John Bryan State Park

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John Bryan State Park
Water through gorge
Clifton Gorge at John Bryan State Park
John Bryan State Park is located in Ohio
John Bryan State Park
John Bryan State Park
Location in Ohio
LocationGreene County, Ohio, United States
Coordinates39°47′28″N 83°51′16″W / 39.79111°N 83.85444°W / 39.79111; -83.85444Coordinates: 39°47′28″N 83°51′16″W / 39.79111°N 83.85444°W / 39.79111; -83.85444[1]
Area752 acres (304 ha)
Elevation1,017 ft (310 m)[1]
Administered byOhio Department of Natural Resources
DesignationOhio state park
WebsiteJohn Bryan State Park

John Bryan State Park is a 752-acre (304 ha) Ohio state park in Greene County, Ohio. The park surrounds Clifton Gorge, a deep cut of the Little Miami River between Yellow Springs and Clifton. The park contains a campground, and hiking and biking trails.[2] The park also abuts the Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve and Glen Helen Nature Preserve.


The Cincinnati-Pittsburgh stagecoach road served the area and several enterprising settlers began establishing water-powered industries in the gorge. The town of Clifton prospered from the textile mill, grist mills and sawmills located there.

By the late 19th century, most of the industrial activity in the area ceased. Water was no longer an economical source of power and many mills were abandoned. However, one of the grist mills built in 1802 is still in operation. Located in the village of Clifton, the Clifton Mill is open to visitors.

In 1896, John Bryan, an ambitious businessman, purchased 335 acres (136 ha) along the Clifton gorge area and called these acres "Riverside Farm." This portion of the Little Miami River was a vital, economical source of power for the early settlers in the 19th century. In 1918, he bequeathed Riverside Farm to the state of Ohio, " be cultivated by the state as a forestry, botanic and wildlife reserve park and experiment station," which would bear his name. In May 1925, John Bryan's land became one of the state's first forest parks. In 1949, John Bryan State Park was transferred to the newly created ODNR Division of Parks and Recreation. John Bryan State Park and the adjoining Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve overlook the beautiful Little Miami River gorge that has been designated as a National Natural Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior.[3][2]


  1. ^ a b "John Bryan State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  2. ^ a b "John Bryan State Park". Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved November 3, 2020.
  3. ^ "Clifton Gorge". National Natural Landmarks. National Park Service. Retrieved November 3, 2020. ...exemplary of interglacial and postglacial canyon-cutting into the dolomites of the Niagara Escarpment.

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