“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Norwich in Muskingum County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

Mile Markers

National Road/Zane Grey Museum

— One of Several Identical Markers —

Mile Markers Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Rev. Ronald Irick, June 25, 2016
1. Mile Markers Marker
Inscription.  The Act of Congress in 1806 which authorized the construction of the National Road required that mile markers be placed at regular intervals. These reference points reassured travelers that they were following the correct route. They also indicated the distance traveled and the distance to a destination.

The use of mile markers began in the Roman Empire with the use of stone obelisks. The first Roman mile markers appeared in the fourth century B.C. on the empire’s legendary Appian Way, the road from Rome to Brindisi.

National Road mile markers are set at one mile intervals along the north side of the Road. Each state’s mile markers were a different design, but all displayed the same information. Ohio’s markers were square with round heads, made of an early form of concrete, sandstone or limestone, while in Pennsylvania they were obelisks made of cast iron. Ohio’s five-foot tall markers were set two feet deep into the ground with three feet exposed. Each marker indicated the distance to Cumberland, Maryland, where the Road begins, and the name and mileage to the nearest cities and villages, for east and westbound travelers.

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the letters or numerals were painted or carved, markers followed a standard pattern of showing at the top the number of miles from the beginning of the Road in Cumberland, Maryland. On the next row, they wrote the name of the next big town and number of miles to it. On the left side of the marker, it would show eastbound travelers the next big town to the east. On the right side, it would show westbound travelers the next big town to the west and the number of miles to go. On the lowest level, there was usually an initial and a small number. This indicated the nearest town. It didn’t need to be spelled out, because most people from the vicinity would recognize it from the initial.

By the 1920’s, a uniform highway numbering system with standardized road signs replaced the old mile markers, but many remain along the Road. See how many you can identify.
Erected 2014 by The Ohio National Road Association, Inc.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Bridges & ViaductsRoads & VehiclesSettlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the The Historic National Road series list.
Location. 39° 58.529′ N, 81° 49.356′ W. Marker is in Norwich, Ohio, in Muskingum County. Marker can
Mile Markers Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Rev. Ronald Irick, June 25, 2014
2. Mile Markers Marker
Full view of pair of markers
be reached from E. Pike Old National Road (U.S. 40). Marker is in the parking lot at the National Road/Zane Grey Museum, next to another marker. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8850 E Pike Old Nationa lRoad, Norwich OH 43767, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Historic National Road in Ohio (here, next to this marker); The Historic National Road (here, next to this marker); Warren Pony Truss Bridge (a few steps from this marker); Zane’s Trace Bridge (a few steps from this marker); Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Motels (about 500 feet away); Norwich (approx. 1.2 miles away); The Ralph Hardesty Stone House (approx. 1.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Norwich.
Additional keywords. Old National road
Credits. This page was last revised on September 7, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 6, 2016, by Rev. Ronald Irick of West Liberty, Ohio. This page has been viewed 637 times since then and 246 times this year. Last updated on September 5, 2022, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 6, 2016, by Rev. Ronald Irick of West Liberty, Ohio. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.

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Sep. 22, 2023