Randolph County

July 11, 1861: Union Victory at Rich Mountain

Jul 11, 2018
Rich Mountain Map
e-WV / WV Humanitites Council

On July 11, 1861, the Battle of Rich Mountain was fought in Randolph County. It was the climax of a successful Union campaign to seize control of Western Virginia early in the Civil War.

Confederate General Robert Garnett had established defensive positions at Laurel Hill and Rich Mountain. Suspecting an attack on Laurel Hill, Garnett placed only about a fourth of his men on Rich Mountain, under the command of Colonel John Pegram.

Downtown Richwood, WV, at dawn after hours of heavy rain flooded the little town.
Kara Lofton / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Almost $5 million in federal funding has been awarded to some of the counties ravaged by floods in 2016.

Pocahontas, Randolph and Greenbrier Counties will receive more than $4.8 million to help repair federal roads from the United States Department of Transportation.

Corridor H
Skudrafan1 / Wikimedia Commons

State officials have hailed the start of construction on a new stretch of the four-lane Corridor H highway in West Virginia.

Gov. Jim Justice and state Transportation Secretary Tom Smith attended the groundbreaking Thursday for the 7.5-mile section that will stretch from the Randolph County community of Kerens to Parsons.

Hundred, WV, a week after flooding is still clearing and cleaning debris.
Glynis Board / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Gov. Jim Justice is seeking a federal disaster declaration for a dozen counties in northern West Virginia hit by flooding in late July.

Justice sent a letter to the White House on August 10 requesting the disaster declaration, according to a news release from the state Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.

West Virginia Governor's Office

Last weekend’s flash flooding in northern and north-central West Virginia has caused over $10 million dollars in damages.

Eleven counties are facing damage costs totaling $10,604,778, according to the West Virginia Department of Transportation.

Randolph County
David Benbennick / Wikimedia Commons

The West Virginia Board of Education has agreed to close an elementary school in Randolph County that has 27 students.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the board voted Thursday to close Valley Head Elementary. The students will be transferred to George Ward Elementary next school year.

This Week in WV History
e-WV / WV Humanitites Council

Mary Lewis was born in New Jersey on August 26, 1763. After marrying Joseph Kinnan, she moved to Randolph County in 1787 and settled in the Tygart Valley.

Four years later, Shawnee raiders entered their home and killed Joseph and a neighbor child. Mary Kinnan fled the house with her young daughter, but a pursuing Indian killed the child and captured her.

4H Camp
e-WV / WV Humanitites Council

A pioneering camp for rural youth began in Randolph County on July 29, 1915. Activities included hiking, fishing, swimming, and games.

The camp was sponsored by West Virginia University’s Extension Service, which had been created just a year earlier, and was led by J. Versus Shipman, his wife, Bess, and William “Teepi” Kendrick.

Rich Mountain Map
e-WV / WV Humanitites Council

On July 11, 1861, the Battle of Rich Mountain was fought in Randolph County. It was the climax of a successful Union campaign to seize control of Western Virginia early in the Civil War.

Confederate General Robert Garnett had established defensive positions at Laurel Hill and Rich Mountain. Suspecting an attack on Laurel Hill, Garnett placed only about a fourth of his men on Rich Mountain, under the command of Colonel John Pegram.

Roxy Todd

There are 100,000 less sheep in the state of West Virginia today than during the 1970’s. Now, there are 36,000 sheep in the state. The demand for synthetic fibers over wool for our clothes and blankets is one reason for the sharp decline. One man from Upshur County is about to hang up his shears. After sheep shearing for 64 years, Calvin McCutcheon says he will retire next year.

At just under 80 years old, Calvin McCutcheon looks like a bodybuilder. His thick stocky torso is bent over while he wrangles a full grown sheep, trying to get it to lay still and stop thrashing.

Stephen B. Elkins
e-WV Encyclopedia / Library of Congress

On February 29, 1888, Stephen B. Elkins gave his first political speech in West Virginia—at a rally in Wheeling. He soon bought into the state’s leading Republican newspaper and built a summer mansion in the Randolph County town that would bear his name.

The weeks leading up to the vote on the levy were contentious in Randolph County.
Photo courtesy of Katelynn Hanek

On Saturday, Nov. 7, residents of Mineral County voted overwhelmingly for the renewal of their school levy according, to the Mineral Daily News-Tribune. Eighty-eight percent of voters supported the measure, which provides schools with $5.9 million each year for 5 years to support new textbooks, teacher salaries, transportation, libraries and facilities.

However, in Randolph County, the outcome was different as voters rejected the county's excess school levy that would have provided $2.8 million each year for five years to county schools.

Elkinite.com

  Since its launch in November, the online community portal Weelunk has attracted web traffic from all 50 states in the U.S. and around the globe. The website serves as a platform for in-depth stories about Wheeling and also provides a forum for new ideas and community events.

 

Now the site’s creators have taken that formula and applied it to a similar project in Randolph County, called Elkinite.

Farm Security Administration

The Tygart Valley Homestead Community in Randolph County is celebrating its 75th anniversary this weekend. The Roosevelt Administration built the town of Dailey during the Great Depression to give out-of-work West Virginians a second chance. But the community is now struggling to hold on to that history and to their school building.

When he started on the Coal & Coke, all but 107 miles of the track between Elkins and Charleston already existed as part of other railroads.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / WV Humanities Council

It also features arts-and-craft shows, wood chopping contests, old English knight tournaments, a carnival, and a fire-engine parade representing departments from across West Virginia.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Mountain State Forest Festival, Elkins, 1930, Neil Armstrong, Randolph County, Queen Silvia

The first Mountain State Forest Festival began in Elkins on October 30, 1930. Since then, it has been held every October except for the years 1941 to 1949. The festival was intended to attract tourists to the region, which is known for its hardwood trees and dazzling fall colors.

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

What does the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling about Virginia's gay marriage ban mean for West Virginia? The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency begins a week of public hearings about it's Clean Power Plan and business owners in Huntington think about what to do next after a large fire Sunday in a building downtown. 

Train-Truck collision fatality ID'd

Oct 12, 2013
Geoff Hamill / Pocahontas Times

Authorities have identified the driver who died after his logging truck collided with a passenger train at a crossing in West Virginia.

Update: October 14, 2013:

Geoff Hamill / Pocahontas Times

Update: Friday, October 11, 2013 at 9:12 p.m.

Tracy Fath, Director of Marketing and Communications for Davis Health systems reports that 23 individuals have received treatment at Davis Memorial Hospital in Elkins, W.Va.: