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West Virginia History
9:24 am
Fri October 31, 2014

October 31, 1990: Ravenswood Aluminum Workers Locked Out

On October 31, 1990, union workers at Ravenswood Aluminum arrived as usual for their midnight shift. Only this time, they were turned away from the gates. Thus began one of the most bitter labor disputes of the late 20th century.

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West Virginia History
11:15 am
Thu October 30, 2014

October 30, 1930: First Mountain State Forest Festival Held

The culminating moment is when West Virginia’s governor crowns the new Queen Silvia.Today, the festival, which is celebrated the first weekend in October, regularly attracts up to 150,000 visitors to the Randolph County seat.
Credit 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.

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Met Opera in HD
3:40 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Bizet's Carmen in HD

There is no other woman in the world of opera like Carmen, the stunning Spanish gypsy, who is as passionate in her loves as she is for her freedom, totally unfettered by any code.

An operatic tour-de-force, Carmen will be sung in French with English supertitles  during the simulcast from the stage of the Metropolitan Opera to theaters around the world this Saturday, November 1, at 12:55pm. 

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Mountain Stage Song of the Week
2:22 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Hear Judith Owen Perform "Blackbird" Live on Mountain Stage

Judith Owen Live on Mountain Stage
Credit Josh Saul

It's been said that singer, songwriter and performer Judith Owen displays the depth of Carole King with the European flair of Annie Lennox. Her latest album, Ebb & Flow pays tribute to artists  who inspired her, like Carole King, along with James Taylor and the Beatles. Here she performs the McCartney standard "Blackbird," backed by legendary session bass player Leland Sklar.

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West Virginia History
11:00 am
Wed October 29, 2014

October 29, 1861: General Lee Ends Three-Month Campaign

There was one upside for Lee during his disastrous adventure. While at Sewell Mountain in Fayette County, he first set eyes on a grey American Saddlebred that would become his faithful companion.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Robert E. Lee, Traveler, Pocahontas County, Cheat Mountain

On October 29, 1861, Confederate commander Robert E. Lee departed present-day West Virginia, near the end of his ill-fated western Virginia campaign. The rest of his Civil War career would rank Lee among the greatest generals in history. However, his first campaign was a total calamity.

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West Virginia History
10:52 am
Tue October 28, 2014

October 28, 1972: Country Singer Brad Paisley Born

At age 14, Paisley became the youngest-ever regular cast member of Jamboree USA. He remained with the Wheeling radio show for eight years.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Brad Paisley, Grand Ole Opry, Glen Dale, Marshall County, C-Notes, Academy of Country Music

Country music superstar Brad Paisley was born in Marshall County on October 28, 1972. At age eight, the Glen Dale native began studying guitar with local musician “Hank” Goddard. Only two years later, he stepped in as the front man for the C-Notes, a local band of older musicians.

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West Virginia History
10:43 am
Mon October 27, 2014

October 27, 1970: Actress & Playwright Ann Kathryn Flagg Died

Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Reverend Joseph Gluck, Forks-of-Cheat Baptist Church, 1775, Stewartstown

  The playwright, teacher, and actress was born in Charleston in 1924. After growing up in the segregated part of town, she graduated from Garnet High School in 1941 and from West Virginia State College four years later.

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Mountain Stage After Midnight
7:13 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

Mountain Stage After Midnight: October 25 & 26

Wanda Jackson on Mountain Stage in 2011.
Credit Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

Why not celebrate two legendary singers' birthdays with two great Mountain Stage performances? Broadcast from 1am-5am Saturday and Sunday mornings here on West Virginia Public Radio, "Mountain Stage After Midnight" takes the best episodes from the show's 31 year history and shares their memories and songs with our late-night listeners. Each week we'll hand-pick two of our favorite episodes and they'll alternate order each night.

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West Virginia History
10:22 am
Fri October 24, 2014

October 24, 1861: Voters Approve State of West Virginia

Waitman Willey would argue eloquently for suffrage for African-Americans at the 1872 Constitutional Convention that produced West Virginia’s current constitution.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / 1872, Western Virgnia, Reorganized Government of Virginia

Voters formally approved the formation of West Virginia on October 24, 1861. Many western Virginia residents had been frustrated with the Virginia state government for years. But, they had few options at their disposal because the U.S.

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West Virginia History
10:20 am
Thu October 23, 2014

October 23, 1943: German POWs Arrive at Camp Ashford

Camp Ashford was built in the summer of 1942 by Italian POWs, who stayed at the camp until the German prisoners arrived the following year.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online; The Greenbrier / The Greenbrier, Camp Ashford, White Sulphur Springs, World War II

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Mountain Stage Song of the Week
5:10 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Hear Chris Smither Play "Get a Better One" Live on Mountain Stage

Chris Smither, live on Mountain Stage
Credit Josh Saul

An undisputed master of acoustic blues guitar,  Chris Smither's  songwriting often draws on the influences of poets, folk singers, philosophers and humorists. Now in his 5th decade of making music, Smither made his 13th appearance on Mountain Stage this year, when the show visited the lakeside town of Grand Marais, Minnesota. Here he performs "Get a Better One," recorded live on the campus of the North House Folk School.

