Kanawha County

Premature Baby
Mikeblyth / wikimedia commons

The March of Dimes gives West Virginia low marks for preventing premature births.

West Virignia earned a D on the 2015 March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card. The report card compares the state's preterm birth rate with the March of Dimes' goal of 8.1 percent by 2020.

Race Forum, WVSU
Clark Davis / WV Public Broadcasting

Members of the Kanawha County Community gathered at West Virginia State University earlier this week to discuss race and the ongoing battle for equality.

Community members, officials and students took part in a discussion at West Virginia State looking at different racial issues effecting West Virginia and Kanawha County. The discussion was organized by students and the American Friends Service Committee. 

ZngZng / wikimedia Commons

Kanawha County is on track to record the most heroin overdose deaths in a single year.

Through July, the county had matched the number of heroin-related overdose deaths that occurred all of last year.

Kanawha County Schools

Sixteen schools in eight West Virginia counties will share more than $12,200 in grants for sustainability projects.

September 4, 1964: Businessman A.W. Cox Dies at 79

Sep 4, 2015
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

  Businessman A. W. Cox died on September 4, 1964. He was 79 years old.

The Roane County native attended a one-room school through the eighth grade. And, by 17, he was operating his father’s sawmill. After a brief teaching career, he got a part-time job at a store in Clendenin in northern Kanawha County. While working there, Cox decided to make a career of retail sales. He moved to Charleston in 1914, when he was 29, and bought out a downtown department store. It became the first in a chain of 21 A. W. Cox Department Stores in West Virginia, Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky. 

Kanawha Textbook War
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

On September 3, 2974, Kanawha County schools opened amid high tensions. Months earlier, school board member Alice Moore had objected to the content of new language arts books the county was adopting. She felt that many were anti-religious or anti-American. Fueled by the efforts of conservative ministers, an opposition movement to the books grew rapidly, particularly in rural parts of Kanawha County. Despite petitions bearing 12,000 signatures and public condemnation of the books by 27 ministers on the grounds of immorality and indecency, the board approved most of the books.

Ayacop / wikimedia commons

Four additional West Virginia counties have been declared endemic for Lyme disease, bringing the total to 11.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that Kanawha, Marshall, Roane and Wetzel counties were declared endemic for the tick-borne disease as of Aug. 15. They join Berkeley, Hampshire, Hancock, Jefferson, Mineral, Morgan and Wood counties on the list.

July 31, 1958: Labor Leader Bill Blizzard Dies at 65

Jul 31, 2015
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

  Labor leader Bill Blizzard died on July 31, 1958, at age 65. The Kanawha County native was the son of two passionate union activists.

During the 1910s, Blizzard quickly rose in rank in the United Mine Workers of America labor union. In 1921, he played a key role in the armed miners’ march on Logan County and personally led some of the front-line fighting at the Battle of Blair Mountain. He was charged with treason and murder for his actions. He was tried in the Jefferson County Courthouse in Charles Town—ironically, in the same building where John Brown had been convicted of treason six decades before.

@yeagerairport / Twitter

Work is scheduled to begin Monday on removing part of a manmade hillside at Yeager Airport that collapsed earlier this year.

Todd Harrell / West Virginia National Guard

After weeks of steady rain, a manmade hillside near the end of Yeager Airport's main runway is slipping anew.

Airport and Kanawha County officials told the Charleston Daily Mail they were monitoring the area Wednesday for further movement. They said no structures were threatened.

e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

  On June 30, 1904, the Kelly Axe and Tool Company acquired 53 acres of land along the Kanawha River on the West End of Charleston. It eventually became home to the world’s largest axe factory.

The company was founded in 1874 by William C. Kelly, who established his first factory in Kentucky before relocating to Indiana and then West Virginia. Kelly was attracted to the Kanawha Valley by the availability of abundant natural gas and good access to river and rail transportation.

wikimedia / Wikimedia

In Kanawha County, reoccurring mud and rock slides have led to the on and off closure of a portion of route 60 near Cedar Grove.

A community group has organized a meeting in Belle this evening to discuss the long-term impacts that these reoccurring closures could have on businesses and residents.

e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

  Attorney and politician William T. Brotherton Jr. died on April 6, 1997, at age 70. During his long career, he’d risen to the top position in two of West Virginia’s three branches of government.

Todd Harrell / West Virginia National Guard

According to Yeager Airport officials a slippage that started Wednesday at the end of the runway has gotten worse.

Yeager Executive Director Rick Atkinson says the slip developed over the weekend in a corner of the safety overrun area at the end of the main runway. The hillside broke away and slipped onto nearby roads.

This was a particularly active period in the Mine Wars—a violent time that pitted miners against coal operators.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / WV Humanities Council

Labor leader Fred Mooney was born in Kanawha County on January 23, 1888. At age 13, he began working in coal mines as a trapper boy.  Six years later, at the young age of 19, he became secretary-treasurer of District 17 of the United Mine Workers of America.

In the early 1800s, Kanawha County became the salt-producing capital of the nation.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Output pool, Kanawha Salt Industry, War of 1812, Kanawha County

On November 10, 1817, Kanawha County salt operators entered into a unique business arrangement that would set the stage for major industries in the late 1800s. Salt was an essential product in early American history. In the early 1800s, Kanawha County became the salt-producing capital of the nation.

According to request filed by attorneys at law Hannah and Hanna PLLC back in August, Black Diamond Power admits to overcharging customers $1,686,338 admits to collecting over a five year period.

The document indicates that the company serves about 4,300 so that’s about $385 per customer.

The company proposes to refund $488, 307 to customers over a five year period which would come through a rate reduction.  But Black Diamond Power wants to treat the remaining money, treat the remaining $1.198 million as a “customer contribution.”

It appears that the Staff of the Public Service Commission filed recommendations on October 1. In that document, the staff of PSC recommends about $900,000 be recorded as a customer contribution and a reduction of rate base.

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.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On West Virginia Morning, an unusual use for twitter.  In Kanawha County, an emergency coordinator is using the social media site to inform citizens where heroin overdoses occur.  And we’ll meet artist Janice Summers-Young who makes art from anything she finds.

Kanawha County Heroin Eradication Association Taskforce

Kanawha County's emergency coordinator wants the public to know that heroin is a problem throughout the county.

Matthew Thomas is using Twitter to publicize drug overdoses in the county, including heroin. He gets notifications on his phone whenever Kanawha County Metro 911 receives an overdose call. He then tweets the overdose's location from the Kanawha County Heroin Eradication Association Taskforce's Twitter account.