In 1813-14, William Cary, having migrated from New Hampshire to Cincinnati in 1802, purchased 491 acres (1.99 km2) north of Cincinnati along what is now Hamilton Avenue (U.S. Route 127). Cary built a log cabin and moved his family to this “wilderness,” then known as Mill Creek Township. In 1833, Cary's son Freeman G. Cary established Pleasant Hill Academy for boys on part of his land. The academy became an agricultural school called Farmer's College (for which the area was renamed) in 1846. That school became Belmont College in 1885, and then formed the core of the Ohio Military Institute in 1890. A separate school, the Ohio Female College, was founded in 1852 by Reverend John Covert and operated until 1873 when it was sold to build the Cincinnati Sanitarium, the first private US psychiatric facility not on the East Coast.
The development of the area was expedited by the introduction of a railroad line in 1851 and horsecar service in the 1860s. College Hill was incorporated as a village in 1866, then annexed to the city of Cincinnati in stages in 1911, 1915 and 1923.
Farmer's College, built 1848 (photo 1934)