WNYC

The Front Porch: Anna Sale on Loving and Leaving West Virginia

As host and executive producer of the hit podcast "Death, Sex & Money" from WNYC, Anna Sale asks famous people and regular folks about the things we need to talk more about, but don't. On this week's "The Front Porch," Sale talks about her complicated love of West Virginia, and the bittersweet experience of visiting home, once you know you're gone for good.
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The opium poppy is a source of beauty in gardens and fields all over the country and the world. But it’s also a source of pain relief and when abused, death.  In recent years death tolls from heroin, a derivative of the poppy, has tripled nationwide, and the numbers are just as stark here in West Virginia.

Frontline PBS recently tackled the poppy’s intimate connection to humans, tracing it back thousands of years. It started with the Sumerians in 3400 B.C., who passed it to the Assyrians, to the Babylonians, to the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Persians, the Chinese, British, and in 1905 Congress banned U.S. imports of opium - the derivative of poppy seeds and base of heroin. Little good it did. A black market bloomed thereafter and of course, the 5,000-year-old obsession with the opium poppy continues.

But today our region of the world is in the grips of an especially nasty resurgence of heroin addiction.

e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

  On May 22, 1861, Thornsberry Bailey Brown became the first Union soldier killed in battle during the Civil War. It occurred during a brief stand-off at Fetterman in Taylor County.

At the beginning of the war, both Union and Confederate forces were scheming to control the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, which had arrived in Taylor County in 1857. The railroad would be a key to moving troops and supplies.

In an age of globalization and a shrinking manufacturing sector, two young men in Wheeling are hedging their bets and running with a business idea that first took off in 1854.  

And as we prepare for a special week long series on heroin addiction in West Virginia, Digital Editor Dave Mistich discusses the digital components that supplement the series "The Needle and the Damage Done: West Virginia's Heroin Epidemic."

Alpha Natural Resources expects to idle a West Virginia coal mine that employs more than 400 workers. 

In a press release, Alpha said it notified 439 workers Friday that it expects to idle Rockspring Development's Camp Creek underground mine and processing plant in Wayne County.

 Last week, Alpha cut 71 jobs at four mines in Kentucky and Virginia.

Provided

Disaster loans are being offered to nonprofit organizations in a dozen West Virginia counties that sustained damage from severe weather in April.

The U.S. Small Business Administration says private nonprofits that don't provide critical services of a governmental nature can apply for the low-interest disaster loans. The loans are available for nonprofits in Braxton, Brooke, Doddridge, Gilmer, Jackson, Lewis, Marshall, Ohio, Pleasants, Ritchie, Tyler and Wetzel counties.

http://history.wvu.edu/r/images/homepage/13223

The West Virginia Supreme Court has ruled documents by a former university researcher studying the effects of coal mining on public health don't have to be made public after a coal company sued to have them disclosed.

The Charleston Gazette reports Alpha Natural Resources sued to try forcing West Virginia University to release thousands of documents by former professor Michael Hendryx related to academic journal articles he published.

West Virginia Encyclopedia

Recreational boaters can travel the Upper Monongahela River without hindrance for the first time in several years.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers agreed to reopen the Opekiska and Hildebrand locks for recreational use. The locks will be open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends for a total of 18 days during the summer.

The corps also has opened the Morgantown Lock on weekends.

Freedom Industries
Aaron Payne / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Two former Freedom Industries executives have been arraigned on a second superseding indictment stemming from a massive chemical spill last January.

The indictment contains a new charge against former Freedom President Gary Southern dealing with the company's bankruptcy. It restates original charges against him and former Freedom official Dennis Farrell.

Southern faces an additional count of lying under oath in bankruptcy court. He faces up to 93 years in prison if convicted.

wvtourism.com

The state Division of Tourism has introduced a website and brochure on West Virginia's military heritage ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

courtesy of the artist / design by Crystal Collins.

To accommodate increased demand for tickets to the upcoming June 28 production of Mountain Stage, a part of FestivALL Charleston, the show is moving to The Clay Center.

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