Book a Cincinnati Heritage Program
Let us bring history to you!
Heritage Programs has a variety of historical, architectural and cultural audio-visual programs that docents can bring to your organization or host at Cincinnati Museum Center. A/V Programs last 45 minutes to an hour. The fee is $70 per presentation. To book an A/V Program, call (513) 287-7031. Choose from the following topics:
Cincinnati and the Miami & Erie Canal
This program covers Ohio’s Canal, concentrating mainly on the Miami & Erie and Cincinnati. We will discuss and answer four questions: Why were the canals necessary? How much of an effort was it to construct them? Were the benefits worth the cost? What legacy do we have of the canals today?
This presentation tells the unique and exciting story of the rise and fall of Cincinnati’s Inclined Plane Railway. Built in the 1870’s, these wonderful lines provided a welcome escape for the crowed basin and opened up the surrounding hills for future development
Jump aboard Cincinnati’s “not so rapid” transit/subway system and find out why and how it got derailed. The remnants, of the never completed system, may still be seen around the city and it remains a topic of transportation studies and voting issues.
Union Terminal is an Art Deco masterpiece begun just as the 1930s ushered in the Depression. Today this beautiful passenger station is Cincinnati Museum Center, a multi-museum complex. This program will lead you through the building. It will take a closer look at the art and artists of the art deco structure and explore the evolution of this fascinating building.
Delta Queen and Cincinnati's First Family of the River
The Delta Queen is an elegant steamboat loved by many for over 60 years. She was brought to Cincinnati from California by the famous Greene family. Learn the history of the Greene Line Steamer company and why the survived and prospered when others failed. ‘Ma’ Greene was a ‘Petticoat Skipper’ in a riverman’s world. Her husband, Gordon, was the strength and ingenuity of the company; and their son, Tom, was the bold risk taker who undertook the perilous journey transporting the Queen to the Port of Cincinnati.
Ohio River Floods
For most of the time Greater Cincinnati peacefully coexists with the Ohio River. But what happens when Ole Man River leaves its boundaries and becomes destructive? Learn how people in the tri-state area have been affected when major flooding occurs. Why did the early settlers choose a flood plain on which to build their cabins? During the '37 flood, how did the residents cope when industry, transportation and even public utilities were curtailed? Discover what the federal and local governments have done to control flooding, and how that affected our response to the most current floods.
Rollin' on the River
Explore early travel along the Ohio River, and then enter the steamboat era. Cincinnati was second only to Pittsburgh in the construction of steamboats, and the river queens were important to Cincinnati for employment, trade, industry, entertainment and leisure. Learn about the people who traveled, worked and/or lived on the riverboats. Since the water level was so unpredictable, the Ohio posed many problems for riverboat travel; there were collisions, fires, explosions and other tragedies. The river is still important for Cincinnati’s commerce and the city is a port of call for the authentic steamboats that still travel the western waters.
Steamboats and the Building of America
Come and join us on an excursion to find out about the impact of steamboats in the United States. Learn what conditions contributed to the “perfect storm” that allowed steamboats to have such a great impact on Cincinnati in particular, and the entire United States west of the Appalachian range. Learn about the features of steamboats that made them unique and the unusual conditions that made these distinctive characteristics so necessary. Hear of the accommodations for passengers who travel first class, and those who travel coach. You may be surprised at the differences that existed on 19th century steamboats. Find out about the only war in which the steamboats played a significant role, the US Civil War, and the use of Cincinnati’s own steamboats and their contribution to the war effort.
Amusement Parks in Greater Cincinnati
The ‘thrill’ rides of today’s amusement parks were not the Cincinnati amusement parks of yesteryear. Travel back in time to learn about the swimming beaches on the Ohio River and the trolley amusement parks. Enjoy a stroll through yesterday’s Coney Island and LeSourdesville Lake. Then decide if today’s King’s Island will be the amusement park of the future.
Crosley Field of Dreams
Relive the days of Johnny Vander Meer’s back to back no hitters, Joe Nuxhall’s famous first day on the pitcher’s mound and Waite Hoyt on your transistor radio announcing Pete Rose sliding head first into third base.
