The University District is a collection of colorful neighborhoods that inspire daredevils and activists, artists and entrepreneurs, students and senior citizens to constantly re-invent the vibrant community were town meets gown.
The University District documentary explores how a country crossroads became the location of the nation’s largest university; the role amusement parks played in the development of the community; and the lasting effects of the movement beyond campus of a considerably large student population.
Early Settlements and Growth
In 1803, High Street was an Indian trail. North Columbus, the area located between the city of Columbus and Village of Worthington, was a trading center—a perfect stagecoach stop.
The Civil War and the Morrill Act
The Civil War helped North Columbus grow. Camp Thomas was established in the area to train new regiments. In 1862, the Morrill Act was signed into law creating land-grant colleges.
Turn of the Century Columbus: Streetcars, Amusements Parks and Education
At the end of the 19th century, Columbus was being transformed by a transportation revolution. Streetcars facilitated the move to the suburbs. And streetcar companies created amusement parks in the far reaches of their lines in the university district.
Industrialization and the Progressive Era
A new industrial section was developing south of campus, along the railroad. The rise of manufacturing and industry changed the neighborhood.
The World War II Era
Some memories of the World War II era are just as soon forgotten: Olympic gold medalist Jesse Owens could not rent an apartment near Ohio State because of the color of his skin; a Japanese family with deep roots in Columbus was sent to a concentration camp in Wyoming.
The 1960s, Civil Rights, and Vietnam
Peace, love and rock and roll were the watchwords of the 1960s. On campus, alternative kinds of organizations, alternative politics and alternative lifestyles rose and challenged traditional values.
University District Map
Take a look at a map of the University District neighborhood. View Map