Ohio Chautauqua

A chautauqua offers living history presented by scholar-actors who assume the role of historical characters.  The Ohio Chautauqua troupe of re-enactors (some of them student performers from the OSU Department of Theatre) travels to five communities across Ohio each summer to give a series of evening performances under bigtop tents as well as workshops for both children and adults during the day.

The Humanities Institute contributes support to this program, which is sponsored by the Ohio Humanities Council. http://www.ohiohumanities.org


Ohio Chautauqua 2013: 

When Ohio Was the Western Frontier

Characters for Ohio Chautauqua 2013 are naturalist and folk hero Johnny Appleseed, frontier aristocrat Margaret Blennerhassett, Iroquois leader Chief John Logan, Lewis & Clark expedition member York, and hero of the Battle of Lake Erie Oliver Hazard Perry.
Ohio Chautauqua players



















2013 Ohio Chautauqua locations:

Lakewood:  June 25-29

Madison:  July 2-6

Rossford:  July 9-13

Bexley:  July 16-20

Coshocton:  July 23-27


2012 Ohio Chautauqua locations for When Ohio Was the Western Frontier:

Marietta:  June 19-23
Urbana:  June 26-30
Burton:  July 3-7
Gallipolis:  July 17-21
Warren:  July 24-28

Ohio Chautauqua 2011:  The Civil War - Promo:

Ohio Chautauqua 2011: The Civil War from OSU Humanities Institute on Vimeo.


2011:  The Civil War

The program features five diverse characters who will give unique perspectives on the War. 
Widely considered one of the nation’s greatest Presidents, Abraham Lincoln worked to preserve the Union and abolish slavery as he led the country during the Civil War. Mary Edwards Walker was the war’s only female contract surgeon, working for the 52nd Ohio Volunteers before spending several months as a POW.  She was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor and later campaigned for women’s rights.  A doctor, judge, political activist, lecturer, journalist, author, explorer and soldier, Maj. Martin Delany was a true Renaissance man.  He devoted his life to seeking full freedom and citizenship for African Americans.  Confederate Mary Boykin Chesnut kept detailed diaries throughout the Civil War.  She speaks not only from the wealthy Southern aristocratic point of view, but - surprisingly - also as an outspoken abolitionist.  Although she is remembered as “General Moses” who led slaves through the Underground Railroad, Harriet Tubman’s greatest work may have been with the Union Army behind enemy lines, where she served as a nurse, cook, organizer, spy, and soldier.
Meet these fascinating characters under the red & white striped tent this summer as Ohio celebrates the sesquicentennial of the Civil War!
Past Ohio Chautauquas include:People from the 1930's.

2010 - The 1930s

W.C. Fields, Margaret Mitchell, Paul Robeson, Eleanor Roosevelt, Orson Wells
            Hudson, Gallipolis, Ashland, Marysville



2008-2009 - Inventors and InnovatorsInventors  and Innovators

Thomas Alva Edison, Mary McLeod Bethune, Alexander Graham Bell, George Washington Carver, Andrew Carnegie
            08 – Lebanon, New Concord, Westerville, Port Clinton, Gallipolis
            09 - Canton, Warren, Archbold, Euclid,     Centerville



2007 - World War IIWorld War II photo

Rosie the Riveter, Franklin Delano Roosevelt,
Pearl S. Buck, Benjamin Davis, Margaret Bourke-White
Newark, Warren, Worthington, Greenfield, Troy




2006 - War and PeaceWar and Peace photo

Chief Cornstalk, Ernie Pyle, Clara Barton, Francisco Pizarro, Teddy Roosevelt
            Delaware, Gallipolis, Mansfield, Geauga County, Sale





2004-2005 - The Roaring Twenties

Henry Ford, Zelda Fitzgerald, John Dillinger, Babe Ruth, Zora Neale Hurston
            04 – Xenia, Marion, Warren, Fostoria, Greenfield
            05 – Huron, Ashland, Montpelier, Chester, Columbus




2002-2003 - The Ohio Frontier The Ohio Frontier  photo

Johnny Appleseed, Mary Draper Ingles, Margaret Blennerhassett, Chief John Logan, Simon Kenton
            02 - Berea, Xenia, Ashland, Archbold, East Liverpool
            03 – Oberlin, Kenton, Piqua, Defiance, German Village, Worthington



2001 - Civil War Buckeyes

Ulysses S. Grant, Sojourner Truth, William Tecumseh Shurman, George Armstrong Custer, Emma Edmonds
            Cincinnati, Ashland, Chillicothe, Cambridge, Lima, Huron



2000 - Ohio 20th Century Voices


Branch Rickey, Thomas Edison, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Victoria Woodhall, John D. Rockefeller
            Lancaster, Peninsula, Ashland, Wilmington, Marietta   

1999 - American Humorists

Mark Twain, Dorothy Parker, James Thurber, Langston Hughes, Will Rogers