Miamisburg: In the Beginning

Adena Culture

Here are some facts about Miamisburg’s history that you may not know. Long before Bullwinkles and TJ Chumps, before bike trails and car cruise-ins, there existed another culture.

The Adena Indians, a Pre-Columbian Native American culture, existed from 1000 to 200 B.C. in a time known as the early Woodland Period. This culture consisted of a number of related Native American societies sharing a burial complex and ceremonial system in locations mostly in the Central Ohio Valley.

Lasting traces of Adena culture are still seen in their substantial earthworks. Once Adena mounds numbered in the hundreds, but only a number of Adena earthen monuments still survive today. One such mound, known as the Miamisburg Mound, is the highest conical mound in Ohio and possibly the world. In addition, they built an enclosure of earthworks from 3 to 10 feet high by 50 feet wide at the base. The earthworks enclosed their village, the site of which now comprises the “downtown” area of Miamisburg. Huge trees grew on the walls and bricks made from its clay eventually went into houses and buildings of the town.

Historical records show that in the early 17th century the indigenous Algonquin peoples organized the tribes of the area into the Miami Confederation, which fought to protect the lands from the unfriendly Iroquois. The most powerful tribes in the confederation were the Miami (specifically the Wea and Piankashaw bands). The valley between the Great and the Little Miami Rivers was the hunting ground for the Miami tribe. At that time no settlements existed on the hunting grounds. The stamping grounds and villages were located on the west side of the Great Miami River. When the Greenville Treaty was signed in 1795, essentially ending the Indian resistance in the Northwest territory, settlers began arriving in the lush Miami Valley.

About 1797, Zachariah Hole came with his family from Virginia and fearing trouble with the local Indians, he built a stockade on the east bank of the Great Miami River opposite the mouth of Bear Creek. He found the Indians friendly. To the stockade came squatters, surveying parties, and settlers mostly from Pennsylvania who had taken out grants and lived there until their own cabins were completed; hence the small community came to be known as “Hole’s Station.”
 
On Feb. 20, 1818, four men from Pennsylvania – Emanuel Gebhart, Jacob Kercher, Dr. John Treon and Dr. Peter Treon – offered for sale at public auction 90 lots in a new town by the name of Miamisburg. Situated on the left bank of the Great Miami River, the plat was divided into square lots containing one-fifth of an acre.

The name Miamisburg was derived from the Miami Indian tribe that resided there, combining “Miamis” with “burg,” which denotes a borough or town. By 1818, the unincorporated community had become a village and achieved City status about 100 years later.

Excerpts from Wikipedia and the Miamisburg Historical Society.

Listed in Explore

Latest Updates

View All Tweets

News & Articles

View All News