The ancient Adena Effigy Pipe is one of the most well-known items on exhibit at the Ohio History Center in Columbus. A four-year effort by students at Columbus School for Girls to have the Adena Pipe named Ohio’s official state artifact culminated last week when Gov. John Kasich signed Senate Bill 33 into law.
Earlier this year, members of the Ohio House of Representatives and Ohio Senate had voted unanimously in favor of naming the Adena Effigy Pipe Ohio’s official state artifact. Sponsors included Rep. Mike Duffey (R-Worthington), Rep. John Carney (D-Columbus), Sen. Kevin Bacon (R-Minerva Park) and Sen. Frank LaRose (R-Akron).
Idea Conceived in 2009
With support from the Ohio History Connection, students and teachers from Columbus School for Girls worked for over four years to make the Adena Pipe Ohio’s official state artifact.
The idea was conceived in 2009 by fourth graders (now seventh graders) studying Ohio history at Columbus School for Girls under the direction of Form IV teachers Tracy Kessler and Charlotte Stiverson. In the ensuing years, additional classes of fourth graders at Columbus School for Girls joined the crusade and helped to continue shepherding the proposal through every step of the legislative process.
A Hands-On Look at the Legislative Process
“Learning about the Adena Pipe, introducing the legislation, lobbying and writing letters in support of this bill and monitoring the House and Senate votes have been hands-on, intimate looks at the political system for the girls,” says Betsy Gugle, Columbus School for Girls lower school director.
“The Adena Effigy Pipe is the earliest representation we have of a human in all of Ohio history or prehistory,” says Brad Lepper, Ohio History Connection curator of archaeology. “Listing the Adena Effigy Pipe as Ohio’s State Artifact honors our indigenous heritage by giving a face to the too-often-forgotten American Indian people who were the first Ohioans.”
Pipe Was Discovered at Adena
The Adena Effigy Pipe is one of the most famous artifacts in the collections of the Ohio History Connection and is, perhaps, the artifact that is most often illustrated to represent the ancient American Indian cultures of eastern North America. It was found in a mound at Adena, the Chillicothe estate of Thomas Worthington, Ohio’s sixth governor and one of Ohio’s first two United States senators. The pipe has become a hallmark of the Adena culture (circa 800 B.C.-A.D. 100).
On Exhibit at the Ohio History Center
See the Adena Pipe and many other ancient Ohio artifacts in the exhibit Following in Ancient Footsteps at the Ohio History Center at I-71 & 17th Avenue (Exit 111) in Columbus. The Ohio History Center museum is open five days a week: Wednesdays-Saturdays 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sundays noon-5 p.m. Ohio History Center museum admission is $10/adult; $9/senior (age 60+); $5/youth (ages 6-12); and Free/child (age 5 and under). Ohio History Connection members enjoy free admission. Questions about visiting the Ohio History Center? Call 800.686.6124.