Lockville Park is a 6 acre park in Fairfield County containing the ruins of three locks from what was once the Ohio & Erie Canal. The park also has a covered bridge that was constructed in 1888.
The ruins of one of the locks with water pooling in the center.
Saturday we went to Stratford Woods for a maple syrup event. They were serving organic, whole wheat pancakes with real locally made maple syrup, farm-fresh sausage and coffee. Delicious!
Rock Mill is a gristmill that was built in 1824 in Fairfield County. It is currently in the process of being restored. (Note: a gristmill grinds corn, wheat, or other grains into flour).
Viewing the rear of the mill you can see the ongoing restoration work.
It’s believed that this figure of a shaman holding a decapitated head was created in 100 A.D. It’s known as the Shaman of Newark
because it was found at the Newark Earthworks
When looking at the prehistoric artefacts and earthen structures in Ohio, I’m always wondering what meanings these things held for the people who created them. I end up reading whatever explanatory sign is posted nearby, but while I’m doing so I’m also wondering how anthropologists know any of this stuff. Since prehistoric societies don’t leave any texts explaining themselves or their culture, anthropologists have to be making a lot of inferences.
Although we just launched our blog in March, it is customary to reflect back on the previous year as the new year approaches. So Deb and I decided to share some of the highlights from the past year as we explored Ohio’s parks and nature preserves.
Best Hike of the Year
Deb: Christmas Rocks Nature Preserve — I loved the view from the cliff on the Jacob’s Ladder trail.
Bob: Hocking Hills Winter Hike – the Hocking Hills region is great in any season, but it’s spectacular in the winter. This was our third year participating in this annual hike.
Buckeye Furnace complex; the Ohio Historical Society rebuilt the buildings and infrastructure that surround the furnace. The building on top is the “bridge loft” where raw materials were dropped down into the furnace. The stone structure is the iron-producing furnace. The molten iron actually poured out onto the floor of the structure to the right. The building to the left housed a steam engine that blew hot air into the iron-producing furnace.
If you visit a number of parks and forests in Ohio, you will occasionally come across a structure built of sandstone blocks that resembles the bottom of a pyramid. A few of these are intact; many are just ruins overgrown with plants. These are the remnants of blast furnaces built in the early nineteenth century. But what are they doing out in the middle of the forest?
Early morning view from Turkey Rock.
In early September we visited and stayed overnight at a 60 acre private park in Pike County. According to legend we were just a few hundred feet away from the lair of a spectral wolf named Old Raridan.
A huge rock hurtles through the empty void of space. Its been orbiting the sun for hundreds of millions of years. But this orbit will be different. This time its trajectory and the orbit of earth intersect. It will impact somewhere in southern Ohio releasing energy equivalent to a large thermonuclear weapon and creating a crater five miles across. Alert the governor, start evacuations! But wait, it’s already too late!
Malabar Farm State Park was once the home of Louis Bromfield (1896 – 1956). He was a novelist and screenplay writer. His very first novel (The Green Bay Tree) was a critical and commercial success. His third novel (Early Autumn) won Bromfield a Pulitzer Prize. He was good friends with movie star, Humphrey Bogart (deemed to be the greatest, male film star of all time by the American Film Institute). When Bogart and Lauren Bacall were making their wedding plans, Bromfield offered them the use of his farm.
Public domain photo of Bacall and Bogart from the trailer for the film, “Dark Passage”.
Path leading to the front of the mound
Seip Mound State Memorial Park is one of the five noncontiguous sites that make up the Hopewell Culture National Historical Park. The other four sites are Hopeton Earthworks, Hopewell Mound Group, High Banks Works, and the Mound City Group (reviewed by us here). Native Americans belonging to the Hopewell tradition constructed this mound sometime between 100 B.C. – A.D. 400.