Mount Vernon 2011 Trip Day 7

Friday June 10




Travel 200 mile today



National Road Zane Grey Museum title banner


Photographic portrait of Zane Grey "Look!" said one, pointing to the west.

"A rider!"

Jane Withersteen wheeled and saw a horseman, silhouetted against the western sky, coming riding out of the sage. He had ridden down from the left, in the golden glare of the sun, and had been unobserved till close at hand. An answer to her prayer!

--Zane Grey
from Riders of the Purple Sage, 1912

 Zane Grey, the "Father of the Adult Western

Illustration of the National Road, with Conestoga wagon This modern museum has three major exhibit areas. First is the National Road, early America's busiest land artery to the West. The National Road stretched from Cumberland, MD. to Vandalia, IL. Begun in 1806, the "Main Street of America" was the only significant land link between east coast and western frontier in the early 19th century. A 136 foot diorama of the National Road plus many objects illustrate this theme.

Second is Zane Grey, the "Father of the Adult Western." The Zanesville author wrote more than 80 books. His study is recreated plus many manuscripts and other memorabilia are displayed.

Finally, a central portion of the museum is devoted to Ohio art pottery.

The National Road, today called U.S. Route 40, was the first highway built entirely with federal funds. The national road was authorized by Congress in 1806 during the Jefferson Administration. Construction began in Cumberland, Maryland in 1811. The route closely paralleled the military road opened by George Washington and General Braddock in 1754-55.

Route of the National Road

By 1818 the road had been completed to the Ohio River at Wheeling, which was then in Virginia. Eventually the road was pushed through central Ohio and Indiana reaching Vandalia, Illinois in the 1830's where construction ceased due to a lack of funds. The National Road opened the Ohio River Valley and the Midwest for settlement and commerce.

[Note: The National Road passed seven miles south of Stratton House Inn. Bricks from the original road still are visible at certain locations near Morristown -- through which the road ran. Also, within a short distance of Stratton House Inn is one of the historic S-bridges; and the National Road Museum is less than fifty minutes away in Zanesville, Ohio.]


The opening of the road saw thousands of travelers heading west over the Allegheny Mountains to settle the rich land of the Ohio River Valley. Small towns along the National Road's path began to grow and prosper with the increase in population. Towns such as Cumberland, Uniontown, Brownsville, Washington and Wheeling evolved into commercial centers of business and industry. Uniontown was the headquarters for three major stagecoach lines which carried passengers over the National Road. Brownsville, on the Monongahela River, was a center for steamboat building and river freight hauling. Many small towns and villages along the road contained taverns, blacksmith shops, and livery stables.

Taverns were probably the most important and numerous business found on the National Road. It is estimated there was about one tavern every mile on the National Road. There were two different classes of taverns on the road. The stagecoach tavern was one type. It was the more expensive accommodation, designed for the affluent traveler. Mount Washington Tavern was a stagecoach tavern. The other class of tavern was the wagon stand, which would have been more affordable for most travelers. A wagon stand would have been similar to a modern "truck stop." All taverns regardless of class offered three basic things; food, drink, and lodging.


During the heyday of the National Road, traffic was heavy throughout the day and into the early evening. Almost every kind of vehicle could be seen on the road. The two most common vehicles were the stagecoach and the Conestoga wagon. Stagecoach travel was designed with speed in mind. Stages would average 60 to 70 miles in one day.

The Conestoga wagon was the "tractor-trailer" of the 19th Century. Conestogas were designed to carry heavy freight both east and west over the Allegheny Mountains. These wagons were brightly painted with red running gears, Prussian blue bodies and white canvas coverings. A Conestoga wagon, pulled by a team of six draft horses, averaged 15 miles a day.


By the early 1850's technology was changing the way people traveled. The steam locomotive was being perfected and soon railroads would cross the Allegheny Mountains. The people of Southwestern Pennsylvania fought strongly to keep the railroad out of the area, knowing the impact it would have on the National Road. In 1852, the Pennsylvania Railroad was completed to Pittsburgh and shortly after, the B & O Railroad reached Wheeling. This spelled doom for the National Road. As the traffic quickly declined, many taverns went out of business.

An article in Harper's Magazine in November 1879 declared, "The national turnpike that led over the Alleghenies from the East to the West is a glory departed... Octogenarians who participated in the traffic will tell an enquirer that never before were there such landlords, such taverns, such dinners, such whiskey...or such an endless calvacades of coaches and wagons." A poet lamented "We hear no more the clanging hoof and the stagecoach rattling by, for the steam king rules the traveled world, and the Old Pike is left to die."


Just as technology caused the National Road to decline, it also led to its revival with the invention of the automobile in the early 20th century. As "motor touring" became a popular pastime the need for improved roads began to grow. Many early wagon and coach roads such as the National Road were revived into smoothly paved automobile roads. The Federal Highway Act of 1921 established a program of federal aid to encourage the states to build "an adequate and connected system of highways, interstate in character." By the mid 1920's the grid system of numbering highways was in place, thus creating US Route 40 out of the ashes of the National Road.

