Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Court House

American Friend, January 10, 1822

A Plan for the court house forty eight feet square, with fire proof offices in each corner 16 feet square, will be received from any person who conceives he has a taste for drawing, and who is willing to contribute his knowledge to the convenience and elegance of a building of this kind - until the 1st day of March next, to be left at the Auditor's office.

New Court House

American Friend, January 10, 1822

Mr. Prentiss - You are requested to publish the following copy of a petition to the Commissioners of this county, relative to the proposed location and plan of a new Court house, and oblige MANY.

To the Honorable the Board of Commissioners for the County of Washington, State of Ohio.

The undersigned inhabitants of said Washington county, having understood, that in pursuance of resolutions, plans and calculations of former boards, the present board contemplate the erection of a new court house near the scite of the old one, to be raised on arches intended for fire proof rooms, beg leave to submit a few considerations, tending to evince the propriety of a reconsideration by the present board, of said resolutions, plans and calculations.

In the prosecution of an undertaking which must doubtless involve the county for many years in debt and embarrassment, we ought at least to have the consolation of believing that the cause of such embarrassment might be traced to some object of permanent usefulness, planned and executed in a manner most prudent and advantageous.  We proceed to point out our objections to the proposed location and plan of a court house.

We do not think the proposed situation the most eligible.

1st.  On account of mud, to avoid which will require considerable expense.
2d.  Greater exposedness to fire.
3d.  Danger of inconvenience from inundations.  The ground now marked out has been nearly or quite covered with water; it has been proved by the experience of ages, that as a country becomes more cleared of wood the inundations have a progressive increase in height.
4th.  The want of sufficient and eligible room for the separate erection of the fire proof offices.

This, we apprehend, may have been one reason for connecting them with the court house - otherwise it might be necessary to place them on ground which has been overflowed.  The location of these offices on spots of the dryest soil and beyond the reach of high water, we consider a matter of the highest consequence.

In these offices are to be preserved the records of our land titles, the decisions of our courts, the settlements of our estates and all records and decisions of our county officers - involving interests of personal liberty, and of property to an incalculable amount.  That these should be kept safely, it is necessary they should be kept dry.  These offices must be constructed with brick or stone walls of considerable thickness.  If the court rooms be built over them, this thickness must be increased.  Should even the foundations of such massy walls be soaked by inundations the dampness will pervade all the ground rooms, and even desks, closets, and cases, for months.  We forbear to press on your consideration, that the plan of placing the arches of these offices under a ponderous structure above, is considered by many as a doubtful and hazardous experiment, and involving a larger extent of building and much greater expense than would be required for their separate and more safe construction.

We therefore recommend that the upper elevated square in Marietta, called Capitolium, situate on Washington street, and reserved by the Ohio Company for public buildings, be taken as the place whereon to erect a court house, as being free from the above objections, and possessing the following additional recommendations.

1st.  The natural elevation & beauty of the situation.
2d.  The artificial elevation and ancient works.
3d.  There being ample room for the erection of new buildings, to accommodate those whose business may lead them to settle near the court house.
4th.  Being more out of the way of that crowd of loiterers which usually infest the court house.
5th.  The consequent increase, of the town, which we consider to be intimately connected with the prosperity of the country, in the increase of business, and the augmented demand for produce.  The natural advantages of Marietta are confessedly much beyond its present advance in improvement.  Should the beautiful building ground on the plain become occupied, many obvious advantages would arise to the town and country.

The principal objection we have heard to this spot is, that those who attend Court could not find accommodation.  But we conceive that all who are necessarily called to Court may, even now, find convenient accommodation within reasonable distance - and that further preparation would undoubtedly advance in proportion to its need.

All of which is respectfully submitted.

Monday, March 22, 2010

For Sale

American Friend, January 17, 1817

A convenient Farm, two miles from Marietta, with a dwelling house and good Orchard.  For terms, apply to the subscriber in Fearing, or to James Whitney, on Point Harmar.

