The Milan Villa was originally the Newton Estate. Constructed during the Great Depression, this home is the most unique residence in the region. The ten thousand square foot house, three thousand square foot carriage house, separate pump house and dam were constructed between 1932 and 1939. All exterior stone walls were originally those of the Calvary Episcopal Church parish house in Sandusky, Ohio. Pittsburgh architect, W.C. Young had this stone moved from Sandusky to the Milan area in 1936 for the home commissioned by Burt P. and Edna Roe Newton. The unusual style of this residential structure has a frame consisting of steel beam and concrete sub-floors, eighteen-inch thick exterior stone walls, and brick and plaster interior walls, resembling a small castle in the woods. Newton, an executive in the Gulf Oil Company, traveled the world extensively with his wife, collecting the extravagant chandeliers, wallpaper and other décor that originally gilded the rooms of this fine home. Many of these objects are currently on display at the Edna Roe Newton Memorial Building, one of seven museums, including the birthplace of Thomas A. Edison, in downtown Milan, Ohio. The current owner has decorated the villa with artwork from around the world. You will notice pieces from New Orleans being a theme in the main hall.
The original security system utilized tear gas, expelled from round, slotted brass fixtures situated above each exterior door, as well as in the front hall. Buttons to activate this security system may be found inside each interior door, as well as in the Master suite. The outside sills consist of local limestone, and the landscape stone fences were gathered from antique fences of the Birmingham area. The southwest cornerstone contents continue to be a mystery.
The Swanson family acquired the home in 2000, and has since worked extensively to restore the integrity of the structure. Included in the restoration is work on the dining room hand painted wallpaper, “Views of Brazil” created in 1829 by Zuber & Cie of Rixheim, France. The white house also hosts a similar piece by Zuber. Most of the original crystal chandeliers remain in the home. The slate, granite and oak parquet floors and marble sills are restored to perfection and grace the halls of this home that reminisces of a bygone era of gentile country estates.