Due to the increased automobile traffic on US Route 40 a whole new network of businesses grew to aid the 20th century traveler. The stage taverns and wagon stands were replaced by hotels, motels, restaurants and diners. The service station replaced the livery stables and blacksmith shops. Some of the National Road era buildings regained new life as restaurants, tourist homes, antique shops and museums. Route 40 served as a major east-west artery until the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 created the interstate system as we know it today. With the opening of the interstates much traffic was diverted away.


The "Old Pike" has certainly not been "left to die" as the poet of the 19th century lamented. Technology of the 20th century combined with increased interest in historic preservation has led to the creation of heritage corridors. The National Road Corridor has been designated a state heritage park to preserve and showcase Pennsylvania's rich industrial heritage. The National Road Heritage Corridor is a partnership among government, business, organizations and individuals all working together to enhance the region's economy through tourism.

The National Road story will be told at the new Fort Necessity/National Road Interpretive and Education Center opening in 2004. It is a story of American growth, development and migration; the story of the past, present, and future of American travel. The story of the National Road also is told in the National Road - Zane Grey Museum (see below) which is less than an hour away from Stratton House Inn.

Note: This history is included here courtesy of the National Park Service.



National Road - Zane Grey Museum, Zanesville, Ohio Mile Marker Picture

Mile Marker on the National Road

National Road / Zane Grey Museum

(800) 752-2602
(740) 872-3143
Fax: (740) 872-3510
On U.S. Route 40, 10 miles east of Zanesville, Ohio.
(I-70 exit 164)

Hours: September 2011 - April 30, 2012 Please note that the National Road/Zane Grey Museum is closed during the fall and winter months to general visitation. Group Tours available by appointment.

Hours: May 1 - September 30, 2011

Wednesday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Sunday 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.


OHS Members FREE
Adults $7.00
Seniors (55 & up), AAA Members, Active-Duty Military $6.00
Students (all ages) $3
Two-for-One Pass to the National Road/Zane Grey Museum and the nearby John & Annie Glenn Historic Site $10 per adult and $5 per student
Groups of 10 or more $6.00 per person


General Information
The National Road/Zane Grey Museum is operated by the John & Annie Glenn Museum Foundation, which also operates the John & Annie Glenn Historic Site (

National Road / Zane Grey Museum
8850 East Pike
Norwich, OH 43767

Mailing Address
c/o John & Annie Glenn Museum Foundation
P.O. Box 107
New Concord, OH 43762

1-800-752-2602 (toll free)

Site Manager:
J. Shivers

Handicap Symbol
Handicapped Accessibility
Ohio Historical Society strives to meet ADA requirements. However, historic structures and outdoor areas provide challenges that make it difficult to provide complete access to all visitors. Please call the site with specific questions and concerns.
Handicapped individuals may reach the museum without having to negotiate any steps. There are no steps leading to any of the exhibits inside the museum. The friendly staff is happy to accommodate handicapped persons in any way possible. The rest rooms are handicapped-accessible.


Y Bridge  

Zanesville, OH

Located at the intersections of Linden Avenue, West Main Street, and Main Street (U.S. 40), "Ripley's Believe It or Not" has said that it is "the only bridge in the world which you can cross and still be on the same side of the river."

Y Bridge
U.S. National Register of Historic Places
The Zanesville Y-Bridge, seen from a high bluff south of the river confluence.


The Zanesville Y-Bridge is a historic Y-shaped bridge that spans the confluence of the Licking and Muskingum Rivers in downtown Zanesville, Ohio. It carries the traffic of U.S. Route 40 (Main Street and West Main Street), as well as Linden Avenue.

It has been rebuilt numerous times since the 1850s. When being given directions, visitors are often struck by the statement "Drive to the middle of the bridge and turn right."

The first Zanesville Y-Bridge was constructed in 1814. Several iterations (some of them wooden covered bridges) were washed away by serious floods before the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers constructed a series of dams and locks that now regulate the flow of the two rivers. The current concrete and steel bridge is the fifth in the series on the same location. It opened in 1984.

The bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


About Historic Roscoe Village

Imagine a living history community offering glimpses into the past through costumed interpreters, artisan demonstrators, and old-fashioned shops and restaurants that give you a flavor of life in the 1800s. Living history, blooming gardens, shopping, dining, lodging--Historic Roscoe Village offers guests all this and more! A restored 1830s canal town, Roscoe is located along what once was the Ohio-Erie Canal. In an effort to enhance its mission to interpret Ohio’s Canal Era, each year Roscoe hosts various festivals, special events, and holiday activities that both educate and provide fun entertainment for guests. Set in the heart of Coshocton County, Ohio, Roscoe Village is just 90 minutes east of Columbus and 2 hours south of Cleveland, along State Route 16 and near the junction of U.S. Route 36.

