Indian Hill Land for Sale
From History to Today – The Land of Indian Hill, Ohio
Native Americans were the stewards of all area land including the land of Indian Hill. Many of the thoroughfares of the Village followed the early Indian trails. There are nearly 20 square miles of land in Indian Hill Ohio, with an elevation of 561 feet. This area was home to the Shawnee, Miami, and Delaware Indian tribes. The villages of the tribes were located in Pickaway and Chillicothe. The Indians lived, hunted, conducted their trading, and played on the riverbanks of the Little Miami River.
A veteran of the Revolutionary War, Major Benjamin Stites was with a surveying party on the Ohio River in 1787 when he saw the tepee’s, horses, canoes, and Indian people fishing on the river bank. Major Benjamin Stites also saw the value of the area located between the two Miami Rivers. As soon as he returned to New Jersey he told Judge John Symmes to purchase the land.
The judge took Major Benjamin Stites advice and purchased close to a million acres from the United State Government. Judge Symmes sold 10,000 acres of land between the Ohio and Little Miami Rivers to Major Stites for $0.66 an acre. The land of Indian Hill was included in the acreage. There has been a little mark up since then - as the land of Indian Hill now sells for over one hundred thousand ($100,000) per acre.
Newtown was one of the first settlements, soon many families moved from Newtown to the hillside to build homes and farm the land. There were countless encounters with the Indians. Legend has it that some Indians went to Nelson’s Station (Madisonville) and stole three horses. One of the Indians was riding a lame horse. When some of the settlers pursued the Indians the Indian riding the lame horse was shot.
Years later the Indian’s remains were found on a farm on the hillside. The name Indian Hill was born. By the early 1800’s the Indians moved from the area allowing the settlers to expand their community. They built three schools and a church. Indian Hill is a paradise in Cincinnati Ohio.
Blome Road Bridge c. 1888
Blome Road Bridge was built in 1888 by The Queen City Bridge Company. It is a one lane bridge that crosses over Sycamore Creek. It is the only surviving bridge by The Queen City Bridge Company. Blome Bridge is 127 years old. It was created with a pin connected Pratt through truss bridge, making it unusual in design. It was composed of six panels, most noted for slight skew. The Queen City Bridge Company used pipe railing that passes through the vertical members and also the end post. It was great for horse and wagon passage.
The Blome Road Bridge was restored by Hamilton County in 1990. Hamilton County built a beam bridge underneath the truss bridge so not to alter the original design and materials.
Buckingham House c. 1790
The Buckingham House is one of the few farm houses left on the land of Indian Hill; built during the Civil War. The Buckingham’s came to Ohio in 1790. They purchased 1,100 acres of land in Indian Hill, known as Camp Dennison. They owned and operated mills on the Little Miami River. The Buckingham home is surrounded by 13 acres of land called Bonnell Park.
Indian Hill Bridges
There are two bridges in Indian Hill. One is located at Shawnee Run Road and State Route 126. This bridge was used by Pennsylvania Railroad trains to move cargo. Today the remnants of the bridge can still be seen by bicyclist and joggers. It is a beautiful scenic area enjoyed by many of the residence of Indian Hill. The second bridge, Blome Bridge, is located at Spooky Hollow Road; built for the Cincinnati and Chillicothe Railroad Company. It is unique because it covers a waterway and a road. This is a popular fishing spot in Indian Hill. There are several renovated bridges along Loveland-Madeira Road, constructed during the Depression era. There are many private footbridges and new village gardens and homes. Each footbridge is unique because of the materials used to build them.
Camp Jim B
The Boy Scouts became popular in America in the early 1940’s. An Indian Hill Ranger, Jim Blankenship liked the idea of citizenship, learning, and camping. Jim started a Boy Scout Troop in 1944. Mr. Blankenship recruited his friend and co worker, Fred Meyer to help him with the seven boy troop; Fred became the scoutmaster. Fred would drive the boys to the weekly meetings that were held at The Cincinnati Country Day School gymnasium. Fred then drove the boy’s home before going to work his shift as a Ranger in Indian Hill. The Boy Scout Troop had several activities they enjoyed. Their favorite was camping. They would have to raise money for such an activity. The Boy Scout Troop 501 found ways to do this in Indian Hill through paper drives and the Indian Hill Annual White Elephant Sale. Jim Blankenship would repair broken lawnmowers and bicycles for the Troop to sell. The Boy Scout Troop would go camping every other month on the land of Indian Hill. They camped at the Kroger Hills Preserve located behind Willow Hills Drive, Albers Woods near the Little Red Schoolhouse, and in the back of Hinkle Home on Given Road.
