NOTE: This post in our “When Mansfield Welcomed” series has been updated with recently-discovered information.
It was a brilliant Saturday in July, 1896 when Buffalo Bill came to town. Not just Buffalo Bill, mind you – his famous “Wild West Show” was in tow and put on two performances in a lot on East Fourth Street. This was not his first visit to Mansfield, nor would it be his last.
Buffalo Bill, born William Frederick Cody in 1846, grew up on the frontier and loved every aspect of that way of life. As he grew older, some of the titles he earned, or at least ascribed to himself, including buffalo hunter, U.S. Army scout and guide, and showman, as well as Pony Express Rider, Indian fighter, and even author. Whatever Cody’s titles, he was destined for fame. More…
A national podcast that focuses in on “true crime” stories has recently set it sights on Mansfield.
The “Coffee, Mystery, & Murder” podcast discusses murder, mystery and the supernatural, according to host Melissa Lancaster. The podcast’s website is here, which has links to several social media pages.
The July 18 edition looks at the history of the Ohio State Reformatory. Listen and enjoy:
By Katharine Stevens
These people and ideas that emerged from Mansfield have gone on to change the world.
TOUCHDOWN – In the early 1900s, Charles Follis — nicknamed “The Black Cyclone” — propelled civil rights movements and his teams forward as the first Black professional football player in America. He played for the Shelby Blues alongside teammate Branch Rickey, who signed Jackie Robinson 40 years later. Honor his memory with a visit to Charles Follis Way in Shelby near the Black Fork Commons.
NEED FOR SPEED – The entrepreneur behind Rupp Industries, Mickey Rupp engineered the go-karts and minibikes that inspired a generation of thrill seekers. More…
Today, we broaden the scope of our Landmarks of Mansfield series by focusing on a landmark that never was.
At least not how it was originally planned.
We take our readers back 113 years, and to the southwest corner of West Fourth and Walnut Street. There, in 1908, owner William Shakespeare Cappeller, founder and owner of The Mansfield News, made plans for something special to take place. More…
He was considered by many to be the greatest English actor of the nineteenth century. Yet underneath the veneer of accomplishment was someone who, it is said, never actually liked performing on the stage.
And on Thursday, March 30, 1916, he visited the city of Mansfield for the only time in his career. His performance that night was one in a series of highly significant moments in the worldwide history of theatre. More…
This story is a favorite of ours, and one which have previously published on Independence Day weekend.
A century and a half ago, local media writers were bemoaning the lack of activities scheduled in Mansfield to celebrate Independence Day, with one exception: a “Base Ball” game between the “fats” and the “lanks.”
This is from the weekly Mansfield Herald’s edition on July 3, 1867:
“The Fourth of July tomorrow will not be celebrated in any formal manner in Mansfield. We are sorry to say it, for many other places of less pretensions than our city, have made arrangement for a good old fashioned time. Ashland, Bucyrus, Bellfontaine and other towns have announcements out of what they intend to do, and many of our citizens will not doubt visit one of the other of these places… More…
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 call “Richland Roots.” For other Richland Roots stories, click here.
A woman referred to as one of the leading American businesspersons of the early 20th century received her own start in pre-Civil War Mansfield. More…
The next time you consider a visit to Mansfield’s gem of a public garden, Kingwood Center Gardens, why not do some touring as well?
Kingwood offers three tours designed to interest history and garden lovers alike.
Tours of the main house, Kingwood Hall, have been going on since the fall of 1953. The house was the home of industrialist Charles Kelly King, who left a $3 million trust fund to transform Kingwood into a “…public garden and park to promote interests in horticulture, literature, music, and fine arts for residents of Mansfield and surrounding areas.” More…
NOTE: The story, first published in 2018, has been updated with newly-discovered information about this groundbreaking concert. See below.
Did you know that Mansfield is one of the places where American musical history was made?
In fact, it was made over 148 years ago, on November 29, 1871. More…
In our Richland Roots series, we briefly present the lives of men and women from Richland County — either by birth, or residence — that have made important contributions to American history but who may not be household names. Other posts in our series can be viewed and read here.
It’s not everyday that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) shares a eulogy. The life and work of William Wynne, however, was certainly worth noting and commemorating.
In a post entitled “NASA Photographer’s Career Documented The War and NASA Research,” NASA shared some of the life story of the photographer and photojournalist, who died earlier this year at the age of 99. After retirement, Wynne settled down on a farm near Mansfield. More…
Mansfield was a bustling place in 1896, with a population of approximately 17,000. On Saturday, May 30, the community came together to celebrate Memorial Day.
First known nationally as “Decoration Day,” the term “Memorial Day” was first used in 1882. More…
1812Blockhouse shares posts in our “Richland Roots” series to reveal stories of the well-known and less-commonly known people born here, or who lived here, and then went on to make significant contributions to state, regional, or national history.
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary weekend of man’s landing on the Moon back in 2019, 1812Blockhouse ran a Richland Roots post to recognize someone involved in that effort who was once stationed in Mansfield. More…
If you are familiar with the memorials that dot Central Park in downtown Mansfield, then you already know that one of those monuments honors Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., for whom this Monday is a national holiday in which we celebrate his importance and his legacy.
The monument to Dr. King was a labor of love that began well over 20 years ago, with the 1999 formation of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Recognition Committee. The group was created between 1998 and 1999, after failed attempts to persuade the City to memorialize King by, for example, renaming a section of U.S. Route 30 in his honor. More…
In 1872, entertainment history was made when the first large circus to travel by rail appeared in small and mid-sized communities across the Midwest. America’s Greatest Showman was behind the entire endeavor.
On June 22, that tour included a stop in Mansfield. The Greatest Show on Earth – a slogan used for the very first time in publicity for that very trip – came to town for three shows. Actually, it was more fully known as “P.T. Barnum’s Great Traveling Museum, Menagerie, and World’s Fair – consisting of museum, menagerie, aquarium, polytechnic institute, international zoological garden, and Dan Castello’s chaste and refined circus.” More…
NOTE: For previous stories in our “Mansfield on the Map” series, click on any of the following:
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…