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Favorite thing: The area that would one day become Dayton was originally inhabited by the Mound Builders, and later by American Indians of the Algonquin, Shawnee, and Lenni Lenape tribes.
The first European to visit the area was French explorer Joseph de Beinville, who claimed the area for France. English traders were the first to establish a settlement in the 1750s, and in 1780 George Rogers Clark took over the region for the Americans.
A new city was surveyed and laid out in 1795, and was named after Jonathan Dayton, a New Jersey politician who was instrumental in acquiring the land for the new city.
Construction of the Miami-Erie Canal in 1845 connected the city to Lake Erie and the Ohio River, and helped bring about its prosperity. Rail traffic further helped later development.
Nowadays, Dayton has about 1,070,000 inhabitants in the metropolitan area, making it the fourth-largest metropolitan area in Ohio, after Clevelend, Cincinnati, and Columbus. The city has such attractions for the visitor as museums, historical sites, cultural events, restaurants, and shopping opportunities.
Updated Nov 30, 2010
Favorite thing: Cincinnati began as a fort which was established in 1789 on a small plain between where the Great Miami and Little Miami rivers flow into the Ohio River. A small settlement, which was initially called Losantiville, quickly grew up around the fort. In 1802, the settlement was incorporated as a city and renamed Cincinnati, after the fifth-century Roman consul and dictator, Cincinnatus.
Because of its strategic location on the Ohio River, the city flourished. Docks, slaughterhouses, furniture factories, and retail shops were the mainstays of the city's economy. The city's growth was further assured when it was linked to other towns by canal in 1846, and by railroad in 1857.
Nowadays, Cincinnati is the center of a metropolitan area of around 2,200,000 inhabitants, making it the second-largest metropolitan area in the state, after Cleveland. Cincinnati offers visitors attractions such as first-class museums, sporting events, historical sites, vibrant neighborhoods, cultural events, restaurants, and shopping.
Updated Mar 19, 2009
Favorite thing: Columbus, which became the capital of Ohio in 1816, was founded on the banks of the Scioto and Olentangy rivers in the center of the state. The site was selected by lawmakers in 1812 because the thriving village of Franklinton, which had been established in 1797, had proven the economic viability of the region. The new city was laid out among bogs and swamps on the east bank of the Scioto River. The expanding city soon enveloped Franklinton.
Intitially, the new capital suffered from a lack of adequate transportation. However, a feeder canal connected Columbus with the Ohio and Erie canals in 1831. Soon thereafter, in 1833, the National Road was routed through the city, and by the 1870s, five railroads connected Columbus to the rest of the nation.
Nowadays, with about 2,010,000 people in the greater metropolitan area, Columbus is the third-largest metropolitan area in the state, after Cleveland and Cincinnati.
Updated Mar 19, 2009
Favorite thing: If you have never been to Ohio, you absolutely have to go to Cincinatti, and once you're there it is literally a 5 minute drive to kentucky, so you can be in a whole different state with different things to see! The view is just breathtaking, and the cities built on the hills/mountains are amazing! If you are ever spending the night in Ohio, and you are on a budget go to a little town called Botkins, and stay at the "budget Inn" motel. it doesnt sound all that great but let me tell you. It was 37 dollars for a room for 2 people and the room was clean, large, had a bar fridge, a microwave, a tv, a nice clean bathroom with safety seals and everything, and it included a free hot breakfast for two people in the morning! I mean like eggs bacon buiscuits gravy, coffee cholate milk..free. The people were SO accomodating and nice to us and we will definately be back!!!
Fondest memory: My fondest memory of Ohio is probably running into a guy on a tractor who educated us all on what "coon hunting" was and then pulling over on the side of the road to pet horses and go swimming in a randomly places farmers field!
Updated Sep 27, 2007
Favorite thing: In Muskingum County, we visited Zanesville, mostly because of Zane Grey, the writer of western novels, and the National Road/Zane Grey Museum.
