5 experiences to learn more about black history in the region

Looking for a way to celebrate the region’s history during Black History Month?

Whether you have an entire day or only a few hours, here are some events and sites to explore:

1. The Paul Laurence Dunbar House Historic Site, Dayton

Dunbar, one of the first nationally known African-American writers, purchased the two-story brick house at 219 N. Summit St. in Dayton in 1904 for his mother, Matilda. He spent the last years of life in the house under her care.

In 1936, the home became the first state memorial to honor an African-American. Visitors can tour the house, much of it exactly the way it was left after the poet died.

Location: 219 Paul Laurence Dunbar St. in Dayton

Hours: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

2. Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument, Wilberforce

Credit: Lisa Powell

Credit: Lisa Powell

Visit Youngsholm, the home of Charles Young who was the third African American to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point. He went on to achieve the rank of colonel and serve as a military attache despite being born into slavery in 1864.

Location: 1120 U.S. Route 42 East, Wilberforce

Hours: Currently tours are available by appointment only.

Call (937) 352-6757 for visitor information.

3. The Gammon House, Springfield

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

Visit the Gammon House, part of the network of secret routes that made up the underground railroad. The site was built in the 1850s and originally owned by a black abolitionist. It is one of only three existing “stops” in Ohio owned by a free person of color.

The home is known for secret passages and a basement tunnel.

Location: 620 Piqua Place, Springfield

Tours are by appointment or can be made by calling (937) 244-2754.

While in Springfield, visit the statue of Davey Moore, a Springfield featherweight world champion boxer who died after a match at Dodger Stadium in 1963. The statue is located on Limestone Street south of downtown.

4. National Afro American Museum & Cultural Center, Wilberforce

Share African-American history, art and culture at the museum which features regularly changing exhibits and special programs.

The museum is the permanent home of one of the nation’s largest collections of Afro-American materials, with over 9,000 artifacts and artwork, 350 manuscript collections, and thousands of photographs.

Location: 1350 Brush Row Rd., Wilberforce

Hours: Wednesday – Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Admission: Adults, $6; Seniors, $5; Youth, $3 and children 5 and younger are free

RELATED: Treasures from the National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center

5. National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Cincinnati



The museum, which opened in 2004, is dedicated to sharing the history of the Underground Railroad and exploring the continuing struggle for freedom around the world.

A two-story log slave pen in among the important artifacts on display. The slave pen, built in the early 1800s, was moved from Kentucky and reconstructed inside the museum.

Location: 50 E Freedom Way, Cincinnati

Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission: Adults, $16.50; Seniors 60+, $14; Children ages 3-12, $11.50 and children under 3 are free. Last entry is 4:30 p.m.

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