A surveyor named Lucas Sullivant can be thanked for picking the location of a town that changed the city.
Sullivant settled the Franklinton neighborhood, named after Benjamin Franklin, in the 1790s.
"The place that he liked best was at the forks of the Scioto and Olentangy rivers," author and historical Ed Lentz said.
Lentz said that Sullivant's fingerprints could be found all around the town, from a store, to his family's home and even the first bridge over the river to Columbus.
Soon, though, Sullivant found a problem with his settlement - flooding. A flood in 1798 covered much of the settlement with water.
"The entire town was washed away in a flood," Lentz said. "Sullivant moved the entire town a considerable distance to the west in hopes of inducing people to settle on that higher ground."
Sullivant offered free land for anyone who lived between Gift Street and the river, Lentz said.
"He set aside Gift Street, saying that if people took a lot on this street and built their home here, he would give them their own lot," Lentz said.
Floods continued to cause problems in 1898 and 1913, when bridges washed away because of rushing water from snow melting and rain.
In 2004, a floodwall was completed in Franklinton.
Sullivant and his contributions to Columbus are commemorated by a monument where Sullivant's home once stood, Lentz said.
Now, state Route 315 passes through the property, 10TV news reported.
The cemetery also is a reminder of how the community was born after the Revolutionary War.
"The Franklinton cemetery was a monument to the memory of the people who established this part of the year," Lentz said.
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