Native tribes like the Fort Ancients, the Hopewell, and the Adena settled in Jackson County because of the natural salt deposits called licks. A salt lick is a naturally occurring deposit of salt that has to be dug out of wells. The water in the wells is called brine, and in the production of salt, the water would be evaporated or boiled away leaving only the salt behind.
After Europeans began to settle in what is now the United States, Native tribes were forced westward. When the fur trade began, eastern tribes like the Shawnee moved into the Ohio country in search of beaver pelts to trade with European settlers. The fur trade led to the Beaver Wars, in the course of which, Southern Ohio was nearly depopulated, and the tribes that were living in the Ohio River Valley were replaced by eastern tribes. However, the people that were living in Southern Ohio were not exterminated, though many were killed, those that remained in southern Ohio stayed and were assimilated into the eastern cultures that were moving in until further European expansion pushed the native tribes out of the Ohio Country altogether with the Treaty of Greenville after the Battle of Fallen Timbers.