Baden

Baden was settled in May 1838 when William McCallister surveyed the area. Christian Burkhardt recorded the plot April 20. 1839, showing 104 lots. The village was called Baden for a city in Germany called Baden-Baden. The village, along with adjoining farms of the Hill, Moore and Bryan families, was incorporated as the Borough of Baden. The Ehrman farm was added to the borough February 29, 1872, by an act of the Pennsylvania Assembly.

Fun facts about Baden:

-The post office was established in 1852. David Anderson was named the first Baden postmaster, and he served as the first burgess of Baden from 1868-1869.

-The Sisters of St. Joseph moved to Baden and purchased land to build a four-story school and convent which was dedicated January 1, 1902. The academy started as a boys boarding school. From 1934 to 1967, Mt. Gallitzin had a high school for girls. The sisters had an elementary school which closed in 2009 due to changing demographics and financial constraints. In 1990, the sister opened Girls Hope, a residential program for girls at risk, and then in 1997, opened Villa St. Joseph, an 120-bed nursing home.

-The town is home to Captain Calvin Blazier’s home, built in the 1870’s. He was a riverboat captain who worked the Ohio and Mississippi rivers for decades.

Anthony Wayne Terrace is a housing development in existence since 1941. Housing was needed for workers in the steel and defense industries. The federal government and the Housing Authority of Beaver County selected Baden for the 250-unit housing project. At first, Baden residents opposed this government development since they were concerned whether the schools, road, water and sewage systems would be able to handle the increase in population. The government overruled the residents and built the housing. After World War II, the government was disposing defense housing. The Anthony Wayne Terrace residents purchased the mortgage and created the Anthony Wayne Terrace Housing Association. The housing plan exists today, and residents pay a monthly administration fee which is used for taxes, utilities, roads and maintenance.

-The Baden School District merged with the Ambridge Area School District in 1971.

Deadly Train Disaster: The Buckeye, a passenger train from Cleveland, Ohio, derailed near Baden at 9:15 p.m. March 16, 1941, during a snow storm. Five people died and 11 were injured. Three coaches fell 40 feet over an embankment into the Ohio River. Railroad officials felt the cause was sabotage as 44 spikes holding down one rail had been removed as well as bolts on the splice bar that linked the rail to its neighbor. They felt the saboteurs were skilled railroaders as the loose rail had been lifted and moved to the side, a bond wire had been stretched and not broken. A $5000 reward was offered for information on who was responsible, and there were no responses. No one was convicted.

Anderson’s Candies celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2016. The Anderson family opened its first store in 1916 on Merchant Street in Ambridge. Owners Mary and Harry Anderson and their three children served ice cream, fountain drinks, chocolates and confections. In 1962, son Harold took over the business when his father died. In 1964, the Baden site at 1010 W. State St. was opened and serves as the candy making outlet and main retail store. It is a fourth generation business selling chocolates.

-The Baden Memorial Library, located on State Street, is part of the Beaver County Library System. The Senior Woman’s Club of Baden and the Baden School Board Directors started a public library in a room of one of Baden’s school buildings in 1941. In 1946, the library relocated to two rooms in the Brown Building, the corner of State and Phillips Streets. The library expanded to three rooms in the Economy Plumbing and Heating Co. at 411 State St. and was named the Baden Public Library. Baden Borough and a Library Building Committee worked to have a multi-purpose building with the lower level for the borough garage and the street level for the library. The new library, renamed Baden Memorial Library, was opened August 30, 1971, at 385 State St.

Baden Boy Scout Troop 405 was established in 1930, and it still exists today. The group meets at the Baden American Legion. The first Scoutmaster was James C. McKelip, serving from 1930 to 1937.

-Two streams run through the municipality, All Fours Run and Tevebaugh Run.

-The Baden Economy Lions Club was chartered in June 1947 with 43 charter members. Its clubhouse is at 1124 Harmony Road. The Lions are known for projects to prevent blindness and for volunteering for a variety of community projects.

