OHIO HISTORY CENTER & MUSEUM Open 5 Days: W-Sat, 10-5; Sun. Noon-5. ARCHIVES LIBRARY Open 4 Days: W-Sat. 10-5. HISTORIC PRESERVATION Open 5 Days: M-F, 9-5.

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Echoes In Time Theatre

Modern photograph of The Ohio History Center “Who needs a time machine when you can travel from the Ice Age to the Space Age in just a few hours?”

--Insiders’ Guide, Fun with the Family: Ohio
2004




Inside this unique structure, the Ohio Historical Society offers visitors a rewarding museum experience of Ohio’s past and an Archives/Library that provides rich resources for genealogists and other researchers. The Center serves as the headquarters for the Ohio Historical Society and is the flagship museum of the Society’s network of more than 50 historic sites and museums.

Featured Exhibits

CONTROVERSY 2: Pieces We Don't Talk About
February 29-December 30, 2012
The Ohio History Center invites guests to explore a new exhibit that examines perceptions of race stereotypes from a historical perspective. In 'Controversy 2: Pieces We Don’t Talk About', visitors are encouraged to reflect on how stereotypes influence personal identity.

Following in Ancient Footsteps
Learn about Ohio’s ancient Native American heritage. At the entry, a widescreen monitor introduces the exhibit with two informational programs. Some of the Society’s most significant archaeological artifacts, such as the Adena Pipe and the many animal effigy pipes from Tremper Mound are centrally featured in tower cases. Fiber optic lighting enhances visitors’ almost 360- degree view of these, and other, unique and beautiful artifacts. Visitors can open multiple artifact drawers to see what the ancient people used on a daily basis, as well as for special purposes. Those interested in a more thorough examination of the objects can move to nearby computer stations, where they can locate information on specific items in the online catalog. Here they can also find additional information on Ohio’s ancient cultures by visiting the OHS Archaeology blog and touring the First Ohioans on-line exhibit.


Permanent Exhibits

Ohio: Centuries of Change
Campaign poster created by Ohio artist Howard Chandler Christy for the 1920 presidential campaign of Warren G. Harding, AL01001 Ohio’s story is the nation’s story. This 15,000-square-foot exhibit gallery chronicles Ohio history from frontier days to the 1970s, focusing on agricultural and industrial progress, leadership and the effect of major changes on the lives of ordinary people. Within the gallery is the popular section, Ohio And The Civil War, which describes Ohio’s key role in the conflict. Artifacts include weapons, uniforms, medical and camp equipment and battle flags from the Society’s collections. More than 310,000 Ohioans served in the American Civil War. Other highlights of this history gallery are 1920s newsreels, an operating carriage shop, vintage automobiles and children’s activities, including a log cabin and pioneer kitchen, where young people can try on pioneer clothes, operate a spinning wheel and “cook” pioneer food.

The Nature of Ohio
Explore Ohio’s natural history through its plants, animals, geology, geography and climate. The exhibit opens with the giant Conway mastodon greeting guests as they begin a tour of Ohio’s unique natural history from the ice age to the present. This exhibit is highly interactive and designed for young people to touch specimens, test themselves with computer displays and play safely in the Battelle Discovery Park and Theatre. Don’t miss a display of extinct animals, including two century-old specimens of the ivory-billed woodpecker. Also, look here for “Buttons,” the last documented wild passenger pigeon anywhere in the world.

To Have and To Hold: Treasures of the Christopher Collection Exhibit item from the Christopher Collection display (detail)
Be amazed at this selection of ordinary and extraordinary objects from the Tom and Agnes Christopher Collection of largely 19th-century American furniture, ceramics, decorative arts, woodenware, and metal ware—each created and designed to hold something else. The temporary exhibition provides an unparalleled opportunity to consider the whys and hows of material culture in 1800s America.

Architecture
The Ohio History Center, headquarters of the Ohio Historical Society, is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The building is a great example of the architectural style known as “Brutalism,” a rational, structuralist, monumental style exported by French and British architects in the mid-20th century. Upon its opening in 1970, the American Institute of Architects applauded the Ohio History Center as a “bold, imaginative, almost startling structure.” Architectural Record called it the “the most architecturally significant public structure built in Ohio since the State Capitol Building.”


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Photo Policy

You are welcome to bring your camera to the Ohio History Center. Photography and videography are allowed so long as the images taken use existing light (no flash) and are for personal use. Galleries or collections where photography and videography are restricted are clearly marked.

Visit Us On Flickr
Once you get home, take a look at the photo sharing site Flickr. There's a whole group for the Ohio Historical Society. If you’ve got some pictures you’d like to add, just follow the instructions to join the group and start uploading.

