Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Posts tagged ‘New Concord Ohio’

National Road – Zane Grey Museum

Zane Grey Museum

The Zane Grey Museum was originally constructed to resemble a frontier fort.

Three pieces of history are superbly woven together at the National Road – Zane Grey Museum between New Concord and Zanesville, Ohio along old Route 40. Learn about the road to the West, famous author Zane Grey, and Zanesville potteries.

Way back in 1811, Ebenezer Zane discussed with George Washington the need for a road across the newly settled country. Washington agreed it was vital to the future of the country so proclaimed, “Open a wide door, and make a smooth Way.” That began Zane’s Trace, which became part of the National Road.

Zane Grey Crossing

Diorama sections show their difficult work in constructing The National Road over streams.

The museum presents a detailed 136′ diorama depicting life on the original National Road, often called “The Main Street of America”. All the figures are hand made from clay and accurate down to the tiniest detail.  The first road was dirt, followed by the Corduroy Road made of logs, making it very rough. Eventually a stone foundation was in place with crushed stone on the top, and finally bricks

Zane Grey Ferries

Ferries took wagons and supplies across the Ohio River.

Every mile a stone mile marker gave travelers information on mileage to various towns along the way. A Gunter Chain, 66′ long, was used to measure the distance of one mile time and time again. If you moved the 66′ chain X 80 times = 5,280 ‘, the distance of one mile. The Gunter Chain also measured the distance across the road – 66’.

Zane Grey Diorama

Logs formed the Corduroy Road, a rough stretch to travel.

After WWI, Dwight Eisenhower led a convoy of trucks across the National Road, and during WWII, General Eisenhower discovered the Autobahn in Germany. When he became president he felt it of high importance to develop better highways in America. Thus began our interstate highway system.

Zane Grey Stop

The 10 Mile House provided refreshments along the highway. Baker’s Motel is located on that spot today.

Pearl Zane Grey, being born in Zanesville, traveled this road frequently. His early writing attempts were squelched by his father, who insisted that Zane attend the University of Pittsburgh so he could be a dentist and follow in his father’s footsteps. Zane did graduate with a degree in dentistry after enjoying a time of pitching his great curve ball on the college baseball team, where he enjoyed a full baseball scholarship.

When he married Dolly, her encouragement and editing abilities, along with a nice inheritance, made it possible for Zane to abandon his dental practice and begin following his passions…writing and fishing.

Zane Grey Study

Zane Grey wrote his books by hand in his study, surrounded by native American items he had collected in his travels.

His first book was Betty Zane, the story of a young girl who helped save Fort Henry. But it was Riders of the Purple Sage that put popularity into Grey’s writings. His books sold like hot cakes. Zane wrote all his stories in long hand, then his wife, Dolly, typed them and had them published. Many were turned into movies.

Zane enjoyed fishing more than anything else and spent over 300 days a year at that sport. He split the money from the books with Dolly, and he spent his half on fishing, boats, and travel. When he traveled out West, he filled his tablets with descriptions of the scenes he saw, for use in his stories.

Zane Grey fishing

Big-game fishing was the real passion in his life.

The only books that sold more copies than Grey’s at that time were the Bible and school primers. Hemingway was quite jealous of Grey, not because of his successful writing career, but because of his great fishing ability. Zane’s love of the great out-of-doors can be seen in all of his books through his detailed descriptions. 

Now how does the fantastic collection of pottery fit in? The perfect clay for making pottery could be found in this area quite easily – in dirt roads, such as the National Road, which had clay as their base. Potters would go out to the road and dig up a small portion of clay to make a vase or bowl. This became known as a “potters’ hole”. Thus the term we use today for a hole in the road – “pot hole”.

Zane Grey Pottery

This is a small section of the Zanesville Pottery collection on display.

But the collection goes beyond those humble beginnings and includes the work of over 132 potteries in the Zanesville area. Thousands of workers contributed to this large display, which was originally the collection of Mr. Downey, the owner of Conn’s Potato Chips. Upon his death, half of his pottery was given to the Zane Grey Museum for display, while the other half is in the Zanesville Museum of Art.

Zane Grey Model T

Find surprises along the way like this Model T Ford.

