The home of High Road Gallery and Studios, a local nonprofit art gallery for Ohio-based artists, is believed to be turning 200 this year.

The building at 12 E. Stafford Ave. has a rich history in its two centuries in Worthington.

It is called the Sidney Brown House, the Buttles House or the Buttles-Pinney-Brown House in historical documents. The names reference the various families who have resided there.

The property on which the house rests is on the original plat for the village of Worthington, according to local historian Jennie McCormick. Worthington was founded in 1803.

Historical society documents reference the building date as 1818 because of an advertisement that was placed in the Columbus Gazette on March 8, 1819, by Aurora Buttles referencing lots for sale with "a brick house thereon."

However, the exact age of the building is unclear, per the Worthington Historical Society.

Records of the original conveyance of the lot were destroyed in a fire at the Franklin County courthouse in 1879.

Still, according to McCormick's research, it is "highly probable" that Buttles, a brick mason who had been working in the Worthington community since 1811, built the house at some point after he returned from serving in the War of 1812 and before marrying Harriet Kilbourne Case on April 12, 1821.

The families who lived in the house over the years made a variety of changes to it.

The current owner, Carol Hershey, said she bought the house in 2000.

She said the chimneys were falling into the house and the basement almost was washed out.

Hershey renovated the house and it was opened soon after as High Road Gallery and Studios.

"With the enthusiastic cooperation of innumerable artists and craftspeople, we have put on a new show every month, drawing art groups from all over the state," she said.

The building's ash floors and other distinctive attributes have been maintained by Hershey. Even the beams in the crawl space still have bark on them.

Four years ago, Hershey decided to convert the gallery into 12 studios for artists to display and work on their craft.

It has a sponsored artist or group every two months and holds receptions for them, Hershey said.

"The building is really inspiring," said Dianne Bauman, a local artist who has a studio at High Road.

Hershey is planning a public celebration for the building from noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 8 and 9. Admission is free and cake and other refreshments will be provided.

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