Nelson T. Gant House

Nelson T. Gant House (HMTIF)

Location: Zanesville, OH 43701 Muskingum County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 56.722', W 82° 1.858'

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The Historic National Road in Ohio

Nelson Talbot Gant was freed from slavery by the last will and testament of his owner, John Nixon, September of 1845 in Loudoun County, Virginia. However, Gant's wife, Maria, was a slave to Jane Russell of Leesburg, Virginia. According to Virginia law at the time, he was required to leave the state no more than a year after being freed. Reluctantly, he left in October of 1846 promising to return for her. Gant traveled to Zanesville, where many of the former Nixon slaves had taken residence. He became acquainted with and enlisted the help of abolitionists and agents of the Underground Railroad in Zanesville and Putam, a decidedly anti-slavery community across the Muskingum River from Zanesville.

In November, Gant returned to Virginia and made another attempt to buy his wife. His offer was refused. With no alternatives, he and Maria simply left. Gant and his wife were caught in Washington, D.C. and put in jail. A month later they were taken to Virginia where Maria was returned to her owner and Nelson remained in jail.

On December 12, 1846, Gant was put on trial for stealing his wife. He was acquitted of the charges since a wife could not be compelled to testify against her husband. Two months later, enough money had been collected from friends in Ohio and Virginia to buy Maria's freedom.

In June 1850, Nelson, Maria, and their one-year old daughter returned to Zanesville. Nelson purchased land for a home and farm along the National Road and made a very successful living growing and selling specialty vegetables.

The Road That Helped Build The Nation.An All American Road—National Scenic Byway

Series This marker is part of the The Historic National Road series
Placed ByPresented by the Ohio National Road Association, Inc
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 5:57am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 411926 N 4422202
Decimal Degrees39.94536667, -82.03096667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 56.722', W 82° 1.858'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 56' 43.32" N, 82° 1' 51.48" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)740
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1701-1999 W Pike, Zanesville OH 43701, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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