Historic tours through the Village take guests back in time to the slower pace of life in a 1830s canal town. While strolling through the restored living history buildings, guests may see actual artisans at work, including a blacksmith, a weaver, a cooper, and a broom maker; observe old-time cooking demonstrations; sit in on a reenactment of an 1800s school lesson; view a full-scale canal boat replica; visit the immaculately groomed gardens displaying an array of colors; or participate in hands-on learning demonstrations like candle dipping, tin punching, or weaving.

At the Roscoe Village Visitor Center, find unique handcrafted items made by Roscoe Village artisans for sale, including candleholders, weavings, wooden toys, rolling pins and other wood items, and brooms. Schedule a special candlelit tour with our group sales staff, or enjoy seasonal tours such as the “Spirit of Roscoe” (available September and October) or “A Roscoe Christmas” (available November and December). Group rates available for the living history tours

Also located in Roscoe Village is the Johnson Humrickhouse Museum, an accredited member of theAmerican Association of Museums, which features a Native American Collection, an AmericanaCollection, an Oriental Gallery, the Eclectic Collection, and special rotating exhibits.

Climb aboard the horse-drawn Monticello III for a peaceful 45-minute float down a restored section of the Ohio-Erie Canal. The knowledgeable canal boat captain will entertain your group with long-ago stories and interesting facts about the canal.

Visitors can browse the old-fashioned shops housed in original 19th century buildings and filled with area crafts, elegant home furnishings, books, baskets, gourmet coffees and foods, exquisite jewelry, pottery, leather goods, musical instruments name a few of the original items available at these stores. The Shops of Roscoe Village will open early or stay late to accommodate groups.

While at Roscoe Village, guests can satisfy the most particular of appetites at one of our restaurants. Choose the rustic atmosphere of the Old Warehouse Restaurant or relax feel at Uncorked our wine and coffee shop, where you will also find some of the best cheese around.



Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum

Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum Building

About The Museum

The Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum opened to the public on May 8, 1931. Its collections originate from a bequest by Coshocton natives David M. and John H. Johnson to the city of Coshocton as a memorial to their Johnson and Humrickhouse ancestors.  These native-born brothers settled on the West Coast and traveled abroad where they collected American Indian, European and Asian artifacts. Their primary collections consisted of American Indian baskets and beadwork; Asian fine and decorative arts and weaponry; and European and American ceramics, glassware, and textiles.  JHM's collections have grown through donations, primarily in areas of local history and pre-historic Ohio Indian tools and points.

Mission Statement: Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum's mission is to serve the local community and the broader audience generated by the Museum's location in Historic Roscoe Village, holding its possessions in trust for all people to use as a source of learning and enjoyment. Its goal is to contribute to society as an educational tool, family activity, visitor attraction, source of community awareness and pride, and a resource for scholarly research.

The Coshocton Foundation sponsored this web site. Their mission statement: The Coshocton Foundation's mission is to provide a community controlled organization dedicated to the betterment and long-term development of Coshocton County's natural, community and human resources.

Located in historic Roscoe Village, the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum is a general interest museum with five galleries. Major collections are American Indian baskets and beadwork; Ohio prehistoric Indian tools and points; Ohio pioneer guns and tools; Chinese and Japanese decorative arts (lacquerware, ceramics, ivory and wood carvings) and weaponry; and 19th c. European and American decorative arts (ceramics, glass, metal and textiles). A special exhibit gallery changes 5 times a year. Come enjoy this wide variety of art and culture.

Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum
300 N. Whitewoman St.
Coshocton, OH 43812

Phone Number(s)

Local Number: (740) 622-8710

E-mail Address(es)

General Information:


Sunday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Monday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Thursday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Friday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Saturday: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM




Adults: 3.00
Senior: 3.00


Monticello III Canal Boat Ride

A horse-drawn canal boat replica takes visitors on a 40 minute ride into Ohio's colorful past
with a glimpse of a 1 1/2 mile restored section of the original Ohio-Erie Canal. The Monticello III departs hourly from
1-3 PM Tuesday thru Thursdays, and 1-5 Friday thru Sundays, Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Closed on Mondays. Weekend operation Labor Day through mid-October. Group rates and special charters available.

Operating Schedule is subject to change due to weather conditions.
Please call ahead for current schedule. 740-622-7528.





Adults $7.00
Youth (5-12) $5.00

GROUP RATE (15 or more)
Adults $6.00
Youth (5-12) $5.00
Charters (Adult Groups) $200.00
School Tours (Exclusive) $125.00
School Tours (Shared Trip) $90.00


Coshocton City & County Park District
23253 State Route 83 North
Coshocton, Ohio 43812
Phone (740) 622-7528

Coshocton Lake Park is located 18 miles from I-77 in central Ohio
on State Route 83 North, 1 mile off U.S. Route 36 in Coshocton, Ohio,
near Historic Roscoe Villiage.