2017-07-26 / Columns

This Week in West Virginia History

from The West Virginia Encyclopedia

West Virginia Humanities Council 1310 Kanawha Blvd., E. Charleston, WV 25301

July 26, 1942 - Camp Washington Carver was dedicated and opened to the public. The camp, located at Clifftop, Fayette County, was the first 4-H camp for African- Americans in the country. The camp’s great chestnut lodge is the largest log structure in West Virginia.

July 27, 1896 - Clark Kessinger was born near Charleston. He was among the most prolific and influential fiddlers of the 20th century, and one of West Virginia’s most important traditional musicians.

July 27, 1909 - Coach ‘‘Dyke’’ Raese was born in Davis. He directed West Virginia University to its first major sports national championship, winning the 1942 National Invitation Tournament in basketball.

July 28, 1915 - Frankie Yankovic was born in Davis, Tucker County. Yankovic did more to popularize polka music than any other performer.

July 29, 1873 - Malcolm Malachi “Mack” Day was born. As sheriff of McDowell County, he claimed that God had called him to enforce Prohibition, even arresting an uncle and his own son.

July 29-31, 1915 - Camp Good Luck, believed to be the world’s first 4-H club encampment, was held at Elkwater in southern Randolph County.

July 29, 1918 - Novelist Mary Lee Settle was born in Charleston. Her literary reputation rests on the “Beulah Quintet,” a sequence of five historical novels spanning four centuries.

July 30, 1973 - The Frederick Hotel in downtown Huntington closed to transient trade. After it was built in 1905, it was touted as the most elegant hotel between Pittsburgh and Cincinnati.

July 31, 1932 - Actor Theodore Crawford ‘‘Ted’’ Cassidy was born in Pittsburgh but was raised in Philippi. He was best known for his role as Lurch on “The Addams Family.”

August 1, 1921 - Baldwin-Felts detectives shot and killed Sid Hatfield and Ed Chambers as they approached the McDowell County Courthouse in Welch. As Matewan’s police chief, Hatfield had assisted the United Mine Workers campaign to organize Tug Fork miners.

August 1, 1940 - Justice Franklin Cleckley was born in Huntington. He was the first African-American to serve on the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals. In 2001, the Supreme Court referred to Cleckley’s handbooks on evidence and criminal procedure as ‘‘the Bible for West Virginia’s judges and attorneys.’’





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