Ohio History Journal

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Few American States possess a more national history,

or one embodying a greater variety of interests, than

Ohio. The centennial celebrations that have lately been

held within her borders commemorative of the beginning

Of the Northwest Territory, were more than local in char-

acter. They embodied ideas that have a marked bearing

on our National history. The settlement at " Marietta on

the Muskingum," on that April morning, one hundred

years ago, was the first one made in our country controll-

ed by the National Government, on soil devoted to free-

dom The founding of this kind of government, the

promulgation of its laws, the establishment of its insti-

tutions, mark an era in our country's history. The

materials should not be forgotten, nor left to decay, that

have arisen from this foundation. They should be

gathered and preserved by the "art preservative," not

only that they may be saved to the future, but that

they may be easily and readily accessible. They thus

become a public benefit, and are of practical use to

those who must preserve and enlarge the structure begun

in 1788.

The State and National archives are filled with valua-

ble documents that should be rescued from decay, and

loss by fire, or by one of the many accidents to which

they are constantly subject. It is the duty of the State

to do this. Private enterprise cannot carry out such a

project. Besides, they are State property, and should be

cared for by their owner. Ohio, the first born State of the

"territory forever set apart to freedom," should be the

one to set the example to those that with her now com-

prise this territory. She has greater wealth, resources,

history and records. These are not only her own, but

those records of her early history, especially that of the

territorial period, are rightfully part of the other States'