History

Appetite Appalachia
10:35 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Bloody Butcher Corn: From Field to Fork

Larry Mustain, about to grind Bloody Butcher Corn
Credit Allender Stewart

In southern West Virginia, Reed's Mill has been stone-grinding local cornmeal since 1791. It's one of the few gristmills that has been in continual operation in this country, and it grinds a local heirloom corn that has been passed down for generations.

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Block Historical District
5:45 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Barbara Hicks Lacy Remembers Charleston During Segregation

Workers outside the Ferguson Theater, 1939. Lacy remembers that Richard Sonders, an usher, is the tall man to the right with an eye patch.
Credit Courtesy of the W.Va. State Archives, Bernidean Brown Collection

In Charleston, those who grew up during segregation remember a tight knit community in the downtown neighborhood known as The Block. During the 30's and 40's Barbara Hicks Lacy grew up in this neighborhood, and she's one of the remaining residents who vividly recalls The Block, which today has all but disappeared. The West Virginia Center for African-American Culture and Arts recently invited her to share her story at the West Virginia State Archives.

When she was a kid, Lacy's best friend, named Baby Sue, was white, and so they weren't allowed to attend the same school.

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West Virginia Morning
8:14 am
Thu September 11, 2014

Advocates Hold Their Own Legislative Session

On West Virginia Morning,  an advocacy group takes over the House of Delegates chamber for its own mock legislative session and religious tolerance is the focus of a discussion in Morgantown. 

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History
3:14 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

Historian Explains Why It's Important to Preserve Your Nearby Graveyards

Credit Charles Gordon Clark / creativecommons.org

There are many ways to research and learn about our past, but for one historian, studying gravestones and its cemeteries is one of the best ways to find out more about a town’s history.

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Block Historical District
7:41 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Speaker Gives Insight into the Heart of the Black Community

The first C.H. James Produce Company was located in downtown Charleston on Summers Street.
Credit courtesy of C.H. James III

The Block Historical District is a section of Charleston that was once the heart of the African American community. As part of a project to resurrect some of the history of this neighborhood, the West Virginia Center for African American Art and Culture has organized a series of lectures. About 60 people attended the second of these talks last week.  

Charles James III is the fourth generation in his family to own and operate one of the oldest family-owned businesses in the United States, the James company. James said that he remembers being invited to the local country club in the late 80's. But his father in an earlier generation was not asked to join until the 80's.

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History
1:46 am
Thu June 26, 2014

New Book Discovers Where Wheeling (Place of the Skull) Got Its Name

Painter Cecy Rose looks onto her painting that serves as the cover art for the newly published book, PLACE OF THE SKULL.
Credit Glynis Board / WVPublic

The name Wheeling is a very old word. While there’s some dispute, it’s most commonly translated from the indigenous Delaware language to mean “Place of the Skull.” That’s the name and subject of a recently published book written by Ohio Valley resident Alan Fitzpatrick.

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Arts & Culture
6:55 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Events Set to Celebrate West Virginia Day

Whelling's Independence Hall.
Credit Nyttend / wikimedia Commons

  The West Virginia Division of Culture and History is commemorating West Virginia Day with festivities in Charleston and Wheeling.

Officials say the free, public events on Friday will take place at the Culture Center in Charleston and Independence Hall in Wheeling.

The Culture Center will host a birthday celebration that includes educational activities, a speech on historic Charleston and cutting of the state's birthday cake.

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Arts & Culture
6:50 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Traveling Sports Exhibit on W.Va. Tour

Martinsburgh High School's football team took home their fourth state championship in a row in 2013.
Credit Cecelia Mason

  A traveling exhibit on the role of sports in American culture is making its way across West Virginia.

The West Virginia Humanities Council is sponsoring a state tour of the new Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibit "Hometown Teams."

Officials selected six museums and cultural and community organizations to host the exhibit and provide public programs about their local sports culture.

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History
6:36 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Mural, Documentary Remember Buffalo Creek Disaster

Credit M0nster0 / en.wikipedia.org

  West Virginia's 1972 Buffalo Creek disaster is being remembered in a mural.

Canadian artist Kevin Ledo began work on the mural Tuesday. His canvas is the outside brick wall of one of the few buildings in the Logan County community of Man still standing from before the flood that killed 125 people, injured 1,100 and left 4,000 homeless.

The flood occurred when an earthen dam along Buffalo Creek collapsed after heavy rain, sending 132 million gallons of coal waste into the community.

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West Virginia Morning
9:00 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Vigil for Funding of Child-Family Programs, 'What's Next, WV?', & Enriching Schools Through the Arts

    

 

Child and family advocates are continuing their push at the statehouse for the restoration of 800 thousand dollars in state funds. West Virginia Center for Civic Life director Betty Knighton and Catherine Moore, an Appalachian Transition Fellow assigned to 'What's Next, WV? speak with Beth Vorhees about the new initiative. An Elkins couple is working to keep storytelling, history and music alive in Appalachia through their work in Randolph County Schools.

