Oldest Concrete Street in America
An archway now marks one end of Court Avenue.
Though parts of the street have been patched, visitors can still see parts of the 1891 concrete.
Court Avenue is on the south side of the Logan County Courthouse, a French Second Empire edifice built in 1870.
In 1941, Bellefontaine celebrated the 50th anniversary of the historic street.
In 1991, a statue of George Bartholomew was installed on Court Avenue.
Around the statue of Bartholomew, several plaques tell the history of the oldest concrete street in America.
In 1968, an Ohio Historical Marker was installed nearby.
Backstory and Context
In 1891, George Bartholemew paved the way for the better roads movement in the United States. He convinced the city council in Bellefontaine, Ohio, to try a new mixture called "artificial stone" at the time. On the streets around the Logan County Courthouse, concrete streets were laid. Bartholemew posted a bond guaranteeing the pavement would last at least five years. You can still an original block's length of concrete on Court Avenue today.
Court Avenue in Bellefontaine is now known as the "Oldest Concrete Street in America" -- signs near the courthouse and along the street cement the claim. Visitors will also see a statue of Bartholomew, which was installed in 1991, when the Court Avenue was made into a one-way thoroughfare.