Saturday, September 04, 1999

Village, tunnel, steamer get notice




BY RANDY McNUTT
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Three more historical markers have been approved for Hamilton County:

        • Whitewater Shaker Village in Miami Whitewater Forest. In 1824, it was the last of four Ohio villages established by the United Society of Believers, called the Shakers. By the 1850s, about 150 members lived and farmed on 1,300 acres in Crosby and Morgan townships. The community dissolved in 1916. The Hamilton County Park District now owns more than 20 original Shaker buildings on the site.

        • Whitewater Canal Tunnel, “an extremely significant example of early canal engineering in Ohio,” according to Steve C. Gordon of the Ohio Historical Society. The tunnel, designed to connect downtown Cincinnati to Indiana, was 1,782 feet long and lined with 2 million bricks when it was built in the early 1800s. An 800-foot section still exists but is mostly covered with silt, said Judy Jones of the Three Rivers Historical Society. The marker will be placed on Miami Avenue in Cleves.

        • The Sultana, a steamer that exploded on its journey north on the Mississippi River at the end of the Civil War, killing 1,700 returning Union soldiers. Chris Heather of Colerain Township said he will erect the marker near the former site of the John Lithoberry Shipyard in downtown Cincinnati. The boat and its boilers were built in factories near the Ohio River.

        The Ohio Historical Society markers should be ready for dedication next summer, said Brian Newbacher, spokesman for the Ohio Bicentennial Commission in Columbus.

        Longaberger Co., a basket company in Dresden, Ohio, has pledged $100,000 to place historical markers around the state until 2003, the state's 200th anniversary year. Mr. Newbacher said a local person or group must pay one-third of the cost of each marker; the remainder will be split between Longaberger and the commission. Each marker costs about $1,600.

        Last fall, a marker was approved for Greenhills, to designate it as one of three planned communities started by the federal government during the Depression. The marker will be erected at 10 a.m. Monday at Winton and Cromwell roads. The Cincinnati Enquirer/Michael E. Keating Law enforcement historian Stephen S. Barnett displays a lithograph marking the three days of riots.

       



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