Each year Boy Scout Troop 501 and Scoutmaster Fred Meyer along with Jim Blankenship would take them on far away camping trips. The boys would ride in the back of Jim Blankenship’s pickup truck for these trips. Jim Blankenship and Fred Meyer took them to Michigan, Kentucky, and Canada to camp. Jim Blankenship realized The Boy Scout Troop needed a meeting place to call their own. Jim Blankenship used his own money to purchase 13 acres of land in Indian Hill for $7000.00. The cabin the Boy Scout Troop used was built by the fathers of boy Scouts in 1950. They named the camp after the man that made it all possible; John Blankenship, Camp Jim B. In 1966 they added a meeting hall. It has hardwood floors and a large stone fireplace in the main room. As time passed more renovations took place adding storage areas, four patrol rooms, and a conference room. Camp Jim B is a unique camp on Indian Hill land. It is surrounded by a grove of mature sycamore and beech trees off of Shawnee Run Road. A creek runs through the camp site as well. Towards the end of the 1950s there were three troops and an Explorer post. The troops merged into one Troop in 1986; Troop 502. To this day the Boy Scout Troop 502 meets weekly at the meeting hall in Camp Jim B. The Scoutmaster continues the tradition of personal fitness, citizenship, and character development.
Elliot House 1800
This is a large stone house on Indian Hill land. It was owned by John Elliott and remained in the Elliott family until 1898 when it was sold to the Sterrett family. This is the oldest house built on Indian Hill land; also one of the oldest houses of the Miami Purchase. John Elliot traveled to America from Northern Ireland around 1784, he was 22 years old. A year later two of his brothers joined him; the ship wrecked causing the deaths of the rest of the Elliott family. John Elliott married; in 1787 he and his wife settled on a mill site he had discovered earlier on the Little Miami River at the mouth of Sycamore Creek. They arrived at the mill site with a horse, a cow, a gun, an axe, and some small articles. They settled into a large sycamore tree; the interior was decayed forming a room eleven feet in size. The Elliott’s purchased the land at the bank of the river. This is where they built the Elliott House. They used a bridged manual (hand-hewn) and water-powered technologies to construct their home. John Elliott used an old log gutter that was from a 40 foot tree. The house had wooden floors which were sawed with water power. The limestone walls; two feet thick were hand cut. They built a beehive oven for cooking. This is the home where their daughters were married; the home where their son’s returned to live and raise their children with their brides. They became wealthy millers—building a dam across the river, set up a flour mill, a saw mill, wool carding mill, and distillery. Their products were sold down the Ohio River, the Mississippi River, and New Orleans. The Elliott House was the only house in the area that had central heating. They used a large cypress tank to store water for the bathroom on the second floor. The water had to be pumped up stairs from the kitchen then stored in the cypress tank. Each family member had to take a turn at pumping the water into the bathroom. In 1898 the Elliott home was purchased by the Sterrett family. The Sterrett family remodeled and modernized the home. They closed in the back stairway and covered the outside stonework. The Elliott House had its own icehouse between the back walk and the porch. The ice was cut from the river. They also had a walk-in cooler for meat, milk, and other food that needed to remain cold. The Elliott House changed hands again in 1920. Henry S. Livingston deeded the home to the United Jewish Social Agency. They were in charge of Camp Livingston, a summer camp that Mr. Livingston created in memory of his only son. Once in the hands of the Jewish Social Agency they added a large dining area and kitchen to use as the camp’s main lodge. Smaller cabins surrounded the area. Camp Livingston was bought by the Village of Indian Hill in 1967. The Elliott House was used as an outdoor education center and school. Tours were conducted to show the children how the people of other centuries lived. Once the Ohio School Foundation Act was passed the tours stopped because the Elliott House did not meet school building codes. The Elliott House Restoration Committee wanted to restore the home to its original form. They obtained archeological studies and architectural evaluations. The Elliott House was stripped down; the house was actually rectangular in shape once the additions to the home were removed. Stripping the Elliott House allowed the definition of the original walls, beams, windows, stairwells, and chimneys to show. They restored the two chimneys and replaced the shingled roof; the exterior masonry was re-pointed. The Elliott House Restoration Committee ran out of money no longer able to continue the restoration the Village sold the building. In 1985 the house and land were leased for 99 years to the current dwellers of the Elliott House. They agreed to restore the home. The house has been rebuild, preserving the original features from the solid cherry staircase to the fireplaces. The Elliott House stands alone on land at the bank of the Little Miami River, where the Elliott mills once stood.
Indian Hills Fall Out Shelters
During The Eisenhower Administration America was going through the Cold War from 1947-1951. Jet engines and tool specialization were being manufactured in Cincinnati; Cincinnati is also a few miles southwest of Wright Patterson Air Force Base. This caused a lot of concern for the people in rural Indian Hill. The Eisenhower Administration passed out survival pamphlets adding to the fear of the people around Cincinnati, Ohio.
