Appalachian Ohio is a bioregion and political unit in the southeastern part of the U.S. state of Ohio, characterized by the western foothills of the Appalachian Mountains and the Appalachian Plateau. The Appalachian Regional Commission defines the region as consisting of thirty-two counties. This region roughly overlaps with the Appalachian mixed-mesophytic forests, which begin in southeast Ohio and southwest Pennsylvania and continue south to Georgia and Alabama. The mixed-mesophytic forest is found only in Central and Southern Appalachia and eastern/central China. It is one of the most biodiverse temperate forests in the world.
Geologically, Appalachian Ohio corresponds closely to the terminal moraine of an ancient glacier that runs southwest to northeast through the state. Areas south and east of the moraine are characterized by rough, irregular hills and hollows, characteristic of the Allegheny Plateau and Cumberland Plateaus of the western Appalachian Plateau System. Unlike eastern Appalachia, this region does not have long fin-like ridges like those of the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians subranges, but a network of rocky hollows and hills going in all directions.
The region is considered part of "central Appalachia", a political, cultural, and bioregional classification that includes southeastern Ohio, Eastern Kentucky, most of West Virginia and Southwestern Virginia.
Counties and county seats
The Governor's Office of Appalachia subdivides the 32 counties of Appalachian Ohio into three smaller regions: East Central Ohio, South East Ohio, and Southern Ohio. The following lists include each county in the region and its county seat.
|East Central Ohio||South East Ohio||Southern Ohio|
Appalachian Ohio has several cities within its borders, which as of the 2010 census included the following localities:
- Youngstown Population: 66,982 Mahoning County and Trumbull County
- Warren Population: 41,557 Trumbull County
- Zanesville Population: 25,487 Muskingum County
- Athens Population: 23,832 Athens County
- Alliance Population: 22,322 Mahoning County
- Chillicothe Population: 21,901 Ross County
- Ashtabula Population: 19,124 Ashtabula County
- Niles Population: 19,266 Trumbull County
- Portsmouth Population: 20,226 Scioto County
- Steubenville Population: 18,659 Jefferson County
- New Philadelphia Population: 17,288 Tuscarawas County
- Marietta Population: 14,085 Washington County
- East Liverpool Population: 11,195 Columbiana County
- Conneaut Population: 12,841 Ashtabula County
- Salem Population: 12,303 Mahoning County and Columbiana County
- Dover Population: 12,826 Tuscarawas County
- Struthers Population: 10,713 Mahoning County
- Coshocton Population: 11,216 Coshocton County
- Cambridge Population: 10,635 Guernsey County
- Ironton Population: 11,129 Lawrence County
- Girard Population: 9,958 Trumbull County
- Hubbard Population: 7,874 Trumbull County
- Campbell Population: 8,235 Mahoning County
- Canfield Population: 7,515 Mahoning County
- Martins Ferry Population: 6,915 Belmont County
- Cortland Population: 7,104 Trumbull County
- Logan Population: 7,152 Hocking County
- Belpre Population: 6,441 Washington County
- Geneva Population: 6,215 Ashtabula County
- Columbiana Population: 6,384 Mahoning County and Columbiana County
- Hillsboro Population: 6,605 Highland County
- Jackson Population: 6,397 Jackson County
- Wellston Population: 5,663 Jackson County
- Nelsonville Population: 5,392 Athens County
- St. Clairsville Population: 5,184 Belmont County
John Glenn Columbus International Airport, in Columbus, is the largest airport and serves most of the residents in southeast Ohio. John Glenn offers primarily domestic flights. Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport to the southwest serves most of the residents of Cincinnati and its metropolitan area, and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport to the north is also a major hub airport.
Appalachian Regional Commission
The Appalachian Regional Commission was formed in 1965 to aid economic development in the Appalachian region, which was lagging far behind the rest of the nation on most economic indicators. The Appalachian region currently defined by the Commission includes 420 counties in 13 states, including 32 counties in Ohio. The Commission gives each county one of five possible economic designations— distressed, at-risk, transitional, competitive, or attainment— with "distressed" counties being the most economically endangered and "attainment" counties being the most economically prosperous. These designations are based primarily on three indicators— three-year average unemployment rate, market income per capita, and poverty rate. In 2009, Appalachian Ohio had a three-year average unemployment rate of 8.4%, compared with 7.5% statewide and 6.6% nationwide. In 2008, Appalachian Ohio had a per capita market income of $22,294, compared with $29,344 statewide and $34,004 nationwide. In 2009, Appalachian Ohio had a poverty rate of 16%, compared to 13.6% statewide and 13.5% nationwide. Seven Ohio counties—Adams, Athens, Meigs, Morgan, Noble, Pike and Vinton—were designated "distressed", while nine—Ashtabula, Gallia, Guernsey, Harrison, Jackson, Lawrence, Monroe, Perry and Scioto—were designated "at-risk". The remaining half of Appalachian Ohio counties were designated "transitional", meaning they lagged behind the national average on one of the three key indicators. No counties in Ohio were given the "attainment" or "competitive" designations.
