William Dean Howells

Ohio Bicentennial Historical Marker


May 10, 2003 @ 10:30 AM

Stay overnight the weekend of May 9-10, 2003, and witness the unveiling of an Ohio Bicentennial Historical Marker commemorating William Dean Howells and his boyhood in Hamilton, Ohio. One of America's literary giants, Howells wrote 35 novels, 35 plays and more. Visit Hamilton for the unveiling with this special package that includes the special "A Boy's Town" tour, which highlights the many sites of Howell's boyhood, the "History Lives! In Butler County" bi-annual event, along with on-your-own visits to Main Street's ArtHop, Fitton Center, Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park and the City of Sculpture.

The Hamiltonian Hotel:  Located in the heart of downtown Hamilton on the scenic Great Miami River, The Hamiltonian Hotel is a short block and a half from Monument Park, the site of the William Dean Howell's Bicentennial Marker, and offers a traditional sense of beauty and style with an emphasis on comfort as reflected in the 120 guest rooms.  At The Hamiltonian Hotel, you can dine in the casual atmosphere of Alexander's Hearth or enjoy beverages & appetizers in Bleachers Sports Bar.  For overnight accommodations for two at The Hamiltonian Hotel, in downtown Hamilton at the special rate of $69 per night, call 513-896-6200 or toll free 1-800-522-5570. www.hamiltonianhotel.com/.  Ask for the William Dean Howells special rate.  For further information on Hamilton, Ohio, visit www.hamilton-cvb.com

10:30AM. Meet at Monument Park for the unveiling of an Ohio Bicentennial Historical Marker commemorating William Dean Howells and his boyhood in Hamilton, Ohio. This event will be hosted by the Ad Hoc Committee to recognize Howells in Hamilton and has been underwritten by the Ohio Bicentennial Commission and the Hamilton Community Foundation. William Dean Howells himself (Chris Kramer, professional actor) will make a guest appearance for this ceremony that includes the official inauguration of the "A Boys Town" tour by Hamilton Mayor Don Ryan and a performance by the Oxford Community Band. In the event of rain, the dedication will be held in the Fitton Center for Creative Arts which is next door to Monument Park.. 

Immediately after the dedication there will be a luncheon at the Fitton Center. The purpose of the luncheon is to present an informative program about William Dean Howells starting with his boyhood in Hamilton. The luncheon will be a sandwich and salad buffet. The cost is $9, but students will be able to attend for only $5 due to the generous financial support from the Miami University Libraries.  You should send name and address information for each person attending, identifying the students, along with a check to Leslie Haid, 157 E. Fairway Dr., Hamilton, OH 45013. The deadline for luncheon reservations to be received is Monday, May 5.

 Featured presentations during the luncheon include:

  • William Dean Howells National Society president Professor Sanford Marovitz on “Back to the Source: Howells’ Ohio.”
  • Ad Hoc committee member Professor Robert Rhode on “William Dean Howells: Hamiltonian, Bostonian or New Yorker?”
  • “Becoming William Dean Howells,” Chris Kramer, professional actor from Hamilton.
  • A Virtual Tour of the William Dean Howells “A Boy’s Town Tour:” a slide presentation of the twelve tour sites with additional historic background..

  • The Lane, Smith Regional History and Miami University libraries will have table displays of Howells materials including books, pictures, articles, bibliographies, plays, and clippings about Howells 1899 Thanksgiving visit to Hamilton.

    William Dean Howells "A Boy's Town" Tour: Visit sites that Howells knew as a boy between 3 and 11 years of age. Although Hamilton has changed in the century and a half since Howells lived here, you can walk to many places he knew and drive to others. Numbered signs designate the 12 sites on this tour. For more information on the William Dean Howells "A Boys Town" tour, contact Dick Haid at 513-868-1488 or dickhaid@adultmentor.com

    Other Events Scheduled for May 9-10 to visit On-Your-Own:

    Main Street ArtHop:  Visit Hamilton's Main Street Business District on Friday, May 9, 2003, from 5:00 PM till 9:00 PM.  The 11th annual Art Hop grows more popular each year. Area artists display and demonstrate their work. Participating businesses in Main Street Business District host artists in stores, serve refreshments, and invite visitors to browse. For more information on this FREE event, call 513-844-6246.

    "History Lives! In Butler County" This free countywide history open house, sponsored by the Butler County History Collaborative, takes place on Saturday, May 10, 2003, from 11 AM - 4 PM.  Many historical sites in Hamilton, such as the Butler County Museum, Lane Hooven House, Lane Library, Monument Cabin, and the Soldiers, Sailors & Pioneer Monument are open for this special Saturday. Nearby visit Chrisholm Historic Farmstead (Trenton), Elisha Morgan Mansion (Fairfield), Middletown Historical Society, Trenton Historical Society, Governor Bebb Preserve (Okeana) with Living History Demonstrations and many others will hold countywide open house, free of charge.  Call BCHS, 513-896-9930, or Butler County Metroparks toll-free at 877-727-5386 for further information.

    EntertainmentPLUS! - CCM Broadway Review (Cincinnati Conservatory of Music)  takes place on Saturday, May 10, 2003 at 8 PM at Fitton Center, 101 Monument Avenue. Ticket prices are as follows: members $10, nonmembers $12, students $5.  For tickets, call Fitton Center (513) 863-8873.

    Fitton Center for Creative Arts:  See the free exhibition, Funny Pages: a Cartoonists' Show by guest curator Craig Boldman.  Reporters have called Fitton Center for Creative Arts “a mecca for the arts” and “the cornerstone of downtown Hamilton’s renaissance.” Gallery hours are Friday 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM or Saturday 9:00 AM - Noon:  For more information on Fitton Center, 101 S. Monument Avenue (513) 863-8873 or www.fittoncenter.org.

    Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park: One of just ten sculpture parks of its size in the U.S and the only sculpture park of its type in Ohio, Pyramid Hill is a 265-acre sculpture park and outdoor museum that combines the lure of nature with the dynamic presence of monumental art. Overlooking the Great Miami River, it is a setting where landscape and over 40 pieces of art come together in natural galleries among the vast meadows and rolling hills. Some of the sculpture is designed to walk through, touch, and even spin. The park has a series of one-way roads to allow viewing from your vehicle as well as on foot. Pyramid Hill also features an arboretum, amphitheater, indoor pavilion, and authentic stone home from the pioneer days while offering hiking trails, lakes, picnic areas, and a variety of programs for children and adults.  Hours on Friday-Sunday, May 9-11, are 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM. Admittance to the park is as follows: adults $4.00; children ages 5-12 $1.50; ages 4 & under are free. For more information, contact 513-868-8336 or visit www.pyramidhill.org.

    Hamilton, Ohio, City of Sculpture, Inc. On August 16, 2000, Hamilton received Governor Bob Taft's recognition as "The City of Sculpture.” This sparked a vision for a group of community members who officially formed Hamilton, Ohio, City of Sculpture, Inc. Since then, a full Board of Trustees has been established and many sculptures by well known sculptors have been installed in Hamilton demonstrating that community members and other organizations are becoming increasingly energized through this vision. New sculpture recently installed include Nancy Schon's "Lentil", Jane DeDecker's "Snapshot", Rosalind Cook's "Legacy of Literature" & "Someday", Butler County's "Fire Fighter Memorial" & "Peace Officer Memorial", and a commissioned piece by the City of Sculpture's first artist-in-residence from a ground-level Artist-in-Residence Program. For a brochure highlighting Hamilton, Ohio, City of Sculpture, call 1-800-311-5353 or visit www.cityofsculpture.org.