Interesting Facts

What to know about the site:

National Road: 

The National Road was the first federally sponsored improved major road in the USA. Construction began in Cumberland, Maryland in 1811, crossed the Allegheny Mountains, reaching the Ohio River in 1818. It continued through Ohio and in 1837 stopped construction at Vandalia, Illinois due to funding shortages. 

The National Road Museum is known for their guided tours. There is so much to share that came about during the development of the national road that has come into our metaphoric language. Tour guides will illustrate what it means when someone says they have arrived with “all of their bells on.” Visit the National Road Museum to find out how bartering bells for repairs on the National Road was a common practice. 

The exhibits speak to the history of the road and its building, transportation – like wagons and cars and the construction methods. A 136-foot diorama of the National Road with many accompanying objects, illustrates what it was like to travel on the National Road from its beginning when the first tree was felled, to the mid 20th century. The diorama is in 3/8th scale and measures 136 foot. It allows children and adults the chance to imagine daily life on the road during different time periods and gives them an opportunity to relate these experiences to their lives. 


Zane Grey: 

Pearl Zane Gray was born on January 31, 1872, in Zanesville, Ohio. Zanesville was a town founded by his mother's ancestors. (The spelling of the Gray family name was changed to "Grey" sometime during the late 1890s.) As a youth in Ohio, he developed interests in fishing, baseball and writing. All three pursuits would later bring him acclaim. 

Grey's baseball prowess led to a scholarship to the University of Pennsylvania's Dental Department. He graduated in 1896 with a degree in dentistry, but chose to play amateur baseball for several seasons, practicing dentistry intermittently. He established his own dental practice in New York City in 1898. 


Art Pottery: 

Ohio was the center of pottery production due to good waterways and an abundance of raw materials, Ohio's natural gas deposits in Zanesville combined with rich clay provided an ideal foundation for local potteries and gave Zanesville its nickname, "clay city". During its heyday, Ohio pottery establishments numbered 30. The products were sold in fine department stores and considered ideal gifts for weddings and other significant occasions. 

Ohio Art Pottery can be characterized as a close-knit industry of artists and potters who were given often switched allegiance, going to work for the competition. As a result, there are a lot of similarities in design and style among the many companies. This industry is also reflective of improved opportunities in the workplace for women, as the advent of modern inventions such as sewing machines and commercially prepared foods enabled women to pursue other activities including artistic professions.