The Ohio State Reformatory, located in Mansfield, Ohio, is a famous prison that has been featured in several movies, including "The Shawshank Redemption." It was built in 1886 and operated until 1990.

Champaign County, Ohio, has a rich history dating back to its establishment in 1805. The area was originally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Shawnee and Delaware tribes, who were gradually displaced by European settlers. The first permanent settlers began arriving in the late 1700s, with the majority coming from the eastern states.

In the early 19th century, Champaign County saw rapid development and growth. The National Road, which passed through the county, spurred economic activity and brought an influx of settlers. The county's fertile soil attracted farmers, who established successful agricultural practices, primarily focused on crops like corn, wheat, and soybeans. The construction of the Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad in the mid-1800s further enhanced the county's connectivity and facilitated trade.

Champaign County played a significant role in the abolitionist movement and the Underground Railroad during the mid-1800s. The county's location between the South and Canada made it an important stop for escaping slaves. Many residents provided shelter, provisions, and transportation to freedom, risking their own safety to support the cause of freedom.

The county also witnessed industrial growth in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Manufacturing became a significant source of employment, with companies like the Ohio Match Company and the Packard Motor Car Company establishing factories in the area. These industries brought prosperity and attracted workers from neighboring regions.

In summary, Champaign County, Ohio, has a history rooted in Native American settlements, early European colonization, agricultural development, abolitionist activities, and industrial growth. It continues to be an important county in the state, known for its rich cultural heritage, economic diversity, and agricultural productivity.

  • 1805: Champaign County was established on February 20, 1805.
  • 1810: The first permanent settlement, Urbana, was founded in 1810.
  • 1812: The War of 1812 began, and several residents of Champaign County served in the conflict.
  • 1833: The first courthouse was constructed in Urbana.
  • 1846: The Little Miami Railroad reached Urbana, connecting the county to the national railway network.
  • 1892: Champaign County Historical Society was established to preserve and promote the county's history.
  • 1917-1919: Champaign County contributed to the American effort in World War I.
  • 1938: The Ohio Land Utilization Survey revealed that agriculture was the mainstay of the county's economy.
  • 1966: The Champaign County Airport was constructed near Urbana.
  • 2008: The Champaign County Bicentennial Celebration commemorated the county's 200th anniversary.