National Geographic Bee
7:42 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

He's a One Man Wrecking Crew of Geography Knowledge

Andrew Christy is West Virginia's representative in the National Geographic Bee for the third year in a row.
Credit Submitted Photo

There’s a very important competition taking place in Washington D.C. next week. It’s the National Geographic Bee and West Virginia has a competitor who thinks he has the right stuff

Andrew Christy is an 8th Grader at St. Francis de Sales Central Catholic School, in Morgantown. He’s going to represent West Virginia, for THE THIRD YEAR IN A ROW, at the National Geographic Bee. He came up short on his first two tries, but now, it’s his final chance to bring home 50 thousand dollars in college scholarships and bragging rights to the Mountain State.

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History
10:12 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Parkersburg Hotel Celebrates 125th Anniversary

Credit Nyttend / wikimedia Commons

  A historic hotel in Parkersburg is kicking off a celebration of its 125th anniversary.

The Blennerhassett Hotel will hold a customer appreciation event Tuesday afternoon that includes a birthday cake and cupcakes.

Marketing manager Nicole Slattery tells the Parkersburg News and Sentinel that other events are planned through the remainder of the year.

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History
10:54 am
Fri May 2, 2014

West Virginia Golden Horseshoe Winners Honored

Credit West Virginia Division of Culture and History

  Nearly 230 eighth graders have been honored as winners of the Golden Horseshoe Award for their knowledge of West Virginia history and culture.    A ceremony was held Thursday at the state Culture Center in Charleston. Students from all 55 counties participated.

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11:58 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Aerial America: West Virginia

In this visually-driven documentary, The Smithsonian Channel highlights the natural (and occasionally the man-made) beauty of West Virginia. The hour-long piece provides a look at various aspects of the state's history and culture, from our formation as a result of the civil war to how industry has played a part in shaping our economic landscape and topography.
West Virginia. It's where the Appalachian, Blue Ridge, and Allegheny Mountains converge, and where a fiercely independent spirit, forged during the Civil War, still lives today. Take off on a sky-high journey above the Mountain State
History & Culture
11:43 am
Fri February 7, 2014

W.Va. Group to Start 'Rosie The Riveter' Movement

Credit National Museum of American History / Smithsonian Institution

A West Virginia group dedicated to honoring the working women of World War II wants to start a national movement.
 
     "Thanks! Plain and Simple" executive director Ann Montague says a public meeting will be held Friday afternoon at Huntington's Pullman Plaza Hotel.
 

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West Virginia Morning
8:42 am
Mon January 6, 2014

West Virginia's Teacher of the Year & County Courthouses Are 'Living Monuments'

Berkeley County 5th grade teacher Erin Sponaugle is West Virginia's Teacher of the Year and a new book highlights the history of the state's county courthouses.

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Documentary
9:27 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Mountain Stage at 30: A Radio Retrospective

Mountain Stage host Larry Groce performs in the early days of the show.

For 30 years and with over 800 episodes, Mountain Stage has been a mainstay in public radio and American music.

Like anything that evolves into a lasting endeavor, Mountain Stage’s success is part happenstance mixed with years of dedication and hard work. Truly, though, it all comes down to the people who made the show possible coming together with a shared vision.

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Kennedy Assassination
2:33 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Fifty Years Later, West Virginians Remember JFK's Death

Maura Brackett, who lived in West Virginia for nearly 20 years, worked in the JFK White House. She shared her memories.
Credit Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Fifty years ago Friday, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. The killing shocked the nation and world and, to this day, people still talk about it. Many West Virginians are remembering where they were the day the President was killed.

The West Virginians who are remembering that day include Mountain Stage host Larry Groce, who was living near Dallas at the time.

Others who share their memories include: Maura Brackett, who worked in the White House, and a Princeton man who served as a local campaign manager for Kennedy during the 1960 campaign.

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Appalachian History
8:41 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Remembering The Farmington Mine Disaster

Credit WV Division of Culture and History

Wednesday is the 45th anniversary of a mine explosion in Farmington, W.Va., that claimed the lives of 78 men. Time Trail, West Virginia, from the state Division of Culture and History, describes what happened that day.

November 20, 1968: The Farmington mine disaster

After an explosion tore through Consolidation Coal Company's Number 9 mine in Farmington, there was still hope that miners trapped below ground found a way to survive.

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Arts & Culture
11:49 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Video: The West Virginia Music Hall of Fame 5th Induction Ceremony Vignettes

Update: You can watch the performances from the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame here.  

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When the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame inductedtheir 5th class on Saturday night, a wide swath of musical styles wasbe featured.

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