Clarksville seeks to restore historic jail

By John Hamilton - [email protected]

The historic Clarksville jail.

The historic Clarksville jail.

Friends of Clarksville

CLARKSVILLE — Local residents are hoping to bring a bit of history back to life.

The Friends of Clarksville will be hosting their first annual chili cook-off on Saturday, November 19. The event will help raise funds to help fix up the historic one-cell jail.

Built in 1880, the lockup is one of the oldest standing jails in Ohio, according to Alicia Chaney, the fundraising coordinator.

“We’re hoping this brings awareness to the jail because not many people are aware of it. It’s a tucked-away treasure in the area,” said Chaney.

The restoration project has been helped out a great deal by locals and businesses, according to Chaney.

She has indicated that restoring the jailhouse is more complicated than one would expect. This is due to them having to keep the same style of the era the jailhouse was built.

“We have to follow the guidelines to fix windows and such,” she said. “We have to find bricks from that era. We had to make the windows similar. It’s pretty costly when it comes to restoring a historic building.”

The total goal for the project is $125,000. They have a “thermometer” set up, showing the immediate goal is currently $10,000.

Along with the donations, they’ve also been searching for grants. Friends of Clarksville decided to make this their next project because they find it to be unique for the village.

“It’s a hidden treasure in Clarksville. This would be a great place for a field trip for the schools. It has a great historic feel to it,” said Chaney.

She is pleased at how much people have been helping with the restoration.

“It’s amazing that such a small community is helping to keep the history in the area strong,” she said. “Many local construction companies are willing to help us and it’s wonderful.”

To register for the cookoff (either to compete or to judge), visit to fill in the form.

The historic Clarksville jail. historic Clarksville jail. Friends of Clarksville

By John Hamilton

[email protected]

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574