The following events happened on these dates in West Virginia history. To read more, go to e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia at www.wvencyclopedia.org.
Nov. 1, 1688: Morgan Morgan was born in Wales. Morgan is traditionally considered the first white settler of West Virginia. He settled in the Bunker Hill area in 1731, building a log house that still remains.
Nov. 1, 1848: Israel Charles White was born in Monongalia County. White was West Virginia’s first state geologist, appointed in 1897 and serving until his death in 1927, working without pay for all but two of those years.
Nov. 1, 1961: The first non-commercial radio station in West Virginia, WMUL-FM at Marshall University, began broadcasting.
Nov. 2, 1859: John Brown was tried for murder, treason, and insurrection in the Jefferson County courthouse at Charles Town. Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry galvanized the nation, further alienating North and South and drastically reducing any possible middle ground for compromise. Nov. 2, 1952: Tri-State Airport in Wayne County was dedicated, with the first official landing made at 11 a.m. by Piedmont Airlines.
Nov. 3, 1947: Kanawha Airport (now Yeager Airport) was dedicated. World War I ace Capt. Eddie Rickenbacker was among the dignitaries present.
Nov. 4-5, 1985: Heavy rains led to devastating floods in parts of West Virginia. Forty-seven people were killed, and several towns were severely damaged.
Nov. 5, 1891: Alfred Earle ‘‘Greasy’’ Neale was born in Parkersburg. He was one of West Virginia’s greatest all-around athletes.
Nov. 5, 1922: Cecil Underwood was born at Josephs Mills in Tyler County. Underwood, West Virginia’s 25th and 32nd governor, served as the state’s youngest and oldest chief executive.
Nov. 6, 1863: Confederate troops led by Brig. Gen. John Echols were defeated at Droop Mountain by a larger federal force led by Brig. Gen. William W. Averell. This was one of the most important Civil War battles fought on West Virginia soil.
Nov. 6, 1923: A methane gas explosion killed 27 men inside the Glen Rogers coal mine in Wyoming County. The mine, which opened in 1921, became one of the state’s largest. A total of 160 fatalities over a 31-year period occurred at the mine before it was closed.
Nov. 7, 1775: The historic Forks-of-Cheat Baptist Church was organized about six miles north of Morgantown. It is the oldest church with continuous records west of the Alleghenies in West Virginia.
e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia is a project of the West Virginia Humanities Council. For more information, contact the West Virginia Humanities Council, 1310 Kanawha Blvd. E., Charleston, WV 25301; (304) 346-8500; or visit e-WV at www.wvencyclopedia.org.