81 West Main Street
Buckhannon, WV 26201

The Summer2019 Exhibit at the UCHS History Center Museum was entitled: An Upshur County Scrapbook of Unusual and Interesting People, Places, Events, and other Curiosities.
The exhibit was based on the early history of museums in which historical exhibits were mostly “Cabinets of Curiosities.” These cabinets were “stuffed” full of many “things.” Our exhibit was laid out in smaller units [nearly thirty different concepts were chosen] and included many artifacts from our collections. Some of the interesting units explored such diverse themes as “Lodges,” “Banks,” “The County Fair,” “Bridges,” “Business Memorabilia,” “Quilts and Coverlets,” “Folk Arts,” “Swimming Holes and Pools,” “G. O, Young,” “The Circus in Adrian,” “Mining Tragedies,” “Big Snows and Floods,” and many other interesting stories. One of the most commented on part of the exhibit was our first time showing of the beautiful wedding dress that was worn on August 30, 1916 by Nellie McWhorter [daughter of Judge McWhorter]for her marriage to Mathew Edmiston. We were really pleased that granddaughters of the McWhorter/Edmiston family were able to visit the summer exhibit and see their grandmother’s dress.
The Exhibit was well attended and received and people spent more time in the exhibit than usual. Visitation was really great all summer and many of our visitors said they thought it was our “best” exhibit ever. We believe that after twenty plus years of creating “storytelling” exhibits, we have proven that seasonal changing exhibits have a greater drawing power than a static display that seldom changes and contains the museum’s entire collection [known as “visible storage”]. All in all it was a very rewarding summer season.
Be sure to visit the History Center Museum between early June and the end of September, 2020, Sunday afternoons, 1-4pm. for our Summer 2019Exhibit which will be entitled: “We grew most everything we ate: The history of food and foodways in Upshur County.” You won’t want to miss this one, so mark your calendars now.
Each summer we have many returning visitors and some who are visiting for the very first time. We still have too many people who tell us that they want to make a visit but put it off until the exhibit closes. Make a note on your calendar to visit the exhibit this summer. We will look forward to seeing you there. If you are receiving this 2020 Journal you will also receive an exhibit card announcement nearer the beginning of the museum opening.
Perhaps you may have noticed how “spic and span” the exterior of the History Center Museum building looks now. Following work by AFNHA AmeriCorps service members in the fall of 2018, we were able to have the entire exterior of the building covered with two coats of paint in the spring of 2019. We hope that this holds the building for the next few years.
 

2019 Exhibit Photos

 

 

 

 

 

 

The History Center Museum is an historic structure, built in 1856 and is the oldest extant building on Main Street in Buckhannon. The building played a role during the Civil War years in Upshur County. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992.he Summer 2017 Exhibit at the UCHS History Center Museum was entitled ─“The History of Upshur County Hospitals, Doctors, Nurses, and Undertakers: If We Can’t Cure You, We’ll Bury You.” There were units that were dedicated to each of the title components and what we thought perhaps people might find a bit morbid, in reality they found fascinating. We explored the various hospitals from Beers Sanatorium, to the Leonard Memorial Hospital, and St. Josephs. We staged a “typical early doctor’s office” in our corner room complete with antique medical devices [courtesy of Dr. Stephen Smith] and listed all of the early doctors that had practiced in Upshur County. It was interesting to understand that each hospital in the county also had their own nurse’s training programming in their early years. We loved being able to exhibit various artifacts of the nursing profession including uniforms, diploma’s, and photographic images. The undertaker’s unit was the most difficult since some people found it to be a bit too profound with displayed coffins, home embalming equipment, and published broadsides of death notices. The exhibit also explored the role of patent medicine, the company doctor, the polio immunization program, Civil War hospitals and treatments, as well as more contemporary stories on the Emergency Medical Services [in the early days, ambulance service was provided by the local funeral homes]. All in all the Summer 2017 Exhibit was one of our most visited exhibits in recent years. We hosted some special showings of the exhibit by anointment including the Wednesday evening Presbyterian Church group, some out of town visitors, and other groups.
You will not want to miss visiting the History Center Museum between early June and the end of September, 2018, Sunday afternoons, 1-4pm. for our Summer 2018 Exhibit which will be entitled: “From Whence They Came: The Story of Upshur County’s Early Migration s.” We will be exploring the early Virginia Valley settlers, the New Englanders, the Irish settlement, the German Baptist and the Pallotine Sisters of St. Joseph’s, along with some other very lesser known but equally interesting immigrant groups. You won’t want to miss this one, so mark your calendars now.
Each summer we have many returning visitors and some who are visiting for the very first time. We still have too many people who tell us that they want to make a visit but put it off until the exhibit closes. Make a note on your calendar to visit the exhibit this summer. We will look forward to seeing you there. If you are receiving this 2018 Journal you will also receive an exhibit card announcement nearer the beginning of the museum opening.

 

 

Upshur County Historical Society
P.O. Box 2082
Buckhannon, WV 26201
Email: info@upshurcountyhistoricalsociety.com
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The Upshur County Historical Society is the county level private, not-for-profit organization that has as its mission the identification, preservation, and perpetuation of all things historical on the county level.

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