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Carillon Park to preserve historic Montgomery County Fairgrounds Barn

Carillon Historical Park - site # 4 on the Aviation Trail

DAYTON, Ohio—Working closely with the University of Dayton and Premier Health as they develop the former Montgomery County Fairgrounds, Dayton History is preparing to preserve Barn #17 at Carillon Historical Park. Aside from the iconic roundhouse, Barn #17 is thought to be the oldest remaining structure on the old Montgomery County Fairgrounds.

While Dayton History advocates the preservation of historic structures in situ, their relocation is occasionally necessary to avoid demolition. Such is the case with Montgomery County Fairgrounds Barn #17—the 19th-century building would have otherwise been lost to redevelopment.

“We are pleased to save, relocate, and restore Barn #17,” says Dayton History President & CEO Brady Kress. “Once moved to Carillon Historical Park, this timber frame structure will recount the unique story of the Fairgrounds and the significant events that occurred on the property. Barn #17 will be strategically situated to help the Park fulfill its master plan.”

Barn #17 will bridge three important Carillon Park programming themes: early Dayton settlement, transportation, and agriculture.

“We select historic structures for relocation based on several factors, including unique historic significance, remaining original material, the practicality of the move, and the presence of adequate funding for the project,” says Kress. “Barn #17 met all these requirements, and we are thrilled it will soon arrive at the Park.”

In the late 19th century, Barn #17 was built as a large Fairground stable. Once traces of lead paint and asbestos are removed from the Barn, the remaining timbers, framing, and foundation will be labeled, dismantled, and transported to Carillon Park for reassembly. The complete project is being privately funded through the generosity of the James and Mary Houtz Family Foundation.

But this is not the first time historic buildings have been relocated to Carillon Historical Park. The original Deeds Barn—the small carriage house where Charles Kettering and the Barn Gang invented the automobile starter motor—is the centerpiece of the Heritage Center of Dayton Manufacturing & Entrepreneurship; Newcom Tavern, Dayton’s oldest standing building, hosts the popular Tavern Dinner series; and dozens of other historic structures all enable hands-on educational opportunities for Carillon Park’s 250,000 annual guests.

About Carillon Historical Park

Carillon Historical Park is part of Dayton History, a private non-profit organization established to preserve, share, and celebrate our region’s history. The Park's 65-acre campus is home to over 30 historic structures and cares for over three million artifacts. In addition to Carillon Historical Park, the following sites rest under Dayton History’s care: Carillon Brewing Co., Hawthorn Hill, the Paul Laurence Dunbar House Historic Site, Patterson Homestead, the Old Court House, the Mound Cold War Discovery Center, Memorial Hall, and the Archive Center.

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