Entertainment and Recreation in Cincinnati
After the Civil War, Cincinnati became known as the “Paris of America”, a city filled with culture and a variety of entertainment venues. Learn about the surprisingly many ways Cincinnatians relaxed and entertained themselves during these Post Civil War years. Discover how many of our current events and facilities are a direct result of the seeds planted during Cincinnati’s Golden Age. See how Cincinnati’s business and commerce led to many of these treasured events and facilities
Let Me Entertain You!
There have been numerous Cincinnatians who have become famous in the entertainment field, i.e. stage, screen and television. The lives of these celebrities such as Theda Bara, vamp of the silent screen who graduated from Walnut Hills High School; Libby Holman, a star of the Ziegfeld Follies in the 1920’s and Roy Rogers, born on Second Street at the site where Riverfront Stadium once stood, are discussed in this very enjoyable look at our past.
Learn how the Nation’s Station brought news to people around the world and set the standard for quality radio programming.
Golden Age of Television
Explore television’s pioneers such as Ruth Lyons, Paul Dixon, the Cool Ghoul and Skipper Ryle who entertained greater Cincinnatians "by the seat of their pants" on live TV.
A Day in the Parks
Visit some of the 100 parks and green spaces developed in the city of Cincinnati for the health and enjoyment of its citizens. View the architecture and art in such diverse places as the city’s first park, Piatt Park, to its latest gem along the riverfront, Theodore M. Berry International Friendship Park.
This program presents the history of the pottery – its development, decline, and resurgence. Some of the pottery’s important glaze lines are shown along with some of the outstanding art pottery decorators. Discuss and view examples of Rookwood Faience decorative architectural tiles that can be found in Cincinnati and throughout the United States.
Arthur St. Clair and the Northwest Territory
General St. Clair gave Cincinnati its name, and was the first Governor of the Northwest Territory. Given the impossible task of bringing order to this wild land, he gave his life, fortune and health on behalf of his adopted nation. Politics, war and intrigue filled his life until he was dismissed by Thomas Jefferson as Ohio became the first state formed out of this rich territory north and west of the Ohio.
Cincinnati and the Presidents
Cincinnati shares an interesting history with some of our presidents. This program describes the success and failures, the personal and humorous sides of the lives of William Henry Harrison, his grandson Benjamin Harrison, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes and William Howard Taft.
Cincinnati's First Founders
You will recognize the names of these city builders on city streets, but who are they? This program focuses on many of the founding fathers: Burnet, Lytle, Baum, Longworth, Drake, Kilgore and Woodward, and their efforts to make Cincinnati a livable city.
Emery Family Legacy
The Emery family of Cincinnati became known for prominent building and integrity, investment, and influence. Building on a foundation begun by Thomas Emery Sr. in 1841 as a real estate and business entrepreneur, his work and that of succeeding generations have provided lasting monuments to the value of investing in greater Cincinnati. Mary Emery, the city’s Lady Bountiful – built Mariemont, and also churches, hospitals, schools and museums. Jack Emery’s generation followed her lead building the Carew Tower-Netherland Hotel and continuing the philanthropy that began early and continues today as a memorial to this prominent Cincinnati family - the Emerys.
Longworth Family Legacy
Nicholas Longworth, regarded as the Father of American Grape Culture, lived the American Dream from his arrival in Cincinnati in 1803 to his ascendency as one of the wealthiest men in the U.S. His legacy of high achievement and service to his fellow man lived on through his granddaughter, Maria, who created Rookwood Pottery and great grandson, Congressman Nicholas Longworth III, who served as Speaker of the House.
Taft Family Legacy
The Taft family has significantly influenced the course of political and economic events and the fine arts in Cincinnati for almost 200 years. From the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the Summer Opera, the Taft Museum, the Zoo, and Lytle Park, Taft's served the public good. In addition, Cincinnati's first President and his descendants represented the city of Cincinnati, the state, and the nation at the highest political levels.
