Tuesday, October 11, 2011
East Liverpool, Ohio: Point of Beginning
You can argue that "the West" starts here.
It's a marker on the state line for Ohio and Pennsylvania, located on the north shore of the Ohio River. Back in 1785, the newly born United States didn't know much about what the lands west of Pennsylvania were like. Some surveying needed to be done. Thomas Hutchins got to work and figured out the point where Pennsylvania stopped. The mapping of the rest of the country, then, essentially began from that point. For the relatively complete story, click on this fine article from the East Liverpool Historical Society.
To be accurate, the original marker was down by the shore of the Ohio, and is believed to be underwater at this point. It was moved due north in order to improve access to it. You can find it right on Harvey St. along State Route 39 in Ohio; it changes route identification once the road goes into Pennsylvania. It's a few minutes from downtown East Liverpool.
American history pops up in some odd places.