I love History. And I enjoy every chance I get to explore, learn, and document our history.
Sometimes those historical items can be found right in your own town, Get out and explore.
What are your favorite historical places, or items? share your photos and comments here.
Here are a few of the photos I shot on Sunday.
In 1805 families of Gebharts came from Berks County, Pennsylvania to make their homes in this area. They were all related even though distantly.
Daniel Gebhart, the son of Valentine Gebhart, built and opened his tavern. It was only a stone’s throw from the east bank of the Miami River in 1811.
Nearly every frontier settlement had a tavern. Taverns were really necessary. Travel was difficult and it was good business to open one’s home for a stop-over. Taverns quickly became social institutions, the center for conversation and news.
Taverns in 1811 were places to rest from arduous trips in wagon or on horseback through vine infested and dense foliage where there were no roads or bridges. You could also get news or letters if you lived in this wilderness. One could get a hot meal and sleep on the floor for a night’s rest. Taverns closed in the 1840’s due to the building of roads and hotels.
In pioneer days, the churches were gathering places for the settlers. But in 1811 there were no churches yet in Miamisburg for Miamisburg was not plotted until 1818. The only churches were out in the open country, such as Gebhart’s church east of the river and Stettler’s church west of the river. They were started in 1805 and 1806 respectively.
The Daniel Gebhart’s tavern site was ideal for business. The river could be forded at low water across from the tavern. boatmen poling up the river and pilots bringing flatboats down the river found it an east place to dock and visit the tavern. Farmers living on the land east of the tavern as well as travelers and new settlers who were traveling by wagon, foot, or horseback could join the others at the tavern for just a drink, or for a night’s lodging. This tavern prospered until the canal began to decline in importance.
In 1840 the tavern closed and became the first boarding house. Then later it became a two-family dwelling with rooms added.
After the sesquicentennial of the founding of Miamisburg in 1968, the Miamisburg Historical Society became interested in obtaining the tavern property for restoration purposes. The purchase was made in 1975 from Owen Fry, the owner.
Today the fully restored log tavern is home to a wide variety of artifacts and memorabilia relating to the history of the area. Research materials, including genealogy resources, are also available. The Gebhart Tavern museum is located on the corner of Lock Street and Old Main Street in Miamisburg. Hours of operation are Sunday afternoons, May through October, 2:00 to 5:00 p.m