Originally called Westbourne, it was renamed Zanesville in honor of Colonel Zane, and it served as the capital of Ohio from 1810 to 1812. John McIntire blazed Zane's Trace, a pioneer trail, and the trail later became the National Road (Route 40), the first federally-funded highway in America! It's often called "Main Street of America". (See my tip on the National Road-Zane Grey Museum)
In 1814 a Y-shaped bridge bridge was constructed to cross the junction of the Muskingum and Licking rivers (center of Zanesville at 2nd St and Capitol). This bridge received attention because it is the "only bridge in the world which you can cross and still be on the same side of the river". It's still used today; we crossed it! Next to this Y-Bridge is the Muskingum River Canal and Lock system. Today this is the only hand-operated lock system still operating in the USA. (Built 1840-1860).
Main Street in Zanesville is US Route 40 (National Road and a National Scenic Byway). Also on Main Street is the Muskingum County Courthouse (which is pictured); it was built on the site of the 1810 Ohio State Capital building.
Downtown Zanesville has 12 historic church structures that are quite beautiful. Also in Zanesville is the Zanesville Art Center at 620 Military Road. There are over 25 artists living and/or working in 5 Downtown Zanesville locations. Outdoor art in the form of murals depict local heritage and war veterans. Picture #2 is the "newest mural of a panorama of downtown with an emphasis on the World Famous Y-Bridge".
Zanesville is also known as the "Pottery Capital of the World" because of the clay so readily available.
Fondest memory: In the Zanesville area, there are still about a dozen pottery manufacturers and many retail shops. We did not have the time to visit these. Unfortunately, we also did not experience the Historic Putnam District. This community was originally called Springfield but was renamed "Putnam" in honor of Rufus Putnam, a Revolutionary War general. Many of its founders were "staunch abolitionists during the pre-Civil War years, and their homes on the south side of the Muskingum River were 'safe houses' for fleeing slaves, and their churches were meeting places for 'conductors' on the Underground Railroad. " These homes are being restored and the 15-block area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Sadly, we were shocked at all the empty buildings in this city. The downtown was almost deserted about noon on a weekday. I do hope that the renewed interest in art will revitalize this historic town.
Note: the second picture is not mine; it was taken from a Visitors Guide
Updated May 15, 2007
Favorite thing: Upon crossing the Ohio state line coming into this state, immediately pop two no-doz (pills to keep you awake) or have three cups of black coffee. Except for the rolling hills in the very eastern most part of the state, you will find most of Ohio is flat and boring.
There have been times when passing through Ohio that I have suddenly come to my senses and wondered what happened for the last 100 miles (and the obvious answer is "absolutely nothing"). The road is almost the highest land in the area and the scenery looks just the same everywhere once you are away from the eastern hills and the northern lakeside.
Updated Mar 23, 2007
Favorite thing: First United Methodist Church of Milford, Ohio, an eastern suburb of Cincinnati, holds the distinction of being the first Methodist congregation to be established in the entire Northwest Territory. This is an area which emcompassed all of modern day Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and northeastern Minnesota.
Milford First traces it roots back to 1797 when the Reverend Francis McCormick organized a Methodist Class Meeting at his log home. Services were conducted by a circuit riding preacher and worshippers walked or rode horseback for miles through the wilderness to attend.
The first church was building was constructed on Main Street in 1818. A newer church was built on the present site in 1835. That sanctuary has undergone several renovations over the years but it is still in use today. First United Methodist Church of Milford continues to be a vibrant local congregation offering both traditional and contemporary Sunday services, and a full array of activities and ministries throughout the week.
Methodism had its beginnings in England as a reform movement within the Anglican Church, the state church of Great Britain.
541 Main Street
Milford, Ohio 45150
Milford First United Methodist Church
Updated Oct 2, 2006
Favorite thing: Ohio should be proud because more of our presidents came from this state than from any other. Ohio has the nickname of "the Mother of Presidents" because eight American presidents were elected from Ohio!
Willaim Henry Harrison
He was our 9th President (he died in office). He lived in North Bend, Ohio, when he was elected president.
Ulysses S. Grant
He was our 18th President, and his birthplace was Point Pleasant, Ohio.
Rutherford B. Hayes
He was our 19th President and his birthplace was Delaware, Ohio.
James A. Garfield
He was our 20th President (he died in office). He was born in Orange, Ohio. He was assassinated only six months after he took office!
NOTE: Three presidents in a row were born in Ohio!
Fondest memory: Benjamin Harrison
He was our 23rd President. His birthplace was North Bend, Ohio.
He served as our 25th President, and his birthplace was Niles, Ohio
Unfortunately, he died in office during his second term.
