With Bainbridge’s annual Fall Festival of Leaves on tap this weekend, the village’s historical society is inviting the local residents to learn more about the area’s roots.
The Bainbridge Historical Society operates both the historical society museum and the Dr. John Harris Dental Museum. Both will be open during the Fall Festival of Leaves, which is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 15 through Sunday, Oct. 18.
At the historical society museum, historical re-enactors and artisans will be on hand during the festival. Calvin Tanner, a leather artisan, makes hunting bags, shot pouches, haversacks, and other accessories. Blacksmith and whitesmith Jim Hays, makes knives, colonial cooking utensils, and other colonial ironware.
Also at the museum will be Robert Stewart, an author and Native American authority from Cincinnati. He will showcase replicated Native American tools and weapons.
The historical society museum is located in the former Presbyterian Church on North Maple Street. Available for purchase there are the books: “The History of Bainbridge” by Nancy Baum and “Battle of Reeves Crossing” by David Tillis.
The dental museum, which is also maintained by the society, was the first dental school in the United States. During the festival, admission into the museum is free.
In a press releasse, the society said that Bainbridge and the surrounding area have a “rich heritage,” which begins with ancient mound builders who left behind several geometrical earthworks. Only a few remnants of those remain today, including Seip Mound, located east of Bainbridge, and the small Kilvert Mound, located on the western edge of the village.
Other major prehistoric sites include the Baum earthworks and Spruce Hill, both near Bourneville.
The society also describes the origin of Bainbridge, which was founded in 1805 by General Nathaniel Massie. He had founded Chillicothe several years earlier, in 1796. According to the release, Massie’s home still stands about a mile west of the village.
The society lists several notable people who traveled through the area including: Daniel Boone, Simon Kenton, Tecumseh, William Henry Harrison, Henry Clay and Jenny Lind.
Lind once gave an impromptu performance in the grand ballroom of the Stone Tavern, the society adds. The tavern was once located where the Cheesecakes at Mystical Retreat now stands.
Also according to the release, Bainbridge was the birthplace and boyhood home of Clyde Beatty, a famous wild animal trainer.
The Bainbridge Historical Society was founded in 1978. The membership fee to support the organization is $10 each year, starting in January.