Troy School District

Information came from the following persons:
Glenna been, Wilma Wiseman, Nelson Wells, Creed Westfall,
Roxie Williams Ellyson and
Walter L Moore, Superintendent of Gilmer County Schools 1928-29
Pictures from Wilma Wiseman

The Bloody Run School was located west of Troy just off Route 47 on the left side of a little road called Road Run Road. It was built in the early 1800’s. This was the first school house near Troy. It was built of logs and had a puncheon floor. The seats were made of slabs with legs. The seats had no backs and were not very comfortable. The log school house was still in use in 1899-1900 when Homer Eber Cooper taught there (see picture). This log building was used until a new frame building was built on Route 47 about one mile west of Troy. The new building was in use when Glenna Queen started to school there in 1915. The frame building was used until the fall of 1932 when the pupils of this school had to go to Troy School. The building went back to the land owner and was torn down and tie lumber was used to build a little store. Jewell Beeson was the last teacher at this school. (Most of the above information was from Glenna Queen, who was a student there from 1915-23.)

Some of the teachers have been: Homer Eber Cooper 1899; Fred Ward;

Tom A. Reed 1914; Aurbey Goff; Lizzie Flasher (Cutright); Vera Law Heckert; Roscoe Cunningham; Artie Williams 1921; Roxie Williams (Elllyson) 1922; Alpha Pirkey was here for several years; Alice Fair, Gloy Talbott; Ira Reed; Mary Gene Osborn (Stalnaker) 1928; Eulah Wilfong (Mrs. Bill Fare); Jewell Beeson was the last teacher. The Bloody Run School closed in the spring of 1932.

History of the Picture Postcard:

Before, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, there were postcards. We could send a picture of where we had traveled. We could send a picture of ourselves. It was a fun way to keep up with friends and relatives. In many ways it helped track our family history. They even made scrapbooks out of the postcards. I have seen several of them through the years.

 The history of the picture postcard is a fascinating topic that spans over two centuries and involves many countries and innovations. Here are some of the main events and milestones in the evolution of the postcard:

  • The first known picture postcard was a hand-painted design on card created by the writer Theodore Hook in 1840. He posted the card to himself as a practical joke on the postal service, since the image was a caricature of workers in the post office.
  • The first official postal cards were issued by the US government in 1873, following an act of Congress in 1872. These cards had a printed 1 cent stamp on the corner and were plain on the back, with only the address allowed.
  • The first picture postcards that were used as souvenirs were sent from Vienna, Austria in 1871. These cards had images of various scenes and attractions on one side and a small space for a message on the other.
  • The first picture postcards in the US were sold and popularized at the World Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. These cards, known as viewcards, had images of the fair and its buildings on one side and a divided back for the address and message on the other.
  • In 1898, Congress passed an act allowing private printing companies to produce postcards with the statement “Private Mailing Card, Authorized by Act of Congress of May 19, 1898.” These cards cost the same as government-issued cards (1 cent) and were the first to bear the term “postcard”.
  • In 1901, the US Post Office allowed the use of the word “postcard” on cards issued by private publishers, and also permitted messages on the address side of the card, creating the divided back format that is still used today.
  • In 1907, Kodak introduced the postcard camera, which could take a picture and print a postcard-size negative of the picture, complete with a divided back and space for postage. This enabled people to create their own “real photo” postcards from their personal snapshots.
  • In the early 20th century, postcards became very popular as a form of communication and entertainment. Millions of postcards were produced and collected, featuring images of landscapes, monuments, celebrities, humor, art, and more. This period is known as the “Golden Age of Postcards” and lasted until the 1910s
  • In the following decades, postcards continued to evolve with new printing techniques, materials, and designs. Some of the notable types of postcards include linen postcards, which had a textured surface and bright colors; chrome postcards, which had glossy photo-like images; and novelty postcards, which had unusual shapes, materials, or features.
  • Today, postcards are still widely used and enjoyed by people around the world. They are a simple and fun way to share greetings, memories, and experiences with others. They are also a valuable source of historical and cultural information, as they capture the changing views and trends of different times and places.

