Amelia, Ohio

The name Amelia was adopted in honor of Amelia Bowdoin, a well known and popular tollgate operator on the Ohio Turnpike - Main Street, today State Route 125. Her home still stands at 94 W. Main St., across the street from where it stood when it was a tollhouse.

In May 2009, Amelia survived an initiative on dissolving the village into Pierce and Batavia Townships.

Amelia’s first residents were sailors from Edgartown, Massachusetts. With their boat sunk by the British in New Orleans and the Ohio waters too shallow to permit other river transport, they had no choice but to walk back. They came upon land in the middle of Clermont County that reminded them of home, without the people.

Captain Pinkham, David Jernegan, Joseph Butler, and many others bought land from attorney Zachariah Chapman. Daniel Rathbone became the first settler in what would become the Village proper in 1813. David Jernegan started the first store and his son, David Jernegan Jr. and the son of Joseph Butler, John O. Butler opened up the first grist mill.

Unlike other towns and villages in Clermont, Amelia was never plotted out. The founders chopped off land to suit them and those buying it. The town consisted at this time of what today is now Main Street. It was beginning to be developed with many mills along the creeks, stores, inns, farms and other businesses.

By 1833 due to the amount of mills the area was known as Milton, corrupted from its earlier name of Milltown. This road of Milton was a toll road. The tollkeeper was officially Charles Bodin, however it was his wife Amerlious who took the tolls.

When the town applied for a post office, it was discovered that Milton and Milltown were already taken as names in the state of Ohio. Puzzled they turned to the town visitors and were surprised to find out that they thought the name of the town was actually the nickname of the wife of the tollkeeper, Amelia. This was the name the stagecoach drivers called when they arrived, so they thought it was the name of the town. Amelia, thus became the name of the town.

Amelia continued to prosper and grow throughout the 19th century. A world traveler from New Hampshire named Increase Morse, settled in Amelia and opened one of the largest stores in Clermont County. He sold fine wines and liquors - for medicinal purposes only.

Elijah Penn owned two homes in the town. He was a famous pension attorney and at one point owned part of the railroad that ran through town, the Cincinnati, Georgetown and Portsmouth Railroad.

1891 saw the first school district in Amelia.

In 1900 the town of Amelia was incorporated as the Village of Amelia and in December of that year, elections were held. Voted in as mayor was attorney and school teacher John Slye. His mayoral ship would last for two years.

Amelia became famous for her gladiolas and was one of the world largest suppliers of goldfish. However, the Village hit the national scene, when adopted son Charles Cyrus Kearns became a member of the U.S. Congress. The Speaker of the House dined in his home here and the National Republican Party at his home as well. In 1931 Kearns lost his seat to a Democratic sweep and his life to ptomaine poisoning. His wife Philena (Lena), remained active in the party until her death in 1941. The Kearns homestead was torn down to make way for more modern housing.

Sewers came in the 1950s and outhouses became illegal.

In 1980, Amelia began the Christmas Parade.


Columbus and Central Ohio Regional MLS listings last updated May 13, 2021 12:46:pm.

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Northern Kentucky listings last updated May 13, 2021 12:47:pm.