The National Park Service is studying the idea of potentially extending the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail into Ohio and neighboring states.
The NPS will hold an open forum from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at Campus Martius Museum, 601 Second St., to discuss issues and opportunities and gather input regarding the trail's potential expansion.
On the same day, a free program about the creation of the first U.S. Army unit after the Revolutionary War, the First American Regiment, will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Campus Martius in commemoration of the 225th anniversary since the establishment of Fort Harmar.
The park service public meeting is one of several being held as part of the initiation of the study process. Each meeting will consist of a short presentation covering the study process followed by an open question and answer session. The public will be asked to fill out comment cards to provide pertinent information regarding the possible extension of the trail through Marietta on its way to Pittsburgh.
The NPS has been directed by Congress to conduct a special resource study to assess the suitability and feasibility of adding the Eastern Legacy sites associated with the preparation and return phases of the Lewis and Clark expedition to the existing Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail. The trail currently extends west from Wood River, Ill., for about 3,700 miles to the mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon and Washington.
The study area for the Eastern Legacy extends from Wood River east along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers to Pittsburgh, and will include additional sites and overland routes followed by Meriweather Lewis and William Clark, whether independently or together, prior to and following the 1804-1808 expedition.
For more information about the study, contact www.parkplanning.nps.gov/eastern-legacy-srs.
Thursday will also feature the Fort Harmar 225th anniversary program by David Heckaman of Milford. Heckaman is a retired social studies teacher and principal in the Claremont Northeastern School District who is among the nation's most noted researchers of military activities of the Northwest Territory.
Heckaman will be joined by Floyd Barmann, the new director of the Campus Martius Museum, to discuss methods of 18th century fort construction including techniques used to build Fort Harmar. The First Regiment built the fort, the first federal post built in the Northwest Territory.
Heckaman and Barmann have been scouring archives and libraries across the U.S. for the past 25 years in search of Northwest Territory material and plan to co-author a book on the subject in the next two years. Thursday's program is part of several marking the 225th anniversary of Fort Harmar.
A grave marking ceremony for Englehard Hopper, a soldier who died while serving at Fort Harmar, will be held 11 a.m. Friday at Oak Grove Cemetery, Eighth and Wooster streets. Hopper, a 24-year-old soldier was a member of Captain Doughty's company of the First American Regiment. He was a German immigrant and enlisted in New York for a three-year tour of duty in July 1785.
He re-enlisted in 1789, but drowned Nov. 21 in the Muskingum River near Picketed Point. First buried near the fort, his remains and marker were moved to this lot in 1881 and his headstone remains the oldest in Marietta.
The dedication is sponsored by the Sons of the American Revolution Marietta Chapter, and will include re-enactors in the First American Regiment, Boy Scout Troop 207 sponsored by American Legion Post 64, Marietta Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution, the Ohio Genealogy Society Washington County Chapter, the Colonial Dames XVII Edward Parrish Chapter and local students.