Columbia Township, Lorain County, Ohio
|Columbia Township, Lorain County, Ohio|
|— Township —|
|• Total||25.7 sq mi (66.5 km2)|
|• Land||25.3 sq mi (65.6 km2)|
|• Water||0.3 sq mi (0.9 km2)|
|Elevation||768 ft (234 m)|
|• Density||272.9/sq mi (105.4/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1086506|
Columbia Township, also known as Columbia Station or just Columbia, is the easternmost of the eighteen townships of Lorain County, Ohio, United States. Columbia Township is the official government name, while Columbia Station is the post office name, and tends to be the town name used by residents. The post office name was chosen to differentiate the township from other Columbia Townships statewide, located in Hamilton and Meigs Counties.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 25.7 square miles (66.5 km²), of which, 25.3 square miles (65.6 km²) of it is land and 1.34% is water. The west branch of the Rocky River and Plum Creek flow through the township from south to north.
Columbia Township is part of Greater Cleveland.
Located in eastern Lorain County, it borders the following townships and cities:
- Olmsted Township, Cuyahoga County – north
- Berea – northeast corner
- Strongsville – east
- Brunswick Hills Township, Medina County – southeast corner
- Liverpool Township, Medina County – south
- Grafton Township – southwest corner
- Eaton Township – west
- North Ridgeville – northwest corner
No municipalities are located in Columbia Township.
The township is governed by a three-member board of trustees, who are elected in November of odd-numbered years to a four-year term beginning on the following January 1. Two are elected in the year after the presidential election and one is elected in the year before it. There is also an elected township fiscal officer, who serves a four-year term beginning on April 1 of the year after the election, which is held in November of the year before the presidential election. Vacancies in the fiscal officership or on the board of trustees are filled by the remaining trustees.
Columbia Township is part of the Connecticut Western Reserve, lands ceded in 1786 by Connecticut after the American Revolution. In 1805, two years after Ohio became a state, the federal government finalized treaties with local American Indians. The reserve was surveyed and parcelled into rough 5-mile (8.0 km)-square blocks (smaller than the typical 6-mile (9.7 km)-square townships in the U.S.). The Bronson and Hoadley families of Waterbury, Connecticut pooled together $20,087 to purchase a township. On April 4, 1807, they drew Township 5 N, Range 15 W from a random selection of townships in the reserve, purchasing the land site-unseen.
Columbia Township has been continuously inhabited since 1807, the longest settlement in the Western Reserve west of the Cuyahoga River. It has other firsts in the Western Reserve west of the Cuyahoga: the first classroom (Bronson cabin, summer of 1808), first teacher (Sally Bronson, 1808), first white child born (Sally Hoadley), first gristmill (summer of 1809), first cemetery (1811), first doctor (Zephaniah Potter, 1809), and first organized church society (Episcopalian, 1809).
The Bronson House Museum (built c. 1850, 13646 W River Road) is the last home of Sally Bronson. Other Columbia Township buildings in the National Register of Historic Places include the Columbia Town Hall (added 1976, #76001468, 25496 Royalton Road) and the Columbia Baptist Church (added 1976, #76001466, 25514 Royalton Road).
The Copopa School was built in 1921. The name originates as follows:
The first post office in town was established about the year 1817. The first postmaster was Thomas G. Bronson, who kept the office in his house. The name selected was the Indian name for Rocky river, Copokah. In the papers sent from Washington the word was miswritten Copopo, and the error was never corrected.—History of Lorain County, Ohio (1879)
Farming has historically been the most significant employer in Columbia Township and the surrounding townships, but in the second half of the 19th century, sandstone from the local quarries was mined and widely distributed. Two of the township's quarries were Jaquay quarry and an area which later became known as Wildwood Lake. Both Jaquay and Wildwood were used as swimming parks in the late 20th century, with Wildwood operating until 2001.
At the 2007 Homecoming, Columbia Township celebrated its bicentenary. For the previous fifty years up, the township had not experienced the urban sprawl that developed in neighboring areas, but the number of farms in the township has fallen significantly.
The Lorain County Metro Parks opened the Columbia Reservation in 2003, a 409-acre (166 ha) park with 285 acres (115 ha) of high-quality wetlands in the floodplain of the west branch of the Rocky River. The park has 3 miles (5 km) of trails running through ponds, marshes, wet meadows and swamps. The park is popular with bird watchers, as more than 50 species of birds, including the Great Blue Heron, can be seen there. An additional 80 acres (32 ha) are planned to be added to the park.
Columbia Township Park is also located in Columbia Station. It is home to ten ball fields, tennis courts, a basketball court, a children's playground and a walking path on 27.1 acres (11.0 ha). The park also hosts various festivals year-round.
Media attention 
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- Lorain County, Ohio — Population by Places Estimates Ohio State University, 2007. Accessed May 14, 2007.
- §503.24, §505.01, and §507.01 of the Ohio Revised Code. Accessed April 30, 2009.
- History of Lorain County, Ohio (1879)
- "Ohio History Central – Cleveland Stone Company". Retrieved August 22, 2009.
- "Olmstead Falls and Surrounding Quarries". Retrieved August 22, 2009.[dead link]
- "Tornado Track Across Lorain and Cuyahoga Counties, Ohio". Fujita, et al, Monthly Weather Review, 1970. Retrieved August 22, 2009.
- "Columbia Twp. celebrates bicentennial". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved August 22, 2009.
- "Columbia Reservation". Lorain County Metroparks. Archived from the original on July 14, 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-12.
- "Trails". Lorain County Metroparks. Retrieved 2012-03-20.
- "February/March". Blackbrook Audubon Society. Retrieved January 12, 2009.
- "KBC – Columbia Reservation Field Trip – October 11, 2003". Kirtland Bird Club. Retrieved January 12, 2009.
- Linebrink, Melissa (November 7, 2008). "Towns complete monumental effort to honor veterans". The Chronicle-Telegram (Elyria, Ohio). Retrieved January 11, 2009.[dead link]
- "Flight 93 Graphic". New York Times. April 13, 2006. Retrieved August 22, 2009.
- "Oprah Winfrey Show: All-American Tragedy". Retrieved August 22, 2009.