Ohio tells an interesting story—and our historic landmarks are evidence of that. From the birthplaces of individuals that changed the course of history of our nation to the mysterious effigy mounds that give us clues about those who came before us, here are 15 historical landmarks you absolutely must visit in Ohio:
1. The Adena Mansion and Gardens (Chillicothe)
Located in Chillicothe, (which was actually Ohio's first capital,) this 2,000-acre estate was once home to the sixth governor of Ohio and one of the state's first United States Senators, Thomas Worthington—who is also considered by many to be the father of Ohio and the Ohio-Erie Canal. (Fun fact: You can also find a beautiful view of The Great Seal of Ohio on the grounds of this site, pictured above.)
2. The birthplace of Thomas A. Edison (Milan)
Built by his father, Samuel O. Edison in 1841-42, this historic brick house was the birthplace of the American inventor Thomas A. Edison and sits on a hill in Milan.
3. The Ohio Statehouse (Columbus)
Officially finished in 1847, our beautiful state capitol is known for its distinctive rotunda and regularly hosts tours organized by the Ohio Statehouse Museum Education Center. Free, guided tours of the Statehouse are offered Monday through Friday on the hour from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and on Saturdays and Sundays from noon until 3 p.m.
4. Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial (Put In Bay)
This memorial on South Bass Island stands to commemorate the Battle of Lake Erie and Commodore Oliver Perry's victory over the British during the War of 1812. It also serves to celebrate the lasting peace between Britain, Canada, and the United States that followed the war.
5. Fort Meigs State Memorial (Perrysburg)
Visitors can observe a reconstruction of the original 1813 fort of Ohio's War of 1812 Battlefield in Perrysburg. On Memorial Day, staff and volunteers reenact camp life for soldiers and a special wreath laying ceremony takes place at the Fort Meigs Monument.
6. Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historic Park (Dayton)
Observe sites related to the Wright Brothers, their flight experimentation and ties to Dayton at this historic park. Pictured is the Wright Cycle Company Building, which is the only remaining building in Dayton where the Wright Brothers operated a bicycle shop.
7. Hopewell Culture National Historical Park (Chillicothe)
Mounds abound at Mound City Group in Ross County where you will find the largest collection of Hopewell culture burial mounds in eastern North America, as well as a museum that showcases the Hopewell culture.
8. Great Serpent Mound (Peebles)
The largest (and most strangely shaped) effigy mound in the world can be found right here in Ohio in Adams County. The 1,348 feet long uniquely shaped mound depicts a snake, with an oval shape at its head. Although no artifacts or written records were found near the mound to determine who built it, a nearby village site shows evidence of occupation by both the Adena and the later Fort Ancient Cultures. The original purpose of the mound remains a mystery, though there is some evidence for astronomical correlations, according to arcofappalachia.org.
9. Tomb of William Henry Harrison (North Bend)
The ninth President of the United States, (and the first from Ohio,) is buried in North Bend near the Ohio River.
10. The birthplace of Ulysses Grant (Point Pleasant)
The Grant Birthplace in Point Pleasant is the fully restored birthplace of the 18th U.S. President, Ulysses S. Grant, who was born there in 1822.
11. Rutherford B. Hayes Home (Fremont)
Fremont is home to the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center, the former home of the 19th president of the United States.
12. James A. Garfield House (Mentor)
Located in Mentor is the former home of the 20th President of the United States, James Abram Garfield.
13. Ida Saxton McKinley Historic Home (Canton)
President William McKinley and his wife's home in Canton has been preserved as the Ida Saxton McKinley Historic Home. It is also now one of two buildings that houses the National First Ladies Library.
14. William Howard Taft National Historic Site (Cincinnati)
In Cincinnati you can find the house where former President and Chief Justice of the United States William Howard Taft was born.
15. Warren G. Harding Home (Marion)
The Harding Home, located in Marion, was once the residence of Warren G. Harding, the 29th president of the United States.
Have you been to any of these places before? Which ones? Share your experiences with us!