Logan County Spotlight: Campbell Hill


Today’s Logan County Spotlight is on Campbell Hill.

Campbell Hill, the highest point in Ohio, is located on State Route 540 at the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center.

It is 1,549 feet above sea level and is open seven days a week.

Anyone can visit the site and take in the scenic views.

Those who visit Campbell Hill can get a certificate as a token to remember.

You may get a certificate in a drawer in the brick post at Campbell Hill.

Campbell Hill is named after Charles D. Campbell of Bellefontaine.

Campbell owned the land from 1896 to 1937.

A marble stone marker on top of the hill (pictured below) was set in 1900, by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, as the highest point in Ohio.

In 1951, the U.S. Air Force opened the 664th Aircraft Control & Warning (AC&W) Squadron on Campbell Hill.

The 664th AC&W Squadron Airbase, which was approximately 53 acres, was part of the U.S. Air Defense Command that monitored the skies for enemy planes and air attacks.

The airbase also helped “friendly” aircraft that needed navigational assistance, along with other functions.

The 664th could monitor the skies with sophisticated radar equipment called the Semi-Automatic Ground Environment System (SAGE).

The SAGE system allowed the airbase to know which aircraft were friendly or suspicious.

The information was relayed to a region direction center in Michigan to be studied closer. 

The 664th was in operation from 1951 to 1969 during the height of the Cold War.

The airmen and civilians who worked at the airbase served an essential role in protecting the U.S.

They were vital members of the community, and some are still active in the community today.

Thank you to the men and women of the 664th who gave their services in protecting the United States.

As the airbase closed in 1969, the focus shifted to build the new Ohio Hi-Point Joint Vocational School.

During the construction of the new school district, some of the airbase buildings were removed and some were remodeled.

Today, many of the original 664th airbase buildings remain that have been renovated and are still in use.

In September of 1974, the Ohio Hi-Point JVS, known today as the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center, opened to students.

Ohio Hi-Point is honored to be located at the former airbase and has named some of their rooms in honor of the 664th.

You can see more information about Ohio Hi-Point and the school’s history here.

Within the last few years, members of the 664th AC&W Squadron opened a 664th AC&W Squadron Welcome Center in one of the former airbase housing units, closest to State Route 540.

It has a wide variety of memorabilia, such as photos, radar equipment, uniforms, and more.

There is a National Air Defense Radar Museum coming soon in the light blue former radar tower next to Campbell Hill.

This building can be toured when one tours the Welcome Center.

The Welcome Center and former radar tower are open by reservation only.

To schedule a visit, call (937) 539-1567 or (703) 867-2413.

Robert Walker, 664th AC&W Chairman, explains the 664th, history of the AC&W sites worldwide, and how to visit the site:

Ohio Hi-Point will be hosting a solar eclipse viewing experience at the highest point in Ohio on Monday, April 8, 2024.

This event will be family-friendly and will be from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 per vehicle and $125 per bus.

Superintendent Rick Smith explains the Solar Eclipse viewing experience on April 8, 2024:

You can see more information about The Solar Eclipse at the Top of Ohio and purchase tickets here.

Campbell Hill is located at 2280 State Route 540, Bellefontaine, OH 43311.