Remarkable Ohio

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103 E Main Street
Sugarcreek

, OH

The Alpine Alpa restaurant in Wilmot, Ohio commissioned clockmaker Karl Schleutermann to build the world’s largest cuckoo clock in 1963. Twelve years and $50,000 later, the enormous outdoor clock was finished. It was featured on the cover of the “Guinness Book of World Records” in 1978. After exposure to Ohio’s weather for 30 years, Hampton Hotel’s “Save-A-Landmark” program helped to restore the cuckoo clock to operating condition in 2007. The restaurant closed two years later, and the owner of the local store Walnut Creek Cheese purchased the clock and donated it to the Village of Sugarcreek. The clock was moved to its new home in May 2012. Village leaders and community members returned the clock to working condition and placed it on display for all to enjoy.

11090 Oak Avenue
Blue Ash

, OH

Civic organizations played pivotal roles in the development of the residential community of Hazelwood, founded as a subdivision of Blue Ash in 1888. The Hazelwood Civic Association, initially established as the Brothers Civic Society in 1941, addressed community needs by working for public improvements and promoting civic relations through social events and educational programs. Efforts by the HCA led to the construction of a new civic center and the introduction of the Boy and Girl Scouts and other programs that were previously unavailable to African-American children. Hazelwood’s deterioration and the threat of encroaching industrial development led to the formation of the Hazelwood Improvement Corporation in 1968. The HIC, acting as an agent of the city of Blue Ash, helped to upgrade housing, pave roads, build new homes to ensure a residential nature, install water and sewage systems, and erect streetlights. In 1997, the Hazelwood Community Association was organized to assist residents during Hazelwood’s transition to a racially integrated community.

7580 Old Mill Road
Gates Mills

, OH

The village of Gates Mills derives its name from its founder, Holsey Gates, and from the importance of mills in the agricultural community. In 1826, the year of Gates Mills’ founding, a sawmill was constructed to increase the lumber supply and attract new settlers. In the following year, a rake factory was established, and by 1829 a gristmill was in operation. The Chagrin River was dammed to create a millrace that regulated the flow of water to the wheels that powered the mills. Shops and houses encircled the mills, which were the center of industry in Gates Mills.

421 Black River Landing
Lorain

, OH

Prior to the Civil War, Ohio was a leading state for enslaved Americans of African decent traveling the Underground Railroad to freedom in Canada. For these fugitives, their final stop in Ohio was a Lake Erie port community in the north. One such port was at the mouth of the Black River in Lorain that came to be identified as Lorain Station 100, named because it was thought to be one of the last stops or stations before the fugitive slaves reached freedom in Canada. Many arrived here in a wagon driven by Robbins Burrell who owned a farm five miles up the Black River. Concealed by vegetables, grains, or hay, the slaves were smuggled into schooners, some of which belonged to Burrell’s cousin Captain Aaron Root. From Lorain Station 100, the determined travelers were transported across Lake Erie, completing the final leg of their long journey to freedom.

North side of 300 block of West Broadway between Cherry and S Plum streets.
Granville

, OH

Just three weeks after reaching Granville, pioneer villagers decided on December 9, 1805 to build a log cabin where eighty children would attend school. By 1820, public school classes were being held in a three-story brick building. When rail lines and the National Road bypassed the village, dreams of becoming an industrial and commercial center were dashed. Educational institutions, however, thrived and by the Civil War Granville’s citizens had organized the following: the Granville Literary and Theological Institution, later called Granville College and then renamed Denison University; the Granville Female Seminary, the Granville Episcopal Female Seminary, the Young Ladies’ Institute, the Granville Female Academy, and the Granville Male Academy. As Granville enters its third century, educational excellence continues to attract students to the community’s schools.

Charity Adams-Earley Girls Academy, 440 Shoup Mill Road
Dayton

, OH

In 1942, Charity Adams Earley (1918-2002) became the first African American woman to receive a commission in what became the Women’s Army Corps (WACs). She rose through the ranks to command the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion in Europe, the only unit of African American women to serve overseas in World War II. Upon leaving the service in 1946, she was the WAC’s highest-ranking African American officer, a lieutenant colonel. Raised in Columbia, South Carolina, Earley moved to Ohio to attend Wilberforce University and later The Ohio State University. She married Stanley Earley, Jr., M.D. in 1949 and they later moved to Dayton. She became active in civic affairs, including serving on the Sinclair Community College Board of Trustees.

1075 The O’Jays Parkway NE
Canton

, OH

Nimisilla Park was established in 1894. Prior to its founding, the site was the location of the county fair from 1859 to 1893. Throughout its history, Nimisilla Park hosted horse races, live music, soldier reunions, and a zoo, among other events. Prominent political figures, such as Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, William McKinley, and Eugene V. Debs, made speeches at the park. In 1918, Debs delivered a famous anti-war speech for which he was arrested and jailed. As of 2016, the park continues to serve as a gathering place for the community.

Near Warren G. Harding High School, 860 Elm Road NE
Warren

, OH

After the outbreak of the Civil War in the spring of 1861, the U.S. War Department commissioned Ohio Senator B.F. Wade of Jefferson and local Congressman John Hutchins of Warren to supervise the Union Army’s recruiting service in Northeastern Ohio. Recruitment rolls were to be filled in summer so training could be conducted during the fall. The Oak Grove Fairgrounds in Warren, home of the Trumbull County Agricultural Society, was one of the sites selected for the training. This camp was named Camp Hutchins in Congressman Hutchins’ honor. John Hutchins, an attorney by profession, had served as Trumbull County Clerk of Courts and had been assocaited with future Ohio governors David Tod (1862-1864) and Jacob Cox (1866-1868), in their law firms. An ardent anti-slavery man and Underground Railroad agent, Hutchins served in the U.S. Congress from 1859 to 1863.