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Eyewitness Accounts of Encountering Falls of the Ohio Rapids

Volunteer Naturalist Paul Olliges’ publication titled Eyewitness Accounts of Encountering Falls of the Ohio Rapids takes you back to a time when the Falls of the Ohio was a much wilder place. Imagine guiding a flat bottom boat down the Ohio River and encountering a series of rapids and exposed rocks that challenge your ability to navigate. The experience was uncertainty and fear for some, and a sense of adventure for others. Through extensive research at the Filson Historical Society in Louisville, Paul has compiled eyewitness accounts by people who ‘shot’ or otherwise encountered the Falls of the Ohio rapids in the 1700s to the early 1900s. They chronicled their thoughts, feelings and experiences as they faced this natural obstacle to navigation. These eyewitness accounts are fascinating, and offer a personal perspective on the many challenges faced by early navigators on the Ohio River. The publication can be viewed on the Resource page of our website.