Attractions May 30, 2018
The Oldest Town In Ohio Is Loaded With Fascinating History
One of the things we love best about Ohio is its rich, vibrant history, and we have
plenty of historic towns that will transport you right back to the past. Marietta, Ohio’s oldest town, is chock-full of history and is beautiful to boot.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
The town of Marietta is located on the far eastern side of Ohio, right next to the West Virginia border.
Nestled in the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio Rivers, this charming town is the oldest in the state. During your visit, you'll see historic sites, beautiful Victorian homes and mansions, and plenty of scenic beauty.
Marietta was founded in 1788 by General Rufus Putnam and a group of Revolutionary War veterans.
The original settlement, built by General Putnam and 48 men who had served under him, was called Campus Martius. It was a walled-in fortification designed to guard against potential attacks from Native Americans. Check out the memorial to these men, which is called "Start Westward of the United States." It's located in Muskingum Park.
Today, Marietta is home to around 14,000 people.
It's a vibrant town with plenty to see and do, and is a perfect place for a weekend visit.
Pay a visit to the Campus Martius and Ohio River Museum, where you'll learn more about General Putnam and the founders of Marietta.
The museum is located at 601 2nd St., Marietta, OH 45750.
The town is also home to Marietta College, a private liberal arts college that was founded in 1830.
Take a stroll around campus and admire the beautiful buildings. You'll find the college at 215 5th Street.
The Castle was built in 1855 and has been home to some of Marietta's most prominent families.
The Gothic Revival-style home now serves as a museum. Take a tour to see Victorian furniture and the restored home, and learn more about the city's history. The Castle is located at 418 4th St., Marietta, OH 45750.
The Catholic Church traces its history in Marietta back to 1830, when the first mass was held at the confluence of the two rivers.
The Basilica of St. Mary of the Assumption is a gorgeous basilica with stained glass windows and soaring ceilings. The colossal cathedral was completed in 1909 and is located at 506 4th Street.
A stroll through Mound Cemetery is a fascinating tour through Marietta's history.
This cemetery is the resting place of many of Marietta's founders, including General Rufus Putnam, Benjamin Tupper, and Abraham Whipple. It's also the site of The Great Mound, an Adena mound built between 100 BC and 500 AD.
The Lafayette Hotel sits right on the spot where the French Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette stepped ashore during his visit to Marietta in 1825.
Though the original hotel burned to the ground in 1919, the reconstructed Lafayette is still nearly 100 years old. Its rooms include many antiques, and you'll find bits of Marietta's history all throughout the hotel. You might even run into a ghost or two - it's said to be haunted! You'll find the hotel at 101 Front St., Marietta, OH 45750.
Take a trolley tour along Marietta's quaint brick roads.
The trolley takes you for a one-hour tour that includes many of Marietta's grand old houses and historic sites. Click
for more information.
If you're interested in learning even more about Marietta's history, take a self-guided tour.
Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau has designed several tours that you can take to explore Marietta and all it has to offer. Click
to access the tours.
A visit to Marietta isn't complete without a trip on the Valley Gem.
Take a narrated sightseeing tour to learn more about Marietta, its history, and local landmarks. Visit the Valley Gem's
to see the different tours offered.
Marietta isn't just filled to the brim with history, it's also charmingly beautiful and makes for an excellent weekend getaway.
For more information about Marietta, check out the town’s
website and stay up-to-date on unique seasonal and special events on the Visit Marietta Ohio Facebook page.
Have you visited the oldest town in Ohio? What’s your favorite thing to see or do in Marietta? We love to hear your comments!