Great Dayton Flood of 1913 depicted in new traveling exhibit

The Great Dayton Flood of 1913 was a catastrophic, yet defining, event in Dayton’s history. Out of this tragedy grew a community spirit of generosity, strength and accomplishment in preventing another flood of such devastating proportion.

The community commemorates the centennial of this event to reconnect with the past and understand its lasting legacy on our history and physical landscape.

The Wright State University Libraries’ Special Collections & Archives created a free traveling exhibit consisting of captivating photographs and primary sources to tell the story of the flood on three, free-standing fabric panels each measuring 33.5″ wide and 84″ tall. An in-depth brochure accompanies the exhibit in addition to a website offering an image gallery,

The exhibit debuted at the Jan. 24 performance of the Wright State University Theatre’s 1913: The Great Dayton Flood, which runs through Feb. 10.

The Archives’ website lists where and when the exhibit will be displayed, and provides a request form to borrow the exhibit. Any organization or institution is welcome to borrow the exhibit for a two-week period. Requests can be made by completing the online form or calling (937) 775-2092.

For additional information, please see the FAQ link on the 1913 Flood website, or email the Archives at

This exhibit is made possible through the generosity of a Wright State University Friends of the Libraries’ Staff Grant, and the Dayton office of Battelle Memorial Institute. Due to their support, the 1913 Dayton Flood Traveling Exhibit is available at no cost, with the exception of shipping if needed.

In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the 1913 Dayton Flood, two Wright State Public History graduate students are seeking community input to create permanent remembrances for future researchers. They are working with the Libraries’ Special Collections & Archives to create a 1913 Flood Archival Resource List and Virtual Gallery of photos from the catastrophe.

Groups and individuals with photos, letters, newspapers, and other mementoes of the flood are asked to contact the Archives now to help create the following resources:

The 1913 Flood Archival Resource List will create a master list of available 1913 Flood archival resources that are available to all for research and study.  Researchers, teachers, historians, and others will be able to discover, in one central location, all of the amazing resources available on the 1913 Flood.  The Resource List will be hosted by Wright State University at

The list will link to repositories’ own web sites and finding aids, and researchers will contact the holding repository directly for access.  Please share your resource list using the enclosed survey, and return it to the mailing address above or by email to  Please send your list by March 8, so we can prepare the Resource List in time for the 100th anniversary of the flood.

The 1913 Flood Virtual Gallery will share photos and video pertaining to the flood. Contributions may be dated 1913 or later (e.g., flood markers). The Virtual Gallery will be created through the use of a Flickr group located at  By creating a (free) Flickr account, institutions can contribute material to the Virtual Gallery.  Both under the Flickr Terms of Use and the terms of the project, all contributed material remains the property of the contributing institution.  Privacy and copyright settings on Flickr can be whatever the contributing institution is comfortable with.  Each contributor is limited to posting 20 images to the group, so that no one repository is overly dominant.  To learn more about Flickr, see Please try to share your materials by the end of March.

The Public History student project managers, Sarah Staples and Seanne Finley, are available to answer any questions and help in any way possible. They may be contacted at

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