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This cache has been archived.

DavisFamily: We will be moving and will not maintain this one, so off to the archives with it. It's a shame, beautiful place.


OSSO: Lest We Forget

A cache by DavisFamily Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 08/27/2005
1.5 out of 5
1.5 out of 5

Size: Size: regular (regular)

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Geocache Description:

Please park & start at the listed coords. As you complete this, please be considerate of the grounds and keep your distance from the school. We have been careful in our planning to guide people away from the school buildings. If you enjoy history and photography, we recommend bringing a camera and would love to see your experience! This should be a pleasant walk and not difficult.

This scenic campus is an important part of history in Ohio. After the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln wanted to designate places as homes for children who lost their parent(s) in the war. It wasn’t until 1869 that his idea became a reality. This particular place was named the Ohio Soldiers & Sailors Orphans (OSSO) Home.

History of the OSSO/OVCH: The Beginning
Money was collected from taxes levied during the Civil War to care for the dependents of soldiers, but the government mishandled the money. By the war's end, several families were living in county infirmities under deplorable conditions. Seeing this, soldiers still living began contacting government officials, requesting that something be done to help the families of the fallen soldiers. Eventually, the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), a federation the veterans formed after the close of the Civil War to foster comradeship, financed the purchase of a home for veteran's orphans in the city of Xenia. Xenia was chosen because people from Greene County had long been interested in the plight of the veterans' families, and Reverend P.C. Prugh had been raising funds for the project for some time. Rev. Prugh is thus referred to as the "Father" of the movement to establish a home. Additionally, Chaplain George W. Collier is credited with being the first to suggest the idea of a home to the GAR.

1869 - Began on E. Main St. in Xenia as the Ohio Soldiers and Sailors Orphans
Home, Dec. 16, 1869, with 2 children.

A temporary location was established in town, and 100 acres of farmland south/southeast of town were purchased for the permanent location. Children began arriving at the home in December 1869, and in August of 1870, they moved to the farm. Responsibility eventually passed from the GAR to the State of Ohio, and the state officially adopted the children.

Dates to Remember
1869 - Began on E. Main St. in Xenia as the Ohio Soldiers and Sailors Orphans
Home, Dec. 16, 1869, with 2 children.

1870 - Taken over by State of Ohio on Apr. 21, 1870, and about 120 children
moved to the farm on "Poverty Knoll", which was originally owned by
William Pelham, on Aug. 25, 1870.

1883 - The first high school graduating class. There were three graduates.

1884 - Part of the grounds was destroyed by a tornado Apr. 27, 1884.

1873 - Administration building was completed.

1904 - The armory building was built.

1978 - The name was changed to the "Ohio Veterans Children’s Home",
because studies showed that the home served very few orphans.

Structure of "Home Life"
The home conducted church services, established a regular school curriculum as well as education in several trades, started a library, and supplied on-site medical attention. The list of trades is impressive, including tin smithing; wood carving; knitting; dress making; tailoring; farm, florist, and garden work; butchering and slaughtering; telegraphy, and blacksmithing. The children also enjoyed such extra-curricular activities as choir, orchestra, concert band, military band, drum corps, and athletics. Beginning in April of 1876, the home put out their own paper, titled the Home Weekly. Children were discharged from the home at the age of 16.

Closing of the Home
OVCH officially closed its doors to incoming students in 1995. The home completely closed in 1997 because the number of students living at OVCH had dropped significantly, as had support for the continuation of the school.

In August 1999, Legacy Ministries International bought the land, in order to expand the campuses of the Xenia Christian Schools. Since then, this historic site has undergone extensive renovation. There are many ministries that have located their headquarters to the campus including Athletes in Action (AIA), Hearts for Honduras, WFCJ 93.7 has a satellite office there as well as Samaritan’s Purse.

Association of Ex-Pupils
Children who once lived at the OSSO/OVCH have formed an Association of Ex-Pupils (AXP), hold an annual reunion and established a museum.

Associate of Ex Pupils Museum
Ohio Soldiers & Sailors Orphanage Home
(937) 374-0302

The museum is maintained by former residents of the OSSO/ OVCH Home. If you’re fortunate enough to arrive when it’s open, they’d love to share their real life history with you.

Stage 1: 39 40.209 N 083 55.247 W
Find the year of Logan’s Memorial Day Order 18______

Stage 2: 39 40.3(year – 40) N 083 55.377
Fill in: What was the age of the only Home child to die while the home was under the control of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR)? __________________

Stage 3 39 40.043 N 083 55.3(age – 1)

How many letters are in this building’s name? ___________ (both words)

Stage 4 39 39.989 N 083 55.3 (# of letters + 56)

The final stage is an ammo can. Please let us know if you have any difficulties with any stage, and please be considerate and respectful of the grounds. Hope you enjoy!

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Fgntr 4: Ybbx hc

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)



27 Logged Visits

Found it 19     Write note 5     Archive 1     Temporarily Disable Listing 1     Publish Listing 1     

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Rendered From:Unknown
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum

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