File:Marietta Ohio Muskingum River.jpg

Marietta is a city in Washington County, Ohio, United States. The population was 14,515 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Washington CountyTemplate:GR and is the second largest by population of three principal cities of and included in the Parkersburg-Marietta-Vienna, West Virginia-Ohio (part) Metropolitan Statistical Area. Founded in 1788, Marietta is the oldest city in Ohio.


The founding of Marietta began when future U.S. president George Washington, who was working as a surveyor, began exploring large tracts of land west of his native Virginia in 1770. During the Revolutionary War, Washington told his friend, General Rufus Putnam, of the beauty he had seen in his travels through the Ohio Valley and of his ideas for settling the territory. After the war, the newly formed country found itself with little money but blessed with natural resources. As a result of this cash deficit, men who had served in the revolution were paid, not with cash, but with warrants for land in the Northwest Territory. There was one problem with these warrants, however. The Federal Government did not own the land it offered until the passage of the Ordinance of 1787 which ceded ownership of the Northwest Territory to the government. The Ohio Company of Associates planned to buy 1.5 million acres (6,100 km²) of land from Congress with provisions it had written in the ordinance which allowed veterans to use their warrants to purchase the land.

When this group of 48 men, led by General Rufus Putnam, arrived, they brought with them the first government sanctioned by the United States. Fort Harmar, a military outpost built three years prior, lay across the Muskingum River. The Native Americans were not pleased with the arrival of the settlers who immediately started construction of two forts, Campus Martius, which stood at the site of the museum which today bears its name, and Picketed Point, at the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio Rivers. At the same time, a community was also being built in the wilderness from plans made before the group's departure from Boston.

In 1785, the Treaty of Harmar was signed, bringing some resolve with several Native American nations in regards to trade, controversy and boundaries.

On April 7, 1788 a group of 48 men of the Ohio Company of Associates arrived at the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio rivers and established the first permanent American settlement in the Northwest Territory (older European settlements include Detroit, 1701 and Vincennes, Indiana, 1732). It was named Marietta in honor of Marie Antoinette, the Queen of France, who had aided the young country in its battle for independence from Great Britain.

In 1788, George Washington, the first president of the young United States had this to say about Marietta:

"No colony in America was ever settled under such favorable auspices as that which has just commenced at the Muskingum. If I was a young man, just preparing to begin the world, or if advanced in life and had a family to make provision for, I know of no country where I should rather fix my habitation."

The families of the settlers began arriving within a few months, as did Governor Arthur St. Clair who presided over this new territory, and, by the end of 1788, 137 people populated the area. The Treaty of Greenville was signed with the Native Americans in 1795, thus allowing the settlers to move from the safety of the fortresses and to spread out into the surrounding territory.

Religion was important to these first settlers and services were held on a regular basis, but it wasn't until 1796 that a church was chartered. This first church was Congregational and its charter was unusually inclusive due to the varied religious backgrounds of its members. The congregation constructed the first church building in 1807.

Since many of the settlers had been officers during the revolution, and were highly educated, education was also a priority for these first settlers. That first winter saw the beginning of basic education for the children at Campus Martius. In 1797, Muskingum Academy was established; it became Marietta College in 1835.

Marietta's location on two major navigable rivers made it ripe for industry and commerce from the start. Boat building was one of the early industries with even ocean going vessels being constructed and sailed down river to the Mississippi and on to the Gulf of Mexico. Brick factories and sawmills supplied materials for homes and public buildings. An iron mill, along with several foundries provided rails for the railroad industry and Marietta Chair Factory supplied furniture.

In 1860 oil was first drilled in the Marietta region. A great deal of wealth was generated for investors during oil booms in 1875 and 1910. The results of these booms can be seen even today by touring the town and observing the many large homes built by men who made their fortunes during these periods. Among those Marietta citizens who made a fortune off the burgeoning oil industry were the Dawes brothers, who founded the Pure Oil Company. All four brothers became nationally prominent businessmen or politicians - Charles Gates Dawes, Rufus C. Dawes, Beman Gates Dawes and Henry May Dawes. Charles Dawes served as the 30th Vice President of the United States.

The Marietta and Cincinnati Railroad (M&C), now defunct, was a railroad of southern Ohio later absorbed by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O). The M&C started as The Belpre and Cincinnati Railroad (B&C) in 1845 to connect to the B&O at Parkersburg, WV/Belpre, Ohio. The Virginia Government would only allow the B&O to go to the Ohio River at Wheeling, WV. The planned route of the B&C was changed to Marietta, Ohio and the name also changed in 1851. Right of way extended up river from Marietta to Bellaire, Ohio for a connection to the B&O. The M&C was bankrupt by 1857 but continued west to reach Cincinnati, Ohio. The first through train from Cincinnati ran on April 9, 1857.

The railroad never went up-river from Marietta and the right of way south of Bellaire was later purchased by roads controlled by the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR).

To continue to the east on the B&O, one had to take a steamboat down river to Parkersburg.

With help from the B&O and the Baltimore City Council, the Union Railroad connected Marietta to Belpre in 1860. It also was later absorbed by the B&O. This section of track is still in operation (2004) with unit coal trains providing most of the traffic.

At one time in the 20th century, Marietta saw 24 passenger trains a day. Most of them on the PRR tracks.

One of the main driving forces in the M&C was William Cutler. He also was a backer of the Union Railroad and the MCC among other local railroads. William Cutler served as General Manager and as President of the M&C for many years.

As transportation advanced, Marietta was passed by. The B & O Railroad went through Parkersburg, West Virginia, the National Road went through Zanesville leaving Marietta off the main travel routes until 1967 with the opening of I-77.