Baden Volunteer Fire Department organized January 4, 1908, with 56 charter members, and John B. Landers was elected chief. The fire department operated as a single unit until 1910 when it was divided into three companies, Company 1, Company 2 and a Ladder Truck Company. The department functioned until the World War in 1917. Interest lagged from 1917 to 1919. Baden Council had the department reorganized October 8, 1920. A ladies auxiliary was formed in December 1927, with 12 members. The group exists today as a volunteer fire and rescue department. Since 2004, Baden VFD is one of the three departments comprising of the technical rescue team for Beaver County. The department provides fire suppression, vehicle rescue, Hazmat response, high and low angle rescue, confined space rescue, collapse rescue, public education, technical rescue and fire prevention.

Baden American Legion Post 641 began September 30, 1930. Officers were elected and installed October 15, 1930, with Victor Pate serving as the first commander. There were 25 charter members. The Baden American Legion Auxiliary was organized December 8, 1934, with 12 charter members, and Mrs. Walter R. Shephard, was elected president. The post, located at 271 State St., is still active today and welcomes all veterans from all branches of the armed forces.

Green Diamond Apartments, 379 Mellon Ave., is a 30-unit housing building for the elderly age 62 and older, and was built in the late 1990’s.

GFWC Woman’s Club of Baden: The Woman’s Club of Baden held its first meeting November 17, 1933, at the home of Mrs. H.C. Machesney, with 32 active members present. Mrs. Machesney served as the first president. In April 1934, the club became part of the General Federation of Woman’s Clubs in the county and the state. The club was integral in planning and fundraising for the construction of the Baden Memorial Library in 1971. The club is active today.

Hill Cemetery, also known as Hillcrest Cemetery or Logan Cemetery, is located at the intersection of Rt. 65/Ohio River Blvd. and Logan Lane. It is reportedly the oldest cemetery in the county. One of the area’s earliest settlers, Jonathan Hill, was buried there in 1836. He purchased Leet District Lot 22 from Mrs. Letitia McKean Buchanon in 1819 and became the first landowner to settle in Baden. There are graves for two Revolutionary War soldiers and seven Civil War soldiers.

Baden United Methodist Church was organized in 1858 as Storer Chapel Methodist Church by Rev. Thomas Storer. The first church was a 32 x 40 feet one-room structure costing $1000 and was dedicated September 19, 1858, and used through July 1906 when it was sold for $1400. At State Street and Dippold Avenue, a second building costing $7000 was erected under Rev. R.B. Carroll and dedicated June 3, 1906. The church underwent several name changes to: Storer Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church of Baden, January 6, 1863; The Methodist Episcopal Church of Baden, December 19, 1921; The Methodist Church of Baden, July 15, 1953; The Methodist Church of Baden, Pennsylvania, March 9, 1981. Ground was broken for a new education and Fellowship Hall April 5, 1955. A new brick parsonage at Berry Street and Dippold Avenue was occupied November 23, 1958. In 1966, services were conducted in the Fellowship Hall to start dismantling the old church. Ground breaking for a new and third church was held August 17, 1968, costing $214,000. Also in 1968, a Plan of Union brought together the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church, and locally the church took its present name, Baden United Methodist Church.

Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, 399 State St.: Rev. Thomas E. Mong was installed as pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in 1976 and served until 1981. In 1982, Rev. Kevin C. Clementson and Rev. Martha W. Clementson formed the first joint pastorate of the church, serving until 1987. In 1988, Christ Lutheran became an independent congregation, and Rev. Carol R. Gesalman served as pastor through 1995. Rev. Anthony Schneck served as pastor from 1995 to 2001 and developed many youth programs. Under Rev. Dennis Roser’s pastorate from June 2002 to 2007, children’s activities increased, and Saturday evening worship services were offered. In 2005, Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Economy Borough and Christ Lutheran Church in Baden, began sharing a pastor. The current pastor (2018) is Rev. Jill McGregor.