Located in downtown Madison, WV, is the Bituminous Coal Heritage Foundation Museum. Originally an exhibit during the West Virginia Coal Festival, the museum became a reality in the 1990s through generous community support. Today, the museum serves to educate the public, particularly school-aged children and visitors to the area, and functions as a repository for many coal artifacts and memorabilia such as antiques from the early days of mining, simulated coal mine with replica tools from the 1940s, Battle of Blair Mountain artifacts, Civil War memorabilia, and a 1910 “crank style” cash register. The museum is open on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 12:00-5:00pm and is fun and educational for all visitors, whether young or old!
June’s featured museum is the President’s Cottage Museum at the Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs! The Greenbrier can trace its roots back to the late 18th century when travelers began to trek “up to the springs to take the waters” to restore their health. Between 1838 and 1860 five sitting presidents visited the resort and they stayed in what was the best accommodation on the grounds at the time which is now the President’s Cottage Museum. In total, 27 presidents have stayed at the Greenbrier. The museum opened in 1932 and is dedicated to telling the story of The Greenbrier. It features two rooms of oil on canvas murals painted in 1932 by William Grauer depicting the resort’s 19th century history. Additional exhibits illustrate the history of the 20th century resort. Archives in the museum’s collection date back to the Greenbrier’s early history. The museum is open daily from 11am-5pm for resort guests.
May’s Featured Museum is the WV State CCC Museum. The CCC Museum has been located in the old Quiet Dell schoolhouse since 2002 and is open seven days a week, 10-5 Monday-Saturday, 1-5 Sunday. The CCC Museum shares the schoolhouse space with artisans. The CCC Museum is dedicated to the history and heritage of the New Deal Civilian Conservation Corps, which is responsible for much of West Virginia’s state parks and provided employment and skills training to young men during the Great Depression.
In March, the Museum hosted the Annual CCC Anniversary Commemoration Celebration and on May 5 will host the Spring CCC Honors Luncheon.
April’s Featured Museum is the Beverly Heritage Center! BHC combines four historic buildings in the center of Beverly, West Virginia, to tell the story of the Battle of Rich Mountain and the First Campaign of the American Civil War, the pivotal role of the Staunton-Parkersburg Turnpike, and daily life in a small rural county seat through the 19th Century. BHC hosts regular events including contra dances, haunted tours in October, and the highly anticipated annual Heritage Days, which includes reenactors, both military and civilian, from early-America through the late 20th century. Beverly Heritage Center is open daily from 11am-5pm and has a low admission rate of only $5.
The Huntington Museum of Art is nestled on 52 acres with nature trails and a tropical plant conservatory. The museum has an extensive permanent collection, including works by American artists Alexander Calder, Childe Hassam, Winslow Homer, and Robert Motherwell, as well as collections of European paintings, sculpture, contemporary prints, folk art and more. HMOA also features permanent installations of Near Eastern art and artifacts; antique firearms; and Ohio Valley glassware.
We love how active HMOA is in their community, providing free admission on Tuesdays, offering special events, working alongside Empty Bowls, selling local arts and crafts, getting outdoors, and featuring new exciting exhibits, not to mention their interesting plants and creatures in the museum like the axolotls or “walking fish!”
HMOA and the Museum Shop are open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Closed Mondays. Admission is free on Tuesdays and $5 per adult on other days. General admission is free to Museum Members; children younger than 18; active duty military personnel and their families; and veterans and their families. HMOA is fully accessible.
The Wetzel County Museum is located in the historic district of New Martinsville, WV. Placed within a restored early 20th century hardware store, the museum provides the local community and tourists with exhibits, programs, and events based on Wetzel County’s rich Native American, Early Frontier, River, Glass, Oil, and Gas history. With many special artifacts such as Viking Glass, Native American arrowheads, and more, the Wetzel County Museum offers all history enthusiasts a chance to learn about our area’s past, present, and future! Recently, the museum has been very active on social media, especially Instgram, hosted multiple movie screenings, and is installing new exhibitions!
