Black History Facts about Walnut Hills

Walnut Hills Redevelopment Foundation > Uncategorized > Black History Facts about Walnut Hills

We have a ton of history right here in our own neighborhood! Here are just interesting things you might not have known compiled by neighborhood resident Christina Brown.

The first black woman to earn a medical degree from the University of Cincinnati opened a practice in Walnut Hills

“Dr. Lucy Oxley  was the first Black woman to earn a medical degree from the University of Cincinnati. After graduation, Oxley faced discrimination again while trying to find an internship position and ended up at Freedman’s Hospital at Howard University because no other institution to which she applied would accept her. Returning to Cincinnati, she started a family practice in the mainly African American community of Walnut Hills.”

One of the 1st African-American military aviators grew up in Walnut Hills

“Known throughout Cincinnati as “Don”, he grew up in the Walnut Hills area. He graduated from Withrow High School and was a star athlete in track. He joined the Armed Forces in the fall of 1942. His test scores made him eligible to become a pilot and he was assigned to the Tuskegee Army Air Field. On October 16, 1944 He graduated as a 2nd Lieutenant at Tuskegee Army Air Field Class 44-I1-SE (single engine). He became a Wingman in the now famous 99th Fighter Squadron led by Benjamin O. Davis Jr. The 99th was a part of the 477th Composite Group at Godman Field, KY.”

Walnut Hills is home to the second Oldest African Methodist Episcopal Church in Cincinnati

“Brown Chapel African Methodist Church (2804 Alms Place) is the second oldest African Methodist Episcopal Church in Cincinnati. The African Methodist Episcopal Church was established in 1787 after Bishop Richard Allen and other persons of color walked out of St. George’s Methodist Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania because of racism. The church was named Brown Chapel, after Morris Brown, the second Bishop of the church who organized churches in the Midwest.”

The first black-owned drugstore in Cincinnati was located in Walnut Hills and sponsored an all black baseball team

The Cincy Manggrums, a Black baseball team, were sponsored by William  L. Manggrum, a pharmacist who was proprietor of the first black-owned drugstore in Cincinnati. Manggrum’s drugstore was at Chapel and Park streets in Walnut Hills. Wheeler, Lonnie, and John Baskin. “In the Shadows: Cincinnati’s Black Baseball Players.”Queen City Heritage 46 (Summer 1988): 13-19.


One of the oldest African American women’s organizations in the United States is based in Walnut Hills.

“The Cincinnati Federation of Colored Women’s Club, one of the oldest African-American women’s organizations in the United States houses its Cincinnati Chapter in Walnut Hills. The organization owns the C. H Burroughs, house, a registered national historic landmark.The building, at 1010 Chapel St., is noted for its Romanesque style, including a cylindrical corner turret flanking a gabled entrance portico.”