Popular Mechanics had an article about fallout shelters including blue prints. The cover of Life magazine featured a civilian fallout suit. Good Housekeeping has several articles about what was needed in the event of a bomb. Americans were told that people in the urban communities would not survive should the bomb drop. Those in the rural areas stood a chance if they built fallout shelters, and that is exactly what the people did on Indian Hill land. Private bunkers were built in the Village on Kugler Mill, Given, Redbird Hollow, Council rock, and Indian Hill Roads. Some were architect designed with heat and air conditioning units. It was an expensive undertaking. Many other residents kept a basement corner supplied with oil lamps, oil, flashlights, generators, chemical toilets, waste disposal bags, cots or beds, portable radios, first aid kits, water storage drums, gas, matches, escape hatches, food, and guns. As time passed and rumors of war stopped the residence of Indian Hill turned their fallout shelters in recreation rooms and gardens. Indian Hill Shooting Ranges Indian Hill’s population grew in the 20th century bringing with it new problems. They had their share of bootlegging, horse and chicken thieves, and other crimes. Because of all crime and the growth of the population of Indian Hill the police felt they needed to become superior marksmen. In the beginning they practiced at a small two-point range behind the original Ranger station; the old Swing Line’s Ramona Depot at Drake and Shawnee Run Roads. That was not enough distance for shooting chicken thieves so they trained extensively at Redbird Hollow. To get to Redbird Hollow the Rangers had to cross the creek on a swinging bridge then walk the rail bed to a lodge. They began their targets at a 25-yard range alone the banks of the creek and a 50-yard range parallel to the Road but this was dangerous to those passing by. The police practiced anyway and they started entering competitions. The police started winning trophies and recognition in local and national competitions. It was necessary to expand the range. With the help of Senator Robert Taft they purchased 31 acres from the federal government that had been used as a Civil War post at Camp Dennison. Camp Dennison was perfect because it already had a National Guard range and they created a second range out of the stone fireplace. Today over forty-five organizations use the Indian Hill Police Range for target practice, not including the Village Rangers. It is closed on Mondays for the Village Rangers. It is open Monday through Saturday, closed on Sundays. The Hamilton County Police Association and the Secret Service use the Indian Hill Police Range for target practice too. There is a civilian range on the lower level called “The Pit” (called that because the Pennsylvania Railroad quarried gravel there for their railroad beds. Before 1958 it was called Camp Ross—The National Guard practiced there. It is said that they used to fire locally made cannons to ensure they would not explode. From 1963-1983 the Junior Rifle Club used the Pit. Over 100 Village youths between the ages of 12-18 trained and competed to prepare for competitions in Ohio and other nearby states. The Junior Rifle Club placed second one year. After which they went on to win first place in all positions of competition for five years in a row. Today the Indian Hill Gun Club with other 500 members participates on Tuesdays and Thursday evenings in the shotgun shoot. Gun safety is strictly enforced. There is always a supervisor and an assistant on duty when the range is open. They offer informal instruction. All youth must be accompanied by a parent; earplugs and eye protection are a must. They also have buzzers and flashing lights signaling cease-fire conditions. For information about the Gun Club and Shooting Range call (513) 561-6500. James Drake House c. 1850 The James Drake House was built in the mid-nineteenth century. The James Drake Home is a two-story brick with asymmetrical façade. The Redbird Creek runs though the property. Upper Mill Road used to run through the hill to Wooster Pike, allowing easy access to Newtown Bridge and the Armstrong Mills on the Little Miami River. It is located on 74 acres of Indian Hill land. It faces Drake Road. Drake Road was once known as Upper Mill Road. Jefferson School c. 1851 There are three schoolhouses in Indian Hill. Each named after an American; Washington, Franklin, and Jefferson. Little Red Schoolhouses were the norm in the early nineteenth century. These schoolhouses replaced the one-room log schools. Each of the schools was built with local bricks. The schools were not only for educating the children of Indian Hill. They were utilized for social gatherings, local festivities, and town meetings. They stand today on Indian Hill land each serving the community in different ways. The Jefferson School built in 1851 had a door where the front center window is. At the rear, they added an additional room prior to 1900 allowing the division of the first through fourth grades and the fifth through ninth grades. Another addition was made in 1920, doubling the school in size. Due to the growth of the community by the 1940’s it was necessary to build bigger schools to accommodate all the children. Jefferson School is now called the Jefferson Center. It houses the offices and acts as a meeting room for the Armstrong Chapel Church. John Broadwell House c. 1804 Located on 160 acres is a two-story stone house. Stone homes were not typical for Indian Hill when it was built in 1804. It also has a double entrance. The house is much larger than its original four rooms not including the kitchen. Today it is part of The Cincinnati County Day School Campus House. It is located at