Orange Johnson House Museum

Exciting News! We now have options to book tours of The Orange Johnson House and The Doll Museum at the Old Rectory on our website. Select February through April dates are available for both sites by clicking the blue “Book Now” button below. We hope to expand our offerings online as the year progresses!  The Orange Johnson House will resume regular Sunday hours in the spring of 2020.  

Book Now

Open Sunday, April through December, 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM, and by appt.   
Admission is $5 for an adult and $3 for children age 6 – 16, which includes a docent-led tour. Group tours are available  for 5-45 visitors.  Group tours can be scheduled for weekdays or the weekend.

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
Orange Johnson House in Worthington, Ohio. Results show that trees for main house were felled
in 1810 and 1811, whereas beams from the back portion of the house date to 1818.

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