Gilmer County WV Schools

Taken from:


Bailey School Glenville

Bear Run School Glenville

Bell School Tanner

Bird School Tanner

Bloody Run School Auburn

Buckhorn School Auburn

Cather School Glenville

Cherry Grove School Burnt House

Chestnutlick School Normantown

Conner School Gilmer

Cooper School Burnt House

Crooked Run School Tanner

Cub School Normantown

Dawson School Glenville

De Kalb School Tanner

Dry Run School Glenville

Duck Creek School Glenville

Ellis Run School Glenville

Fairview School Cedarville

Gluck Run School Glenville

Hall School Burnt House

Heaters Fork School Gilmer

Jerseywood School Gilmer

Job Run School Tanner

Joes Run School Gilmer

Laurel Fork School Tanner

Laurel Run School Cedarville

Leatherbark School Cedarville

Lick Fork School Normantown

Lick Run School Auburn

Little Cove School Vadis

Low Gap School Auburn

Low Gap School Gilmer

Lower Bull Run School Cedarville

Lower Newberne School Burnt House

Lower Rush Run School Auburn

Lynch Run School Glenville

Meadow View School Vadis

Middle Ellis School Gilmer

Mound Run School Burnt House

Mudlick School Normantown

Oak Grove School Normantown

Osborne School Auburn

Pawpaw School Auburn

Peachtree School Normantown

Pine Grove School Vadis

Poplarlick School Normantown

Revere School Grantsville

Rocky Fork School Gilmer

Rocky Pond School Auburn

Rudkin School Gilmer

Sand Fork School Gilmer

Shock School Cedarville

Slidinghill School Gilmer

Springston School Auburn

Spruce Run School Glenville

Spruce School Glenville

Steer Run School Cedarville

Stewart Creek School Glenville

Sugar Grove School Glenville

Sugar Grove School Vadis

Tanner Fork School Normantown

Third Run School Tanner

Tumbling Run School Gilmer

Turkey Fork School Glenville

Upper Big Run School Auburn

Upper Laurel School Burnt House

Upper Newberne School Burnt House

Walnut Grove School Tanner

WV State Folk Festival: June 15th-18th

We have members with crafts in both the annex and the Holt House. 10 AM Friday and Saturday Carol Wolfe will give basket demonstrations in the Holt House living room. Thursday and Friday, 7 PM, Dave Corcoran and ghost stories; all 3 days, 6:30 PM Lisa Minney will do author readings from her books…

We want to see you here!! Let’s go Folk’n, June 15-18!

Decoration Day

My Dad always referred to this day being called “Decoration Day”. He always made sure we took flowers to family members’ graves. Not all of these had been in the military. I decided to take a look at Decoration Day. Why did my father call it this?
The Civil War ended, on April 9, 1865. Just a few years later, on May 5, 1868, Major General John A. Logan, established Decoration Day. He headed an organization of Union veterans called the Grand Army of the Republic or the GAR. It was time for the nation to heal and show respect to all the fallen on both sides. To honor those that had lost their lives, it was time to decorate the graves. He declared it should be May 30. By the end of May many flowers would be blooming though out our county and be available for Americans to use.
The first Decoration Day observance was held that year, 1868, at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C. The veranda of Arlington mansion was draped for mourning. It was once the home and land of General Robert E. Lee. Many Washington officials, including General and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, presided over the ceremonies. After speeches, orphaned children from both soldiers and sailors in the Civil War and members of the GAR made their way through the cemetery, throwing flowers on both Union and Confederate graves. They sang hymns and reciting prayers, as they decorated the graves. I also believe it was a way for our whole county to come together and begin healing. Families had been torn apart with this war. Our country was hurting. Our president had been assassinated, just a few days after the war ended. Due to this war, West Virginia became a state in 1863.
Later Decoration Day expanded to include all Americans, men and women, who died while serving in the armed forces. Today it is known as Memorial Day, a federal holiday celebrated the last Monday in May. It is a time to honor those that gave the ultimate sacrifice. Freedom comes at a cost. We honor and thank, all those that paid that cost for us.

By Becky Kirkpatrick-Oppe

To Learn from the Past

 “The dedication of a library is in itself an act of faith. To bring together the records of the past and to house them in buildings where they will be preserved for the use of men and women in the future, a Nation must believe in three things. It must believe in the past. It must believe in the future. It must, above all, believe in the capacity of its own people so to learn from the past that they can gain in judgment in creating their own future.”

Program of the dedication of the FDR Library, 1941

Official Program for Dedication of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum. June 30, 1941.

One of the projects of the WPA was to save records from all communities in the USA.

The Works Progress Administration (WPA; renamed in 1939 as the Work Projects Administration) was an American New Deal agency that employed millions of jobseekers (mostly men who were not formally educated) to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads.


