Ohio’s urban garden cemeteries are some of the country’s most distinctive memorial parks, and stunning examples can be found in nearly every population center.

Places of rest

In the early 19th century, public city parks were virtually nonexistent. That doesn’t mean, however, that there was no green space in urban areas.

Ohio’s urban garden cemeteries are some of the country’s most distinctive memorial parks, and stunning examples can be found in nearly every population center. Here are three that are particularly outstanding and accessible. 

With World War I well underway, Fred Norton joined the Army after graduating from OSU in one of the earliest versions of what would become the U.S. Air Force.

The amazing Fred Norton

Two weeks before he graduated from Lakeside High School in May 1912, Fred William Norton competed in the inaugural Ottawa County track meet.

Most kids of the day ended schooling and began working full-time after eighth grade. But Norton took a different path. He entered Lakeside High School (now Danbury High) in 1908. Along with track, he also competed in football, baseball, and basketball, and he carried a 4.0 academic average all four years there. 

According to the Lakeside Heritage Society, he also worked for a local railroad, operating a locomotive and cleaning and repairing buildings and equipment. He often clocked 10-hour days, six days a week.

Visitors also can get up close and personal with a bevy of the farm’s residents, such as Bob, a Percheron horse.

Past perfect

Where do the batteries go?” Ann Culek always smiles when she recalls the curious little boy who couldn’t figure out the workings of an old-fashioned marble run one afternoon in the farmhouse at Slate Run Living Historical Farm.

Operated by Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks, the farm is part of Slate Run Metro Park, situated in the splendidly scenic countryside between Circleville and Canal Winchester.  It’s a South Central Power Company member, but because the farm preserves the lifestyle of an era before electric cooperatives served rural Ohio, visitors never see so much as a light switch, let alone the modern office equipment that occupies the farmhouse’s second story. 

Early French colonial influence can be found all across Ohio, but notably so in the western part of the state, where, for example, the Holy Family Cemetery in Frenchtown has a sign at the entry that reads, “Heureux Les Morts Qui Meuerent Dans Le Seigneur,” which translates to “Blessed Are the Dead Who Die in the Lord.”

French connection

France began its effort to colonize North America not too long after Christopher Columbus arrived here in 1492. At times between 1656 and 1750, in fact, France controlled more of the continental land mass than Britain and Spain combined.

Quebec, for instance, continues to be a Francophone island in English-speaking Canada that’s held steadfast to its language for hundreds of years. In spots of northern Maine, French is used as typically as English, and French-inspired poutine and ployes are as familiar on menus as burgers and pizza. The Cajuns of Louisiana still embrace their past with gusto and richness — so much so that the number of French-speakers in the bayou has actually increased in recent years. In Missouri, where St.

One of the most popular events at the Hayes Library's Easter Egg Roll is the arrival of the Easter Bunny.

Easter egg-citement

For more than 25 years, children have been bringing colored Easter eggs to the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library and Museums (HPLM) in Fremont. Why?

Egg games were popular during the late 1800s, and in Washington, D.C., residents especially enjoyed spending Easter Monday on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, where they picnicked and watched children rolling eggs — and often themselves — through the grass. After some rambunctious egg rollers damaged the landscaping in 1876, members of Congress promptly protected their turf by passing a law prohibiting people from using the Capitol grounds for a playground. Because it rained in 1877, the law wasn’t enforced until 1878, when police expelled youths carrying colored eggs from Capitol Hill.

Upon her arrest, Gillars was held in a prison camp at Frankfurt until turned over to the FBI in January 1949

Axis Sally

On March 15, 1946, 77 years ago last month, Ohioan Mildred Gillars was arrested by the U.S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps in Berlin, Germany.

Mildred Gillars was born in Maine in 1900 and came of age in Ohio, the stepdaughter of an alcoholic dentist who once practiced in Bellevue. Home life was tumultuous. 

She graduated high school in 1917 at Conneaut, near the extreme northeastern corner of the state, and attended Ohio Wesleyan University, where she majored in dramatic arts. Gillars, who went by the nickname “Milly,” took roles in plays and earned a reputation as an excellent orator, eccentric, and a bit of a coquette. 

Charles F. Kettering working on his revolutionary electric car starter.

Small-town genius

When automobiles were first being developed more than a century ago, they were as dangerous to start as they were to drive. You didn’t just turn a key in the ignition or press a button on the dashboard as we do today.

Born in Loudonville, Ohio, in 1876, Charles Kettering was the fourth of five children in his family. Poor eyesight caused him headaches in grade school, but he persevered to attend the College of Wooster before transferring to Ohio State University in Columbus.  However, continuing eye problems eventually forced him to withdraw, and he took a job at the Star Telephone Company in Loudonville as foreman of a line crew.  

Who better to tell our story?

Who better to tell our story?

The story of electric cooperatives is one of the great American success stories: Neighbors across the country banding together to extend electric service to homes and farms too far from population centers to be profitable for traditional electric companies. Today, the nearly 900 electric cooperatives operating across the United States, including the 24 headquartered here in Ohio, continue to be a model of public-private partnership and an essential part of the communities we serve.

Turkeyville introduced dinner theater, complete with top-notch productions and a full buffet, to its menu in 1968.

Everyday Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving takes place nearly every day of the year at Cornwell’s Turkeyville, located approximately 45 miles north of the Ohio border near Marshall, Michigan.

The sprawling complex is home to a restaurant offering all-turkey entrées, as well as made-from-scratch sides and desserts. It also boasts a 5,000-square-foot Country Junction gift shop, an ice cream parlor, a professional dinner theater featuring talented actors and actresses from throughout the country, a 175-site campground complete with swimming pool, and an outdoor gazebo where musicians tune up their instruments on warm summer days. 

Two offshoots growing from an old, decaying stump are all that’s left of the last living tree planted by Johnny Appleseed, which still occasionally produces fruit in Ashland County.

A slice of history

Tucked off County Road 658 in Ashland County, not far from the northward-flowing Vermillion River, a squat, knobby tree stump sits near a modest white farmhouse.

Folklore paints Johnny Appleseed as an eccentric nature lover, scattering apple seeds while wandering barefoot and wearing a tin pot as a hat. While he was a devout conservationist, he was also a calculating and successful orchardist whose passion sprang from a blend of religious devotion, humanitarianism, and strategic economic thought.