21 Oct Cincinnati, the City of Seven Hills…
By: Julie Kelly
Cincinnati is a city rich in history. It is also a city with a lot of hills. In fact, it’s known as the city of seven hills. I did some research and uncovered what are considered to be the “original” seven hills. They are; Mt. Adams, Mt. Auburn, Walnut Hills, Fairmount, Fairview Heights, Clifton Heights, and Price Hill.
As a fun, fact finding mission, I’ve decided to research each of the neighborhoods and share what I discover over the next several weeks about their history, and also comment on their current place in Cincinnati’s culture.
The first neighborhood in the series that I tackled was Mt. Adams. When asked, people today associate Mt. Adams with trendy restaurants, Eden Park, Playhouse in the Park, row houses, and awesome views.
But it’s beginning was a little less flashy. It went largely undeveloped until the late 1800’s. It was known as Mt. Ida until 1843 when President Adams dedicated a building for the astronomical society. The name Ida referred to a woman who allegedly lived in the trunk of a large sycamore tree.
During the late 1700’s thru part of the 1800’s, a vintner by the name, Nicholas Longworth owned most of the land. He grew Catawba grapes and was quite famous throughout the country for his “Golden Wedding Champagne”.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote a poem that is said to be about Longworth’s wine.
The richest and the best
Is the wine of the west
That grows by the beautiful river
And this song of the wine
This greeting of mine
The winds and the birds shall deliver
To the Queen of the West
In her garlands dressed
By the banks of the beautiful river.
In the 1850’s disease wiped out Nicholas’ vineyard. As the Longworth’s sold off the land, some of it became what is known as Eden Park, much of the rest of the area was settled by German & Irish immigrants. They built and adapted their homes to fit the unique landscape and created the Mt. Adams community we are familiar with today.
In order to connect Mt. Adams to downtown and make traveling the steep hills more manageable, the Mt. Adam’s Incline was built and started operation in 1872. It could move, people, vehicles and even streetcars up and down the steep incline. It quickly became a huge tourist attraction. People would ride to the top, visit shops, restaurants and then ride back down. The Incline stopped running in 1948 and has since been demolished.
Along with the Incline, there have been several unique businesses associated with Mt. Adams. Maria Longworth, daughter of Nicholas Longworth, moved her Rookwood Pottery factory to Mt. Adams. The first “use” specific museum was built in Mt. Adams for the Art Museum and in the 1960’s Playhouse in the Park opened its doors.
Mt. Adam’s is a prime location for art, theater, green spaces, trendy restaurants, bars, and fantastic city views. There are approximately 1,600 residents in the hilly neighborhood. Sprinkled throughout the neighborhood are several great bars and restaurants. Whether you enjoy pub grub or Thai food, you’ll find a place to satisfy your cravings. And, if you are looking for a romantic dinner with your special someone, the Celestial is always a great choice.
The average home price is approximately $550,000. Developments are popping up all around. Old buildings are being torn down or renovated to accommodate a clientele that wants modern conveniences with a neighborhood atmosphere.
Mt. Adam’s close proximity to entertainment, highways, business districts, coupled along with all its charming and innovative architecture has helped make it one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Cincinnati.
If you are looking for a home in Mt. Adams to buy or rent, give us a call, we will be happy to help you find the perfect property to suit your needs.