William H. Taft
Taft served as our 27th President. His birthplace was Cincinnati, Ohio
Warren G. Harding
Harding served as our 29th President, but he died in office. He was born in Corsica, Ohio (now called Blooming Grove).
NOTE: Four of these eight presidents died in office!
Updated May 21, 2006
Favorite thing: Much by accident, Jill and I found this Ohio Historical Marker that tells about the novelist, Zane Grey. We were actually lost in Zanesville, trying to find the downtown area. We entered the McIntire Terrace Historic District and "stumbled upon the birth site of Zane Grey".
The first Photograph: All throughout Ohio, we had enjoyed the Historical Markers that were done for the Bicentennial. We were both interested in Zane Grey (as English teachers, we are interested in all novelist!) so we were thrilled when we saw this historical marker.
Second photograph: Then we spotted a lovely white framehouse and assumed it belonged to the novelist, but the information does not indicate that it was Zane Grey's home.
The third photograph: Next to the marker was the most beautiful Dogwood tree in full bloom, and I just could not resist taking a photo of it.
Fondest memory: The Ohio Historical Marker gives this information:
"Zane Grey "Father of the Western Novel"
Born Pearl Zane Grey in 1872 at this site and raised in Zanesville, author Zane Grey established the western novel as a twentieth century American literary genre. Trained as a dentist and practicing in New York City, Grey began writing full time following his marriage in 1905 to Lina Elise "Dolly" Roth, who served as his editor and agent. Grey's novels featured rich western imagery and highly romanticized plots with often pointed moral overtones, inspiring scores of imitators. Of his more than 60 books, Riders of the Purple Sage (1912) is his best known work. Many of grey's novels were made into movies in the 1920s and '30s. In addition, Grey was the holder of ten world records for large game fishing, an avocation he pursued when not writing. He died in 1939 at his home in Altadena, California."
This home was located in Star Historic District.. We sure are glad that we got lost!j
Updated May 12, 2006
Favorite thing: While Jill & I vacationed in Ohio, we were sponges, soaking up all the information that we didn't know previously. We assumed incorrectly that the state of Ohio was flat. Hardly! Its rolling hills, a surprise.
Ohio takes its name from the Ohio River. The word "Ohio" is really an Iroquoian Native American word that means "great river". Ohio was a part of what was originally the Northwest Territory, along with Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, & part of Minnesota.
Ohio actually became a state in 1803, becoming the 17th state in the Union. Chillicothe, Ohio, became the 1st Capitol; Zanesville (1810) 2nd Capitol; Columbus became the3rd & final state Capitol (1816).
Like Illinois, Ohio has the Cardinal as its state bird. We loved the Ladybug as the Ohio state insect. The state flower, the beautiful red carnation, & the state beverage, Tomato juice. (Are you starting to see a trend?) I already knew that the Buckeye was the state tree, the Wright Brothers (Dayton) were the 1st in flight; & that both Neil Armstrong & John Glenn were from Ohio.
As young teachers in 1970, we both remembered Kent State (4 university students were killed by National Guard gunfire during a Vietnam War protest). We also knew that there were several American Presidents from Ohio; we discovered the specifics: more presidents came from Ohio than from any other state; 8 presidents were elected from Ohio; thus, the state's nickname became "the Mother of Presidents"; the 8 presidents are: William Henry Harrison, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, Benjamin Harrison, William McKinley, William H. Taft, & Warren G. Harding. Unfortunately, 4 of the 8 died in office (Harrison, Garfield, McKinley, and Harding).
Fondest memory: As a result of our visit, we know that Paul Newman, Drew Carey, Halle Berry, Steven Spielberg, Bob Hope, Phyllis Diller, Luke Perry, Doris Day, Clark Gable, Dean Martin, Hal Holbrook, and Paul Laurence Dunbar were all from Ohio!
For teachers, it's always delightful to learn new information. With all the information we learned on this trip, it's obvious that we love Ohio.
I have great memories from my Ohio trip such as discovering this spooky house on a side street in Mount Vernon, which I pretended was Miss Havisham's home in Dicken's novel, Great Expectations, a favorite of mine. However, my fondest memory of Ohio would be meeting Stephen Conn (VT) and his lovely wife, Karen.
Updated May 9, 2006
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