From Ohio History Central
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Completion of the Erie Canal dramatically altered life in Ohio. Thousands of settlers utilized the canal to move to Ohio. Cities in northern Ohio, especially Cleveland and Toledo, grew quickly and became important ports. Farmers and industrialists in northern Ohio now had a relatively cheap and quick means of transporting their products to market. The success of the Erie Canal also prompted the Ohio government to invest in canals within Ohio, most notably the Ohio and Erie Canal and the Miami and Erie Canal, both of which connected Lake Erie with the Ohio River.