Shawnee Run Road and Given Road. A Log Shelter This Log House was originally located on the Three C Highway near Clarksville, Ohio. The Three C Highway connected the towns of Cincinnati, Chillicothe, and Columbus. Passengers would travel by stagecoach. It would take days to reach a destination so Inns were created. A Log Shelter is one of those Inns. A local farmer took the two-story Log House apart with the plan to restore it. He numbered each log so to put it back exactly as it had been built. His plans changed and he advertized in the Sunday Cincinnati Enquirer’s Gold Chest column. A couple in Indian Hill purchased the Log House and moved it on to Indian Hill land. They restored the exterior it to its original form with the help of an architect. The couple changed the interior of the Log House. Originally the Log House had a separate outside entrance to the second floor. The first floor was used for people visiting with each other, eating a meal, or waiting for the next stage coach. The couple added a stair way and a loft. Heat was provided by woodstoves, and there is evidence today on some of the logs of a long-ago fire. Also added were a fireplace, a shed lean-to, a rustic front porch, and several windows. A Log House could be built with a single bit axe. Since the restoration of the cabin it is being used as a guest house. It is currently owned and protected by a private trust. The artistry of the Log Shelter is being preserved. Old Armstrong Chapel c.1831 Old Armstrong Chapel is a one-story brick church that was built during the summer of 1831. Samuel Earhart baked the bricks from clay at his property on Brill Road. This Chapel has always been a community church. It was originally affiliated with the Methodist denomination because of the Methodist circuit riders always coming to the area. Before the Chapel was built church services were held in a settler’s home. Nathanial Armstrong purchased the property and deeded it for a place to worship and a burial ground. Armstrong Cemetery The Armstrong Cemetery sits behind the Old Armstrong Chapel; located at the intersection of Drake Road and Indian Hill Road. Nathaniel Armstrong owned a family farm of 300 acres of land in Indian Hill. Nathaniel Armstrong had six sons and three daughters. 23 members of the Armstrong family are buried at Armstrong Cemetery. The Armstrong Cemetery is so old that many of the tome stones have deteriorated and cannot be read. The Armstrong Cemetery reveals stories about some of the residents the land of Indian Hill. The cemetery is full of Indian Hill history dating back to the oldest recorded burial in 1807. Her name is Hannah Lavertew, Hannah died at the age of 23. Alexander Barns was not the same after his wife, Alassana passed. The words that are still visible say, “Since coldness wraps this mortal clay…” There are a lot of symbolic carvings; a weeping willow tree and an outstretched hand etched into the stone of a tomb. There are four markers for the Howard family. The mother Sally died in 1833, two of her children, Rhoda, one year and nine months old; Phebe at age two. The father George died at the age of 48. There is a tall stone pyramid within the cemetery that can be seen from Indian Hill Road. It stands as the marker for the son of the Rothenhoefer who died when he was eight months old. There are many infants laid to rest at The Armstrong Cemetery in Indian Hill. There is a newer section to The Armstrong Cemetery. Many of the World War I victims of influenza are buried there; the graves unmarked. These are South of the earlier tombstones in the old section of The Armstrong Cemetery. Each Memorial Day the community keeps tradition alive with a prayer service, a reading of the Gettysburg Address, and a speech by the Mayor. They also recognize the veterans that attend the event. In years gone by the citizens of Indian Village observed Decoration Day (Memorial Day) with a parade from Jefferson School to Armstrong Cemetery. The parade was led by the Indian Hill Band. Flowers were put on graves and the America Flag was placed at the tomb stones of the soldiers dating back to the Revolutionary War. Camp Livingston Children from the ages of 6-16 attended Camp Livingston. It started in 1919 and flourished until 1968. It was along the banks of the Little Miami River on North Given Road. Today Given Road is the site of the village soccer fields and Livingston Lodge. The camp was originally named The Helen Trounstine Camp. The name was changed in 1920 when H.S. Livingston established a memorial for Lt. Robert Krohn Livingston, his only son. Robert died with influenza during World War I. H. S. Livingston wanted a summer camp for children to experience the outdoors, learn to swim, and learn an appreciation for nature in a healthy environment. The camp site had barracks style buildings. The programs of the camp included nature study, photography, horseback riding, handicrafts, canoeing, drama, and most sports. The camp had two campfire areas, ball fields, tennis courts, and a swimming pool for the children to learn to swim. The camp grew to 25 acres of land. Camp Livingston emphasized learning to work together. It was more important than competition. There was the building of the duck pond, an outdoor chapel of tree stumps, and a chicken coop. The children participated in daily barrack inspections, skit night, flag ceremonies, and amateur night. Camp Livingston was predominantly Jewish though children of other faiths came to Camp Livingston for a week during the summer months. The camp had separate sessions for boys and girls for the first 20 years. Sometime in the 1940’s the camp became a co-education camp. More than 15,000 children attended Camp Livingston before the camp moved to Indiana. There were four cabins