Historic canal trail to be created

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The Ohio and Erie Canal as it looked in the early 20th century passing through Groveport. (Photo courtesy of the Groveport Heritage Museum.)

The Scenic Scioto Heritage Trail, Inc., and its partner communities recently announced the development of the new Ohio and Erie Canal Southern Descent Heritage Trail from Buckeye Lake to Portsmouth.

The 114 mile driving trail begins at the southern edge of Buckeye Lake in Fairfield County. It includes Bibler lock #8 in Baltimore; locks #11, 12, and 13 in Lockville; lock #22 in Groveport; locks #26, 27, 29, and 30 in and near Lockbourne; and remnants of the Columbus Feeder just west of Lockbourne in Franklin County.

In Pickaway County the trail passes lock #31 in Millport and includes Canal Park in Circleville. In Scioto County the trail continues south through Rushtown at lock #48 and lock #50 in West Portsmouth and ends at lock #55, west of downtown Portsmouth at the Ohio River.

All of these canal locks, with the exception of lock #55, are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Work to list lock #55 is underway.

Once the trail has been established, residents and visitors will be able to learn the story of this important transportation route as they follow the driving trail. Creation of the trail, which will be launched next fall, is being funded by the Canal Society of Ohio and Ohio Humanities.

For information about the Ohio and Erie Canal Southern Descent Heritage Trail, contact project director Cathy Nelson at cathyd.nelson@gmail.com.

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