Crooksville, Ohio is a small town with a rich history. Located in Perry County, this town has witnessed some notable events that have shaped not just the town, but also the state and the nation as a whole. Here are 7 historical events that have taken place near Crooksville, Ohio.
1. Underground Railroad
During the mid-1800s, Ohio was a crucial stop on the Underground Railroad, and Crooksville was no exception. Many runaway slaves found safe haven in Crooksville because of its location on the Muskingum River. Underground Railroad conductors would transport slaves across the river to safety, connecting the town to the larger abolitionist movement.
2. Crooksville China
In 1902, a group of businessmen founded the Crooksville China Company. This company would go on to become one of the largest ceramics manufacturers in the Midwest, producing everything from dinnerware to decorative pieces. For decades, the Crooksville China Company was a significant employer in the town, and many residents worked at the plant.
3. Operation Hardtack II
During the Cold War, the government conducted a series of nuclear tests in Nevada. The effects of the tests were studied on site, but also in places as far away as Ohio. In 1959, Operation Hardtack II saw a series of nuclear tests take place at the Nevada Test Site. Scientists from Battelle Memorial Institute, which has a research facility in Crooksville, examined the effects of the tests on Ohioans.
4. The Ohio State Reformatory
About an hour’s drive from Crooksville, in Mansfield, Ohio, the Ohio State Reformatory was built in 1886 with the aim of rehabilitating young offenders. The Reformatory featured Gothic-style architecture and was used as a filming location for movies such as The Shawshank Redemption. Inmates also made furniture and other items in the Reformatory's workshops, some of which can still be purchased today.
5. The Civil War
The area surrounding Crooksville saw significant action during the Civil War. In 1863, Confederate General John Hunt Morgan led a raid through nearby towns, including Somerset and McConnelsville. Union soldiers pursued Morgan, and a skirmish took place just north of McConnelsville. The Confederates were ultimately captured in northeast Ohio.
6. The Zanesville Y-Bridge
Crooksville is located near one of the most interesting architectural landmarks in the entire state, the Zanesville Y-Bridge. Built in 1814, this unique structure connects three separate downtown areas across the Muskingum River. It was the first bridge of its kind and is still in use today.
7. John Glenn's Orbital Flight
Crooksville is about an hour's drive from New Concord, Ohio, where astronaut John Glenn was born. Glenn made history in 1962 as the first American to orbit the Earth. His flight captured the nation's attention and helped establish America's lead in the space race. The John & Annie Glenn Museum is a popular tourist site in New Concord that celebrates Glenn's life and achievements.
These are just a few examples of the many historical events that have taken place around Crooksville, Ohio. While the town itself may be small, it has been witness to some significant moments that have helped shape Ohio and the nation.
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