|Lawrence County History
In order to trace your family roots, you must understand and consider the history of an area in order to get an idea as to where to look next. The following is a quick history of the earliest history of what is current-day Lawrence County, Ohio, which was mostly formed from Gallia and Scioto counties:
(Excerpts from Gallia County, Ohio Residents book are placed in quotation marks)
"This 1800 Census of Gallipolis Township was part of a Census of Washington County, Territory Northwest of the River Ohio, by Paul Fearing. Other townships of Washington County included in the census were Middletown, Belpre, Waterford, Marietta, Adams, Salem, Newton, and Newport. The original copy was kept in a notebook at the Campus Martius Museum in Marietta, Ohio, after being donated along with other papers by the County Commissioners in 1942. Edith S. Reiter, Curator, copied (transcribed) the census and returned the original to the Marietta College Library, where unfortunately it was stolen from the shelves. If it was not for Mrs. Reiter's copy, the recorded names of these people living in 1800 Southeast Ohio probably would be lost forever.
The first town laid out for the French settlers was opposite the Great Kanawha River and was called "Fair Haven". Major Burnham and a party of about 40 men, including Colonel Robert Safford, were dispatched to clear the land and erect buildings for the new settlers. They actually located a few miles south, where the banks of the Ohio were higher and the land was less susceptible to flooding. These two men, along with James Burford, were the first white men known on this site, where they landed June 8, 1790. In the late fall, the French colonists arrived, and at an early meeting, the site was called Gallipolis (town of the French). Marie Louise Cadot was said to be the first child born. She was born January 28, 1791, daughter of Claudius Cadot & Jane Bastine."
For more information on the settlement of Gallipolis (city of the Gauls) and the families from that area, there is a book entitled "The French Five Hundred."
"In 1803, Ohio became the 17th state admitted to the Union and in the spring of that year, eight new counties were created, including Gallia County. At this time Gallia County included most of present-day Lawrence County (except for a few western sections of present-day Elizabeth twp. and Hamilton), much of present-day Jackson (all of Franklin, Jefferson, Madison, Bloomfield, Milton, and part of Hamilton & Scioto townships) & Meigs (Salem, Rutland, Salisbury, Sutton, Letart, Lebanon, and part of Cheshire twps.) Counties, and part of present-day Vinton County (Wilkesville twp.). On May 10, 1803, Gallia County was divided into 3 townships: Gallipolis, Kyger, and LeTarts."
March 24, 1803, Scioto County, Ohio was formed from Adams County, Ohio.
"December 29, 1804 - All townships that belonged to Gallia in Range 18 & 19 went to Scioto County. The western boundary of Gallia became the western edge of range 17. The northern boundary remained the same." Therefore, since current-day Lawrence Co. has lands scattered from range 19 to range 15 (along the Ohio River), Scioto Co. records will hold the earliest residents from the following current-day townships: Hamilton, Upper, Perry (very small portion), Elizabeth, Decatur, and Washington."
December, 1816 - Lawrence County, Ohio was formed from parts of Scioto and Gallia Counties; organized in early 1817 with 10 townships; Decatur, Elizabeth, Fayette, Lawrence, Mason, Rome, Symmes, Union, Upper, Windsor, adding Aid and Perry townships by 1830, Washington twp. by 1850, and Hamilton twp. in late 1850, after the census.
So if backtracking records prior to Lawrence Co., start with the following:
Scioto Co. - 1803/1804 - came from:
Adams Co. - formed 1797
Hamilton Co., - formed 1790 (original co.)
Scioto Co. - early marriages, deeds, 1807 taxlist
Adams Co. - early marriages, deeds,
Gallia Co. - 1803 came from:
Washington Co. - formed 1788 (original co.)
Gallia Co. - early marriages, deeds, wills + estate records, taxlists: 1800 census, 1806 land, 1808 land, 1810 land, 1811 land, 1812 chattels, 1813 land, 1814 land, 1816 land
Washington Co. - early marriages, deeds, probate records 1789-1850, court of common pleas 1795-1803
Contribution made by Kristy Stevens.
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