Date(s) - 7/13/17
12:00 am

Campus Martius Museum



WHO: The Public is invited

WHAT: 230th Anniversary of the Northwest Territory Ordinance of 1787 Celebration Program. “The Ordinance of 1787”, presentations by Ohio Supreme Court Justice Judith French, Marietta College President William Rudd and historian Denver Norman.

WHERE: “Start Westward Monument” in Muskingum Park, Front Street, Marietta, OH 45750

WHEN: Thursday, July 13th 2017, 10am Patriotic tunes. 10:30am Program: “The Ordinance of 1787”

10:00 am to 10:30am – First Congregational Church, 318 Front Street, Marietta, OH, bell ringing of the carillon will be performed with various patriotic tunes. Visitors are invited to climb the steps into the bell tower to watch or assist as members operate the wooden levers to engage the chimes.

1:00 to 5:00pm – Campus Martius Museum, tour the General Rufus Putnam House, constructed in 1788 as part of the Campus Martius fortification. (Regular admission rates) Note: Territorial Governor Arthur St Clair and other officials conducted official business at Campus Martius.

3:30pm Mound Cemetery Tour (conducted by “The Castle Museum” adults $5, children free)

7-8pm – Music in the Park, “Colonial Period Music” at Gazebo in East Muskingum Park, adjacent to the Start Westward Monument. (No charge)

230th Anniversary of the Northwest Territory Ordinance of 1787 Celebration Committee; Co-Chairs: Joe Matthews, Marietta Mayor; The Honorable Nancy Hollister, Ohio School Board; Ada Woodson Adams, President of The Multicultural Genealogical Center; Lila Hill, Marietta Daughters of the American Revolution; Jean Yost, Friends of the Museums, Campus Martius & Ohio River Museums & Marietta SAR. Contact: Jean Yost, 6207 Ohio Route 550, Cutler, Ohio, 45750, 1-740-678-8060 (home), 1-740-336-8060 (cell), Email:

The Northwest Ordinance, officially titled “An Ordinance for the Government of the Territory of the United States North West of the River Ohio,” was adopted by the Confederation Congress on July 13, 1787. Also known as the Ordinance of 1787, the Northwest Ordinance established a government for the Northwest Territory, outlined the process for admitting a new state to the Union, and guaranteed that newly created states would be equal to the original thirteen states. Considered one of the most important legislative acts of the Confederation Congress, the Northwest Ordinance also protected civil liberties and outlawed slavery and involuntary servitude in the new territories. The Old Northwest is now Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and part of Minnesota.

HISTORIC BACKGROUND: Marietta, Washington County, Ohio, is the site of the first organized settlement and Capital of the Northwest Territory. After the Revolutionary War, many New England officers and enlisted men formed the Ohio Company and left their homes for life on the frontier. Landing at the mouth of the Muskingum (site of Fort Harmar and the 1st American Regiment of the U.S. Army) on 7 April 1788, a group of 48 patriots led by General Rufus Putnam, founded Marietta and started the western expansion of the United States. Over the next several years, a great many soldiers, sailors, and/or their families came to live here in a county named for their leader, General George Washington. These men who had fought for their country’s independence in the American Revolution had lobbied with the new Congress for land as payment for their service. One result of the efforts of these men was the creation of the Northwest Ordinance of 1787 which established territories North of the Ohio River to Canada and East of the Mississippi River, abolished slavery (Article VI) and served as the model for the Bill of Rights in the US Constitution. The Northwest Ordinance was unanimously passed on 13 July 1787 as one of the first significant pieces of legislation passed by the Continental Congress after the war. On 17 September 1787, almost 2 months to the day of the passing of the Northwest Ordinance, Congress slightly modified that Ordinance and adopted it as our U.S. Constitution.