Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum


Sullivant Hall, 1813 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43210

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is located on the campus of The Ohio State University in Columbus. This museum houses the world’s largest collection of cartoons and comics. The college started collecting artwork in the 1970’s when it was given the collection of Dayton native and world famous cartoonist Milton Caniff, and has grown since. The museum is open to public most afternoons. Their is also library where one can study cartoons and comics.

The collection includes, editorial cartoons, comic books, comic strips, graphic novels, spots cartoons, magazine cartoons. The museum itself is made of a few galleries filled with cartoons and comics. There is tons to look at an explore. The museum has special exhibits through out the year and many exhibits are rotated. When we went there was a really great Mad Exhibit.

The admission is free, so coming many times a year is needed to see the new exhibits. There is parking in the area, free and at a cost. Most likely, one will have to pay, so look at the options and find out the best deals. The time it takes to visit the museum all depends on how long one spends reading the cartoons. There is lots of fun comics to read, so take the museum leisurely.  The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is really unique museum that is easy to access. You do not have to be a lover of comics, to enjoy this museum.

Tip: The museum is located on the campus of one of Americas biggest Universities. The place will be busy during the school year and a madhouse at football time. 




Updates! Updates! Updates!

After 10 years we finally have the address we want. This address will lead to the same page you are on, but is easier to remember.

We have also updated all our reviews to include more information and be easier to read.

Now all of our reviews include an address to the location we are reviewing. The address is linked to a Google map of the location. This means that with a simple click you can plan a trip to the site, or see how far away it is. We have also included links to the official website of most of the locations. With this you can find the official information on times, costs, and events of the locations. We want to make sure that you have the most up to date information on each place before going. Not much ruins a trip more than getting somewhere and finding out that it is closed on the day you went.

We hope this makes your enjoyment of the great state of Ohio and all the fun and interesting things to do in it easier.

Fort Meigs

29100 W River Rd, Perrysburg, OH 43551

Following the Siege of Fort Meigs the fort was no longer needed.  A smaller fort was built but abandoned at the end of the war. As the years went on the site was left but not forgotten. 1864, during another American war, brothers Timothy and Thomas Hayes bought the land and decided to preserve it for all that had fallen. In 1907 their family decided to sell it to the state of Ohio. One year later a large monument was installed by veterans of the Civil War to honor those from the War of 1812. In the 1960’s the Ohio History Society decided to rebuilt the Fort. The new recreated Fort opened in 1974. After nearly 30 years the Fort was starting to show its age and in 2000 the Fort was rebuilt again. This new Fort now stands proudly along the Maumee.

The Fort is split into two main parts, the Fort and the Museum. Starting with the Fort is a good idea. The land has change overtime but the Fort itself was recreated to be as accurate as possible. Inside the its walls are the embankments, like those that protected the men during the battle, blockhouses, and the memorial erected by the Civil War veterans. At first this seems like any other recreation of a fort. Walking around the grounds one can get a feel for how big the Fort was. The land however does not really give much for the feel of the time, or the life of a soldier. One can go inside the blockhouse too.

The blockhouses, all seven of them, are the real treat to the Fort recreation. Unlike some recreations where it is a blank building, or just a few items, these are full museum rooms.  Inside are displays about the time of the Fort, the life of the soldiers, and the activities of the siege. They include maps, very detailed models, and interactive displays. All of the blockhouses are separated into one aspect each, but together make up a large museum. Each one must be entered to get the whole story of the Fort.

Outside the trails include the paths that the would have been used at the time. They follow along the outer edge along the wall going from house to house. At certain points the wall is lower and the river can be seen, or the field where the British and Tecumseh’s men were stationed. At these points are cannons ready to defend the Fort.

Inside the visitors center is a nice video, museum, and the gift shop. While the Fort is about the battle, the museum is more about times before the conflict, the times of the greater conflict, and how we know what we know than it is the siege itself. This is where the actual artifacts are housed. Along side the artifacts are stories of how they were found. Pictures of the archaeological digs, tales of the interpretation needed, and questions still left unanswered. The museum is a great companion to the Fort.

From the Fort to the fields to the Museum, Fort Meigs is a great place to learn about a piece of American history that helped to keep us free, the life and times of the men and women who fought, and we can keep their history alive.

History of The Siege of Fort Meigs

In the early 1800’s France and Britain’s war spilled over into North America. The British allied with the American Indians in The Northwest Territory to help defeat American settlers in the area. The British also maintained a force in the area against the treaties it signed after the American Revolution. This angered the new nation and it declared war.

The Northwest Territory was lightly populated at the time, but had many forts to protect the region. A majority of the fighting of the war took place in the area, and along the border of Canada, which was still British at the time. Fort Detroit, along the Canadian border, was a major fort in the system. The Americans had plans to use the fort to supply an attack on Canada and to defend the Northwest from attacks. The British Attacked the fort and gained control in the summer of 1812. The defeat was a major blow to the American Army.  The United States need Detroit back and General William Henry Harrison was sent to regain the Fort and nearby city.  Unfortunately he was defeated before even reached the Fort.