The Powel Crosley Story
Powel Crosley, Jr., built radios for the masses, not the classes and soon was known as the “Henry Ford of Radio.” He was a pioneer in radio broadcasting, but so much more. Hear of his many innovative products he produced and particularly the one used to help win WWII. Did you know he built airplanes and a hair restorer machine? Learn of his hardworking and very talented brother Lewis. Powel would get an idea and Lewis would make it work. Their partnership made the name Crosley well known and profitable when many companies failed.
Women of Cincinnati
Throughout Cincinnati's history, its women have contributed a great deal to the well-being of their community and beyond. This presentation recognizes many very prominent people, some still relatively well known, but also others who are no longer much remembered. In addition, you'll hear the story of the hard work performed by many thousands of common women to raise and support their families and the increasing opportunity that has fortunately become available to them. It becomes apparent why the iconic Tyler Davidson Fountain, featuring a woman supplying the vital life element of water to the people of the city, makes such an appropriate community centerpiece.
America's Story from Depression to Super Power
Relive the incredible transformation from depression era despair, through enormous come-back victory of the WWII years, featuring Cincinnati’s contribution to this unprecedented time in history.
Cincinnati During the Civil War
It is late 1862, and a Confederate Army is marching toward Cincinnati. The city is in a panic! Less than a year later, Cincinnati is threatened again - this time by the dashing General Morgan and his raiders. Find out how Cincinnati responded to these emergencies in this fascinating program.
Ghosts and Spirits (Formerly Haunted Cincinnati)
This program examines the history of ghost stories and hauntings in the Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area from the founding of the city right up to the present time. Did you know many older houses, as well as public places have their resident ghosts? Hear the stories of local citizens, both well-known and regular folks, which were and still are affected by the supernatural. Learn what haunted places still exist today and where they are. Appropriate for adults.
Grand Old Theaters of Cincinnati
Do you remember the Grand, Lyric, Keith, Capitol, Cox, Times, and Royal theaters? How about the magnificent Albee, Shubert and the Palace theaters? And did you ever visit the Gayety Burlesque House? We will look back at these fabulous grand old theaters including the buildings and the shows that played there – vaudeville, burlesque, musicals, comedy, stage plays, and movies - focusing on their history from the time they opened until they played their final show with the wrecking ball.
Historic St. Bernard
St. Bernard, just 1.5 mile square, grew from wilderness settlement in 1793 tamed by John Ludlow, to the busy residential and industrial home of global industry. The Miami & Erie Canal brought jobs and opportunity in 1825. John Bernard Schroeder named and platted the hilltop in 1850. Mom and Pop stores and cafes located in each neighborhood, and churches, schools and independent government were a priority. Procter & Gamble was the largest to make this a soap manufacturing center. Hear how this community grew into the 21st century where quality products and profits still provide employment worldwide today.
National Historic Landmarks
Take a virtual tour with us to 14 sites in Hamilton County designated as National Historic Landmarks by the US Department of the Interior. These are places in our area that have played an important role in shaping America’s history.
Greater Cincinnati's Veterans' Memorials
Take a patriotic tour of Veterans’ memorials located in the Hamilton County area. The program describes memorials and tributes to military personnel from the Cincinnati area, and includes a brief history of each memorial. The time span covers two centuries, from the Revolutionary War to the Gulf War. It is appropriate for groups with an interest in military history or patriotic holiday programs.
The Cincinnati Story - From 1788 to 1925
They called it the “Miami Slaughterhouse” during the early days of the Indian Wars. Soon it was America's original “boom town” and they proclaimed it the “Queen City of the West.” This program highlights the people and events that have shaped Cincinnati history from the 18th century to the early 20th century.
Twentieth Century Cincinnati
During the 20th century, Cincinnati moved from one of the worst governed cities to one of the best, from a city that just grew, to one that had a plan, from a river city to a highway metropolis. In that time it responded to two world wars, a depression, and the response to a changing world economy. This picture tour shows some of the changes as the city moved through these events, some of our celebrations, some of the city’s changing face, as it became center of the metro area.
