History

Why is this site important?

Paul Laurence Dunbar is one of America’s greatest poets and he spent almost his entire life in Ohio. He published hundreds of poems, as well as novels, short stories, and song lyrics. He is considered one of the most important figures in African American and American history, in the company of Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and his Dayton neighbors Orville and Wilbur Wright. In 1936, the Ohio Legislature dedicated the house as a memorial to Dunbar—the first state memorial in Ohio to honor an African American—and delegated its care to the Ohio Historical Society. In 1938, the home was opened to the public.