Abraham Whipple

Notice, Store of J. Guitteau

American Friend, January 12, 1816

The highest price in Goods will be given for prime Bear, Otter, Black Fox, and Wolf Skins, and for clean Cotton and Linen Rags at the Store of J. Guitteau, who has a general assortment of European, India and American Goods, to dispose of, cheap for current Bank Paper, or in exchange for the above articles.  Also for sale at the above store, a few barrels of first quality Kenhawa Salt, Lee's Patent and Family Medicines, Columbian Factory Cotton Yarn, from No. 4 to 12, a few bales of Mississippi Cotton, and Trotter's warranted Rifle Gun-Powder.


American Friend, December 25, 1813

Mr. J. Mason, respectfully informs the Ladies and Gentlemen of Marietta and its Vicinity, that he has opened a Writing School, at Mr. McFarlands, also at the schoolhouse at point Harmar, upon a New, Improved and Systematic Plan, for the benefit of those who wish to be, or have their children instructed.  Ladies and Gentlemen desirous of acquiring a fair hand writing in a short and easy way, will apply immediately, as teaching by classes continues but a short time in a place.

Specimens and Improvements of those who have been instructed, to their perfect satisfaction, may be seen at his School-Rooms, which gentlemen are invited to call and examine.

Persons of a suitable age and tolerable capacity, may acquire a fair hand writing in one course of fifteen exercises, one hour and a half at each.

Friday, March 5, 2010

A Rare Opportunity

Marietta Gazette & Washington County Agriculturalist, June 29, 1839

J. W. Dodge, Artist from New York city, being unavoidably detained at Harmar, for a short season, would respectfully announce to its citizens, and also those of Marietta, and their vicinities, that he has decided, during his stay, to pursue his profession in the execution of Miniature Likenesses.  To those who wish to possess correct representations of themselves or friends, he would suggest the propriety of an early application.

His "studio" is at the house of Mr. John Delavergne where several specimens of his painting may be seen.

J. W. D., would remark, that he has in his possession, certificates from many of the best judges in the country, in proof of his miniatures being unsurpassed by those of any other Artist in the United States.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Ohio Flood

The Marietta Intelligencer, March 5, 1856

In the Tri-weekly Intelligencer of the 23d inst., you have published an article on the "Ohio Floods," by our late worthy fellow townsman, C. Emerson, Esq.  Few persons have devoted more thought to that subject than he has done; but his statements in regard to the floods of 1817 and 1818, appear to have been made from recollection, which are not exact as to time and other circumstances.  Having made some notes relating to those floods at the time, I am able to give some facts in regard to them which Mr. Emerson has not given.

The flood of November 1817, was preceded by heavy rains on the 30th and 31st October and the 1st day of November; on the latter day, the river began to rise rapidly.  On the 2nd, it was nearly out of its banks, and rising at the rate of 6 inches per hour.  It reached its greatest height on the night of the 4th, when it was 6 feet 3 inches below the flood of January 1813.

This was followed by the March flood of 1818.  On the 2nd and 3d of February a snow storm occurred exceeding anything known at this place.  The depth of snow which fell at that time was 24 inches.  On the 9th and 10th the weather was extremely cold.  The snow remained for several weeks.  On the 28th February a good deal of snow fell.  On the 1st March the river commenced rising rapidly and continued to rise until the night of the 4th, when it reached its greatest height, which was 2-1/2 feet below the flood of January 1813.  This flood came mostly from the Muskingum.  At this time much damage was done at the East by floods; especially on the Hudson, which had not been so high for 40 years.

My own observations have led me to conclude that extremely high floods, depend on such a combination of circumstances, that no one can calculate beforehand when such a flood will come.  We cannot therefore conclude from any former experience, that we are certainly to have a high flood, when the rivers open again upon the melting of the snow.

A. T. N.