Family walking at Sauder Village’s 1920s Main Street in Archbold (photo by Laura Watilo Blake)

Step into the Past at 4 Living-History Attractions in Ohio

From the beginning of statehood to the canal era to the Roaring 1920s, travel through time for an afternoon to see what life was like here generations ago.

Historic Roscoe Village | Coshocton
During its heyday, the Ohio & Erie Canal was responsible for shaping our state, and today, that era is preserved at Historic Roscoe Village. Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the village’s seven historic stops, where digital kiosks offer brief videos explaining a given structure’s importance, such as the office of Dr. Johnson, the village medical professional. Other interactive locations allow you to watch a blacksmith at work or a broom squire making a broom.

Historic Zoar Village | Zoar
German Separatists seeking religious freedom founded this Tuscarawas County village in 1817, and more than 50 of the buildings and homes that they built during the 19th century are preserved as a National Historic Landmark. Today, visitors to Historic Zoar Village can learn about its past through demonstrations from interpreters dressed in period-appropriate attire. Pay a visit to the tinsmith in his shop or feel the warmth of the ovens in the bakery.

Ohio Village | Columbus
Founded in 1974, Ohio Village is a fictional town rooted in teaching about life in our state during the late 19th century. Visitors can tour up to 18 buildings, including a bicycle shop, funeral home and general store. Costumed interpreters stationed at models of residential homes and a one-room schoolhouse speak to what everyday life looked like during the era. Take a self-guided tour of the village and grounds, and enjoy hands-on experiences like a game of croquet.

Sauder Village | Archbold
Located about 50 miles west of Toledo, Sauder Village is Ohio’s largest nonprofit living-history destination. Since founder Erie Sauder started the village in 1976, it has grown to encompass over 200 acres with more than 40 historic and re-created homes and businesses on display from a broom shop and glassblowing studio to a weaver and baker. Explore the Walk Through Time, which starts with Ohio statehood in 1803 and ends at the village’s 1920s Main Street.