By Becky Kirkpatrick-Oppe

In the Beginning: Gilmer County West Virginia

By: Becky Kirkpatrick-Oppe

The Little Kanawha Valley was first visited by Europeans; William Lowther, Jesse and Ellis Hughes in 1772, when they passed through our area. Toward the end of the Revolutionary War, Adam O’Brien and his son-in-law Peter McCune came through scoping out the valley. Peter must have liked what he saw here. He came back in 1810 and settled at the mouth of Leading Creek. The military would many times, give out land grants to those that served. William Stalnaker was a lieutenant in the War of 1812. For his service he was given 30,000 acres of land in Lewis County, one of Gilmer’s parent counties. He found a deserted indigenous people’s village. There he put down stakes and claimed his land near Mill Seat Run, on the banks of the Little Kanawha River. These were the first few to call what is now Gilmer County, home.
The Stalnaker family, William, Elizabeth and their son Salathiel, moved in. They had a group of twenty slaves, brought in to clear the land and build a tobacco plantation. In 1820 they built a two story, brick home on the banks of the Little Kanawha River. In the following years a second home was built with homemade bricks. It would go on to serve as the first Gilmer County Court House, when we became a county.

First Gilmer County West Virginia Court House

Taken From: “Inventory of a county archives of West Virginia, # 11, Gilmer County (Glenville)”

Roaming the Back Roads

by Genny Kirkpatrick, written for the Retired Gilmer County School Employees’ News Letter

Trace Fork School Gilmer County WV One Room Schools

 Trace Fork School was first held in an old round log building about one-half mile from the mouth of Trace Fork where L.H. “Dode” Lydick later lived.  Teachers were James Taylor (1867) and Joe Calenine (1868).  In 1869 a new building was erected about a mile from the mouth of Trace Fork on the road bank about one hundred yards above the old Gainer home.  Four terms were taught before the building burned in the spring of 1873.  Lyda Hays was the last teacher in this building.  The following year (1873) school was again held one-half mile above the mouth of Trace at the L.H. Lydick home with North Orvis as teacher.  In 1874 school was taught in the log U.B. Church on land back of the Revere Store and Post Office.  Henry C. Goodnight was the teacher.  There was no school in the Lower Trace section from 1875 until 1880.

The Upper Trace School then came into existence.  People from the mouth of Trace to the mouth of Tanner realized the need for a school near enough for their children to attend. A.E. and Benton Webster donated land upon which to build a new schoolhouse.  Jim Cain was given a contract to build a frame building for a school.  It was located on the right bank of Tanner Fork and was known as the Webster School (but it was commonly known as the “White School” because of its color).  School was held here for 22 terms.  Teachers were Alice Hays (1880), Benjamin Franklin (1881), Mr. Hanson (1882), Jake Weaver (1883), Dave Weaver (1884), W.L. Stump (1885), Elmer Steward (1886), Ida Brannon (1887-88), Asa B. Harris (1889, 1893), Rev. Albert Kelley (1890), Florence Stalnaker (1891), Coleman Gainer (1892), Zoe Stalnaker (1894), Allen Houton (1895), Ida Bell (1896), Jacob Loudin (1897), Jennie Stalnaker (1899), Mae Bell (1900), and Ethel Bush (1901).

     On July 1, 1901 the DeKalb District BOE (Jacob Crites, D.H. Beall, and A.H. Cooper) , met and ordered that the Webster School (Upper Trace Fork) be moved to the mouth of Trace Fork and a new school be established at Latonia.  Land for the school was now donated by Quincy Kelley on the left bank of Trace Fork on the right side of the road about 200 yards from Tanner Creek.  W.R. Church was hired to build the new building. Teachers were:  I.N. Hardman (1902), Alva Wilt (1903), J.A. Kelly (1904-05), Jesse Bell, Sr. ((1906), Vear Ponager (1907), Blaine Engle (1908-10), Nellie Harris (1911), Charles Ayers (1912-14), Judson Gainer (1915). School was discontinued because of an insufficient number of pupils until 1931.  Then school opened again with the following teachers:  Jesse Bell, Jr.,(1931), Clara Riddle (1932), Holly Gainer (1933), Thelma Ware 1934), Willard Britton (1935), Woodroe Beall (1936-38), Charles Boone Maxwell (1938), Thelma Gainer (1939).  This school closed in May 1940.

Floods in Gilmer County WV

                                Floods, have had a huge impact on Gilmer County through the years. We have had several nasty ones in my lifetime. As a child, it was always a big deal to drive to Glenville to see the water coming up under the stoplight. Jon boats would be moving through the streets helping people out. My Dad would have the three of us kids stand in the edge of the water, for a picture. The addition of the Burnsville Dam, completed in September of 1976, helped control some of the water. Brooklyn, in Glenville, seems to always be hit hard. Through it all, the good people, of our county came together to help one another. Our Glenville Democrat-Pathfinder has been with us all along, keeping us updated. The Recreation Center has been a spot to give food out and help our county. Glenville State was always there to lend a helping hand, giving folks a place to stay and place to eat. They, many times, have been a shelter in the storm.

