Main Street in Berlin, now a hub of activity,
was once a quiet stretch of road through an unassuming village.


History of Berlin OhioBerlin is the oldest existing village in Holmes County, laid out on July 2, 1816, by John Swigert. Swigert, a native of Berlin, Germany, and Joseph Troyer, an early settler from Berlin, Pennsylvania, named the village after their hometowns. Folklore suggests Swigert chose the site because its elevation, the highest in Holmes County, made it more easily defensible from Indian attack.


Berlin was a center of industry, with machine shops, a foundry, dry goods stores, hotels, tailor shops, hat factories, blacksmith shops, a tannery, a gristmill. It was the site of a hugely successful auction in the early-to-mid 1900's.


Most of Berlin's early settlers were from Germany and Switzerland, having first settled in Pennsylvania, then migrating to Ohio. Early Berlin residents were members of a number of churches, including Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist and Mennonite. Amish settlers came later, establishing their first church there in 1820.


The Pomerene family was prominent in Berlin. Pomerene Hospital in Millersburg is named for Joel Pomerene, a Civil-War-era surgeon. Atlee Pomerene was a U.S. Senator who once ran for the Democratic nomination for President. The Pomerene family house still stands along east Main Street.

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Berlin, Ohio 44654