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Public meeting to be held for Battle of Blair Mountain Site nomination to the National Register of Historic Places

3/7/2005

The State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History will host a public meeting to discuss the proposed Battle of Blair Mountain Site nomination to the National Register of Historic Places at the Museum in the Park in Chief Logan State Park on Friday, March 18, at 7 p.m. SHPO staff members will be present to answer questions about the nomination process and property owner’s issues. The meeting is free and open to the public.

The Friends of the Mountains and interested local citizens prepared the nomination and submitted it to the West Virginia SHPO, which is reviewing it and plans to take the nomination before the State Archives and History Commission, the state review board for the National Register program, in May. If the commission endorses the nomination, it then will be forwarded to the National Park Service in Washington, D.C. for final review and approval.

A listing in the National Register of Historic Places is an honorific designation which recognizes the significance of the property to the history of the state and nation. The National Register listing does not introduce new land use controls to the area, therefore; it does not prohibit any actions private property owners may take with regard to their property. The SHPO reviews and comments on the effects of projects that receive state or federal funds, or that require state or federal licenses or permits, on properties that are eligible for or listed in the National Register.

The Battle of Blair Mountain took place in 1921 after thousands of well-armed miners marched to Logan County to unionize the southern West Virginia’s coalfields. The union men and their sympathizers fought a pitched battle with sheriff’s deputies and armed guards on Blair Mountain near the Logan-Boone county line. The battle ended with the arrival of the 10th U.S. Infantry from Fort Thomas, Ky. and a squadron of bombers from Langley Field, Va. On Sept. 4, 1921, the federal troops marched up Hewitt Creek in Logan County and the miners began to scatter. The defeat at Blair Mountain ended the United Mine Workers’ efforts to unionize southern West Virginia until passage of the National Industrial Recovery Act in 1933.

A facility of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, Museum in the Park is a regional cultural center showcasing the best in West Virginia history and the arts. Changing exhibits and displays feature artwork and historical items from the collections of the West Virginia State Museum and State Archives. One area of the museum is dedicated to local and regional history.

Museum in the Park is located four miles north of Logan on WV Route 10 at Chief Logan State Park. Operating hours are 5 - 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday, and noon - 5 p.m. Sunday. Tours are available during non-business hours by appointment. To schedule a tour, call (304) 792-7229.

For more information about the public meeting for the Battle of Blair Mountain Site nomination to the National Register, contact Alan Rowe, National Register Program coordinator for the Division, at (304) 558-0240, ext. 712.

The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. Visit the Division’s website at www.wvculture.org for more information about programs of the Division. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.