Happy birthday Dayton! 7 things everyone should know about the city’s history

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Combined ShapeCaption

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Happy birthday, Dayton!

Dayton was founded exactly 226 years ago today, on April 1, 1796, by a dozen people known as “The Thompson Party.” The group had traveled up the Great Miami River from Cincinnati.

>> 222 things we love about our favorite city

Here are 7 more things you may not know about the Gem City:

Combined ShapeCaption
If you were to assume the statue at Main Street and Monument Avenue was of Jonathan Dayton, for whom Dayton is named, you'd be wrong. Dayton was born in New Jersey and never came to this area. He was the youngest signee of the United States Constitution. This statue honors Civil War soldiers. CONNIE POST/STAFF

If you were to assume the statue at Main Street and Monument Avenue was of Jonathan Dayton, for whom Dayton is named, you'd be wrong. Dayton was born in New Jersey and never came to this area. He was the youngest signee of the United States Constitution. This statue honors Civil War soldiers. CONNIE POST/STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
If you were to assume the statue at Main Street and Monument Avenue was of Jonathan Dayton, for whom Dayton is named, you'd be wrong. Dayton was born in New Jersey and never came to this area. He was the youngest signee of the United States Constitution. This statue honors Civil War soldiers. CONNIE POST/STAFF

1. DAYTON’S NAMESAKE

Dayton is named after Capt. Jonathan Dayton, who was born in New Jersey and served in the American Revolutionary War. He was the youngest signee of the United States Constitution. Dayton never visited the area, but when the city was established he owned land in the Great Miami River basin.

Dayton served as the third Speaker of the United States House of Representatives; he also served in the U.S. Senate. He was linked to the Aaron Burr conspiracy (Burr allegedly wanted to create an independent country in what is now the American Southwest). Dayton was arrested for treason but never faced charges.

There is no monument of Jonathan Dayton in Dayton. The monument at Main Street and Monument Avenue is a monument to soldiers of the Civil War.

>> These historical figures are honored with statues in Dayton

Combined ShapeCaption
A U.S. Navy WAVE demonstrates the Desch Bombe, one of 120 codebreaking machines designed and built in NCR's Building 26, between 1943-45, for use in cracking the Nazi U-boat and other Enigma codes. Dayton History photo

A U.S. Navy WAVE demonstrates the Desch Bombe, one of 120 codebreaking machines designed and built in NCR's Building 26, between 1943-45, for use in cracking the Nazi U-boat and other Enigma codes. Dayton History photo

Combined ShapeCaption
A U.S. Navy WAVE demonstrates the Desch Bombe, one of 120 codebreaking machines designed and built in NCR's Building 26, between 1943-45, for use in cracking the Nazi U-boat and other Enigma codes. Dayton History photo

2. FAMOUS INVENTIONS

Dayton is known as the home of many inventions. Some of most famous are aviation, the cash register, the hydraulic jump to prevent flooding, code-breaking machines that helped end World War II and the pop top.

>> Why Dayton is a city of invention

Combined ShapeCaption
Warren Christopher, the Secretary of State (left) and the Richard Holbrooke, assistant Secretary of State, (right) were tasked with working toward a sustainable peace during the Dayton peace talks held for 21 days in Nov. 1995 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE

Credit: HANDOUT

Warren Christopher, the Secretary of State (left) and the Richard Holbrooke, assistant Secretary of State, (right) were tasked with working toward a sustainable peace during the Dayton peace talks held for 21 days in Nov. 1995 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE

Credit: HANDOUT

Combined ShapeCaption
Warren Christopher, the Secretary of State (left) and the Richard Holbrooke, assistant Secretary of State, (right) were tasked with working toward a sustainable peace during the Dayton peace talks held for 21 days in Nov. 1995 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE

Credit: HANDOUT

Credit: HANDOUT

3. WORLD PEACE

The Dayton Peace Accords signed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in 1995 ended the Bosnian War.

>> 3 things to know about Dayton Peace Accords

>> 12 museums you must explore in Dayton

Combined ShapeCaption
Wilbur and Orville Wright in Straight outta Dayton meme.

Wilbur and Orville Wright in Straight outta Dayton meme.

Combined ShapeCaption
Wilbur and Orville Wright in Straight outta Dayton meme.

4. FAMOUS DAYTONIANS

Famous Daytonians include aviation pioneers Wilbur and Orville Wright; poet Paul Laurence Dunbar; actors/entertainers Rob Lowe, Allison Janney, Martin Sheen, Nancy Cartwright and Sherri Saum; humorist Erma Bombeck, and Olympic gold medalist hurdler Edwin C. Moses.

>> Daytonians who’ve made us proud at the big Hollywood award shows

>> Allison Janney opens up about growing up in Dayton

Combined ShapeCaption
The Deeds Carillon is a 151-foot-tall tower, made of Indiana limestone, and originally designed with 32 bells. Eight of the first 32 bells were “silent,” each a memorial to a member of the Deeds family.SKY 7 / STAFF

The Deeds Carillon is a 151-foot-tall tower, made of Indiana limestone, and originally designed with 32 bells. Eight of the first 32 bells were “silent,” each a memorial to a member of the Deeds family.SKY 7 / STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
The Deeds Carillon is a 151-foot-tall tower, made of Indiana limestone, and originally designed with 32 bells. Eight of the first 32 bells were “silent,” each a memorial to a member of the Deeds family.SKY 7 / STAFF

5. OHIO’S LARGEST CARILLON

The Deeds Carillon at Carillon Historical Park is 151 feet tall with 57 bells, and is Ohio's largest carillon.

>> This historic sunrise Easter service is one of Dayton’s most beloved traditions

>> 3 things to know about Deeds Carillon

Combined ShapeCaption
The Great Miami River Trail is a 57-mile paved path in Southwest Ohio. STAFF

The Great Miami River Trail is a 57-mile paved path in Southwest Ohio. STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
The Great Miami River Trail is a 57-mile paved path in Southwest Ohio. STAFF

6. GREAT OUTDOORS

Ohio's Miami Valley region provides over 340 miles of paved, multi-use recreational trails. Stretching across county lines, these trails connect schools, parks, historic landmarks and area attractions.

>> Best places to hike in Dayton

>> The best bike trails in Dayton and how to make the most of them

Combined ShapeCaption
Richard (Dick) Roediger helped design and execute the vision of the Kettering Tower in downtown Dayton. FILE

Richard (Dick) Roediger helped design and execute the vision of the Kettering Tower in downtown Dayton. FILE

Combined ShapeCaption
Richard (Dick) Roediger helped design and execute the vision of the Kettering Tower in downtown Dayton. FILE

7. TALLEST SKYSCRAPER

Standing at 408 feet, the Kettering Tower is the tallest building in Dayton. It was built in 1970.

>> Little known but fascinating fact about Dayton’s tallest building

About the Author