Ohio Historical Center

Admission to the Ohio Historical Center is $7 for adults, $3 for children 6-12 and students, and free for children under the age of 5, plus $4 parking.

  • Open: Tuesday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays and holidays 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Location: (Map It) 1982 Velma Avenue in Columbus, Ohio
  • Phone: 614-297-2300
  • Web: http://www.ohiohistory.org/

The Ohio Historical Center in Columbus, Ohio:  This world-renown museum depicts Ohio history from the Ice Age to 1970. The museums interesting architecture is made up of three stories, 250,000 square-feet, supported at the base by a glass enclosed entryway anchored by four stunning columns. It houses the museum, library and state archives of Ohio, gift shop 280 seat auditorium, and offices. The library preserves and collects written and graphic information concerning Ohio’s history. The museum store offers publications, posters, ceramics, and historical reproductions, educational games and toys. Teachers and members receive a 10% discount. In addition to its permanent collection, the center offers a rotating schedule of temporary exhibits. The Center’s newly renovated, permanent natural history exhibit features Ohio’s plants, animals, geology, geography, and climate and weather.

Excerpt from a past edition of OhioTraveler

LEARNING OHIO HISTORY HAS
NEVER BEEN SO MUCH FUN

Ohio’s history is filled with truths stranger than fiction.

The Buckeye State is home to an inordinate number of nationally acclaimed comedians, former Presidents and fly boys. It birthed “rock n roll” and Rockefeller. It fielded the first professional baseball team and houses the professional football hall of fame.

The 17th state of the union is as diverse as its landscape which features the north coast, Ohio River and Appalachia regions. It bridged the original states of the union to the rest of what would later become the lower 48 as “The Gateway State.”

Welcome to the wonderful world of Ohio history. It’s as unique as the building that contains it. In the capital city of Columbus, Ohio’s past is presented in all its glory at the Ohio Historical Center.

Its permanent collections, traveling exhibitions and special events deliver a new experience every visit. Many innovative and interactive displays engage the minds of young and old in impactful settings.

Ohio’s ancient past explores more than 15,000 years of Ohio’s prehistoric and historic Native American heritage. Interesting discoveries are revealed here including the Adena Pipe, the mica hand, and the Wray figurine. Not only are visitors able to see life as it was thousands of years ago in these lands, but computer stations allow for even deeper exploration for information.  Try the Ohio Historical Society’s Archaeology blog and tour the First Ohioans on-line exhibit.

Venture from the ancients to frontier days to the 1970s, focusing on agricultural and industrial progress. One of the most popular sections of this exhibit is Ohio and its role during the Civil War. Artifacts include weapons, uniforms, medical and camp equipment among other notable items. The highlights continue with 1920s newsreels, an operating carriage shop, vintage automobiles and children’s activities, including a log cabin and pioneer kitchen, where young people may dress in pioneer clothes and operate a spinning wheel for starters.

The Ohio Historical Center leaves no stone unturned and even preserves the history of nature in Ohio.  Here, visitors can explore five themes of Ohio’s natural history: plants, animals, geology, geography and climate. Greeting all those who enter is the enormous Conway mastodon. Beyond its grasp is a tour spanning the ice age presented in a highly interactive manner designed for young people to touch specimens and play with computer displays and other hands-on stations.  Highlights include Battelle Discovery Park and Theatre.

Located on the third floor of the Ohio Historical Center is the Archives/Library. It is there that researchers, historians and otherwise curious minds gather to delve into every nook and cranny of Ohio’s documented history. It also houses the State Archives of Ohio. Genealogists are one of the most popular patrons of the Archives/Library.

Adjacent to the Ohio Historical Center is Ohio Village. Ohio Village is designed to recreate the typical county-seat town in Ohio during the mid 19th century. The buildings are fully operational and complete, not just merely facades. The village is only open to the public for special events, school groups and private events.

More to explore:

The Center offers education programs for school groups with a wide range of subject-focused field trips. Group tours may be arranged for seniors, church groups, large families, students and youth groups by calling 614-297-2915. Private events and parties may be planned in the Center or Ohio Village for meetings, weddings and banquets of all kinds. Call 614-297-2915 to plan your special occasion. The Ohio History Store offers books and magazines, posters, ceramics, historical reproductions and much more.
The Ohio Historical Center is open Thursday from 9am – 9pm, Friday and Saturday from 9am to 5pm and Sunday from Noon to 5pm. Admission is $8 for those age 13 or older and $4 for ages 6-12 plus $4 per vehicle for parking.

Visit www.ohiohistory.org or dial 614-297-2300 or 800-686-6124 for special holiday hours, discounts, announcements and directions. The Ohio Historical Center is located at 1982 Velma Avenue in
Columbus, OH 43211.

By Frank R. Satullo, The OhioTraveler