article mentioned that John C. Dacy, a resident of Norwood, was retired from business, but did not say how long he had been retired.

    John C. Dacey was involved in the saloon business probably before he came to Norwood. In the 1895 Williams Cincinnati Directory, he was listed as having a saloon on the west side of Reading Road, near Forest Avenue in Avondale. In the 1898 directory, he had a saloon at 3519 Reading Road.

    According to the 1900 Census, the Dacey's lived on Edwards Road. The following information was recorded for Hamilton County's (Columbia Township) Enumeration District 281, Sheet 18B:

    Dacey, John C.       Head       M   43  Ohio    Saloon Keeper
           Mary A.       Wife       F   33  Ohio
           Wm.           Son        M   12  Ohio    at school
           Margaret      Daughter   F    8  Ohio    at school
           Mary          Daughter   F    6  Ohio    at school
           Gertrude      Daughter   F    1  Ohio
    Dayle, Julia         s-i-l      F   31  Ohio
    Reifschuerder,Gourad Boarder    M   45  Ohio    Barkeeper
    McGuire, John        Boarder    M   26  Ohio    Barkeeper
    Rardou, Daniel       Boarder    M   67  Ireland Servant
    Kelly, James W.      Boarder    M   27  Ireland Enamel Maker
    Fitzpatrick, Dennis  Boarder    M   33  Ohio    Teamster
    Kelly, Thomas        Boarder    M   45  Ireland Teamster



Dacey John C proprietor, Norwood Inn Base Ball and Picnic Grounds
   h 4117 Smith Rd (Mary A.)
   Telephones: Elm 879 and Elm 458
    �1909-10 Williams Norwood Directory;


Dacey John C real estate
   h 4117 Smith Rd (Mary A.)
    �1915 Williams Cincinnati & Hamilton County Directory; page 1098