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West Virginia History
10:07 am
Wed October 22, 2014

October 22, 1977: New River Gorge Bridge Dedicated

The Fayette County bridge has become one of West Virginia’s most recognizable landmarks and was featured on the state quarter. Most significantly, though, it reduced the driving time across the gorge, making travel easier and turning the region’s whitewater-rafting business into a multimillion-dollar industry.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The New River Gorge Bridge was dedicated in Fayette County before a crowd of 30,000 on this day in 1977. Throughout history, transportation across the rugged gorge has been a challenge. Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.

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Radio
9:55 am
Tue October 21, 2014

October 21, 1940: Gov. William Conley Died

After earning his law degree, Conley opened a legal practice in Tucker County and founded the Parsons Advocate newspaper. He also served as mayor of Parsons and Kingwood before being appointed West Virginia attorney general in 1908.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / William Conley, Preston Co., Kingwood, Tucker County, WV Attorney General, Republican, Arch Moore, Cecil Underwood

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West Virginia History
11:02 am
Mon October 20, 2014

October 20, 1966: Senator Harry F. Byrd Dies

Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Harry F. Byrd, Martinsburg Evening Journal, Richard Byrd, 1966, 1887

  U.S. Senator Harry F. Byrd died on October 20, 1966. The Democrat was a pivotal political figure for much of the 20th century.

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West Virginia History
10:50 am
Fri October 17, 2014

October 17, 1785: Virginia General Assembly Establishes Morgan's Town

The town began to take off with the founding of the West Virginia Agricultural College in 1867. Renamed West Virginia University the following year, the school would become the centerpiece of Morgantown.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online; Library of Congress. / Morgantown, Morgan's Town, 1785, 1886, West Virginia University, Zackquill Morgan

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Recommended If You Like: Longform Folk-Pop
10:35 am
Fri October 17, 2014

'A Change of Tune' Interviews The Barr Brothers

The Barr Brothers
Credit John Londono

 

This week, "A Change of Tune" host Joni Deutsch interviews Andrew Barr of The Barr Brothers, an up-and-coming Canadian quartet with roots in American folk, African desert, Delta blues and classical string, to say the least. The band's newest record, Sleeping Operator, just goes to prove that The Barr Brothers are the Ra Ra Riot of transcendental folk. Check out the interview below to learn more about the band, their longform music style and their connections to alt music friends The War on Drugs and of Montreal. If you're a fan of sprawling soundscapes that are as much warm as they are catchy (see: Bahamas), this interview and music are recommended for you.

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Mountain Stage After Midnight
10:12 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Mountain Stage After Midnight: Listener's Choice!

You chose'em, so we're playing'em on "Mountain Stage After Midnight."
Credit Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

 

It was a Mountain Stage Radio Show match for the ages: Randy Newman vs. Robert Cray vs. Colin Hay vs. Bela Fleck & the Flecktones. Which performances would we choose for "Mountain Stage After Midnight?" Luckily, you made the tough call by voting for your favorite performances on Mountain Stage's Facebook, and now it's time to listen to the winners on this week's  "Mountain Stage After Midnight." Broadcast from 1am-5am Saturday and Sunday mornings here on West Virginia Public Radio, "Mountain Stage After Midnight" takes the best episodes from the show's 31 year history and shares their memories and songs with our late-night listeners. Each week we'll hand-pick two of our favorite episodes and they'll alternate order each night.

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West Virginia History
10:02 am
Thu October 16, 2014

October 16, 1859: John Brown Captures U.S. Armory

Infuriated—and mostly drunken—Harpers Ferry townspeople grabbed their rifles and trapped Brown’s men in the armory’s fire engine house. On the morning of October 18, U.S. Marines under the command of Colonel Robert E. Lee captured Brown and the eight raiders who had survived the ordeal.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Harpers Ferry, John Brown, US Armory, Robert E. Lee, Civil War

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Mountain Stage Song of the Week
10:49 am
Wed October 15, 2014

Hear Dave Bing & Ben Townsend Play "Red Mountain Wine" Live on Mountain Stage

Dave Bing and Ben Townsend live on Mountain Stage
Credit Brian Blauser

Roane County, West Virginia native Dave Bing is a veteran fiddle teacher and musician, with decades and performing throughout the United States and abroad. He's backed here by fellow West Virginian Ben Townsend (of beloved stringband The Fox Hunt) on banjo and vocals for "Red Mountain Wine."

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West Virginia History
9:32 am
Wed October 15, 2014

October 15, 1850: Virginia Constitutional Convention

Joseph Johnson of Harrison County called the Virginia Constitutional Convention in 1850 to respond to concerns by residents of western Virginia over feelings of neglect by the state government in Richmond.
Credit e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / Harrison County, Virginia Constitutional Convention, 1850

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