History & Tourism

What’s New In Richland County This Year?

18 Jan , 2019  

From our friends at Destination Mansfield – Richland County:

New year, new Richland County! See what’s coming to your favorite attractions and whet your appetite for brand new eateries and places to stay. There are many new and exciting things coming to the Mansfield area this year like a new theatre, an upscale restaurant, and a guesthouse! More…


History & Tourism

Richland Roots: Introducing Mansfielder General James S. Robinson

13 Jan , 2019  

Throughout its history, Richland County has produced or been the home to a wide variety of individuals that have made important contributions to the world. 1812Blockhouse has been sharing their stories in a series we started last year called “Richland Roots.” For other Richland Roots stories, click here.

Richland County has produced leaders in business, the arts, the military, education, politics, and civic life over its 200-plus years. Occasionally, that includes someone whose life story includes noteworthy activity in several of those areas. Such is the case with native Richland Countian James Sidney Robinson. More…

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History & Tourism

Mansfield On The Map: The Railroads Arrive

8 Jan , 2019  

NOTE: For previous stories in our “Mansfield on the Map” series, click on any of the following:

Mansfield on the Map: The Beginning

Mansfield on the Map: Richland County Changes Shape

Mansfield on the Map: Earlier Map, Hedges Letters Found Online

We continue our look at “Mansfield on the Map” by moving to the year 1854 and the publication of one of the first maps of Ohio to include rail lines, “Colton’s railroad & township map of the state of Ohio, drawn by George W. Colton, and engraved by J M. Atwood.”

The first completed rail line in Ohio was the Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad. Construction began in 1835 in Sandusky and was completed through Tiffin, Kenton, and Springfield by the late 1840s. More…


All About Richland, History & Tourism

OSR Seeking Unique People For A Bit Of Mystery

4 Jan , 2019  

Auditions for the 10th murder mystery dinner theater at the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield will be held this Sunday, January 6 and Monday, January 7, both starting at 6 PM.

Auditions will include cold readings from the script. This is a partially scripted show with heavy interaction and improv with the audience. Special skills such as juggling and other “circus” or “side show” skills and talents are encouraged. More…

History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: Mansfield Dry Goods Building

3 Jan , 2019  

NOTE: This is our 40th post in the Landmarks of Mansfield series. These posts routinely rank among the most-read on 1812Blockhouse, which signifies to us that the city has a proud heritage that its citizens value. The other posts in the series can be found here.

Sometimes an element of good can come from a tragic event, particularly one that does not involve loss of life or limb. More…

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All About Richland, History & Tourism

100 Years Ago, Mansfield’s New Year’s Eve Featured “Small Cannon And Bombs”

2 Jan , 2019  

Local New Year’s Eve revelers may have had a dry evening — once they made it inside, that is. Strong rain and high winds made travel somewhat difficult.

One hundred years ago, on December 31, 1918, the scene was somewhat similar in Mansfield. According to the News Journal published 100 years ago today, January 2, 1919, “Mansfield kicked off a year and a half of war restraint in giving 1919 a noisy welcome. New year’s eve was celebrated with more than ordinary noise and joyousness. More…


All About Richland, History & Tourism

Great Ideas For A Mid Ohio January

29 Dec , 2018  

The end of the holiday season looms near, so here’s everything you’ll need to beat those coming winter blues.

Get out of the house with bracing, snow-filled fun at Snow Trails, live music all around town, and fantastic shows at The Renaissance Theater, Theater 166, and The Mansfield Playhouse. Check out the Destination Mansfield – Richland County calendar for a full list of January happenings and events. More…

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All About Richland, History & Tourism

Landmarks Of Mansfield: The Rigby House

24 Dec , 2018  

NOTE: This post in our Landmarks of Mansfield series was first published a year ago today, on Christmas Eve 2017. It has been updated with additional information.

One of the many outstanding houses built along Park Avenue West was constructed for a family associated with, of all things, cigars.

Cigar manufacturing and wholesaling was big business in turn of the last century Mansfield. Large companies such as the American Cigar Company occupied large business blocks downtown. Over 1,000 Mansfielders were employed in these concerns which produced over 200,000 cigars a day!

The arrival of mass produced cigarettes after World War brought a downturn, however, and by the 1930s few such businesses were in operation. One of the giants during of the heyday of cigar manufacture was the Rigby Cigar Company, headed by James Arthur Rigby (known primarily as J.A. Rigby). Rigby brands included the well-known “Dolly Dollar” five cent cigar. More…


History & Tourism, Holidays, Literary Mansfield

Louis Bromfield And Christmas

22 Dec , 2018  

NOTE: In what has become an annual tradition, we’re sharing this post through Christmas Day.

There is no question that Pulitzer Prize-winner and Mansfielder Louis Bromfield was a fan of the holidays.

During the period of time that Bromfield lived there, Malabar Farm was an active place during the Christmas season. More…

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History & Tourism

When Mansfield Welcomed: The Ohio State Corn Show

18 Dec , 2018  

Updated with additional information. The competition was fierce early last century as Columbus, Alliance, Marietta, Toledo, Fostoria, Marion, and Mansfield vied for the prize – host city for the 1914 Ohio State Corn Show. At the 1913 show in Lima, the winner was announced, and Mansfield was chosen.

Amazingly, both the 1913 and 1914 Corn Shows took place in the dead of winter – mid to late January. Still, thousands attended such events. More…


All Things Business, History & Tourism

State Board Recommends That Downtown Mansfield Be Designated A National Register Historic District

16 Dec , 2018  

The Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board met earlier this month at the Ohio History Center at I-71 & 17th Ave. in Columbus.

At the meeting, the board recommended nine proposed Ohio nominations to the National Register of Historic Places, either individually or as part of a National Register Historic District. The latter group included a several-block area of downtown Mansfield, labeled the “Downtown Mansfield Historic District,” roughly bounded by Fifth Street to the north, Diamond Street to the east, Second Street to the south, and Mulberry Street to the west.

According to the announcement: More…

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History & Tourism

Holiday Hours For Area Attractions

14 Dec , 2018  

Destination Mansfield has shared that while it’s that time of year where everything gets a little more chaotic, it’s also the time to slow down and spend some quality time with family and friends.

If you’re planning on visiting some of these popular attractions, please make note of their limited holiday hours below and plan accordingly. More…

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History & Tourism

Landmarks of Mansfield: Kingwood

13 Dec , 2018  

Publisher’s Note: We are re-posting this look at Kingwood, the house at Kingwood Center Gardens, in honor of Christmas at Kingwood going on now through December 30. Questions about the house are often heard as visitors walk up and down its halls during the event.

In 1926, a bit of France landed in the middle of north central Ohio in the form of Kingwood, the home of Charles Kelley King. Ninety years-plus later, it forms the centerpiece for one of the region’s foremost attractions and one of the best-known public gardens in the entire Midwest. More…

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History & Tourism

OSR Featured On Science Channel

7 Dec , 2018  

Mansfield has had more exposure on national television this fall. This time, it’s the Ohio State Reformatory’s turn to be in the spotlight.

According to its website, the Science Channel’s series Mysteries of the Abandoned features “stories behind some of the world’s most amazing engineering marvels, why they were built, and why they were eventually no longer of use. Each story highlights the people who designed the structures, their significance, and why they were ultimately left to crumble.” More…

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