Early Marietta: A blog by Dave Baker – local historian and Campus Martius & Ohio River Museum volunteer – that offers facts, photos, opinions, and commentary about life in the Marietta area over the years.

  • Ephraim Cutler Dawes: A Wounded Soldier's Journey Home
    by David Baker on April 5, 2019 at 4:59 pm

    They called it the "War of Rebellion." The Civil War. Southerners used the understated phrase “The Recent Unpleasantness," as though the war never happened. Over 700,000 perished in the War from combat and illness. At least that many more were wounded - often with disabling injuries. The poignant experiences of courage, injury, illness, and […]

  • The French Doctor
    by David Baker on March 15, 2019 at 8:18 pm

    Most of the settlers and leaders of early Marietta, Ohio, came from New England. But there was also a French connection as well. French explorer Celeron’ De Bienville led an expedition down the the Ohio River Valley in 1749. They buried engraved lead plates at the mouth of major tributaries (including the Muskingum River) to claim the […]

  • Man Overboard on the steamboat CARRIE BROOKS
    by David Baker on January 16, 2019 at 9:38 pm

    The sternwheel packet boat CARRIE BROOKS chugged along down the icy Muskingum River one frigid winter day in the 1870's. Engineer Cliff Crane was on duty in the engine room. Passing the Douda bar (near Malta-McConnelsville, Ohio) Crane stepped out on the fantail to oil the bearings of the paddlewheel shaft. Spray from the paddlewheel left a […]

  • Lewis and Clark on the Ohio River
    by David Baker on November 23, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    The initial phase of the Lewis and Clark Expedition began in Pittsburgh and included a stop in Marietta. Leader Meriwether Lewis set off down the Ohio River in a flatboat on August 31, 1803, laden with supplies and several recruits for the expedition. He would meet up with second-in- command William Clark at Louisville. Quotes, spelling, and […]

  • Thomas Wallcut's Journal
    by David Baker on October 3, 2018 at 12:03 pm

    Thomas Wallcut (1758-1840) arrived in Marietta on October 26, 1789 - on foot. He started from Boston, enduring a rough passage of twenty-four days to Baltimore on the schooner CAPTAIN SNOW. After 4 days recuperating in Baltimore, he started walking to Wheeling, Virginia (now West Virginia). He walked the 280 plus miles in 19 Days, an […]

  • Brick Streets and Horse Manure
    by David Baker on August 9, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    Brick Streets are a signature part of Marietta, Ohio’s small town charm. The Marietta Brick Streets Commission states that Marietta has more brick street mileage (about seven miles total) than any city in Ohio. I'm not sure how to fact check that, but it sounds good to me. Locals are proud of those brick streets as part of Marietta's […]

  • A New Territory Begins: July 1788
    by David Baker on July 27, 2018 at 11:17 pm

    Walking through the woods on July day recently sparked a reminder of Marietta’s earliest days as a new settlement in 1788. Our two English Sheepdogs Sophie, Tess, and I ambled down a trail near our home. It was a sunny and mild Sunday in July - a welcome break from the typical heat and humidity.Sunlight filtered through the trees. We stepped […]

  • Jack Nicklaus and the 1956 Ohio Open Experience
    by David Baker on May 18, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    Jack Nicklaus finished what he described as a “ho-hum” round of 76. Then he flew off in a private plane for an exhibition match later the same day. Sounds like a routine day in Jack’s legendary professional career. But it was not. "Jackie" (that's how his name appeared in print at the time) Nicklaus was only 16 then, an amateur, […]

  • Three Brave Men
    by David Baker on April 10, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    The GraveI overheard the trail crew talking about it: a grave site along the new trail. A Buckeye Trail work party was building a new hiking trail in June, 2015, through the Edge of Appalachia Preserve in Adams County, Ohio. One day after trail work was done I hiked out to see the grave.It was a poignant sight, a simple grave stone with a crisp […]

  • The Ohio Company: A Developer with Heart
    by David Baker on March 4, 2018 at 4:45 am

    Note: quotations (including spelling and grammar) unless otherwise noted are from the Ohio Company of Associates' documents, primarily minutes of Directors' meetings. Marietta, Ohio was the first settlement (1788) in the first United States territorial expansion (Northwest Territory, 1787) beyond the original thirteen states. It was a gateway to […]

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