Overfield Tavern Museum features new exhibit


TROY – The Overfield Tavern Museum, located at 201 E. Water St. in Troy, recently announced the opening of its new exhibit, “On the Banks of the Miami: The Creation of a Community.”

The exhibit features select artifacts from the collection that help tell the story of Troy and Miami County prior to the coming of the Miami & Erie Canal in 1837. Visitors can explore themes in local frontier history, including prehistoric Native Americans, early settlement in the Miami Valley, medicine on the frontier, pioneer religion and education, and Miami County’s free Black community in the early 1800s.

The exhibit also features archaeological artifacts from the William Barbee site, located just north of Troy, excavated by the Wayne’s Legion Research Group (WLRG).

Barbee was an influential Miami County citizen, serving as a judge when court was held at the Overfield Tavern from 1808 to 1811. He served in the Revolutionary War and first explored what is today Miami County in 1782 during a retaliatory raid by the Kentucky Militia against Native Americans in the Ohio Country. The raid, led by Gen. George Rogers Clark, destroyed the Native American villages at Lower and Upper Piqua as well as Pierre Lorimier’s trading post near modern-day Fort Loramie.

Barbee returned to the Miami Valley in 1803 and established a home on the west side of the Great Miami River. Barbee also served as a captain during the War of 1812 and later obtained a position in the commissary department at Upper Piqua, working with Indian agent John Johnston. On Sept. 21, 1813, he died at his home in Concord Township from an illness and was buried on the family farm.

The new exhibit is included with the price of admission to the 1808 Overfield Tavern Museum ($3 per person) and is available for viewing during open hours: Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 1 to 4 p.m. and Wednesday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon.

This summer, the museum will also host archaeology students from the University of Tennessee who will be excavating portions of the tavern’s backyard. The museum will hold a Public Archaeology Day on Saturday, July 20, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visitors will have the opportunity to witness the ongoing excavation and speak to real archaeologists along with a variety of activities.

The Overfield Tavern Museum depicts the tavern as it would have appeared from 1803-1824, with historical collections ranging from 1795-1840. Young visitors to the museum can also complete a pioneer-inspired craft during their visit.

The exhibit and archaeological excavation are made possible by grants from The Troy Foundation.

No posts to display