Ohio Archæological and Historical Society
Publications, Volume XX

Ohio Archæological and Historical Society Publications, Volume XX [1911], Page 220 [Click for larger image]Page 220

THE OHIO RIVER. ARCHER BUTLER HULBERT, Professor of American History, Marietta College; President of the Ohio Valley Historical Association; author of "Historic Highways of America," “The Ohio River,” etc. The mountain ranges of this Continent generally trend from North to South. The greatest rivers trend in the same general direction, particularly the St. Lawrence, Mississippi and Hudson, all of which were to play an important role as avenues of approach for the races which fell heir to the Continent. But the Europeans, landing on our Atlantic coast were compelled to explore and occupy the land along East and West lines, the social movement in general cutting straight across the general trend of the greater mountain ranges and river valleys. An interesting result followed. So far as actually playing a definite part in the western expansion of America is concerned, the lesser streams w ere of greater importance than many of the larger ones, and one cannot have a very clear understanding of the development of our Nation without knowing something of the place and power of the Juniata, Mohawk, Wood Creek, Connemaugh, Watauga, Holston, Fox and Wisconsin rivers. Said Edward Everett in 1835: "The destinies of the country, if I may use a language which sounds rather mystical but which every one, I believe, understands, — the destinies of the country run east and west". At the moment, when the building of the Boston and Albany Railroad was under discussion, the Housatonic was of more importance to New England than the Connecticut; if Boston nails were to continue their battle successfully against Pittsburg nails in the West the Housatonic would be responsible. Perhaps this introductory word will bring out as plainly as possible the one great important fact concerning the Ohio River its position on the Continent. It paralleled the "destinies of the

Page 27 of 65