Ohio is known as “the Mother of Presidents,” as an impressive 8 U.S. Presidents hail from Ohio. Seven were born in Ohio: Ulysses Simpson Grant (Point Pleasant), Rutherford Bichard Hayes (Delaware), James Abram Garfield (near Orange), Benjamin Harrison (North Bend), William McKinley (Niles), Warren Gamaliel Harding (Corsica, now called Blooming Grove), William Howard Taft (Cincinnati); and ninth President William Henry Harrison was born in Virginia, but later moved to Ohio.
If you’re from Ohio, you likely learned all of the above in your grade school Ohio History class. And if you’re from Cincinnati, or have lived here for any length of time, you’ve surely heard of the legacy of the Tafts.
You can’t drive anywhere in Cincinnati without encountering Mr. Taft or his family. There’s the Taft Museum (the house of Pres. Taft’s half-brother Charles Phelps Taft — in 1908, William Howard Taft accepted the nomination for U.S. president on the house’s porch!), the Taft Theatre (named for Charles Phelps); William Howard Taft Rd; and, of course, the William Howard Taft National Historical Site.
Located in Mt. Auburn, the William Howard Taft Historical Site is the house where Taft was born and raised. It’s also one of Ohio’s eight National Parks.
With Election Day fast approaching, this fall is the perfect time to learn more about our 27th President. The William Howard Taft House is open daily from 9 am – 4 pm, and admission is free.
The home itself is stunning: a yellow-brick, two-story Greek Revival house sitting atop a hill in Mt. Auburn. Due to COVID-19, tours are self-guided right now, with a maximum of 15 people allowed inside the house at a time.
As you tour the house, you’ll learn fun facts about this larger-than-life president. For instance, Taft graduated second in his class from Woodward High School — and Yale. Taft is the only person to have served as both President and Supreme Court Justice. And yes — Taft was a big guy (our largest president to date), a fact which didn’t go unnoticed by the public, his colleagues or his opponents. (See elephant caricature above.)
The William Howard Taft National Historic Site is a wonderful way to experience a rich piece of Ohio history. The house is just the right size for kids to explore and the grounds are gorgeous. This national site makes for an educational, kid-friendly and fun afternoon.
The William Howard Taft National Historic Site is located at 2038 Auburn Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45219. It’s open 7 days a week, 9 am-4 pm. Admission is free. Call 513-684-3262 or visit the website for more information.