What to know about the site:
The Village was established by David Zeisberger, who in 1772 found a rare pocket of neutrality in a region that was tense as the American Revolution approached. Five Indian families and Ziseberger came to the Tuscarawas River area to find a suitable site for a mission, upon an invitation of the Delaware Indian leader Netawatwes to establish a mission in the Ohio country. The village established the state’s first civil code, and built the first schoolhouse. Towards the end of its short five year history, the villagers were harassed from both sides; the Indians, who were under the influence of the British, and the American frontiersmen who were pushing their way farther into the Ohio country. By 1777, the villagers, pressured by the opposing forces chose to abandon Schoenbrunn. Upon leaving, they ruined the meeting house so it could not be used again.
The village, now restored to appear as it did more than two centuries ago, includes the original cemetery and 16 reconstructed log structures, as well s the church and gardens. A visitor’s center with museum and introduction video helps orientate the visitor to experience the village as if you were in the past.
Did you know that the Moravian missionaries kept precise diaries and yearly reports that are preserved in the archives of the Moravian Church? From these journals, it was possible to relocate and reconstruct Schoenbrunn Village after the Ohio Historical Society acquired it in 1923.