The Story of David T. Chambers

Note: Due to the current events across the country in regards to the hurricanes and flooding, we thought we’d share some stories we have previously posted, detailing the heroism from the Dayton Flood of 1913.

The chain of events that started Dayton’s Great Flood started on March 21, 1913, with a rainstorm. Over the next few days, more rain came, ultimately weakening the levees and flooding the already oversaturated soil. Water rose quickly, and as gas lines were destroyed, a fire started downtown that destroyed most of a block.

As these events were happening, twenty four year old David T. Chambers of North Dayton could not stand by and watch without helping. From the safety of his home, which was located above the flood waters, he could see the damage being caused by the rising waters.

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Orville Wright (August 19, 1871 – January 30, 1948)

In honor of what would be Orville’s 146th birthday, here are some facts about the younger Wright Brother:

  • Orville was a snazzy dresser – Orville wore well-tailored suits, wingtips, and “snappy argyle socks.”
  • Orville loved playing the mandolin. In fact, he played it so often that it drove his sister Katherine to say, “He sits around and picks that thing until I can hardly stay in the house the point of madness.”
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Dayton Unknown Spotlight: Laurana Wong

Back in October, we hosted the Dayton Unknown Fall Scavenger Hunt at Wegerzyn Gardens. It was a beautiful fall day, and we had some great submissions from our participants. We awarded two prizes, one of which is a feature story here on the blog. Our winner of this prize is Laurana Wong – an incredibly fascinating character.
We came up with fifteen questions we thought would truly showcase Laurana’s personality and told her that she could pick and choose which questions to answer. In true Laurana form, she decided to answer all of them! We hope you enjoy learning about her as much as we did!

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Dayton Firsts Part 12

  • First Telegraph Message – Received in Dayton on September 17, 1847.
  • First United Brethren Church – The first United Brethren church in Dayton was organized in 1847, in a small room in the Oregon Engine House. Their first church building was erected in 1852, at Sixth Street and Logan Street, later being purchased by the city and converted into a city prison.
  • First Gas Company – Chartered February 4, 1848, by Daniel Beckel, Peter Voorhees, Daniel Stout, I.F. Howells, David Winter, J.D. Loomis, J.D. Phillips, Valentine Winters, John Mills and Daniel W. Weelock.
  • First Hebrew congregation – The first Hebrew congregation was organized in 1850. They met in the old Dayton Bank building until 1863, when they purchased the old Baptist house of worship.
  • First Railroad – The first railroad line to enter Dayton was the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad, between Dayton and Springfield. It was formally opened on January 25th, 1851.
  • First Depot = The first railroad depot erected in Dayton stood at the northwest corner of Jefferson Street and Sixth Street, and was finished and occupied in 1851.
  • First Town Charter – The first charter of the town of Dayton was granted by the legislature on February 12, 1805. For the next ten years, the town council met at the homes of its various members.
  • First President of Council – David Reid, elected at the first meeting held following the formation of the body under the new charter.

Natalie Clifford Barney

“I built a fire to welcome her
And my voice sighed
Aloud her name. To be with her
This night, I would have died…”

Natalie Clifford Barney was born in Dayton, Ohio in 1876, to an affluent family. By age twelve, Natalie knew she was a lesbian. Although society in the late 1800’s was very conservative, Natalie knew she would “Live openly, without hiding anything.”

Natalie developed an interest in the French language as a child. Her governess often read Jules Vern stores aloud to her in French, and she had to learn the language quickly to understand the stories.  In adulthood, Natalie was fluent in French, and published most of her work in French. 

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Exercise Dayton – Riverscape Inventors Walk

Tired of the same exercise routine? Try visiting some of Dayton’s notable spots while you exercise!

Enjoy fresh air and history as you experience the Dayton Inventors River Walk.

The Route:

Starting with a brick medallion at the corner of Monument Avenue and Main Street, the Inventors Walk continues around Riverscape with informative tiles in the pavement, leading to the Automobile Self Starter, the first of 7 invention stations. Continue toward North Patterson Boulevard, visiting the Cash Register and Ice Cube sculptures. Cross the bridge on Patterson Boulevard to continue reading the tiles. Approximate distance is 1 mile (see map below).

Features:

  • Automobile Self Starter
  • Hydraulic Jump Fountain
  • Search Engine
  • Wright Flyer
  • Pop-Top Can
  • Cash Register
  • Ice Cube Trays