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At the crossing of State Route 350 and the Little Miami River
College Township Road (ranging from Chilicothe through Lebanon to Oxford) was constructed and crossed the Little Miami River at this site in 1804.
The still-standing stone building was built as a farmhouse around 1806 and around 1809 was converted to a tavern & stagecoach stop called the Crossed Keys Tavern.
The Little Miami Railroad was built through the area in 1844; a Post Office opened in 1846; and the town was platted in 1849.
The town became a busy shipping area by providing the farms and orchards of the area access to the railroad. Large quantities of peaches, blackberries, hogs & grain were shipped from Fort Ancient.
By 1850, Francis Howell had built a hotel that could accommodate 100 guests. People came to the town to visit the earthworks and to get out of the cities.
Other businesses & organizations included: a railroad station, a distillery, a tannery, a warehouse, a school, a physician, a seamstress, a general store, a blacksmith & a church.
By the late 1800's the town was starting to dwindle. By 1920, the only store was in the hotel and the Post Office closed in 1923.
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