                  25 Feet is Flood Stage in Glenville

Dates of Floods in Glenville, WVCrested at:
February 9, 199430.4
July 25,198929.5
November 198536.5
December 197829.8
December 196928.1
March 196734.5
February 195730.2
December 195629.2
February 195730.2
December 195629.2
February 195131.2
June 195031.1
August 194330.7
April 193933.2
February 193929.8
November 192633.6
March 191831.7

                  Our outlying communities have felt the pain of these floods. Countless people have lost homes. Lives have also been lost. Businesses have been devastated. Our people come through. They rebuild, push through and start life again, with the help of our friends and neighbors. When we work together, we are our best selves.

                  Tell us your stories. You are a part of our living history. We would love to hear the stories of your family. You can email us at [email protected] or message us on Facebook .

March 23,2023

West Virginia Humanities Council

If you’re going to be in Glenville on Thursday (March 23), you’ll have two opportunities to catch History Alive! performances. JoAnn Peterson will be taking on dual roles. At 1 p.m., she will appear as First Lady Abigail Adams at the Gilmer County WV Historical Society at 302 East Main Street (304-462-5065). At 5 p.m., she will portray journalist Nellie Bly at the Robert F. Kidd Library at 100 High Street (304-462-6163).

Help us Pay for New Roof

Used Heavy Gauge Metal Roofing & Metal Rain Gutters Taken off the Annex Building Gilmer County Historical Society

Silent Auction

Used Heavy Gauge Metal Roofing & Metal Rain Gutters

Taken off the Annex Building

Gilmer County Historical Society

302 S. Main St

Po Box 235

Glenville, WV 26351

 ask for ‘Sandy’ 


Mail your bid to the address above or drop off on a Wednesday or Saturday, between 11 and 3. 

All bids must be written on paper and sealed in an envelope marked ‘Roofing Metal, Silent Auction Jan. 2023’.  Your submission must include the amount of your bid, name, address, phone number, email address and signature.   

All bids are non refundable and final. 

Winning bidder is responsible for any applicable sales tax. If tax exempt, you will need to provide us with a WV Tax Exemption Certificate at the time of payment. 

Sold as-is and  subject to purchasers sole discretion of value and condition. Located on site for inspection.  Ask any questions before bidding.   

The winning bidder will be announced on Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at 2:00pm. in the Gilmer County Historical Society Annex building. The winner will be contacted by phone/text/email if not present.  

Full cash payment is required before removal.  All metal must be removed no later than Saturday, February 11th by 12:00 noon or you forfeit the winning bid and the next highest bidder will be notified as the winner.  

We are not responsible for the protection or condition of the metal after the announcement of the winning bidder. 

The seller is not liable for any damage or injury to any property or persons in relation to the material or its sale.  

Any damage to the property while removing the metal is the sole responsibility of the winning bidder. 

We reserve the right to cancel the auction at any time. 

All proceeds will benefit the Gilmer County Historical Society.  

Jan. 2023 Mini News Letter

by Sandy Hershey, Board Member

2023 January Mini Newsletter 

The Reaser family from Gilmer County, West Virginia. I live on Sinking Creek Road today. Have been neighbors to them for 32 years now. A number of their photos have come up missing while under possession outside the family. They’ve been asking for any photos anyone may have of their relatives so they can identified their relatives by older members of the family who are still able do this. If you think you may have any in your possession, please contact us. Thank you. Sandy

    We had our monthly meeting on the 18th and our customary 8 member turn out.  Our new  membership total isn’t official yet for 2023 but looks promising at 90+  members.  An increase of approximately 50 paying members, some new and some returning.  We also had two guests in the Annex with us, one doing research in the library on genealogy and the other setting up our new digitizing computer.  I’m so excited about getting our photos in order.  It will be a huge job for sure.  

