Colerain

Colerain, although unincorporated, has a post office, with the ZIP code of 43916. It lies along U.S. Route 250. It is located on the county’s north-east border. Colerain was originally built up chiefly by Quakers from North Carolina and Virginia, who left those states due to their opposition to slavery. A small community of Quakers moved into Belmont County. This led to several locations in Belmont County being stops on the Underground Railroad. The third station was located in Colerain at a mill belonging to Joshua Cope. 

Josiah Fox was born in England and came to America. In the 1790s, he was hired by the government to help design ships. His most notable work was the USS Constitution. It is a frigate that could withstand cannonballs due to the way it was designed. Cannonballs literally bounced off her oak sides, earning her the nickname, “Old Ironsides”. She is the world’s oldest commissioned naval vessel still afloat and sits in Boston Harbor, open to tourists. Josiah’s work designing war ships conflicted with his Quaker faith and as a result, he was expelled from the church, but later reinstated. He came to Colerain in 1814 after retiring and it was there that he was reinstated into this faith.

The Concord Quaker Meetinghouse  was the first Quaker Meeting in the Northwest Territory. Built 1813, it was remodeled in 1863 and 1898. In 1826 Concord Monthly Meeting had 279 members. In 1898 the building was reduced in size because of the difficulty in heating the large meeting house and smaller attendance due to westward migration. In 1911 Concord reported only 21 resident members. The Concord Meeting was “laid down” in 1919. A group of descendants has restored the building which includes three bricks-thick walls, and the original wooden pegged benches. The building is on both the Ohio and National Historical Registers.  Fox is buried in the adjoining cemetery. The U.S. Navy placed a bronze plaque, listing the ships he designed, on his grave in 1976.

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Colerain IGA Ohio Valley

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