Athens County had Appalachian Ohio's highest poverty rating, with 32.8% of its residents living below the poverty line. Clermont had Appalachian Ohio's highest per capita income ($30,515) and Holmes had the lowest unemployment rate (5.5%). Washington County has the highest high school graduation rate (84.5%), while Adams County has the lowest (68.6%). Although Holmes County has a significantly lower high school graduation rate than Adams County at 51.5%, its graduation rates are somewhat skewed compared to the rest of the region, due to the county's high population of Amish, whose children do not attend school past the eighth grade.
Notable Americans from Appalachian Ohio include:
- John Glenn, former United States Marine Corps pilot, astronaut, and United States senator. First American to orbit the Earth.
- Sarah Jessica Parker, actress and producer, Nelsonville
- Nancy Zimpher, Chancellor of the State University of New York System
- Dean Martin, actor, Steubenville
- Lou Groza, football placekicker and offensive tackle for Cleveland Browns and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame
- Jimmy the Greek
- Clark Gable, actor, Cadiz
- George Custer - served in the American Civil War and was killed in the Battle of Little Big Horn, New Rumley, Ohio
- Ulysses S. Grant 18th US President (1869–1877) Hiram Ulysses Grant was born in Point Pleasant, Ohio, April 27, 1822. Victor of the American Civil War.
- William McKinley 25th US President (1897-1901, shot in abdomen on Sep 6, died Sept 13) was born in Niles on January 29, 1843.
- Cy Young, Major League Baseball pitcher, Gilmore. The Cy Young Award is given annually to the best pitcher in MLB.
- Cody Garbrandt UFC fighter. Uhrichsville (Tuscarawas County)
- Stephen Kappes Deputy Director of the CIA during the Bush (43) and Obama administrations, Athens
- Maya Lin Architect and designer of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, DC, Athens
- Katie Smith Three-time Olympic gold medal winner with Team USA basketball; two-time WNBA champion and Ohio State University standout
- Joe Burrow, quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengals, number one pick in the 2020 NFL Draft and winner of the 2019 Heisman Trophy
- Jack Roush, founder, CEO, and co-owner of the NASCAR team Roush-Fenway Racing. Grew up in Manchester, Ohio.
- Ambrose Bierce, American author, Meigs county
- Mike Palagyi - Washington Senators Baseball Player, Conneaut Ohio, Ashtabula County
- "Counties in Appalachia", Appalachian Regional Commission website. Retrieved 2012-Jan-13.
- County Map Archived July 18, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Governor's Office of Appalachia, 2008. Retrieved December 10, 2008.
- Appalachian Regional Commission Online Resource Center Archived January 11, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved: May 15, 2009.
- "County Economic Status, Fiscal Year 2012: Appalachian Ohio" Archived October 15, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Appalachian Regional Commission. Retrieved: 2012-Jan-13.
- "Education – High School and College Completion Rates, 2000". Arc.gov. Archived from the original on February 14, 2011. Retrieved December 22, 2010.
- Bomberger, Ben (January 14, 2009). "Jack Roush: The Man Below The Hat". Bleacher Report. Retrieved September 17, 2020.
- Billings, Dwight B. and Kathleen M. Blee "Agriculture and Poverty in the Kentucky Mountains: Beech Creek, 1850-1910" in Appalachia in the Making: The Mountain South in the Nineteenth Century, eds. Pudup et al. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995.
- Blethen, H. Tyler "Pioneer Settlement" in High Mountains Rising: Appalachia in Time and Place, eds. Straw and Blethen. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2004.
- Davis, Donald Edward. "A Whole World Dying" and "Medicinal and Cultural Uses of Plants in the Southern Appalachians" in Homeplace Geography: Essays for Appalachia. Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 2006.
- Lewis, Ronald L. "Railroads, Deforestation, and the Transformation of Agriculture in the West Virginia Back Counties, 1880-1920" in Appalachia in the Making: The Mountain South in the Nineteenth Century, eds. Pudup et al. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995.
- Salstrom, Paul. "Newer Appalachia as One of America's Last Frontiers" in Appalachia in the Making: The Mountain South in the Nineteenth Century, eds. Pudup et al. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995.
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Southeast Ohio.|
- Foundation for Appalachian Ohio
- Tending the Commons: Folklife and Landscape in Southern West Virginia
- Appalachian Studies Association
- Center for Appalachian Studies and Services
- Center for Appalachian Studies
- Appalachian Regional Studies, Radford University
- Appalachia: Land and People (Ohio University Professor Geoff Buckley's Syllabus)