    Our treasurer’s report has proven hard work produces progress.  A gracious Thank You is in order for numerous donations given this past year from anonymous donors, local residents and businesses which totaled approximately $19,000 for operational costs and special events like Folk Festival,  cleaning and organizing the Holt House Museum, Pumpkin Roll Fund Drive, leasing of our Annex Library for private groups, the Farm Bureau and the Gilmer County Fire Department (they sponsored a wonderful Gingerbread House building contest), and a History lesson for the very young and their parents while enjoying a breakfast with Santa! (thank you Martin Hess). The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)  awarded us $20,000 through our very own Gilmer County Commissioners, for a roof replacement and water damage. Also an additional $14,000 from the Town Council for an AC/Heating unit in our Annex Library meeting hall. Wow, that’s one impressive paragraph!  All this has made a large impact on our group and our community.  Though this was an exceptional year, I hope we will keep improving in 2023 for the benefit of us all.

    The rest of the meeting was filled with electing our new President, Peggy Wentzell and new board member, Sandy Hershey.   Wonder what we’ll fill our calendar with this year? To be seen. 

Here’s where I invite everyone to try to attend a meeting or two in 2023.  If the time of day for meetings is a problem for you, start by letting us know.  We’ll be willing to make changes to the time if enough people show us what our members’ needs are. And for the new members who came in to help during events and share fresh ideas, we all benefited.  Just 4 hrs a year of everyone’s time can make a huge difference to those who carry the load for all.  Please think about it.  We’ll try to post this years activities early enough so you may pick the ones that best suit your interests.  

Steve Ostaff, Board Member sent some photos and bits of information he’d like to share with everyone:

Winter is for weaving, my Studio loom was made by Newcomb in Iowa during 1930s.  The wool yarn is made from wool I sheared off my sheep and sent to a mill to be carded and spun.  The three colors are natural off white undyed from the sheep,  black from a  black sheep, and another breed that had both colors which I then had  mixed to make grey.  My goal is to make one blanket per winter.  A full size blanket is two identical three foot wide blankets, that I hand sew together to make one. The lengths vary. 

Woven wool blanket made by past member ????? who donated it to the GCHSociety. Steve Ostaff, president at the time, accepting the gift.

During our November 2022 Annual Meeting, we had  Rick Sypolt as a guest speaker on the English Chestnut trees and the history of their decline in West Virginia.  He was a fascinating speaker on the subject of how we are helping our state to repopulate the trees through hard work and research.  There has been an increase in areas of West Virginia where propagation has made in an impact on the increasing acreage of this majestic tree.  Steve shared a picture of an antique 1902 chest of drawers made from the English Chestnut to show the sturdiness and beauty of the wood grain.   Thanks Steve. 

Happy New Year to All

Winter set in fast and hard this past week. Christmas is behind us and New Years is within reach. Because of the strong winds and snow we moved most of our outdoor Christmas decorations inside by the warm fireplace mantels. Large wrapped packages strewn all about. Looks festive and colorful when you gaze past them through the wavy glass windows and onto the yard. The ground is white. So what better time to pay homage to the old fashioned snowman. With scarf and mittens, he’s loved by the young and the young-at-heart. We’ll have two or three more months to contend with the white stuff. Some love it and some grumble, but few miss the beauty of fresh fallen snow.

1921 Ford Model T was used for delivering in the snow regions Rural Free Delivery (RFD) USPS

Here is a link to a newspaper article recently printed on how West Virginia played a part in the creation of the song ‘Frosty The Snowman’.

All of us at the Gilmer County Historical Society would like to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year for 2023.

“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.”


Breakfast With Santa At the Historical Society

Students from Kindergarten through second grade of the Gilmer County Elementary School in Glenville, West Virginia, were invited to Breakfast with Santa on December 17th by the Gilmer County Historical Society. The children enjoyed chatting with Santa and learning about Christmas toys from the past like wooden boats powered by rubber bands and wooden tops you can spin on a smooth surface. Showing the kids how his clothing fashions changed over the past hundred years, Santa even pointed out one of his favorite long, fur trimmed robes.

Watching the young children converse with the man in red as they ate and played with the old fashioned toys and gifts from Santa was heartwarming to see. There is nothing sweeter than shy smiles of wonder on children’s faces this time of year.

One of the favorite spots was the water table. Who needs batteries?

As Santa and his helpers handed out gifts, Moms and Dads took pictures of all the interesting activities.

After the two hour visit with Santa, everyone said their goodbyes and Merry Christmas wishes were exchanged. Lots of smiles and hugs for everyone.

The Historical Society sent home A Brief History Of Toys from 4000 bc to 1993.

As we tidy up the kitchen and turn the Annex back into our history library, we know we have done our part in creating a spark in the hearts of our younger generation. May it grow into the desire to become the future protectors of our past.

We would like to thank our local businesses and private individuals who donated to help make this event possible. The spirit of Christmas is strong in Gilmer County, West Virginia.