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Official Birthday of "Coney Island"

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On June 21st, 1886 (122 years ago today) Ohio Grove: The Coney Island of the West officially opened. The steamboat the Guiding Star transported those first park guests to the park that day.

While that day is the official opening of "Coney Island", the name the park eventually took as its sole name in the following year, the roots of the park extend further into the past then 1886. James Parker opened his 400 tree, 20 acre apple orchard to picnic goers back in 1867. He operated his picnic business with early amusements until he sold it on March 18th, 1886 for $17,500 to the Ohio Grove Corporation. The Ohio Grove Corporation was spearheaded by William and Malcolm McIntyre, both steam boat captains. This company was only in charge of Coney Island for a few seasons. In 1888, the Coney Island Company took control of the park, under the tutelage of Commodore Lee Brooks.

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In 1907, the Coney Island Company was reorganized as The Coney Island Company of West Virginia. This was done primarily for tax and liability reasons. Lee H. Brooks and his two sons were still the ones primarily in charge of this new company.

John Winslow Hubbard bought Coney Island in 1922 for $300,000. In 1924, Hubbard sold Coney (which by this time had 108 acres) to Coney Island, Inc. Coney Island Inc. principles included Rudolph "Rud" Hynicka, George F. Schott, and William O. Mashburn (whose family owned the Coca-Cola franchise in the Cincinnati area, and as a result, Coca-Cola became the official drink of Coney).

February 21st, 1927, Rud Hynicka dies of a heart attack. He had owned 15 of 65 shares in Coney Island Inc. George Schott assumed control of the park.

In 1935, George Schott passed away due to a heart attack at the age of 57. His son Edward Schott and son-in-law Ralph Wachs took over the operation of running the park. Edwards Schott passed away in 1962. Ralph Wachs and his son Gary Wachs were now in control of Coney Island, Inc.

In July of 1968, Taft Broadcasting bought Coney Island for $6.5 million with the intention to build Kings Island. Taft Broadcasting would own Coney even after Kings Island opened in 1972. (Sunlite Pool did open for the 1972 season). In 1987, Taft Broadcasting was bought by Great American Communications, who became the new owners of Coney Island (Great American, like Great American Insurance is related to Carl Lindner and family).

In 1991, Ronald Walker purchased Coney Island from Great American Communications for $3.8 million. Ronald Walker died unexpectedly in 1997, and his wife Brenda Walker continues to own Coney to this day.

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And for a while, the same company that owns Coney Island of Cinci owned Americana aka LeSourdsville Lake Amusement Park.

So do you remember the first opening day at Coney?

<G>

WooferBear Feeling Playful and had to give Interp a Ribbing.

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Isn't there a time capsule by Moonlite Gardens slated to open up sometime soon?

pilotank

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Yes, there is a time capsule by the entrance to Moonlite Gardens. It is slated to be open on June 21st, 2011. See the below image.

100_1870-(Medium).jpg

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Yes, there is a time capsule by the entrance to Moonlite Gardens. It is slated to be open on June 21st, 2011. See the below image.

100_1870-(Medium).jpg

Thanks, now I know where to look!

pilotank

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Guest rcfreak339

When was that capsule put there??

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1911, duh! If it is to be opened on it's 100th anneversary (as said), and it's going to be opened in 2011 (as said), then 2011-100=1911!

What are they keeping in the Time Capsule?

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I don't know much, but I do know there is NO way that time capsule was put there 100 years ago....it may have been put somewhere else and moved (which I doubt), but more likely was more recently ensconced where it is.

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Well, considering that it is a "100th anniversary time capsule" I would suspect that the time capsule was placed there for the park`s 100th anniversary, in 1986, to be opened twenty five years later, which would be in 2011

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Does anyone know when they tore the dam down that stretched across the Ohio River?

You can see it in some aerial photo's ca. 1950's. It was located just about where Riverbend is now

and where the turnaround for the Shooting Star was in 1971.

I believe it was built for flood control after the 1937 flood.

pilotank

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I do not recall seeing a dam near Coney Island in any aerial pictures. That of course does not mean there wasn`t one.

I`ve done a little digging, and haven`t found any indications of a dam near Coney. However, I do have some information to share. The Captain Meldahl Dam and locks reside on the Ohio River to the east of Coney Island, 1.7 miles west of Chilo, Ohio. The dam replaced dam and locks numbered 31, 32, 33 and 34. One of those could be the potential dam that once resided near Coney.

Construction on the project started in April of 1958, with construction of the locks beginning a year later. Construction on the dam began in 1961. The locks were placed in operation in 1962, and the dam was completed in 1964, with a total cost of $74 million. So the timeline pretty much fits with when the dam you were describing could have been removed.

Meldahl Dam

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The Corps of Engineers dams on the Ohio are not now, nor were they ever, used for flood control. They are for navigation only....and allow the river to have a navigation pool the year around. Before they were built, the Ohio sometimes got so low in summers so as to be impassable. The dams on lakes (like Cave Run in Kentucky or Deer Creek in Ohio) are for flood damage reduction and recreation.

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That makes sense. It possibly could have been a lock.

The aerial is from the dvd "Greetings from Coney Island" Cincinnati".

You can definitely see it stretching across the Ohio River. In addition,

you can see where boats can pass through.

pilotank

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I do not recall seeing a dam near Coney Island in any aerial pictures. That of course does not mean there wasn`t one.

I`ve done a little digging, and haven`t found any indications of a dam near Coney. However, I do have some information to share. The Captain Meldahl Dam and locks reside on the Ohio River to the east of Coney Island, 1.7 miles west of Chilo, Ohio. The dam replaced dam and locks numbered 31, 32, 33 and 34. One of those could be the potential dam that once resided near Coney.

Construction on the project started in April of 1958, with construction of the locks beginning a year later. Construction on the dam began in 1961. The locks were placed in operation in 1962, and the dam was completed in 1964, with a total cost of $74 million. So the timeline pretty much fits with when the dam you were describing could have been removed.

Meldahl Dam

The you-tube video shows the lock in the aerial portion of the video at the 00:25 mark.

It looks farther east than Coney, closer to River Downs.

pilotank

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Here it is Oct. 2019, I took a picture of the engraved stone referring to the time capsule to be opened June 21, 2011. Don't think it has been opened. It looks undisturbed.

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