Zane's Trace - Dunkinsville, OH
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Marine Biologist
N 38° 50.938 W 083° 29.252
17S E 284128 N 4302956
Quick Description: A monument about Zane's Trace, an important road during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, is located on SR 41 near Dunkinsville, Ohio, USA.
Location: Ohio, United States
Date Posted: 12/27/2008 6:48:09 PM
Waymark Code: WM5ED5
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Rupert2
Views: 10

Long Description:
The Zane Trace Monument text reads as follows:

Ohio’s 1st highway and mail route authorized by Congress in 1796 – marked and cleared in 1797 by Col. Ebenezer Zane, it became the route of the old stage line from Maysville to Wheeling used by statesman traveling to and from the Southwest and Washington [D.C.].

From a U.S. Department of Transportation website:

Colonel Ebenezer Zane, beginning with Zane's Trace, played a major role in the social and economic development of Ohio, placing it on the path to statehood.

Zane and his brothers followed Native American footpaths to cut the first road from the wilderness in the Northwest Territory in the late 1700s. Colonel Zane, who founded Wheeling, West Virginia, and helped to settle Lancaster, Ohio, appealed to Congress for permission to build a road and he received that permission in 1796 after he had already begun the project. Zane requested and received from the American government land grants where the Trace crossed the Muskingum, Hocking and Scioto Rivers to pay for his surveying costs. The government agreed to his request, believing that a major road opened in 1797 would bring more settlers to Ohio and help increase trade.

Zane's Trace, intermingled with what is now the National Road and Route 40, was the shortest distance between Wheeling and Limestown, Kentucky (present-day Maysville) on the Ohio River. In the early stages, Zane's Trace was wide enough for only a horse and rider but not a wagon. Many of the pioneers used the Rivers for transportation, so Zane built ferries at each of the river crossings. After having built a ferry at the mouth of the Licking River, a small town developed, eventually named Zanesville, which is the county seat and largest city in Muskingum County.

In 1800, the road was widened from Wheeling to Zanesville, but it was steep with deep ruts, making travel difficult. However, the Trace was the only major road in Ohio until after the War of 1812.

In 1803, after Ohio received its statehood, the state legislature set aside money to improve Zane's Trace and make it accessible by wagon. Trees were cut down to make it 20 feet wide and bridges were built. Soon travel by wagon from Wheeling to Chillicothe was possible. Settlements sprang up along the way, with businesses such as taverns and inns that catered to the travelers. Farmers used the road to transport their crops to market.

In Lancaster, Ohio, Zane's Trace crossed the Hocking River. German settlers used the road for their westward travels, many arriving from Pennsylvania. The Trace provided the way for such a large population of German settlers that by 1809, Lancaster was publishing a Germany language newspaper, Der Ohio Adler.

Today, the National Road and Route 40 continue to use some of Zane's Trace as its path. Zane's Trace between New Concord and Zanesville can be driven in an automobile except for a section at the Zanesville Airport. The road is narrow and winding, and is an example of what the National Road and Route 40 were like before the era of roadbuilding that started in the 1930s.

Feature Discription: Zane Trace Monument located near Dunkinsville, Ohio

Web address for the route: [Web Link]

Secondary Web Address: [Web Link]

Beginning of the road: Maysville, KY (formerly known as Limestown, KY)

End of the road: Wheeling, OH

Visit Instructions:
We ask that if you visit the site, please include a unique picture with your impressions of the location. If possible, and if you are not too shy, please include yourself and your group in the photo. Extra points will be given for your best buffalo imitation or if you are licking something salty.
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Recent Visits/Logs:
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Marine Biologist visited Zane's Trace - Dunkinsville, OH 12/27/2008 Marine Biologist visited it

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