16 Aug: The “Cake Walk Fad” hits Columbus

Originating in plantation slave quarters as a mockery of the way aristocratic southerners carried themselves, the dance formalizes and becomes a regular feature at parties and minstrel shows. Its popularity in Columbus is matched by its absurdity. One interviewee says of the phenomenon: “…cakewalking isn’t what it used to be…white folks have taken it up now…when white folks try to imitate the negro, they are a sorry failure …” (Columbus Evening Dispatch)


12 Feb: NAACP Founded

Established by a biracial group of activists and intellectuals in response to a series of racially motivated attacks in Springfield, IL, the year before, The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will take both a social and legal approach to race problems in America.


09 Jan: Ohio Constitutional Convention

The first day of the Ohio Constitutional Convention takes place. Despite having claimed dozens of progressive ideals in the last century, this convention will introduce and defeat bills to remove the word “white” from the state constitution, abolish the death penalty and grant women the right to vote.


23 Mar: The Great Flood of 1913

March 23-26: The Great Flood of 1913 develops into the worst natural disaster in Ohio and Indiana history. While historians tend to focus on devastation primarily in Dayton and Indianapolis, the entire city of Columbus is submerged as well.