Next time you travel along the Old National Road, today’s Route 40, stop at the National Road – Zane Grey Museum and watch a film about the life of Zane Grey. The knowledgeable guides will lead you down the road to books, movies, pottery…and some surprises along the way.

National Road – Zane Grey Museum is located on old Route 40 about a half mile from I-70, Exit 164, Norwich Exit. The museum is located between New Concord and Zanesville, Ohio.

 

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John Glenn Delights Audience during Charlie Rose Interview

New Albany's McCoy Center presents the Jefferson Series.

New Albany’s McCoy Center presented Glenn as part of The Jefferson Series.

Blasting off to outer space may be something we joke about, but for John Glenn, it was the real thing. Born in Cambridge, Ohio, John Glenn grew up in nearby New Concord. Always interested in science, there he acquired the determination and desire to enter the military and eventually become part of NASA’s space team.

Recently, 93-year-old Glenn spoke in an interview setting conducted by award winning journalist, Charlie Rose, at the McCoy Center in New Albany. Inspired by Thomas Jefferson’s life-long adventure in learning, New Albany Community Center conducts The Jefferson Series, comprised of interviews with great thinkers of our time.

Video showed history of John Glenn.

Video showed history of John Glenn.

Prior to the actual interview, a short video was shown covering Glenn’s childhood and many of his major accomplishments. This provided opportunity for the audience to get to know John Glenn better.  His interest in flying began when he was eight years old and his dad took him flying from a small airport near Cambridge. Glenn was hooked! He immediately went home and began building model airplanes.

When 93-year old Glenn came on stage, there was a standing ovation for this Ohio born, national hero. Throughout the evening, his recall of events of his life was phenomenal, as well as his ability to think about the future. His sense of humor often filled the auditorium with laughter during the interview.

In introduction, Rose proclaimed, “Glenn is one of the great national heroes of our time.” Although Glenn was very humble about that remark, his participation in the Marines, space program, US Senate, and education programs verify that title.

He flew 149 combat missions as a Marine fighter pilot where he was awarded six Distinguished Flying Crosses, the Air Medal, The World War II Victory Medal, and four Service Medals. When asked, “Who’s the best pilot you ever knew?” Glenn quickly responded, “Me!” He said if you don’t have the correct training and attitude of being the best, you shouldn’t be a fighter pilot.

Charlie Rose interviews John Glenn, age 93.

Charlie Rose interviews John Glenn in 2015.

Then he entered the space program where he flew two missions. He was the first American to orbit the earth in 1962 on Friendship 7, and later in 1998, at the age of 77, Glenn volunteered for another orbital mission to experiment on the effects of space travel on the elderly. The second flight was another record setter, as it made him the oldest man to fly in space.

One of the favorite things to do on these flights is look out the window. Glenn described the beauty of the sunsets from space, where the angle of the sun’s rays makes all the colors of the spectrum visible. Charlie Rose told him, “You sound like a poet, not a pilot.”

John and Annie Glenn and Charlie Rose welcomed students on stage.

John and Annie Glenn with Charlie Rose welcomed students on stage.

The International Space Station holds special interest for Glenn, but it upsets him that we pay Russia $65,000,000 for each astronaut to be taken there. He obviously wants the United States to become more active in their own space program as the lessons learned are valuable.

Between those space flights, Glenn served as U.S. Senator from Ohio for four terms. Glenn said he had aspirations of being in politics since he was a youngster and credited his high school teachers for instilling that value. Doing something for your country is exhilarating. He reminded the crowd, “Every person here is a politician and part of this solution.”

Glenn thought for a few seconds when Charlie Rose asked him, “Which president do you admire the most?” Glenn’s answer, “Bill Clinton.” He said Clinton brought about good programs, and for the first time in a long, long time we were actually paying down the national debt.

When asked about his feelings on troops being sent to Iraq, Glenn quickly answered, “No, I would not have voted for the war in Iraq.” He said he had been through two wars and they were not very pleasant things. He was also skeptical that recent deployments of military advisors to Iraq will make much of a difference, since “they’ve been fussing over there for 2,000 years”.

Students in attendance had the opportunity to be on stage with the Glenns and Rose.

