Spring is on the way – it’s time to make some plans!

It may feel like we don’t want to leave the house right now in all this frigid cold weather, but it won’t be long before the temperatures are rising,  the birds are singing,  and everyone will be anxious to get out and about.

While waiting for better weather, it is a great time to do some planning.

Whether you are planning a group tour, a family reunion or a private ‘get-away’ the Steubenville Visitor Center can help you with your plans.

A tour of Steubenville’s ‘City of Murals’ with its 22 larger than life paintings depicting the area’s history on buildings throughout the city is a great place to start.   It is often combined with a tour of Historic Fort Steuben, the reconstructed fort originally built in 1786-1787 by the 1st American Regiment to protect government surveyors from hostile Indians as they laid out the first seven ranges of the Northwest Territory.  The fort offers the opportunity to experience frontier life first hand with knowledgeable and entertaining guides to take you through the exhibit filled buildings plus a visit to the adjacent First Federal Land Office west of the Allegheny Mountains.

Just South of Steubenville is the Village of Mt. Pleasant a picturesque Quaker village on the National Register of Historic Places and designated as a National Historic Landmark District of the Underground Railroad.  It was a center for antislavery activities with five Underground Railroad Stations that still stand in the village.   The Historical Society of Mount Pleasant owns five and operates six museums in the Village, which is the home of the Quaker Meeting House. It is located in southern Jefferson County and has an annual Historic Home Tour the 1st weekend of August. 

Historic Union Cemetery is noted as one of the most beautiful in the country and is the final resting place of the grandparents of Woodrow Wilson and the family of Edwin M. Stanton, Lincoln’s Secretary of War.  Unique attractions at Union Cemetery include the Old Stone Chapel built in 1892, the Old Stone Bridge built about 1880 (which still carries traffic from the main road) and the Dog Marker, which marks the grave of John Boillin.  Boillin, a molder was blinded by an accident and a stray dog adopted him and became his seeing-eye dog.  After Boillin’s death the dog would neither eat nor drink and soon grieved itself to death.  Boilin’s fellow molders cast the metal dog at the Foundry where he worked to be placed on Mr. Boillin’s grave.

Another potential destination is The Jefferson County Historical Museum which is housed in an elegant 19th Century Steubenville mansion consisting of 19 rooms which exhibit period furniture and artifacts, including a Dean Martin Room and Vivian Snyder Genealogical Library with one of Eastern Ohio’s finest collections for family history research.  For your consideration also is Franciscan University of Steubenville boasting a beautiful campus including its Portiuncula Chapel, a reproduction of the site in Assisi, Italy and Black Sheep Vineyard, a quaint and curious family owned vineyard on a former sheep farm.

Shopping for diverse antique and unique items and gifts at local owned and operated shops is another option, including Nelson’s of Steubenville, a very large Steubenville family business manufacturing and offering a wide variety of items sold not only locally but around the world; Antique Warehouse, housing over 77 different vendors with a broad spectrum of items;  Adam’s Antiques of Steubenville offering unique and one of a kind items from the past including Dean Martin merchandise;  Historic Fort Steuben Museum Shop selling a wide variety of items from hard to find historic books to wooden old time toys, as well as Steubenville and Fort Steuben memorabilia;   Drosselmeyer’s Nutcracker Shoppe offering not only a selection of Nutcrackers from around the world, but a variety of other gift items as well;  and Bookmarx Bookstore, a charming little bookstore that either has that hard to find book you are looking for or most likely can get it, serving coffee and a place to sit and read as well!

So, while you are staying warm with your hot cup of cocoa or tea why not plan a visit (or two) to the Steubenville area this spring or summer.   And if you are looking ahead to next fall, you definitely want to plan a trip to visit Steubenville’s Nutcracker Village and Advent Market, along with Christmas Wonderland and Gift Shop!

For more information call the Visitor Center at 740.283.4935.