It all started with a ditch - hand-dug in the 1820s & 1830s to create the Ohio & Erie Canal. The canal completed an inland water route stretching from New Orleans to New York, and opened up a new shipping route to the world. It took Ohio from a struggling frontier to the third richest state in the country & positioned New York as a world port. Basically, this little strand of water was the canal that changed the world.
Today, the Ohio & Erie Canalway is a National Heritage Area — designated by Congress in 1996 — to help preserve and celebrate the rails, trails, landscapes, towns and sites that grew up along the first 110 miles of the canal that helped Ohio and our nation grow.
We start your Byway tour in the northern reaches of the Canalway. You’ll travel to the cultural, historic, recreational and natural wonders that grew from these beginnings. Enjoy an ever-changing landscape - and the opportunity to move through a journey nearly two centuries in the making. Mostly, enjoy the views!