Students in attendance had the opportunity to be on stage with the Glenns and Rose.

Education has become a big issue for the future as we are now in a global competition. He credited his teachers for starting him on the right path and encouraged students to learn about their government through Civics class promotion. At the end of his interview, he asked all students to come on stage. At that time his wife, Annie, joined him and they had their pictures taken with the group.

Freeze dried ice cream added flavor to the road trip.

Freeze dried ice cream added flavor to the road trip.

There wasn’t a dull moment in the interview, as Glenn and Rose brought vitality to the stage while discussing past, present and future. Today you can learn more about John and Annie Glenn by stopping in New Concord at John & Annie Glenn Historic Site, where a visit earlier in the evening provided dinner dessert, Freeze-Dried Ice Cream.

Makes me proud to be from the same area where John and Annie Glenn grew up.

Visit the John & Annie Glenn Historic Site, located in Glenn’s boyhood home, at 72 W. Main Street in New Concord, Ohio on old US Route 40 between Cambridge and Zanesville. 

Hoping to Strike Gold in Venice

Everyone has their dreams, and the only thing that can keep you from fulfilling your dreams is you. David Turrill, faculty member at Muskingum University, found one special dream fulfilled on a recent trip abroad.

Quite often you don’t have to go as far from home as David did to find interesting and unusual activities. At the Muskingum University Library, each month they present Author Talks with campus and local authors describing their writing experiences. David’s talk centered around musical research in the archives of Bologna, Italy.

As conductor of the Muskingum University Wind Ensemble, Muskingum University Band, and Muskingum Valley Symphonic Winds plus teacher of trumpet and music education, David Turrill breathes music most of his waking hours.  His special interest exists in the Baroque period from 1600-1750.  So when it came time to select a topic for his doctoral presentation, David decided to study Giovanni Battista Martini and his passion for the Baroque trumpet.

Starting at the Natural Trumpet Making Workshop in Indiana, David and other participants assembled, pounded, and polished their original Baroque Trumpet, synonymous with Natural Trumpet. David said this was not an easy task for him as he wasn’t really very good at working with his hands. By using a slide presentation at the library, he was able to explain the day to day process. When completed, those trumpets each had a slightly different sound depending on how they were pounded out, and also on who was playing them.

His relaxed manner had the audience laughing at his musical jokes and asking questions throughout.  He did play a selection on the Baroque Trumpet, which is very specialized and can only play in certain compositions. One of his students played a traditional trumpet to display differences. Since there are no valves on the Baroque trumpet, the mouthpiece is very special and there are bits to change keys.  David smilingly said, “Wrong notes are easier to come by!”

Many of the participants spent hours creating a glossy shine on their instruments, but David said he wanted his to look like it was played in the 1700’s so he didn’t spend time shining. Or maybe he wanted to explore other things?

Next stop, Germany, where he visited the Baroque Trumpet Shop featuring Egger trumpets, which David said were the Rolls-Royce of Trumpets.  This was just a short stop on his way to Bologna, Italy where he did his research on Martini, who was a composer of over 1500 works as well as a teacher and historian. The Martini Library at the Conservatory of Bologna was where David spent two to three hours a day looking at 280 year old manuscripts, and trying to figure out that age old question – What was the intent of the composer?

All through his research he was hoping to strike gold and find an undiscovered composition or interesting life story. But this was not to be.  However, David did feel that he struck gold when he arrived in Venice, which had been a dream spot to visit for several years. St Mark’s Basilica seemed to be one of his favorite stops. Sometimes when we dream of something, it never quite lives up to the dream. This time however, David said Venice was “beyond my wildest dreams.”

He does hope to write dissertations and journal articles in the future regarding his travel experience, as well as sharing his knowledge of the Baroque music period. This accomplished musician needs to keep on dreaming.

Muskingum Library is quite easy to access on the Muskingum University campus. From I-70 take Exit 169 OH 83 towards New Concord. At the traffic light turn right onto Main Street/ US 40. Turn left at the entrance gates to Muskingum University and follow the road to the top of the hill.  Turn left again and at the left end of the short street, you will find the library.  Parking is available for visitors either before you reach the library or at the side.

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