Optically stimulated luminescence dated sand dunes and Pleistocene beach ridges in northwest Ohio are used to reconstruct landscape modification more than 5000. yr after deglaciation. Four of the OSL ages (13.3-11.1. ka) cluster around the Younger Dryas cold event, five ages (10.8-8.2. ka) cluster around the Preboreal, one young age (0.9-0.7. ka) records more recent aeolian activity, and one age of 15.1-13.1. ka dates a barrier spit in Lake Warren. In northwest Ohio, both landscape instability recorded by aeolian activity and a vegetation response recorded by pollen are coeval with the Younger Dryas. However, the climate conditions during the Preboreal resulting in aeolian activity are not recorded in the available pollen records. From this, we conclude that aeolian dunes and surfaces susceptible to deflation are sensitive to cooler, drier episodes of climate and can complement pollen data. Younger Dryas and Preboreal aged aeolian activity in northwestern Ohio coincides with aeolian records elsewhere in the Great Lakes region east of the prairie-forest ecotone. ?? 2011 University of Washington.