Ohio Facts

Ohio is the 34th largest state by area and the 7th most populous in the United States. It joined the Union as the 17th state in 1803.

Here are some other quick Ohio facts about the state’s symbols:

  • Ohio’s state tree is the Ohio buckeye
  • Ohio’s state bird is the cardinal
  • Ohio’s state animal is the white-tailed deer
  • Ohio’s state insect is the 7-spot ladybug
  • Ohio’s state beverage is tomato juice
  • Ohio’s state’s official rock song is “Hang on Sloopy”


  • Cleveland is named after General Moses Cleaveland. The name was shortened so the city name could fit into a newspaper’s masthead by dropping the “a”
  • Cleveland is home to the first U.S. traffic light which started on Aug. 5, 1914
  • Four time gold medal Olympian Jesse Owens grew up in Cleveland. He won four gold medals in Berlin in 1936
  •  Cleveland became the world’s first city to be lighted electrically in 1879


  • Columbus is the capitol of Ohio
  • 50% of the United States population lives within a 500 mile radius of Columbus
  • Columbus is home to the largest college campus, The Ohio State University
  • In 2010, the Dole Nutrition Institute named Columbus as a top city for salad consumption


  • Cincinnati had the first U.S. ambulance service, which started in 1865
  • The Cincinnati Reds were the first all-professional baseball team in history
  • Cincinnati State is a vocational school which includes the Midwest Culinary School, one of the best culinary institutes in the United States
  • Cincinnati played a key role during the Civil War as a major source for supplies and troops for the Union Army


  • Akron was the first city to use police cars
  • Akron is the rubber capitol of the world
  • Famous NBA basketball star Lebron James is from Akron
  • The All-American Soap Box Derby takes place each year at the Derby Downs in Akron, as it has since 1936


  • The Toledo Zoo was the first zoo to feature a hippoquarium-style exhibit
  • Stock car races and concerts can be seen at the Toledo Speedway
  • The National Arbor Day Foundation has designated Toledo as a Tree City USA
  • Actress Katie Holmes is from Toledo


  • The inventors of the first airplane, the Wright Brothers, are from Dayton, Ohio
  • Dayton is nicknamed the gem city
  • Dayton hosted the first American Professional Football Association game in 1920 and it is considered to be one of the first professional football games ever played
  • The Dayton area was ranked the 10th best metropolitan area in the United States for higher education by Forbes.