The Wetzel County Museum is open on Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm. Admission is free and groups are welcome! Visit the Wetzel County Museum at 136 Main St., New Martinsville, WV.
Historic Shepherdstown Commission (HSC) is an active, non-profit, membership organization dedicated to preserving Shepherdstown’s architectural character, and building public understanding of Shepherdstown’s distinctive history.
Since 1961, HSC has undertaken many important projects that benefit our community.The Entler Hotel was built in 1786 and has served many purposes over the years from hotel to Civil War hospital to housing for Shepherd College to housing for cadets during WWI. In 1972 when the historic Entler Hotel was scheduled for demolition, HSC coordinated efforts to save and restore the building for public benefit. The Historic Shepherdstown Museum was founded at the Entler in 1983. After years of heavy public use, a major 25th anniversary renovation project was undertaken in 1997-98 to further enhance the public rooms. Today the Entler is headquarters for HSC.
At the Entler, HSC operates the Museum and manages public spaces which house the Shepherdstown Visitors Center, thirteen offices, and a reception area and garden available for community and private events. We also sponsor or co-sponsor speakers and workshops relating to the history of Shepherdstown and Jefferson County. Recent exhibits include history of gun making, stories from the Civil War, and African-Americans in the community. Special items in their collection range from a postal wagon to craft clocks to copper kettles to pottery. Another highlight of the museum is the Rumsey Boathouse, which is open on weekends, April-October. The museum is nestled in historic Shepherdstown, making it the perfect destination for a day trip or weekend get-away!
The Museum of American Glass in West Virginia is located in downtown Weston! They boast an extensive collection of glass produced in West Virginia glass companies and other American glass companies. They also hold the National Marble Museum, which is a beautiful and creative collection. Because not everyone has the opportunity to visit the museum, they have made a great portion of their collection available online at http://www.magwv.com/index.html, posting up to 900 photos each week. In addition to the collectible pieces in the museum, they display local artistic pieces as well as offer an excellent selection of gifts in their shop, both in store and online. The museum holds events throughout the year as well as an annual auction for pieces that do not fit in the collection or are duplicates.
The Cockayne Farmstead, in Glen Dale, WV, is a time capsule of rural American life and an active site of conservation and discovery. The Cockayne farm, once comprised of over 300 acres, served as the namesake of Glen Dale. And the Cockayne family were prominent early settlers in Marshall County, coming to western Virginia around 1800. Today, you can visit the family’s home, explore their ancient Adena burial mound, see the excavated privy, and learn about everyday life in the 1800’s. The farmhouse, yet to be restored, is teeming with original artifacts and beautiful works of art produced by the family. See layers of original wallpaper newly discovered by conservators, play our 1880’s piano, and experience what life was like in Marshall County. On November 19, they’re hosting a mother-daughter Victorian tea and in December, they host a Victorian Christmas! Free tours are available Mon-Friday 9-4 and by appointment on the weekend!
The West Virginia Mine Wars Museum, in the heart of Historic Matewan, preserves and interprets artifacts and historical records of the local communities affected by the West Virginia Mine Wars, exploring historical events from multiple perspectives through the lives of ordinary people. The museum is located at 336 Mate Street in Matewan, in a building that still bears the scars of bullet holes from the Matewan Massacre shootout. Its offerings include exhibits about coal camp life, the Paint Creek-Cabin Creek Strike of 1912-1913, the Matewan Massacre, the Miners’ March, and the Battle of Blair Mountain. Using audio, video, artifacts, maps, and historic photos, the museum simulates the journey that many mining families took as they began to organize to gain rights.
On October 7, the museum hosted a screening of “Matewan” in celebration of the film’s 30th anniversary. Over 500 people attended the event and many others attended a Q&A with the film’s creators! Congratulations on your successful event, WV Mine Wars Museum! The museum has also recently hosted tours with young children in the community!