for the girls named The Alps up on the hill; three boys’ bunkhouses were near a pathway to the river across Given Road. There was a small barn for the horses, a canteen where the children could purchase post cards or candy. The Elliott House was the Director’s residence, and Livingston Lodge was the Recreational Hall. There was a hobby house too. Children came from West Virginia, Kentucky, Cincinnati, Michigan and Tennessee to enjoy Camp Livingston. It cost $7.00 to attend Camp Livingston in 1940. Scholarships were available for those that needed it. I, myself attended Camp Livingston. Water tower c. 1938 This water tower is the only elevated water source for the land in Indian Hill. It is the water source for Indian Hill, Madeira, and Terrance Park. It was constructed in 1938 on nine acres of land, supplying water to Madisonville and a portion of Indian Hill. In 1948 the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that the City of Cincinnati was not required to provide water to Indian Hill because Indian Hill land is not a part of the City of Cincinnati. This caused The Village of Indian Hill to purchase the tower and any existing mains. The water system has been enlarged with a three million gallon underground storage facility at the Water Tower site. It is now an American Water Landmark. Redbird Hollow The Swing Line was an inter-urban train rail line that linked Cincinnati with the suburbs and the villages in the nearby counties. The owners named it the C&C—Cincinnati and Columbus Traction Line; also connecting Norwood and Hillsboro. There were overhead electrical cables and narrow rails joining Allandale (Indian Hill) Madeira, and Terrance Park. The Swing Line closed in the early 1920s. A company was formed called the Camargo Realty Company. They hired A.T. Taylor an architect out of Cleveland. He created a layout design to include Camargo Clubhouse, a riding club, polo grounds, and a golf course. A. T. Taylor included lots to be purchased and used for home sites. The lots were large parcels on the knolls of Indian Hill. The bottomland (considered less desirable) called The Reserve was left vacant. Redbird Hollow Creek was part of the bottomland. The Camargo Club wanted to sell the hollow in 1963 to raise money. The property owners at the west end came together with the residents along the middle and created a nonprofit corporation called Redbird Hollow. Gifts of land were given to Green Areas Trust. The Nature Conservancy formed a private association with the Indian Hill land owners on both sides of Redbird Hollow. The citizens were going to preserve the valley and its nature trail. By 1964 sixteen families created a preservation society, each donating portions of the property and paying Camargo Realty for the property. Members of Redbird were owners of the land around the hollow and residents of Camargo Club Drive. Since then the Hollow has been looked after by the Redbird Hollow Association, the Village Public Works Department and the Nature Conservancy volunteers. In August of 1969 there was a tornado leaving many trees uprooted or their tops snapped off. Then honeysuckle, euonymus, and ranunculus vicaria ran rampant over the forest floor over powering the Redbud trees. The Red Bird Hollow Association had to deal with the possibility of closing the trail, created a permit system, and posting restrictions of the area. Redbird Hollow survived all of its natural disasters. Redbird Hollow is now a quiet preserve with wildflowers where trees shade the trail. It is an oasis for deer, owls, woodpeckers, fox, coyote, and sapsuckers. It spans across 54 acres of land located in the heart of Indian Hill with its numerous paths, the ridges created long ago by the glaciers that spread to southwestern Ohio. Stephan Field Stephan Field is named after Paul Stephan. He was a most enthusiastic about knothole baseball. He inspired hundreds of boys to play in the 1950s and 1960s. Stephan Field sits at the southeastern corner of Drake and Shawnee Run Roads. It has two lakes behind it. Paul was married to a wonderful woman by the name of Alice. Paul and Alice were raised on farms in Brown County, Ohio. They moved to Clifton while Alice worked on her degree from the University of Cincinnati. Paul worked in a government office at the stockyards. Paul was the first local broadcaster of agricultural news. Paul quoted noon market prices of livestock on WLW radio. He left the stockyards to become the superintendent at Schroth Packing Company. The Stephan’s family grew. Paul and Alice decided they wanted to return to farm life. Paul was offered a position as a manger of a Graves Road estate. He worked there from 1950 until 1963. He went on to manage a Shawnee Run Road estate while the Stephan boys attended school in Indian Hill. It was in 1953 that Paul’s son, Paul, Junior asked his dad to manage his baseball team starting Paul Senior’s commitment to baseball in Indian Hill. Paul Stephan’s never played baseball himself though he was a Reds fan. Paul Stephan, Senior was the coach and manager for two of his sons teams, then the manager and promoter for countless other teams spanning over 20 years. Paul would spend up to six hours a night on baseball. The team practiced where ever they could in Indian Hill; the Village diamond, The Country Day School, and Drake Elementary. Paul did every job within baseball for his teams. He carpooled, found umpires, sponsors, uniforms, and equipment. Paul even lined and dragged the baseball fields. The boys on Paul’s teams loved him. They were encouraged to practice daily. His son Paul Junior was the batting practice pitcher for the Cleveland Indians for 15 years. In 1953 Paul Stephan’s had one team by 1955 he was had three. Stephan’s loved baseball so much he tried