Heritage Center of Dayton Manufacturing & Entrepreneurship

By the turn of the century, Dayton had more patents, per capita, than any U.S. city, and one-sixth of the nation’s corporate executives had spent a portion of their career at legendary Dayton company National Cash Register (NCR). Beginning in the mid-1800s, Dayton established itself as a center of manufacturing and entrepreneurship. Companies such as NCR, the Barney & Smith Car Company, McCall’s Publishing, DELCO, the Wright Company, and the Huffy Corporation set Dayton apart in innovation and forward thinking.

Carillon Historical Park’s Heritage Center of Dayton Manufacturing & Entrepreneurship is themed around innovation, manufacturing, industry, engineering, and invention. And the focus of the Heritage Center rests on five main individuals: John H. Patterson, Orville & Wilbur Wright, Charles F. Kettering, and Colonel Edward A. Deeds.

As a city set in the middle of the country, Dayton continues to remind us of America’s Gilded Age and the entrepreneurial spirit of this nation. The Heritage Center covers a span of over 150 years, starting as early as 1840 and continuing into the nuclear age. It paints a picture of a city emerging out of the industrial revolution and evolving into a major center of manufacturing. Evolving over time, Dayton was a center of innovation through the Civil War, Reconstruction Era, Gilded Age, Progressive Era, World War I, roaring 1920s, Great Depression, World War II, and Cold War era.