Northside started as a small settlement in Native American territory back in the 1790’s and is located on what was once two Native American trails. With the building of the Miami-Erie canal in the 1820’s, the population grew and the town of Cumminsville was founded by Ephraim Knowlton, the supervisor of the building of the Miami-Erie canal. Cumminsville was named after David Cummins, one of the original settlers in the area. The population increased even more with the building of the Cincinnati, Hamilton, & Dayton Railroad. The town was often referred to as, “Hell Town” due to the numerous bars and drinking which resulted in drunken fights. The town also held another nickname of, “Happy Valley” most likely for the parade of circus animals and performances that would take place on the circus grounds in the area. Cumminsville was annexed by the city of Cincinnati in 1873. Knowlton’s Corner in Cumminsville was once one of the busiest commercial areas in Cincinnati.
Cumminsville continued to see steady growth up through the 1920’s. In the 1970’s with the construction of Interstate 74 the town was split in two and at that time North Cumminsville and South Cumminsville was established. In the 1980’s, North Cumminsville was changed to Northside.
Nowadays Northside is a vibrant and diverse community. Along Hamilton Avenue is the business and historic district. Here you will find many independently owned businesses from shops with local goods to foodstuffs, art, and restaurants. Northside has a strong music scene with many local and regional bands playing at various establishments in the area. Northside also has parks, community gardens, and various co-ops throughout as well as many popular events like the Northside Farmer’s market, Northside Rock ‘n Roll Carnival, and the Northside Fourth of July Parade - a long running parade that started in 1854.
A map of the Northside businesses can be found here.