VISITING THE HOUSE
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Thurber House (the home of humorist, author, and New Yorker cartoonist James Thurber) is a non-profit literary center and Thurber museum.
The Thurber House museum is open from 1:00–4:00 pm seven days a week, excluding major holidays. Daily self-guided tours are free, and drop in guided tours are available on Sundays ($4.00 for adults and $2.00 for students and seniors).
We offer guided group tours for 10+ guests by appointment. Guided tours are $4.00 for adults and $2.00 for students and seniors.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 614-464-1032 x11 to schedule a guided group tour for 10+ guests.
Click here for more information about visiting Thurber House, including parking and a map.
Thanks to the work of our dedicated volunteers, Thurber House was restored to reflect the period when the Thurber family lived here (1913-1917). The first two floors are open to the public. Rooms on view include the formal parlor, the living room and its alcove, the dining room, five bedrooms, and the bathroom Thurber hid in to avoid the ghost running up the back stairs.
At the direction of the Thurber family, the restored house is a living museum where interaction with museum materials is allowed. In many rooms, visitors are invited to sit on the chairs, play the piano, and experience the museum as if they were the Thurbers' guests.
The formal parlor, living room, alcove, and Thurber's bedroom represent the more "museum-oriented" rooms in the house. The parents' bedroom has been turned into a showcase for rotating displays of memorabilia from Thurber's professional life as a writer, playwright, journalist, and cartoonist.
The rooms of William and Robert (Thurber's brothers), the guest room, and the kitchen contain some period furniture and Thurber family or period memorabilia. The dining room has been transformed into a museum shop where various Thurber-themed gift items and Thurber books can be found.
The third floor of Thurber House is an apartment for visiting writers.
The DoG Reading Garden
"Columbus is a town in which almost anything is likely to happen and in which almost everything has." James Thurber was right, even regarding gardens. And thanks to a garden-loving benefactor and the landscaping vision of Cynthia Benua, men, women, and dogs can enjoy the Thurber Centennial Reading Garden in the peaceful stretch between Thurber House and Thurber Center.
Four larger-than-life-size dogs, sculpted by Dale Johnson after Thurber's cartoons, frolic amid dogwoods, bayberries, viburnum, and a range of what a Thurber cartoon summed up as "flars." In the center of the garden, a fifth dog playfully perches on top of a tranquil fountain.
THE UNICORN IN THE GARDEN
In the elliptical Thurber Park across the street, a unicorn tosses its head as it considers which of the summer lilies it will eat next. The unicorn is modeled after the memorable creature in Thurber's story "The Unicorn in the Garden," which is engraved nearby. The unicorn is one of two matching sculptures. The other is located on the grounds of the Columbus School for Girls.