Remarkable Ohio

Results for: african-methodist-episcopal-church
8230 Columbus Pike
Lewis Center

, OH

Anson Williams visited Ohio in 1834 before he moved to Orange Township. A former resident of New York State, Williams purchased this site and the surrounding 1,000 acres of U.S. Military District lands and hoped to find opportunity for himself and his family. He bought the land for $6.00 an acre from James D. Wolf, who owned the 4,000-acre section three of Orange Township. The Village of Williamsville was laid out with 80 lots in 1836 on both sides of the Columbus and Sandusky Turnpike. Williams built his home and a hotel with a store and tavern. A hotel and tavern, owned by George Gooding and where the stage changed horses, had already been established north of Williamsville. Competition may have led to Williamsville’s decline. A church was built in 1845 and remained until 1900. Anson died in 1847, and his wife Hannah passed away in 1851. Both are buried in nearby Williamsville Cemetery.

365 West Market Street
Orrville

, OH

Orrville was founded in 1852 at the railroad crossing that would later serve the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne and Chicago and the Columbus, Mount Vernon and Cleveland railroads. The town was named in honor of Judge Smith Orr, who was instrumental in bringing the railroad to Wayne County. Orr persuaded landowner Robert Taggart to partition ten acres into town lots. After buying out the land owned by fellow settlers Christian Horst, David Rudy, and Peter Perrine, Orr engaged Jesse Straughan to create the first plat map that centered the newly-formed town on the railroad crossing. Incorporated on May 9, 1864, Orrville prospered and attracted manufactories of all kinds. Orrville was the largest manufacturing town in Wayne County by 1873.

104 N. Prospect Street
Akron

, OH

This church, founded in 1866, is the oldest Black congregation in Akron. After worshiping in several locations, the congregation held a fund-raiser to help finance the construction of a permanent home. The person collecting the most money had the privilege of renaming the church. That honor went to Mrs. Belle (Smith) Wesley. Completed in 1928, the current structure is a Neo-Classical Revival style building, featuring a classical pedimented portico, or porch, and four distinctive ionic columns. An education wing was added in 1963 by the late Rev. Dr. E. E. Morgan, Jr. Akron Black architects Herbert L. Wardner and John O. Somerville designed the church, and then a Black contractor, Samuel Plato, completed the structure. The church has long been a vital religious and social focal point for Akron’s Black community. The local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was organized at Wesley Temple. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places 3/19/94.

6520 Main St SE
Rendville

, OH

Established in 1879 by Chicago industrialist William P. Rend as a coal mining town, Rendville became a place where African Americans broke the color barrier. In 1888, Dr. Isaiah Tuppins, the first African American to receive a medical degree in Ohio, was elected Rendville’s mayor, also making him the first African American to be elected a mayor in Ohio. Richard L. Davis arrived in Rendville in 1882 and became active in the Knights of Labor. He was one of the labor organizers from the Little Cities of Black Diamonds region who helped found the United Mine Workers of America in 1890. An outstanding writer and orator, Davis was elected to UMWA’s national executive board and organized thousands of African Americans and immigrants to join the union. (continued on other side)

SE corner of Racine-Bashan Road/County Road 28 and Eagle Ridge Road
Racine

, OH

General John Hunt Morgan led 2,000 Confederate cavalrymen into Meigs County on July 18, 1863, during a 45-day raid north of the Ohio River. In pursuit, Union forces under Gen. James M. Shackelford and Col. Frank L. Wolford deployed near Bashan Church on the morning of July 19. Near this point five regiments of Kentucky cavalry and the 45th Ohio Mounted Infantry met Confederates retreating from the battle at Buffington Island, three miles east. During this skirmish, Confederate Colonels Richard C. Morgan, William W. Ward, and D. Howard Smith surrendered their commands, numbering about 400 men and officers.

417 Main Street
Huron

, OH

In the early 1800s, Jabez Wright, an early Huron County judge, purchased a large tract of lakeside land on the north side of what is now Cleveland Road. There Wright built an eight-room farmhouse that later served as a “station” on the fabled Underground Railroad, playing a vital role in aiding fugitive African-American slaves to freedom. Beneath Wright’s farmhouse was a sixteen foot-wide and ninety foot-long tunnel. Escaped slaves entered the passage through a trap door in the home’s basement and exited into a corn crib located a mere one hundred feet from Lake Erie. There the slaves awaited the arrival of rowboats transporting them to vessels heading north to Canada. (Continued on side two)

Intersection of Ohio 31 and County Road 190
Kenton

, OH

Built in 1886 by direct descendants of slaves, the Black and White schoolhouse provided education for local youth until 1928. Denied admission to white schools in the area, local African-American families first built a log schoolhouse across the road in 1883 in which to educated their children. Three years later, this brick building was constructed. The black families allowed white children to attend and, as a result, the school became known as the Black and White school. It is an early integrated school in Ohio.

Intersection of OH 203 & Radnor Road
Radnor

, OH

Built in 1910, this lych gate was designed by local architect William Robert Powell to commemorate early settlers of Radnor who emigrated from Wales. Traditional in England and Wales, lych gates are covered gateways used to shelter coffins until clergymen arrive for burial. The Radnor lych gate has two openings: a larger one designed for horse-drawn hearse and a smaller one for mourners. Powell added the tower to resemble a church steeple for a more ecclesiastical style. Constructed of stone from the local Meredith quarry, the gate features raised joints and oak gates to close the entrance.