Contact Us
See Reproduction Services for information on downloading digital files of the Society’s collections.

For information on materials for publishing and/or commercial use, contact images@ohiohistory.org.

For media requests, call the Communications Department (614-297-2314).


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Resources at The Ohio History Center

Ohio Village
The adjacent Ohio Village is open to the public for special public events, school groups and private events.

Archives Library
Photo of the interior of the Archives Library at the Ohio History Center in Columbus Located on the third floor of the Ohio History Center, the Archives/Library collects, preserves and makes available to the public written and graphic information about Ohio’s history. It also is the State Archives of Ohio, the designated repository for state government records of enduring historic value. Family history research is one of the most popular activities in the Archives/Library. Academic historians, students and others also use its resources often. Visitors are asked to register at the Ohio History Store front desk before proceeding to the Research Room. Please see the hours listed below.



Ohio Historic Preservation Office
The Ohio Historic Preservation Office was developed when the Ohio Historical Society was designated to manage responsibilities delegated to the state in the National Historic Preservation Act.
The office has a staff of archaeologists, historians, architectural historians, a historical architect, and others with expertise in preservation-related fields. The office receives an annual grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior's Historic Preservation Fund. The Ohio Historical Society, State of Ohio, and other sources match the federal funds.
The office:

  • Identifies historic places and archaeological sites
  • Nominates eligible properties to the National Register of Historic Places
  • Reviews work to qualifying historic buildings for state and federal rehabilitation tax credits
  • Monitors federally-assisted projects for effects on historic, architectural, and archaeological resources
  • Qualifies communities for Certified Local Government status
  • Manages a competitive grants program
  • Consults on the conservation of buildings and sites
  • Offers educational programs and publications

Education Programs
The Center offers education programs for school groups. The Ohio History Teacher's Resources Page lists the wide range of subject-focused field trips offered at this site and other Ohio Historical Society sites. Each field trip includes a brief description and location as well as general dates of availability.

Group Tours
The Center welcomes adults, families, college students and youth groups who want to experience the museum as a group tour. Please call us at 614.297-2663, or email reservations@ohiohistory.org to make arrangements.

Private Events
The Ohio History Center and the adjacent Ohio Village are available for meetings, banquets and other special events. Find out more online or call us at 614.298.2915.

The Ohio History Store
Located inside the front entrance, the store offers a wide variety of books and magazines, posters, ceramics, historical reproductions and fun products related to our exhibits. If you can’t visit the physical store, please visit our eStore.


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Museum Hours: Year Round Now Open Wednesdays

Monday CLOSED
Tuesday CLOSED
Wednesday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Thursday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Friday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sunday Noon - 5 p.m.
Closed Holidays
New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, President's Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve
Opened Holidays Independence Day (noon-5 p.m.), Veterans Day


Archives Library Hours: Year Round

Monday CLOSED
Tuesday CLOSED
Wednesday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Thursday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Friday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sunday CLOSED
Closed Holidays
New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, President's Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve
Opened Holidays Veterans Day


Museum Store Hours: Year Round - Gift giving just got easier. Visit our eStore now. Now Open Sundays

Monday CLOSED
Tuesday CLOSED
Wednesday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Thursday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Friday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sunday noon - 5 p.m.
Closed Holidays
New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, President's Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve
Opened Holidays Independence Day (noon-5 p.m.), Veterans Day


The Ohio Historical Society, including the Ohio Historic Preservation Office, business hours are from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Offices are closed New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, President's Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veteran's Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.


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Museum Fees

Museum Admission:

OHS Members FREE
Adults $10.00
Seniors $9.00
Children 6 - 12 $5.00
Children 5 & under FREE
School Groups $4.00 per student

AAA and senior discounts given. Military discounts are available with ID to all active military and their dependents as well as to veterans.


Archives Library Admission

FREE

Parking is FREE. Please note that during the Ohio State Fair, July 25-August 5, 2012, the fair charges $5 for parking at the Ohio History Center.
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Location


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The Ohio History Center is located just off of I-71 on 17th Avenue (exit 111) about 4 miles north of downtown Columbus in Franklin County.


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General Information

Ohio History Center
800 E. 17th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43211

Phone:
614-297-2300/800-686-6124 Museum
614-297-2266 Group Tours
614-297-2510 Archives-Library

FAX:
614-297-2358

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Handicapped Accessibility
Site is wheelchair accessible. Limited wheelchair access to restrooms.


Thank you for your interest in the Ohio Historical Society!

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