A brief study of the individuals who built Washington County will prove just how disconnected the president is with his recent statements suggesting to small business owners, "You didn't build that yourself."
American history is full of examples of the self-made men the president insists do not exist. One such man with ties to Marietta was Robert Oliver who accepted his nation's call in April 1775 and was appointed captain of a company of minute men from Conway, Mass. He served throughout the War of Independence rising to the rank of colonel.
In 1788, he bought into The Ohio Company and moved his family to the civilian fortress of Campus Martius in Marietta. In 1789, the family settled on Wolf Creek where Beverly is today. Oliver and two partners built and operated the first grist mill in Ohio supplying Marietta with food and grain. During the Indian Wars, Oliver took charge of local military matters and became the lieutenant colonel of the 1st Regiment of the Territorial Militia.
In 1795, Oliver was appointed Judge of the Court of Common Pleas. In 1798, he became a representative to the 1st Territorial Legislature under the John Adams administration. He became president of the council and remained president until statehood in 1803. He was also elected Justice of the Peace back at Beverly.
Looking at our rich heritage shows us it wasn't a government program that settled this Valley some 250 years ago, but rugged men and women with nothing more than God's blessing and extra helpings of fortitude and courage that built this great county, of which this generation is still enjoying.