Orange Johnson House Museum
Open Sunday, April through December, 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM, and by appt.
Visit the Orange Johnson House Museum and step back into nineteenth-century Worthington – into one of the oldest residences standing in its original location in central Ohio.
This property offers a unique view of both the pioneer and Federal periods in Worthington. The oldest portion was built in 1811 by Arora Buttles. The six-room house was on thirty-five acres, part of a choice farm lot next to the village. The pioneer architecture can be seen in the low-ceilinged keeping room with its solid walnut wainscoting and steep dogleg staircase to the second story. The kitchen has the original open fireplace with a large iron crane and bread oven. The house is furnished with period pieces, some of which have a connection to early Worthington families and activities.
In 1816 Orange Johnson, a hornsmith who specialized in comb-making, bought the property. He added a stately Federal-style addition highlighted by the gracious entry with its curved fanlight, sidelights and delicately reeded pilasters leading to a center hall. Each of the four principal rooms in the federal-style addition contains a fireplace with handsome mantel. The front door in the addition faced west toward the road that was becoming the main route (now High St.) between Columbus, the new state capital, and Lake Erie.
In the exhibition rooms on the lower level there are rotating exhibits featuring items from the Society’s collection.
Surrounded by period furnishings, costumed guides describe the everyday pursuits of the early Worthington settlers. Visitors will learn about the comb making trade and see a collection of 19th century women’s hair combs and comb making tools.
In May of 2011, The Wooster Tree Ring Lab from the Geology Department at the College of Wooster used dendrochronology to provide a calendar date for the felling of timber used to build the