Epworth Heights began, in 1874, as the Cincinnati Camp Meeting Grounds. Consisting of 40 acres it was started by the Methodist Church and operated by the Cincinnati Camp Meeting Grounds Association. Camp meetings lasted a week or more and consisted of religious preaching and soul saving. Thousands of people attended these meetings. Many arrived using the Little Miami River and the Baltimore and Ohio Southwestern railroads. The grounds contained two auditoriums one of which was large enough to hold 1,500 people at a time. There was a large open-sided Tabernacle, tennis courts, shuffleboard courts, a corral for horseback riding, canoe launches, a reservoir, hotels, gazebos, tents for those just there for the events. There were 700+ lots, the average size being 20' by 40'. The streets were named after prominent people in Methodist history. The map below is a very ragged 1891 layout of Epworth Heights proclaiming one of these meetings. I have tried to clean it up a little so you can get an idea of what this area looked like.
1891 Camp Meeting
WWI was the start of Epworth Heights decline, automobiles changed recreation habits, and of course the depression brought financial problems. In the 1950s legal disputes ended the association's control of the land. Clermont County won a court decision that ordered the association to pay taxes on everything except the land on which the chapel sat. The association sold it's holding and went out of business in 1972.
Early Entrance to Epworth Heights Later
Symmes & Branch Hill Bridge Branch Hill multi-view
I believe this road is going across the Little Miami River and is now called Hopewell Road which connects to the Loveland Madeira Road (in distance) to the Branch Hill Loveland Road (behind camera). The camera is positioned on what is now a block long street called Bridge Street. The Branch Hill Loveland Road changes to County Highway 19 and was used to get to the Epworth Heights entrance above (I think). I have added the Branch Hill multi-view card because I wanted to keep the Branch Hill cards together (for now).
View from Riverside Hotel
Hotel's Refreshment Stand
Cottages / River
Auditors Camp Peruvian Camp
Children's Chapel Deaconess Home
YWCA Vacation Cottage
Auditorium Lovers Lane
Epworth Avenue Various Roads
Little Miami Valley from Epworth
Penn. Depot Penn Flier
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