The O’Bear Hotel

You might be wondering what the connection is between the O’Bear Hotel and Tecumseh Theater. The O’Bear sat on the same plot of land that the Tecumseh Theater sits on currently. Prior to the Improved Order of Redmen purchasing the O’Bear in 1904, the O’Bear was believed to be Shawnee’s first business and was ran by Horatio and Anna O’Bear.  In fact, then Gov. and later the 25th President of the United States, William McKinley, known at the time as “The Major,” spoke from the O’Bear’s porch on October 3rd, 1891 while running for Governor of Ohio. Notable Shawnee resident and personal friend of McKinley, Dr. J.D. Axline introduced the future President and McKinley gave a 2-hour speech to 7,000 people. It is believed to be the biggest political event in the history of Perry County. All this occurred on the same plot of land where the Tecumseh Theater proudly serves as the “Beacon of the Valley” today.

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