Enriching The Future By Sharing The Past
Matamoras Area History
History of the Matamoras area goes back before Ohio became a state. In 1797, the first permanent settlers to set foot on the site of Matamoras were James Riggs, his two sons-in-law, Martin and Anthony Sheets, and their families. Fearing hostile Indians, they camped on the Virginia side of the river while clearing the Ohio land and building cabins. Many of our first settlers were Revolutionary War Veterans.
Grandview Township was created and officially cut off from Newport Township in 1803, the same year Ohio became a state. The Grandview Township's First Trustees Journal 1803-1843, has been found and reprinted by the Matamoras Area Historical Society, Inc., a unique book, for most official's books of that era have been destroyed.
Matamoras Village was first platted in September,1846 by Stinson Burris and Henry Sheets, with Adam Cline platting the first addition. The founders named it for Matamoros, Mexico; in the spring of that year, Zachary Taylor's troops drove the Mexican Army back to Matamoros when they invaded Texas Territory before the Mexican War was declared. Our village was incorporated in 1861, receiving a post office the same year. The U.S. Post Office Department insisted it be called New Matamoras to avoid confusion with a small town, Metamora, in Fulton County.
Once a boom town and a major shipping point on the Ohio River, Matamoras' major industries have been farming, oil and the river itself. One Matamoras native was Lawrence Amos, who invented plastic wrap and held 60-plus patents. Another, Charles Ambler, was the leading historian for West Virginia and wrote 17 books. Daniel Dye, a missionary to China for 41 years, became the worlds leading authority on Chinese lattice work and had several books on the subject printed, including two volumes for Harvard University Press. Successful people from every walk of life have come from the Matamoras area.