Riding the Great Black Swamp of Northwest Ohio
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Thread: Riding the Great Black Swamp of Northwest Ohio

  1. #1
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Riding the Great Black Swamp of Northwest Ohio

    Montezuma and I headed out at 9am in the growing heat and humidity for what would become a 6 hour 150 miles trek on the TWs around the region of the long gone Great Black Swamp of Northwest Ohio:

    Photos part #1

    Paulding 3 004.JPGPaulding 3 003.JPGPaulding 3 002.JPGPaulding Redux 008.JPGPaulding County Ride 010.JPG

    The Great Black Swamp's southern edge began in the central part of Van Wert County, Ohio{city where Hoot was hatched back in 1949} and old US 30, the Lincoln Highway was laid out along the southern beach head of the swamp, which was finally drained completely in the late 1800s...the first set of photos are from Mercer, Auglaize, and Van Wert Counties...
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Photos Part #2

    We crossed north into Paulding County, where we found some dirt, wooded trails, and some sites that even me, have been born in the area had not really seen...of course I was 5 when we left Paulding County and the town of Scott...so what would I remember?

    Paulding County Ride 034.JPGPaulding County Ride 011.JPGPaulding Redux 003.JPGPaulding Redux 004.JPGPaulding Redux 005.JPG

    Junction, Ohio at the convergence of the Miami-Erie and Wabash-Erie Canals, was Historical for sure, more bars, brawlers, and Whore Houses than any place around Paulding County back in the mid 1800s...
    Last edited by Hoot Gibson; 07-22-2016 at 08:20 AM.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    [B]Part #3 Photos...[B]

    Paulding 3 003.JPGPaulding 3 001.JPGPaulding County Ride 023.JPGPaulding County Ride 020.JPGPaulding County Ride 007.JPG

    We stopped in the town of Paulding for fuel and feed...stopping to eat at a mom and pop, strange name of Hometown Pizza, but it is a full menu place where we eat had the dinner special...Potato Soup and Beef Stew{also loaded with Potatoes} in a bread bowl...talk about overload of Carbs....we did that for sure{damn forgot to take photos} ...we then head south fully full in both food and fuel and stopped by my Great Grandpappy's....of course Ol Nelson has been gone since 1880 but his veteran Civil War Grave still is readable....

    Nelson, wife Mary Ann, and the brood of 13 once lived in Briceton, Ohio, as well as Tipton, and the Black Swamp area of Paulding County...Nelson died of Malaria in 1880 at the age of 50....the family continued to live in the area, as well as Fort Wayne into the late 20th century...
    Last edited by Hoot Gibson; 07-22-2016 at 06:31 AM.
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    Senior Member joeband's Avatar
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    cool ride, going back to our roots is an important thing to do once in awhile.
    thanks for posting.
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    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    Hoot:
    When are you coming back to Florida? I'm sure we can find some bottomless sugar sand to get bogged down in.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xracer View Post
    Hoot:
    When are you coming back to Florida? I'm sure we can find some bottomless sugar sand to get bogged down in.
    Hoping on getting down to Naples to Little Sis and Denmark Mike's place in late February....Everglade City, Loop Road, the Tower, Flamingo, and perhaps Key West....although not sure if I want to ride US 1 from Islamorada to KW on a TW fearless I may be, but not old and crazy just yet....
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  8. #7
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Riding the Great Black Swamp

    Part #4 Epilog

    Not sure how many people outside Ohio{and with the sorry state of today's public education system how many in Ohio} and Northeast Indiana have even heard of the Hellhole that was the Great Black Swamp...in NW Ohio and portions of Indiana, near Fort Wayne...but when my Great-Grandparents picked up from Waldo, Ohio, near Columbus and traveled by horse and wagon from Waldo to Blue Creek Township in 1866 they and the rest of the ajoining families had to be wondering when they arrived for the Free Land..."What the Hell were we thinking"? It was a place not fit, even for the Indians who lived there...this 1982 look at the Swamp and it's history was broadcast first in 1982 on the Bowling Green{Ohio} PBS station, where it was produced:

    http://video.wbgu.org/video/1402715991/

    A penned look at the GBS History on Wikipedia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Black_Swamp

    More Photos:

    GreatBlackSwampMap.png

    Paulding County Ride 002.JPGPaulding County Ride 013.JPGPaulding County Ride 009.JPGPaulding Redux 003.JPG
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    TW Adventure Rides Completed
    March 2015 Moab: With 30 TW Forum Friends..
    Summer 2015 Great Lakes, Wisconsin, UP of Michigan, With Borneo and Montezuma
    November 2015: SE Ohio/West Virginia w/ Borneo and Montezuma
    March 2016: Big Bend NP in South Texas w/ Montezuma, Borneo, Ebbanflood and FW Gary
    August 2016: Montezuma and Hoot's Covered Bridge Ride in Southern Indiana

  9. #8
    Senior Member arbolmano's Avatar
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    Loving roadside history. I believe that's the first monument I've seen celebrating two escaped convicts and the law what apprehended them. When I lived in West Virginia I drove my girlfriend nuts visiting Civil War sites. Only got away with it as she loved riding behind me on my chopper. Personally, I didn't appreciate the horror of the Civil War until I stood at Antetiem and saw with my mind the thousands of dead Americans in one battle. Never heard of the great swamp but I find it interesting that many sites the White man started to steal were considered "unhabitable" by the Native Americans. Local town here quite favorable now was once called "the valley of sickness" as native lore said that folks what lived there all became sick. Century later studies were showing an endemic species of mosquito were carrying a form of encephalitis..........nice there Hoot.
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  10. #9
    Senior Member Hoot Gibson's Avatar
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    Ohio OVI Book.jpggilmanhouseworth.jpgMaish.jpg

    Civil War History Buff myself....

    I contributed stories and photos to the book above....as 3 of my direct ancestors fought in the Battle of Chickamauga with the Ohio 26th OVI...in September of 1863

    Henry Houseworth was KIA during the battle

    Gilman Houseworth, photo, was wounded but lived a long life after the war...but let's say according to my research, had some "Issues"...who knows if those were associated with the war

    And Ol' Maish, who joined at 15, was booted out, but rejoined to finish the war at 18 and 19...and who lived to the ripe old age of 98 at Waldo, Ohio...one of the longest and last Civil War Veterans in Ohio{some say the last to pass on} The first 2 were Great-Great Uncles...Maish was a first cousin, twice removed...
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    March 2015 Moab: With 30 TW Forum Friends..
    Summer 2015 Great Lakes, Wisconsin, UP of Michigan, With Borneo and Montezuma
    November 2015: SE Ohio/West Virginia w/ Borneo and Montezuma
    March 2016: Big Bend NP in South Texas w/ Montezuma, Borneo, Ebbanflood and FW Gary
    August 2016: Montezuma and Hoot's Covered Bridge Ride in Southern Indiana

  11. #10
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
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    Thanks for the history lesson Pat, never knew of Great Black Swamp. For a guy who is supposedly long gone from the forum Hoot still posts some mighty interesting stuff.
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