to find a team for every boy that wanted to play. Paul stated, “Small boys can compete on an equal basis with larger boys.” By 1962 Paul had 12 teams; many Indian Hill young boys learned competition and sportsmanship from Paul Stephan. They won championship District Titles. The trophies are displayed in the Village Hall. Because Paul Stephan gave so much of his time and heart to the youth of Indian Hill Stephan Field was named and dedicated to Paul Stephan in August of 1964. The Council members and the Mayor gave speeches. Three Cincinnati Reds players delivered a letter of commendation. Paul Stephan was inducted into the Cincinnati Knothole Hall of Fame. Today Stephan Field has state-of-the art playground equipment. The field is used for walking, jogging, tennis, dog walking, soccer, picnics, and of course baseball. There were artistic monuments erected in 1995 to show the major eras and the significance of organizations in Indian Hill over the last 200 years. A man by the name of Philip O. Geier along with his life-long friend Leslie Applegate walked the one mile trail around Stephan Field on a daily basis for as far back as Philip could remember. For Philip’s 90th birthday his family donated a bronze sculpture of Philip walking with his friend. Sycamore Creek Church 1820 Sycamore Creek Church was built in the mid-1820’a. It is a stone structure. The building served as a church until the 1870’s. A second story was added and it was operated by Conrad Zurwelle as a mill; he ground corn and wheat. After he passed Sycamore Creek Church became a residence during the 1890’s. Now it serves as a barn. Waite Smith House 1782 The Waite Smith House was actually built in Watertown, Connecticut in 1782. In the early 1950’s it was mandated for demolition. Instead the home was moved to Indian Hill land in 1953. The Waite Smith House was a typical style of Georgian design. It was built with a central hall and two large chimney’s that provided for eight fireplaces. A new wing was constructed in the same style as the original house; the frame of the home is oak, pegged together, and the siding is the original siding from 1782. The Waite Smith House is one of the oldest houses in Ohio. One of the beautiful details of the Georgian architecture in the newer colonies at the last half of the eighteenth century was the classical details, the wood-frame construction with shingles or clapboard siding and a central chimney. The Green Acres Foundation began using the Waite Smith House as a classroom in 1992, for the children that visit the large farm. Washington Heights School 1873 the Little Red Schoolhouse Washington Heights School was built in 1873-1874. There were 52 children taught in the first class by Schoolmaster Charles Earhart. The students composed of all grade levels. It was used as a one-room school until 1940 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Double front doors open into a vestibule; made of local brick, with the schoolroom having hardwood floors. There is a 200-pound bell, still rung today. This school was an unusual build for a school house because of the masonry detail. The blackboard is massive in size. It has ten large arched windows, high ceiling, and a ventilation system; an amazing example of the architecture of the 19th century. The land that the school was housed on was sold by Josephine and Ambrose Buckingham in September of 1873. It was sold to the school board to build a new improved building to educate the children of Indian Hill. With the passage of the Ohio School Foundation Act the building stopped being a schoolhouse. Many small schools were organized into larger districts; promoting the development of more efficient and organized school district. The land of Indian Hill was incorporated in 1941. The Washington School became the administrative offices of the new Village. In 1956 a new Administration Building was completed at Drake and Shawnee Run Roads. The old school left vacant; used on occasion as a community building. In 1961 it became the offices for the Board of Education until 1972. The Village Council grew concerned about the vacant building so they incorporated the residents to find a new use for the Schoolhouse. Tyler Emerson led the charge and the Indian Hill Historical Museum Association was formed in 1973. It was the duty of the Association to research, collect, locate, and preserve memorabilia of the history of Indian Hill and the surrounding area. It was also their task to renovate the schoolhouse and develop it into the Community Historical Center. The name Indian Hill Historical Museum Association has been changed to the Indian Hill Historical Society. This group of people has grown to 500 families. The Little Red Schoolhouse is available for meetings or party rental by the members. It is also the center of most the Indian Hill Historical Societies activities. The monthly board meetings and other programs held there. The land of Indian Hill today – Home to nearly 6,000 people: And many horses! Bridle Trails – There are over 150 miles of bridle trails over the land of Indian Hill. The bridle trails are maintained by The Village of Indian Hill Public Works Department. Trails have been rerouted, mowing when necessary, weed-eating done, and tree trimming each year as needed. If you are on the bridle trails and see any hazards or obstacles please contact the supervisor at 513-831-3712 or email Jerry Hensley with the posted trail number and a description of the problem. A bridle trail license is required to ride on the land of Indian Hill trails. Prices and instructions for riding the Indian Hill Bridle Trails are listed here: Residents of the land of Indian Hill Individual Membership: $75.00 for each rider Family Memberships: $150.00 for the first