Put-in-Bay is a village located on South Bass Island in Put-in-Bay Township, Ottawa County, Ohio, United States. The population was 138 at the 2010 census. Put-in-Bay is located 15 miles northwest of Sandusky.
The name “Put-in-Bay” originally only referred to the bay itself. In the latter-1700s, the schooners sailing on Lake Erie, would “put in” to this bay, to wait out bad weather on Lake Erie. (Many of the unfamiliar sailors used the slang phonetic term, puddin’ (or pudding) bay, resulting in later local-historians’ attempt to attribute various explanations for the term “pudding bay”, which, in reality, had no meaning, but was simply a slang phonetic variant of “Put-in-Bay”.)
Put-in-Bay, Ohio has been a popular resort for years as these photographs show.
In the park, Put-in-Bay, Ohio ca. 1906 by Detroit Publishing Company
The bay played a significant role in the War of 1812 as the location of the squadron of U.S. naval commander Oliver Hazard Perry, who sailed from the port on September 10, 1813 to engage a British squadron just north of the island in the Battle of Lake Erie.
Perry monument i.e. Cannonball Monument and guns, Put-In-Bay, Ohio ca. 1904 by Detroit Publishing Company
Perry’s Victory & International Peace Memorial, South Bass Island, Put-in-Bay, Ottawa County, Ohio ca. 1930
In 1820 and 1830, the island was under the jurisdiction of Huron County, Ohio; but later joined to Ottawa County, Ohio.
It was after 1830, when Put-in-Bay Township was finally established. The island was only very sparsely inhabited and there was no actual village here prior to the creation of Put-in-Bay Township.
The first known Caucasian resident on the island, was Alexander Ewen, who had about 1000 hogs roaming the island in 1810.
Photograph below shows groups of individuals scattered throughout the Put-in-bay park either sitting together in the grass or on benches, standing around, or gathered in the gazebo, between 1900 – 1910 by photographer H. A. Herbster
Today, Put-in-Bay is a popular summer resort and recreational destination. Ferry and airline services connect the community with Catawba Island, Kelleys Island, Port Clinton, and Sandusky, Ohio.
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