Oakwood historical marker honors tavern built in early 1800s



The newest historical marker commemorating Oakwood’s beginnings has been installed.

It honors Four Mile Tavern, a building that dated to the early 1800s, according to the Oakwood Historical Society.

The marker, the fifth one in a series of the historical society project, was installed in the sidewalk near the corner of Far Hills and Hilltop avenues, where the tavern was located.

One news account from that era said the tavern may have may been built about 1800, but it is difficult to say with any accuracy, said Debra Edwards of the historical society. But the OHS believes it was built in the early 1800s.

The building had rooms for overnight stays “and it was very large,” Edwards said. “It had food. You could eat there. It was mostly a meeting place later … People voted there. Township trustees had meetings there.”

The tavern was named for the four-mile journey from downtown Dayton along Lebanon Pike, officials said.

It “served as a place of respite for travelers and a gathering place for those living in the nearby rural area,” the marker states. It was demolished about 1912.

The OHS project, which started with a first marker installed in 2022, honors the 150th anniversary of the platting of the Town of Oakwood in 1872, some 30-plus years before the city incorporated.

The first two markers were installed on Park Avenue. One is at the city building and the second was dedicated across the street at the former site of the town’s first library.

The Rotary Club of Oakwood funded the Four Mile Tavern marker. The club also funded markers for the Kramer’s Wine & Pleasure Gardens and the Schantz Park Historic District, both installed in 2023, according to the historical society.

“Oakwood has such a rich history and we are very pleased to see the historical marker project unfold” said Joe Scott, Rotary club president, in a released statement.

The historical society is planning the next historical marker, which is expected to be announced this fall, Edwards said.

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