Entered Union: March 1, 1803
Present constitution adopted: 1851
Motto: None
State Symbols: Nickname: Buckeye State
Origin of name: From an Iroquoian word meaning “great river”
Land area: 40,953 sq mi. (106,067 sq km)

Famous natives and residents:

State located in the Midwest, occupying the transitional space between Kentucky and Michigan, and Pennsylvania and Indiana. It was the 17th state admitted to the union, in 1803, and due to its central location, abundant soil, and excellent water transportation corridors, it grew to be one of the most populous, prosperous, and prominent states of the USA. Ohio gave rise to seven presidents throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The period since the Second World War has been marked by an almost equally dramatic decline in relative prominence and prosperity.

Ohio is really two entirely distinct regions that have very little in common and really should be separate states. Roughly the northern two thirds of the state lies within the industrial northern Midwestern region known as the Rust Belt. This part of Ohio dominates the perception of the entire state, and is characterized a flat boundless countryside of intense factory agriculture, industrial metropolises such as Cleveland and Toledo on the shores of Lake Erie, and innumerable old industry towns in varying states of decay, including Youngstown, Akron, Canton, Findlay, Lima, and others. The topography is flat and the climate features long harsh winters aggravated by copious amounts 'lake effect' snow. The population is a largely homogenized mix of the descendants of the Eastern European, German, and Irish immigrants of the late 19th century, with pockets of African-Americans and Hispanics. The university town of Columbus at the southern extent of this region fulfills the role of a lager version of Madison or Ann Arbor.

The southern third of the state, by contrast, is geographically and culturally part of Appalachia. The topography features steep wooded hills and humid valleys. With the exception of the population centers of Cincinnati and Dayton, limited agriculture, industry, and population density characterized its development and present. The population is largely Scotch-Irish, augmented by the concentrations of German and African American descent in Cincinnati and Dayton.

The southern part of the state was settled first, shortly after the American Revolution and the passage of the Northwest Ordinance, by frontierspeople from Virginia and Kentucky. Settlement of the north proceeded shortly thereafter from Pennsylvania and upstate New York. In 1835 an armed standoff Between Ohio and the then territory of Michigan, called the Toledo War, finalized the boundaries of the two states. The completion of the Miami and Erie Canal, which linked the Ohio River in the south with Lake Erie in the north was a major step in the advancement of transportation and industry in America, and a boon to the state. The population of Ohio was greatly increased by German immigration, and as industrialization proceeded, immigration from elsewhere.

The presidents from Ohio are: William Henry Harrison from North Bend, near Cincinnati, Ulysees S. Grant from the region to the East of Cincinnati, James Garfield from near Clevleand, William Howard Taft from Cincinnati, Rutherford B. Hayes from somewhere in the North, William McKinley from Niles, near Canton, and Warren G. Harding from Youngstown.

In the years since World War 2, the state declined in relative prominence, as the national population and industries shifted to the West and South. It seems like most of the interstate highway system traverses Ohio, and entire cities were destroyed to make way for highways. Suburbanization took its toll on the cultural and physical fabric, so much so that it inspired the Pretenders' song 'Ohio' about the Mallification of America as a whole. Cleveland, the largest city, was lampooned as 'The mistake on the Lake.' Recent years have seen decline stable-ized and attempts at renaissance in Clevland and Cincinnati.

Technically, Ohio is not the 17th state admitted to the United States. It is the 47th. During its 150th anniversary, government officials went looking for the records. As it turned out, there had been a small oversight. You see, while the constitution and boundaries had all been approved, Congress forgot to actually admit the state to the Union. Whoops. A resolution was introduced to admit Ohio as a state retroactive to March 1, 1803. Congress passed a joint resolution and Eisenhower signed it on August 7, 1953.

That's where the fun began. Tax evaders have claimed that since the 16th Amendment was introduced to Congress by the Taft administration, and Taft was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, that he was not a legal president (The Constitution explicitly states that presidents must be natural-born citizens of the U.S.). Hence, Taft could not legally introduce the 16th Amendment. Also of interest is that this line of reasoning would render the actions of presidents Harding, Hayes, McKinley, Garfield, Harrison, and Grant unconsitutional.

The argument against this is that the resolution in 1953 rendered all previous events legal, since Ohio was declared to have been a state since 1803.

The tax evaders have countered this by pointing out that the Constitution also says Congress can't make an ex post facto law. The question is whether retroactive admission of a state falls under this category (probably not). Not to mention everyone thought Ohio was a state for a century and a half. It's hard to fight 150 years of history in court.

Well, I must be a Buckeye. I as born in Cleveland, raised in Akron educated in Dayton and now I live in Columbus.

Personally, I think Ohio is cool. Not so cool as Mill Valley, California perhaps, but you don't need a million bucks to buy a house here. The state is lush, with plenty of mountains and trees to the south, a western flt plan, lots of good farmland, Lake Erie that most maligned of the Great Lakes. There isn't a single Ohio city so large that you can't be in the country within forty five minutes, yet the cities are culturally interesting. Think not?

The Cleveland Art Institute is famed as one of the world's great art museums. There are larger museums, but everything on display in the Cleveland is a total masterpiece. The Cleveland Orchestra might be the best symphony orchestra on Earth. Yes, that includes Berlin, Chicago and the New York Philharmonic. The Cleveland music scene is justly famed, and for more than the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Pick up a Scene Magazine and you'll find bands playing everywhere. Look for the Mr. Stress Blues Band and you'll see why Mr. Stress got mentioned in a Pretenders song. Jacobs Field might be the finest ballpark on earth, and the Indians don't suck anymore. Yes, Cleveland Rocks!

Mid Ohio Sports Car Course is simply one of the finest road racing circuits located on the planet, and internationally known. Want to know who's raced there? Bobby Rahal, Mario Andretti, Mark Donohue, Jackie Stewart, Dennis Hulme, Bruce McLaren, Peter Revson, Nigel Mansell, Dan Gurney, AJ Foyt, Phil Hill, Gilles and Jacques Villeneuve and a whole lot more of racing's greatest drivers. Mid Ohio is home of the the SCCA Runoffs, Over 600 SCCA drivers compete for the right to be balled national champion.. The Runoffs is the best week of racing anyone could hope for. If you're a circle track fan who likes doing it in the dirt, you have to have heard of Eldora Speedway, where guys like Scott Bloomquist duke it out on the dirt.

Dayton boasts the United States Air Force Museum which may be the finest aviation museum on Earth. The collection is huge, and almost entirely on display With acres under roof, the Air Force Museum dwarfs the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. Go to the Oregon district for a good ale and some cool music, or visit the Canal Street Tavern for the finest in national folk and acoustic music in friendly atmosphere.

Columbus is the capital, and has a collection of restaurants capable of sating the pickiest eater. The local theater scene is considered by some theater people to rival that of New York because it is more willing to take risks. Ohio State provides the sport, and in Columbus you're near everything.

In Akron you can check out Stan Hywet and relive Tudor splendor, or check out a burger at Whitey's Chrissie Hynde, Devo and Rare Earth all came out of Akrons music scene, where jazz is featured.

If I win a powerball jackpot, I'll move to Mill Valley, California. But for anything less I stay here, a cosmopolitan state normal people can actually afford to live in.

Ohio does have a state motto:

With God, all things are possible.

Though, the motto is controversial it has been decided by a 2-1 vote in the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 1998 that the state will keep 'God' in the motto despite the efforts of the ACLU to have it removed.

sources: www.brianmorrison.com

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