Northwest Ohio Tourism
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Mansfield Ohio

Martin Luther King, Jr. SculptureMansfield is the county seat of Richland County, Ohio. James Hedges, Jacob Newman, and Joseph Larwill established the town in 1808. Residents named the community after Jared Mansfield, the surveyor general of the United States.

Mansfield grew slowly, having just 20 houses and 1 store in 1817. By 1846, 2,330 people resided in Mansfield. This tremendous growth resulted from the completion of a railroad that connected Mansfield with Sandusky, Ohio.

In 2000, the city was ranked as the 5th best place in the United States to raise a family, and the United States Conference of Mayors has voted the community one of "America's most livable cities."

Johnny Appleseed

Johnny Appleseed Saves Mansfield by Running a Marathon

John Chapman, more commonly known as Johnny Appleseed, was a common figure through the state of Ohio. His quirky habits and quiet ways had become a regular feature on the frontier. During the War of 1812, everyone on the frontier was on edge. Rumors ran rampant about impending Indian attacks. Militia forces told tales of great battles to the north and the number of Native Americans that had sided with the British during the fighting.

On August 9, 1813, Levi Jones, a local shopkeeper in Mansfield was killed and the rumors that an Indian attack was imminent spread throughout the small village. Settlers living on the outskirts moved into town where 2 blockhouses had been built. These blockhouses were used to store supplies for military forces, but the fort was mostly unprotected. It was at this particular time, that Johnny Appleseed had come to town as he often did during the warmer months. Knowing that a large military force was in the area of Mount Vernon some 26 miles east of there, Johnny took off on an overnight run to bring back reinforcements to help defend the village of Mansfield. Along the way Chapman warned other settlers of the threat.

Mansfield and Abraham Lincoln

In 1857 Abraham Lincoln was not exactly a household name across most of the United States. In fact, very few outside of the political arena were even aware of him but that was all about to change. In 1857 Lincoln decided to run for the US Senate. During his campaign for this office he had several noteworthy debates with Frederick Douglas that became classics in the world of political debate. Suddenly the entire country was aware of the lanky, soft spoken Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln lost his bid for the Senate seat, but later that yea,r Abraham Lincoln received his first official endorsement for the office of President of the United States at a county convention held in Mansfield on November 5, 1858.

Richland Carrousel Park

Richland Carrousel Park

Located in downtown Mansfield is the Richland Carrousel Park that is the first hand-carved carrousel to be built and operated in the United States since the early 1930s. The Richland Carrousel includes 30 horses, 22 menagerie figures and 2 chariots.

Richland Carrousel

Each figure is unique, carved and hand-painted in the style of G.A. Dentzel, one of the most respected carrousel carvers of the early 20th Century. To accompany the carrousel, there is a Stinson Band Organ that plays authentic carrousel music.

The park is open year round with daily hours from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm and Wednesdays open to 8:00 pm.

Richland CarrouselRichland Carrousel Park
75 N. Main Street
Mansfield, Ohio 44902
(419) 522-4223





Heart of the City Cruise In

Live entertainment and lots of autos on display can be found at this annual event in mid-August in historic Downtown Mansfield. The event, which started in the late 1990s, was first put on by the Gent's Car Club. Cars are parked around the town square and the event is free. Expect to see anywhere from 500 - 800 cars. The event draws nationwide attention thanks to being ranked in the top 10 best cruise-in events in the country by Cruisin' Times.

Mansfield MuseumMansfield Memorial Museum

34 Park Ave. West, Mansfield Ohio 44902

The museum is the oldest museum in Richland County and was founded in 1889. Visiting the museum allows you to step back in time to the late 1800s. Artifacts on 2 floors of displays span from Roman to modern times. The museum houses many collections from early Native American, African, Asian, military, and natural history. A display of nearly 600 planes showing the history of aviation is on display.

Historic Ohio State Reformatory

100 Reformatory Rd, Mansfield, Ohio 44905

With the cornerstone laid in 1886, this castle-like prison was designed as a reformatory for young offenders. Abandoned in 1990, the original cell-blocks and administration areas remain intact. Four major motion pictures have been filmed on location including "The Shawshank Redemption" and "Air Force One". The reformatory has been listed on the Travel Channel's "101 Things to do before you Die" and in Entertainment Magazine's "Vacation on Location Top 10". The Historic Ohio State Reformatory invites you to come see this monumental 19th century architectural achievement for yourself.

Make a special visit during the month of October, when the Ohio State Reformatory opens its doors for a haunted prison experience.

Also see:

Kingwood Center

Malabar Farm

PDF Map of historic downtown Mansfield

Mid-Ohio Race Course

Sno Trails Ski Resort