After his defeat Harrison regrouped along the Maumee river, near modern day Toledo. There he started to build Fort Meigs at the beginning of February. Most of the men Harrison had brought were nearing the end of their enlistment and new men had to be found. This caused major delays in construction. Brigadier General Green Clay was ordered to bring 1200 men from Kentucky as Major Eleazer D. Wood continued construction. The weather was poor that spring, and this prevented an attack on the unprepared fort and gave Clay’s men time to arrive.

Major General Henry Procter had been told to attack the Americans along the eastern shores of Lake Erie, where they were building ships to regain control of the lake. He instead decided to attack Fort Meigs on the western shore. His idea was to stop a summer invasion of Fort Detroit and to capture its supplies. On April 26th he landed on the shores of the Maumee and head towards the fort. Along with his 900+ men he brought a contingent of 1200 American Indians lead by Tecumseh. Tecumseh was already well skilled in attacking American forts and fighting General Harrison having placed a decisive role in the Battle of Detroit and having battled in his own war against the General.

On May 1st the British artillery opened fire on the fort. The British continued the siege for five more days but Fort Meigs had been well built and was able to withstand the attack.  Harrison sent word to General Clay, who had not yet made it to the fort, to send some of his men to stop the cannons. Clay sent a group commanded by Colonel William Dudley. They were able to temporarily disable the cannons but in the fighting some followed Tecumseh’s forces in to the woods while others stay behind. This split allowed the British to regain control of the guns and destroy most of the Kentuckians.

A few months later the British attacked the fort for a second time. Knowing that guns would not work on the well built location they tried luring the Americans out. Tecumseh, who had used decoy actions to gain control of Fort Detroit staged a fake battle. The Americans, knowing that all of their army was safe with in the fort, or far off at other battles, did not fall for the tricks. Eventually the British gave up and moved on. Fort Meigs was too well built to be defeated.

With the British no longer attacking the area and a fort no longer needed, it was soon scaled down  to a simple supply depot and last the rest of the war. After the war the depot was abandoned and eventually burned down. Over the years the land has changed hands. Finally the Ohio History Society, now Ohio History Connection, gained control of the land. In the 1970’s they decided to turn the area into a historical museum and monument to the men who fought to keep Ohio out of the hands of the British.

The hills of Hocking County Region and what to do.

In the southwest corner of Ohio, about 1/4 of the way up the map is the region surrounding the county of Hocking. The county has less than 30,000 residents. The region is in a part of the state crisscrossed with back roads and no interstates. Yet despite it small size and out of the way location millions of people visit it each year. The big question is what do all these people do in Hocking County and the surrounding region?

For such a lightly populated place the region has a large number of museums. From the small museum with a great point to the giant washboard and its museum and factory  How about the birthplace of a famous Civil War General, or a glass hot shop and museum. Like art? The region has many art museums too. A good list is available at

Outdoor Activities:
Paddling on the Hocking River or Lake Logan is always a popular option. They even have a water jetpack adventure. Biking, both mountain and road, are a good way to get exercise. Golf, both mini and big, is offered in the region. The area is known for its large forested hills and state parks. Hiking and simply enjoying nature seems to a very popular.

The region does not have many large big box chain stores, but makes up for it in the many little art studios and mom and pop shops dotting the region. A quick search on the internet, or with the help of the friendly staff at the regional welcome centers, will bring up a large list of places to find that unique item or gift.

Free Stuff:
The amount of free stuff to do in the area will make it a sure draw for people from all over the state. We tried to put a list together but found this one covered more than we could even imagine.

Or one could just visit  the State parks with ravines. They always seem to be a popular option.

Special thanks to Hocking Hills Tourism Association. Their Website is overflowing with things to do in the region. Their Welcome Centers are a must stop for the beginning of any tour of the area.


Cantwell Cliffs

Address: State Route 374, Logan, Ohio 43138


This is going to be a short review of Cantwell Cliffs. Cantwell Cliffs is part of Hocking Hills State Park. This park is 17 miles from Old Man’s Cave, so it is not as well visited as other parks of Hocking Hills State Park. This makes the place less crowded. The trails in Cantwell Cliffs are 1 to 2 miles. These trails are listed as difficult by the park’s website. This is very true as the trails are full of steps and inclines. There are two main trails. One on the rim of the cliffs is easier and less rocky. The lower trail is more of a challenge.  Both are relatively short and can be done in one day. Getting between the two can be an adventure in itself.


This woodland park is full of waterfalls (even though one website says there are none), steps, cliffs, waterways, and other natural beauty. The park might not be accessible by everyones ability level, but it is a very nice change to the other parks in the area. So, if you able and willing for a challenge, this park’s natural beauty will amaze. 



