Ohio History Journal

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[The following article is reprinted with slight corrections, from a

Marietta paper, published some years ago.-E. 0. R.]

The wrecking, a few years ago, of the old jail just opposite

the Court House at Marietta brought to mind several historic

facts of no mean importance. This building was a little more

than fifty years old, having been erected in 1848 on the site of

the pioneer Court House which was the first Hall of Justice in

the Northwest Territory. The building was forty-five feet in

length, thirty-nine feet in breadth and two stories high. The

walls were three feet thick and were made of double tiers of

yellow poplar logs. The front room in the upper story was

the court-room. It was 40 by 30 and lighted by seven windows.

The two lower rooms were occupied by the jailer and his

family. The jail was in the rear part of the building, which

was very strongly built and from which, it is stated, no prisoner

ever escaped. The jury room was in the rear of the second

story over the jail. A cupola surmounted the roof in which was

hung the same bell that was hung in the succeeding Court House

and which has been in use till the occupancy of the present

new Court House.

The theory that John Brough was born in the primitive

Court House has been disputed for the reason that coupled

with the above statement, the assertion is generally made that

his father was Sheriff at the time. We quote from a Marietta

newspaper issued Friday, June 12, 1863:

"Mr. Brough (John) was born in 1811 in Marietta, in the

old Court House and jail, the dwelling-house part of which

was occupied by his father, John Brough, Esq., who was at the

time Sheriff of the county. The father was a native of England,

and died in 1823, on the 'Cleona' farm just above the mouth

of Duck Creek."