Columbus Downtown at Night
Credit: Public domain, author's collection.

Celebrating a City, a War, and a Famous Road in 2012

The year 2012 is a historical year in Ohio for two reasons. First, it is the 200th Anniversary of the beginning of the War of 1812 - 1814 that was massively pursued on Lake Erie. Second, it is the 200th Anniversary of the founding of the current state capital, Columbus, Ohio. This is all very exciting for residents and visitors who are living to see re-enactments and celebrations of 200 years of Ohio and American History.

We also have the 200th anniversary of construction of the National Road, Route 40 in Columbus extending through Spring of 2012. My family worked on that construction at both ends of the strip running through Ohio's capital city. My great-grandfather arrived from the UK during the time of the two Potato Famines in Ireland and Scotland, served successfully with two units the Union Army in the American Civil War, and from 1865 to 1870, helped build and rebuild the western part of the National Road. This part extended from the west side of Columbus in Franklin County through Madison County, where he built a workshop and made tools for the construction workers as well as working on the road. Some years later, his son worked on the strip of Route 40 that connected Zanesville and Cambridge in the east with Columbus, in addition to his farming. This eastern part of the road contained Zane's Trace as a parallel route at one time.

The largest celebration of the year 2012 in Ohio will be in Columbus on Valentine's Day. This is because on February 14, 1812,  the city created by design to become the State Capital  took the name Columbus in tribute to the famous Christopher Columbus, and opened for business, so-to-speak. It was just a clearing at the site of the Scioto River in Downtown Columbus in 1812, in the center of a group of beautiful forests. In the beginning of settlement within Ohio, the French owned what became the small Columbus in Ohio County. Today, Columbus reaches across Franklin, Delaware, and Fairfield Counties with nearly 1.9 million people in the greater metro area. The site of its founding at the Scioto River today features one full mile of elegant parklands open to the public and filled with community events. Columbus is the Number One City for Technology in the country today and growing fast. We have a lot to celebrate!

Battelle Park is the center of the Scioto Mile, a full mile of parks at the waterfront in Downtown Columbus. This is where the city began it history.
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Battelle Riverfront Park, Columbus, OH 43215, USA