Hocking Hills Regional Welcome Center

13178 State Route 664 South, LoganOH 43138

The Hocking Hills Welcome Center is one of the best places to start a trip to the Hocking Hills region. The center is located at the edge of downtown Logan, Ohio. It is a great place to get trail maps and information on the less traveled trails and parks of the region. Inside are brochures and guides on more than just the natural wonders, with lots of information on businesses catering to visitors. It also has a large collection of menus from local restaurants for anyone trying to decide where to go after a long day on the trail.

While the world has gone digital and most information is online, the centers staff is quite helpful and a great resource. They are happy to help visitors find the regions popular destinations, local resources, and hidden gems. The center also has many paper maps that are great for using on the trails or roads of the region. In an area where mobile phone reception can be and usually is spotty, this can be a real life saver.

While there don’t forget to leave enough time to go to the Paul A Johnson Pencil Sharpener Museum just outside the front doors. This is one of the regions hidden treasures.

Paul A Johnson Pencil Sharpener Museum

13178 State Route 664 South, LoganOH 43138

Paul A Johnson Pencil Sharpener Museum Sign

The Paul A. Johnson Pencil Sharpener Museum is located next to the Hocking Hills Regional Welcome Center. This museum is an oversized garden shed. What the museum lacks in size it makes up in the size of the collection. The museum houses the collection of Paul Johnson. There are over 3,400 pencil sharpeners in the collection. It is just one room. A person can stand in the middle and turn three sixty and see the whole museum. A visit to the area should include this museum. It will not take long to see, but will amaze one in the amount and variety of pencil sharpeners. It is one of Ohio’s hidden treasures. So, make it a point to see this museum.

Random Ohio Reviews : 10 Years Later

A little bit of this …. a little bit of that ….. a Whole lot of oHIo. (okay mostly SW OhiO)

10 years ago today we posted these words and from there we were off to explore Ohio. Over the next decade we would explore many of the great places that this great state has to offer. Restaurants, museums, parks, local culture. If Ohio offered it we gave it a chance. After a decade of exploration we thought we had seen a good portion of the state but Ohio is like its  weather, when you think you know it, it changes.

We choose the name Random Ohio because we had no major focus in the early days. We loved going to anything that was Ohio. Eventually as we started to look at the pieces of the puzzle that is Ohio, we realized that this great state is almost impossible to describe in a concise manner. Everything about it is random.

From the north where the Eerie allows vast ships to travel from this state to others, to the south where smaller paddle wheelers and riverboats take to the Ohio, to the lakes and the rivers in between where swimmers, skiers, and recreational boats reign. Ohio seems to be something different depending on where in the state you are. Our travels have taken us to the farm lands of the northeast to the hills of the south to the industrialized Eerie shores. We may have gotten to some regions more than others, with the crowded Dayton Cincinnati region being over represented, but we have tried to show every part of Ohio. Our rough estimates show that:

  • 14% of our reviews have been from the Northwest :  Toledo and the Black Swamp region
  • 15% Northeast: Cleveland, Akron, and Canton
  • 15% Central: Columbus and the center of the state
  • 8% Southeast: Hocking Hills, Chillicothe, and Marietta
  • 48% Southwest: Dayton and Cincinnati

Our post have ranged from history to the arts to outdoor recreation to the local landscape. We have loved almost every minute of our journey through this great state. While we have tried to categorize them we have found that most, if not all, fit into many categories. Of our 152 reviews:

  • 83% have been about History: Since the first Ohioans settled permanently in 1788 the state has been preserving its past. Most places we visit love to tell their history, and we loved to hear it.
  • 65% Museums: A legacy of preservation brings on many museums. The great Ohio History Connection network of museums, national history museums, or local stops all have been worth a visit.
  • 50% Entertainment and the Arts: The great playhouses and art museums of the large cities to the small stages and outdoor murals.
  • 46% Food: Local fare known to the world to the local fare unknown to anyone from 10 miles away.
  • 40% Parks and Playlands: national parks, state parks, local parks, amusement parks.

We have even found that the facts we learn about Ohio are random. 7 years ago we decided to give a list of 100 random facts about Ohio to celebrate our 100th post. We only were able to get 50 facts at the time but from that 50 we have added 50 more every year until we had 300 Random Facts About Ohio. From “Ohio is an Iroquois word meaning “great water.” to “The shortest time a governor has served is…” we have helped many a school kid finish a report or just satisfied the curiosity of our readers. The facts have become our most popular posts with almost 65% of our traffic coming from them. After 300 facts, when we think it is going to be hard to find more facts, the state and its citizens still keeps giving them to us.

The one thing that we have noticed that is consistent is that most Ohioans are proud to be Ohioans and support their local culture even as they venture out into the wider world.

As we look back over the past decade and the 530 post we wanted to a take a moment to reflect on what we have seen, heard, learned and experienced. This year we will be reflecting on some things Ohio has taught us and looking forward to the things we are yet to learn. Through out the year we will be posting about our experiences and our thoughts on different aspects of our travels. So stay tuned to see what we have in store for the next decade and beyond.