Local governmentEdit

The city of Marietta uses the mayor-council form of government. The mayor is a full-time position; the seven city council members and the city council president are all part-time positions. The city is divided into four wards, with a person from each ward elected to the council. In addition, there is a non-voting city council president and three voting at-large councilmen.

Democrat Michael "Moon" Mullen is the current Mayor of Marietta. He followed Democrat Joseph Matthews who was defeated in the primary by Mullen. Prior to being elected the Mayor of Marietta, Mullen was an at-large member of city Council, having previously served the first ward on council and as the Marietta City Development Director. On November 2, 2003, Mullen was elected Mayor after defeating Republican challenger Cathy Harper and independent candidate Dan Harrison. Mullen took office in January 2004.

The 2007 Mayoral race in Marietta was unusual in that no Republican candidate filed for the position. Former Mayor Joe Matthews challenged Mayor Mullen for the Democratic nomination but was defeated in the May 8th primary 55%-45%. Mullen also defeated two independents in the November General election, local shopkeeper Rich Hudson and serviceman Chris Hansis. 2003 Mayoral Candidate Dan Harrison filed to run for City Council President as an Independent but was excluded from the ballot after he voted in the Democratic primary thus removing his Independent status.

City Council of Marietta, Ohio
Council President Paul Bertram III Republican
At-Large Harley Noland Democrat
At-Large Kathy Shively Democrat
At-Large Andrew Thompson Republican
First Ward David White Republican
Second Ward Randy Wilson Republican
Third Ward Jon Grimm Republican
Fourth Ward Tom Vukovic Democrat

State and Federal GovernmentEdit

The residents of the city of Marietta are currently represented by conservative Democrat Jennifer Garrison in the Ohio House of Representatives and Republican Joy Padgett in the Ohio Senate.

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Marietta is currently represented by Democrat Charlie Wilson, who was elected to replace Ted Strickland who did not seek re-election in 2006, choosing instead to run for Governor of Ohio.


File:Muskingum River-Marietta-Ohio-USA.jpg

Marietta is located at Template:Coor dms (39.420824, -81.450506)Template:GR.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 22.2 km² (8.6 mi²). 21.5 km² (8.3 mi²) of it is land and 0.7 km² (0.3 mi²) of it (3.03%) is water.

The Muskingum River and Duck Creek flow into the Ohio River at Marietta. The area is part of the Appalachian Plateau which covers the eastern half of Ohio. The Appalachian Plateau consists of steep hills and valleys and is the most rugged area in the state. This portion of the state is blessed with beautiful scenery and Ohio's most abundant mineral deposits. [1]


As of the censusTemplate:GR of 2000, there were 14,515 people, 5,904 households, and 3,501 families residing in the city. The population density was 674.4/km² (1,747.0/mi²). There were 6,609 housing units at an average density of 307.1/km² (795.4/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.31% White, 1.08% African American, 0.46% Native American, 0.71% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.28% from other races, and 1.11% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.79% of the population.

There were 5,904 households out of which 27.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.4% were married couples living together, 13.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.7% were non-families. 35.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.86.

In the city the population was spread out with 20.9% under the age of 18, 14.0% from 18 to 24, 25.1% from 25 to 44, 22.3% from 45 to 64, and 17.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 87.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $29,272, and the median income for a family was $36,042. Males had a median income of $30,683 versus $22,085 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,021. About 13.6% of families and 16.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.6% of those under age 18 and 10.4% of those age 65 or over.

Notable residentsEdit

Notable eventsEdit

  • Annual Sternwheel Festival is held every year on the weekend after Labor Day in September. 2005 was the 30th anniverary of the event which brings dozens of Sternwheelers to the banks of the Ohio River near downtown Marietta. The Festival includes performances from musical artists, sternwheel races, and a large fireworks display which brings in thousands of visitors from across the country.
  • Annual Riverfront Roar powerboat races are held in July, the event includes formula 2 and formula 3 powerboat racing along the Ohio River.
  • Marietta Civil War Re-enactment is also held at the end of September, and includes Union and Confederate re-enactors battling across the scenic Muskingum River.
  • Goodfest is held at Goodfellows Park and is a local music festival for teenagers featuring local musicians in a drug & alcohol free environment.
  • A number of regattas run throughout the spring, chief among them Marietta High Schools Ralph Lindamood Memorial Regatta and the Marietta Invitational Regatta hosted by Marietta College, which brings some of the nations fastest college rowing programs to the Muskingum River. In the fall season the Head of the Muskingum head race is held, again bringing in rowing teams from across the country. The race is run over a 3-3.5 mile course starting in Devola, Ohio and ending at Marietta College's Lindamood-VanVoorhis Boathouse.


  1. Reichler, Joseph L., ed (1979) [1969]. The Baseball Encyclopedia (4th edition ed.). New York: Macmillan Publishing. ISBN 0-02-578970-8. 

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


Washington County, Ohio
Marietta, county seat

Belpre | Marietta


Beverly | Lowell | Lower Salem | Macksburg | Matamoras


Adams | Aurelius | Barlow | Belpre | Decatur | Dunham | Fairfield | Fearing | Grandview | Independence | Lawrence | Liberty | Ludlow | Marietta | Muskingum | Newport | Palmer | Salem | Warren | Waterford | Watertown | Wesley

Census-designated place


Unincorporated places

Barlow | Bartlett | Coal Run | Cutler | Germantown | Little Hocking | Newport | Reno | Vincent | Waterford | Watertown | Whipple | Wingett Run


Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Marietta, Ohio. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Governance Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.