Monday, August 19, 2013

Hamilton County, energy center of the Universe! . . .er, really?

Hopping from one metropolitan area to the next seems a bit weird to me because I think of Ohio as an agricultural state. Of course, when our families were there they were farming, even in the counties which now contain large cities. We’ve moved from Columbus, the capital of Ohio, to the rip-roarin’ river town of Cincinnati in Hamilton County.

Rip-roarin’, that is how I thinking of it as of today, August 19. Yesterday the only picture it evoked (having never been there) is baseball. It seems, due to the Ohio River and the other rivers that empty into it, that Cincinnati was always destined to be something really special. Not necessarily good, often naughty, sometimes

Courthouse Riot, 1884
famous and just as often notorious. Colorful would describe its sketchy past; and sad her race riots and poverty. Still all of that is mixed with greatness – and comes along with the larger-than-life energy of place. In this place temperance crusaders battled with cultures that favored a good drink as part of their lifestyle. In this place abolitionists fought with slave-holding sympathizers and worked hard to run the Underground Railroad. From the beginning Cincinnatians drew into opposing camps and battled each other, or the Native Americans they had displaced, or the soldiers from Fort Washington who were there to keep the peace.

I read that even today the majority of voters in Hamilton Country are Independents. Now, that just
Harriett Beacher Stowe House
Cincinnati, Ohio
fits, doesn’t it? They have many famous sons and daughters. It is amazing, considering the size of Ohio that so many of the governors have come from Hamilton County. Harriett Beach Stowe lived there, and two presidents called it home, William Henry Harrison and William Howard Taft. It is a place where culture and education have always been hallmarks. I feel energized just reading about Cincinnati!

From almost the beginning the area had river pirates, bootleggers, hostile Indians, rowdy soldiers, large groups of Irish and German immigrants, and slaves coming from the south with a desperate need to be free – what a mix! Plus there were the movers and shakers, the politicians and the builders, the meatpackers, and the iron workers. The energy on that spot – Hamilton County must be electric.

I hear that they are working hard now to bring the downtown back to life and with the energy it has (probably boiling up from the center of the earth) I can see that the city is rising up like a phoenix to greatness  – and all her citizens proud of their great city. All part of Hamilton County.

Photos: Stowe House, Courthouse Riot, & Cincinnati from Kentucky
Clipart: Phoenix
MaryLu Tyndall's webpage 'The Cross and Cutlass':


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  3. Betsy, Ohio Historical Society, Columbus, OhioOctober 4, 2013 at 8:21 AM

    Thank you for sharing these [links to the Temperance Movement and Abolitionists]; and it’s just fine that you link to our website.
    And thank you for the great feedback!


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