|Motto: "Freedoms Landing - Where thousands found freedom on the Underground Railroad"|
Location of Ripley, Ohio
|• Total||2.30 sq mi (5.96 km2)|
|• Land||1.99 sq mi (5.15 km2)|
|• Water||0.31 sq mi (0.80 km2)|
|Elevation||502 ft (153 m)|
|• Estimate (2012)||1,739|
|• Density||879.4/sq mi (339.5/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1061608|
Main Street ends at the Ohio River in Ripley, Ohio.
Colonel James Poage, a veteran of the American Revolution, arrived in the free state of Ohio from Staunton, Virginia in 1804 to claim the 1,000 acres (4.0 km2) he had been granted in what was called the Virginia Military District. Poage was among a large group of veterans who received land grants in what was first organized as the Northwest Territory north of the Ohio River for their service in the American Revolutionary War, and freed their slaves when they settled there. Poage and his family laid out the town of Staunton in 1812; it was renamed in 1816 to honor General Eleazar Wheelock Ripley, an American officer of the War of 1812.
Given its location on the river, Ripley became a destination for slaves escaping from slavery in Kentucky on the other side. Both black and white residents developed a network, making Ripley an early stop on the Underground Railroad, to help slaves escape North to freedom. A number of prominent abolitionists lived in the town in the 19th century, mainly on Front Street near the river, including John Rankin, former slave John Parker, Thomas McCague, Thomas Collins and Dr. Alexander Campbell.
Rankin moved from Kentucky to Ripley in 1822 and later built a house on Liberty Hill overlooking the town, the river and the Kentucky shore. From there, he signaled escaping slaves with a lantern on a flagpole  and provided them shelter. (It is now known as the John Rankin House (Ripley, Ohio), and has been designated as a National Historic Landmark.) The account of Margaret Garner, a slave woman who escaped across the frozen river to Ripley in 1838 and stayed in Rankin's house, inspired the character of Eliza in Harriet Beecher Stowe's landmark book, Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852). The bestselling book of the nineteenth century, it aroused controversy and strengthened the abolitionist movement. Rankin was the minister at the Ripley Presbyterian Church for twenty-four years.
Ripley is located at  The town is surrounded by steep, rolling hills on the northeast, Red Oak Creek on the southeast, and the Ohio River on the southwest.(38.739416, -83.841102).
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,750 people, 759 households, and 469 families residing in the village. The population density was 879.4 inhabitants per square mile (339.5/km2). There were 931 housing units at an average density of 467.8 per square mile (180.6/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 92.6% White, 4.9% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.2% Asian, and 2.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.5% of the population.
There were 759 households of which 30.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.2% were married couples living together, 16.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.2% were non-families. 32.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.91.
The median age in the village was 42.2 years. 24.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 22.8% were from 25 to 44; 30% were from 45 to 64; and 15.9% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the village was 47.5% male and 52.5% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,745 people, 745 households, and 467 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,722.2 people per square mile (667.1/km²). There were 896 housing units at an average density of 884.3 per square mile (342.5/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 91.69% White, 6.65% African American, 0.06% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.17% from other races, and 1.26% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.69% of the population.
There were 745 households out of which 28.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.0% were married couples living together, 16.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.2% were non-families. 32.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.97.
In the village the population was spread out with 24.9% under the age of 18, 9.2% from 18 to 24, 26.3% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 17.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 83.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 79.8 males.
The median income for a household in the village was $30,000, and the median income for a family was $39,330. Males had a median income of $29,318 versus $20,977 for females. The per capita income for the village was $15,268. About 11.7% of families and 15.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.9% of those under age 18 and 15.7% of those age 65 or over.
- Steve Stivers - U.S. Representative for Ohio's 15th congressional district
- Steven M. Newman - The Worldwalker, the first man to walk solo around the world.
- Colonel Charles Young
- John Parker
- John Rankin, abolitionist and Presbyterian minister
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-06.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-06.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-17.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- The History of Brown County, Ohio: Containing a History of the County, Its Townships, Towns, Churches, Schools, Etc. Higginson Book Company. 1883. p. 416.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.