two riders and $15.00 for each additional Family Member. Must be immediate family under the age of 21. Individual Memberships: $100.00 for each rider with a onetime initiation fee of $150.00. Family Memberships: $200.00 for the first two riders and $20.00 for each additional family member. Must be immediate family under the age of 21. There is also a onetime initiation fee of $150.00 per rider. The Bridle Trail Year runs from June 1st to Many 31st each year. Half year memberships are available AFTER December 1st for half of the membership fees. Guest passes are available for guests of bridle trail members. All guests must be riding with a licensed bridle trail member in order to obtain a guest pass. Guest passes are $5.00 per day for each Village resident guest and $10.00 per day for each non-resident guest. If daily guest passes to any one guest exceeds twelve times in one year, they will be asked to purchase a yearly license. Licensed trail riders and their guest can obtain a guest pass at the Village Administration office or the Ranger’s station 24 hours a day. For more information on obtaining a bridle trail license, please contact our Administration office at 513-561-6500. Parks and Recreation There are soccer and lacrosse fields, a basketball court, baseball and softball diamonds, and tennis courts. There are restroom facilities, nature trails, playgrounds, picnic areas, bridle trails, and walk paths within The Village of Indian Hill’s parks. Stephan Field Stephan Field has a paved walking path that surrounds three baseball and softball diamonds as well as a youth soccer field, a playground for the children, basketball court, tennis courts, picnic tables, park benches and restroom facility. This field is 4/10 of a mile in size. Stephan Field is located at the intersection of Shawnee Run and Drake Road. Within Stephan Field is an entrance to The Redbird Hollow Trail. The Redbird Hollow Trail is a 1.5 mile trail. It extends from Stephan Field to South Given Road which has a roadside pull-off. Sycamore Creek Area and Camp Livingston Restrooms and a playground are available within this area. It has a paved walking trail that is 7/10th of a mile through the woods and around five soccer fields. The Livingston Lodge is located in this park. The lodge is available for rental from the Village. You can find this park at 9350 Given Road. Camp Dennison Memorial Park This park has two walking trails. One is a rugged walk along the bank of the Little Miami River with amazing scenic views. The other walking trail is paved and is one-mile long. The park is considered a great full family park because it also offers a playground, sheltered picnic tables, and park benches. Due to the open space of this park it is a great location for kite flyers, radio controlled airplanes and drones as well as Frisbee throwers. Camp Dennison Memorial Park has three baseball diamonds, three soccer and lacrosse fields, and a batting cage. Camp Dennison Memorial Park is located on State Route 126 in Camp Dennison. Rheinstrom Park This park is great for walkers who enjoy an 8/10th of a mile paved walking trail while enjoying the 27 acres of specimen trees. Blue Bird Trail is also in this park. You can reach this park by traveling to 8105 Graves Road. Bird Sanctuary There is a birdbath fountain and a number of ornamental trees and shrubs. There are benches to accommodate the bird lovers. It is though generous donations that the Bird Sanctuary has so many plant species attracting a numerous variety of birds. This park is located at the intersection of Drake Road and Shawnee Run Road. Whitacre Park If you appreciate Rolling Meadows and wooded hills this rugged walking trail is perfect for you. The trail is 3/4ths of a mile with a bark base. There are separate bridle trails that begin at this park and connect to the Village Bridle Trails. This park is located on Given Road between Kugler Mill Road and Shawnee Run Road. Radio Range Park Radio Range Park has a covered shelter, great for picnics. There are large lawn areas, walking trails and bluebird boxes to enjoy. This park is located on Indian Hill Road. It was given to the Village of Indian Hill by the National Park Service’s Federal Lands to Parks Program in 1972. Bonnell Park This park has fountain gardens and the bluebirds love it here. They are usually present. This park offers fields and a wooded hillside. This area is also the home of the Indian Hill Historical Society. It is located at 8650 Camargo Road. Drake Park This park has three baseball diamonds and restroom facility. It also offers a paved ½ mile walking path. The path is connected to the Stephan Field walking path. All you have to do is walk across Drake Road and there it is! Drake Park is located on Drake Road. Steer Meadow This is the perfect place for a quiet morning, afternoon, or early evening; alone or with loved ones. The field is an open vista. Bluebird boxes have been carefully places in Steer Meadow to attract the bluebirds. The Bluebirds love Steer Meadow. It is located on Keller Road between Loveland-Madeira Road and Given Road. Rowe Arboretum Nine beautiful acres of nature, with plant specimens, even those of summer. There is a walking path that circles through the Arboretum so you do not miss the lilacs, crabapples, dwarf conifers, and evergreens. Rowe Arboretum is a paradise in Indian Hill. The Arboretum is located on Muchmore Road. The Grand Valley Preserve Image 379 acres of wildlife and natural beauty. When you come here bring your camera and binoculars, there is so much to see and experience. The Grand Valley Preserve is a former gravel excavation site. The Village obtained it for Indian Hill in 2002. Since that time Indian Hill has been restoring it to be what it was before the digging. The Grand Valley Preserve is located in Camp Dennison. There are miles of walking trails and two lakes have been converted into one lake. There are many species of birds, including the American Bald Eagle. This is a great place to walk, canoe, and fish. GRAND VALLEY MISSION STATEMENT AND OBJECTIVES: 1. Develop a master plan for the property that will insure the highest level of benefits to a broad range of users while restoring Grand Valley to a pristine natural area. 2. Protect unique and important wildlife species through meaningful use restrictions and responsible site design criteria. 