As its name suggests, Historic German Village embodies both the history of Columbus and the German roots that run deep in the city.
The area dates to 1814, when it was founded by a large enclave of working-class German immigrants. Throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, German residents built up the infrastructure, architecture and business community in the neighborhood, creating an area that at once was distinctly German and America. In the mid-1900s, the area began to fall into disrepair, businesses shuttering and the once-grand rowhomes crumbling. Thanks to the work of the German Village Society, the neighborhood has recently flourished, with a boom of shopping, dining and cultural outposts that have led to bustling tourism traffic.
During your stay in a short-term lease in Columbus, a visit to Historic German Village can make you feel even more at home in the city. It’s an area that brings the history of Columbus to life, fusing it with a modern and vibrant urban experience.
One of the best times to visit Historic German Village is at the end of June, for the annual Haus Und Garten Tour. A dozen houses, many of them historic, open their doors and garden gates to visitors, who can take in the architecture, interior design and impressive landscaping. Along with the tours, guests are treated to music, art exhibits, sidewalk sales, food and more.
No matter what time of year you visit, shopping options abound in Historic German Village. Book lovers will delight in The Book Loft. The expansive space is one of the nation’s largest independent bookstores, a title that’s easy to understand as you traverse the staggering 32 rooms that make up the bookstore. In addition to offering classic and new works, the store gives visitors a glimpse back into the town’s history, as it’s situated in several buildings that date to before the Civil War.
You can bring a little piece of Historic German Village home with you at The Red Stable. The gift shop, founded in 1970, features Ohio-made artwork, jewelry, kitchenware, furniture and more. Its newly opened second floor features a fine-art gallery that showcases works about Historic German Village and the surrounding area.
Several picturesque parks provide a breathtaking backdrop, with greenery, ponds and wildlife. Schiller Park has been in use since the 1800s, and its history is noted with sculptures, while it remains an active hub of village life.
The town’s commercial corridor on Third Street features plentiful food and drink outlets. For the most authentic experience, stop at Katzinger’s Delicatessen for what many have deemed to be the best Rueben in America.
Historic German Village is home to cuisine, creativity and, most importantly, culture, so be sure to venture out of your short-term lease in Columbus and explore this gem.
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