The Sad, Seamy, Sinister Side of Cincinnati
Serial murderers, grave robbers, epidemics, personal tragedies and even slime are all part of Cincinnati’s history. Spend an hour hearing stories about some of Cincinnati’s most notorious citizens and their nasty deeds. Listen to details about a few of Cincinnati’s saddest stories. Learn how two of Cincinnati’s presidents were victims of ghastly grave yard activities. Tragedies and crime abound in this program. Come prepared to be shocked and saddened. Appropriate for adults.
Up & Away to Mt. Auburn
Mt Auburn was Cincinnati's first hilltop suburb where the wealthy 19th century citizens lived above the city's crowded basin. This was the birthplace of William Howard Taft and home of two Ohio Governors. William H. Doane, industrialist, hymn writer, and collector of musical instruments lived here and his collection is now at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Mt. Auburn Presbyterian Church has beautiful Tiffany windows and the interdenominational God's Bible School and College has its home on Mt. Auburn, as well as one of the last existing Cable Car Barns.
Cincinnati's Jewish Culture
What prompted the first Jew to choose Cincinnati as his home? Learn about the curiosity he aroused in this burgeoning little town. What caused Jews to be so well assimilated here and become so successful that, by 1850; Cincinnati had the third largest Jewish population of any American city? How was it that Isaac M. Wise came here and made Cincinnati the birthplace of Reform Judaism? Discover some of the treasures Cincinnati’s Jewish community has given not only to the city, but also to the entire world.
Cincinnati's Winter Holiday Traditions
If you enjoy reminiscing about the holidays, come along with us to celebrate the many joyful times and faces of the winter holiday season. You can’t see the holiday spirit, but its there in the many traditions of Cincinnati around this festive season.
Cincinnati's German Heritage (Formerly Over-the-Rhine: It’s People and It’s Spirit)
The 19th century German settlement in Over-the-Rhine, an area located north and east of the Miami Erie Canal was unique. Here the German society established their own city within Cincinnati reconstructing the culture of their homeland. Churches, shops, schools, building and loans, breweries and other industries were abundant throughout their community, along with beer gardens, singing societies, theater and a Turnerverein (Turner Gym) for recreation. Learn how this lively, crowded close-knit community left a lasting imprint on the entire society of Cincinnati.
Cincinnati's Brewing History
In 1860 there were 36 breweries in Cincinnati, 26 shortly before Prohibition. Cincinnatians took their beer drinking seriously. Whether they carried it home in “growlers” or drank it at the neighborhood saloon, on the average every Cincinnatian consumed 40 gallons a year - 24 more than the national average. Join Jim Bruckmann of the Bruckmann Brewery family for a visual tour of Cincinnati’s “golden age of breweries.”
Cincinnati Style Chili
One of the most interesting local success stories of American Immigrants is that of Cincinnati Chili, the culinary delight that means home to many Cincinnatians. The story of the families who developed this epicurean delight is filled with mystery, as they develop their companies and hold close the recipes that are uniquely their own. Hear of the more famous companies and as well as lesser known Chili Parlors in the area.
Do Pigs Fly? The Story of Porkopolis
Cincinnati was once known by the nickname of “Porkopolis.” Visitors to the city often had to walk down streets that were crowded with pigs being herded to the city slaughter houses. Pigs slaughtered in Cincinnati not only fed our country but also helped to revolutionize the country’s industries. From pig pens to dinner plate, learn how “pigs” helped to builds Cincinnati.
Wooden Shoe Hollow
They came from Westphalia, Germany over a century ago, but these "Inwanderers" did not go "Over the Rhine," instead settled across the Mill Creek. They were gardeners and truck farmers and for nearly 100 years sold their produce in downtown Cincinnati markets. They lived together in a fertile hollow north of Spring Grove Avenue and Winton Place, where many of their greenhouses can still be seen. The group carried on the tradition of wearing wooden shoes in their gardens, worshipping in their German Church and dancing on Saturday nights to the music of their homeland. This program presents their history from the mid-1850s to the present.