3. Provide for the construction of necessary recreation facilities and other low impact uses which comply with the mission statement. 4. Employ very strict standards for effluent discharge to insure the maintenance of a high quality water system. 5. Retain ownership of the property and provide for the continued operation of the facilities and uses to insure that the property remains a beneficial asset to the Indian Hill residential water customers. Note: Only certain activities are permitted at Grand Valley Preserve. Any activity, at the discretion of the Village of Indian Hill, may be suspended at any time, for a specified length of time and/or in a certain area, due to construction activities. For additional information call 513.979.6221 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. GRAND VALLEY GATE The schedule of the gate opening changes with the season based on dusk and dawn hours. The entrance is for authorized card holders and their guests. The entrance is controlled by an electronic gate. It will only open during specified hours. Access cards will not open the gate before or after the permitted entrance times to the Preserve. Guest are not permitted to enter the Preserve after the lock out time. A sign at the entrance states the time the Preserve closes. You must be out of the Preserve at the designated closing time. Do not park your car outside the gate area to enter Grand Valley. You will receive a citation for parking on a NO PARKING ZONE. The entrance is located on State Route 126. GRAND VALLEY ACCESS CARDS Access Cards are only available at the Indian Hill Administration Building. They are located at 6525 Drake Road, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. A Photo ID is required. Each Indian Hill residential water customer can receive one access card at no charge. One additional card may be purchase for $10.00. There is a limit of 2 cards per household. To enter the Preserve you must swipe the card in front of the card reader at the gate; opening the gate and permitting you to drive your vehicle into the Preserve during hours of operation. If you bring a guest to the Preserve the guest must leave when you do. DOG LEASH REGULATION For the safety of your dog they may be unleashed on the North Trail and the West Overlook Trail. Keep your dog under control. There are no exceptions to dogs being off their leash on any other trails. Coyotes Attack Dog at Grand Valley! Dogs have been attacked by coyotes in Grand Valley. Usually in February when coyotes breed; they are more aggressive. It is advised that you keep your dog close to you will in the park. If your dog is attacked please report this to Grand Valley staff in person or by telephone at 513-616-4723 or 513-615-3329. In case of an emergency you can reach the Indian Hill Rangers at 513-561-7000. Fishing at Grand Valley All fish are catch and release except the following limits per person per day (daily bag limits): Largemouth Bass: 11 to 13 inches No Limit Crappie: 10 inch minimum Limit 4 Yellow Perch: 10 inch minimum Limit 4 Catfish: 12 to 24 inches Limit 4 Bluegill: 6 inch minimum Limit 10 Common Carp: Any size No Limit NOTE: Any groups of more than two persons accompanying a pass holder to fish are not to take more than twice the daily bag limit of any of the about species of fish. REGARDLESS to the number of passes the pass holder or others in their household may possess. THERE ARE NO EXCEPTIONS EVER. Two small lakes are located on the Northeastern side of the Preserve property. FISHING IS PROHIBITED! There are signs posted do not ignore them. Regarding the other lakes, fishing from the boat is permitted. Fishing is permitted on all of these lakes except the NORTH LAKE—fishing on the bank is prohibited. If you do not have your own boat there are canoes on the property that you may use. BOATS EQUIPPED WITH GASOLINE MOTORS ARE NOT PERMITTED TO BE ON THE LAKE AT ANY TIME. IT DOES NOT MATTER IF THE MOTOR IS NOT IN USE. NO GASOLINE MOTORS PERMITTER ON THE LAKE. THE USE OF ELECTRIC TROLLING MOTORS IS PERMITTED. A FISHING LICENSE IS NOT REQUIRED KEEP GRAND VALLEY CLEAN Do not discard water bottles, paper, cigarette butts or other trash on the shoreline or anywhere else in Grand Valley Preserve. Trash cans are available or take your trash with you. REPORT ANYONE THAT YOU SEE LITTERING TO THE PRESERVE MANAGER OR A GRAND VALLEY EMPLOYEE ON DUTY. THE INDIAN HILL RANGERS ARE AT 513-561-7000. Spring Nesting Season Grand Valley Preserve is the home of many wild birds, ducks, and geese. These animals build their nests here for the purpose of laying their eggs in a safe environment. If you should come across any nests please do not touch them. Enjoy them from a distance. There are some nests on the ground. We try to mark them with a small orange flag or orange cone. If you come across them marked or unmarked, respect our wildlife; do not disturb the nest, enjoy them from a distance. The American Bald Eagles start visiting Grand Valley Reserve in mid fall and remain until late spring. Check the trees located just south of the curve on the main road near the lake or the Sycamore tree just west of the North Lake near route 126.