The village of Zoar, on state Route 212 in northern Tuscarawas County, is a well-preserved early 19th century communal village.
Zoar was founded in 1817 by a group of German Separatists who were fleeing religious persecution in their native Wurttemberg, Germany. After arriving in Philadelphia, they obtained a loan from the Quakers and purchased 5,500 acres along the Tuscarawas River.
The settlement was named Zoar, after the Biblical town to which Lot fled after escaping from Sodom. It became a communal society in 1819, with every member’s property and earnings becoming common stock. Men and women had equal political rights in the community.
The village contained a church, communal bakery, tin shop, blacksmith shop, furniture shop, weaving and sewing houses, a pottery, several mills, a brewery, a large ornamental garden with greenhouse, a town hall, a general store and private and communal residences.
The society was disbanded in 1898, with each member receiving land, a house and possessions.
The Ohio Historical Society and the Zoar Community Association currently manage several of the public buildings in Zoar and provide interpretive tours and demonstrations. Several bed and breakfasts operate in the historic district and seasonal festivals are held throughout the year.
The historic district roughly is bounded by First, Fifth and Foltz streets on either side of Route 212. Many of the historic buildings are open for tours on Wednesday through Sunday. For further information on hours and admission charges, call 330-874-2646.
Nearby, nestled between the historic village and the Tuscarawas River is the Zoar Wetland Arboretum, an 82-acre natural wetland with a 30-acre marsh and 50 acres of woodland.
Owned by Earth Action Partnership, the site also has two miles of trails designed for people of all ages that are maintained through volunteers.
The wetland partners with the Zoar Community Association to use the wetland for public tours, summer day camps and nature education.
The ecosystem has a large variety of native trees, plants and flowers.

Need directions? GPS it at 198 Main St., Zoar.