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Antebellum (1800-1859)


Harman Blennerhassett (ca. 1764-1831) portrait. Blennerhassett constructed a large mansion on Blennerhassett Island at Parkersburg. He was involved with the plot by Aaron Burr in 1805 to establish an independent nation in the western territories. Blennerhassett was acquitted of all charges in 1807.

Aaron Burr (1756-1836) portrait. Burr served as Vice President of the United States under Thomas Jefferson from 1801 to 1805. He was arrested and acquitted on charges of treason in 1807, for an alleged plot with Harman Blennerhassett to establish an independent nation in the western territories. In 1804, Burr killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel.

Joseph Carrington Cabell (1778-1856) portrait. Assistant to Thomas Jefferson in founding of University of Virginia and leader of the movement to construct the James River and Kanawha Canal. The canal, intended to connect eastern and western Virginia, was completed to Buchanan, Virginia, but never extended into present-day West Virginia.

Alexander Campbell (1788-1866) portrait by E. O. Middleton, 1863. Campbell was founder of the Disciples of Christ denomination and Bethany College, the oldest institution of higher education in the state. He was also a leader in the statehood movement, attending the 1829-1830 Virginia Constitutional Convention.


Alexander Campbell House in Bethany. Home of Alexander Campbell, built in 1793, with additions made in 1836 and 1840.

Monument Place in Wheeling. Colonel Moses Shepherd built this mansion in 1798.


Bethany College lithograph by Strobridge & Company, ca. 1860s. Bethany was founded as Buffalo Academy in 1816 by Disciples of Christ founder Alexander Campbell.

Charles Town Academy, 1912.School Building was constructed in the 1790s.

Greenbrier College for Women, Lewisburg This school was a successor to the Lewisburg Academy.

Marshall College State Normal School, 1877. Marshall Academy was established in Huntington by an act of the Virginia General Assembly on March 30, 1838.

Salt Industry

Dickinson Salt Works, Malden (Kanawha County)

Hartford City Coal & Salt Company, Hartford (Mason County)

Salt workers in the Kanawha Valley, ca. 1870

View of the salt works on the Kanawha River at Kanawha Salines, 1843, from a sketch by Henry Howe (reproduced from the Collections of the Library of Congress)

Other Industry

Pleasant View Farm in Jackson County. Residence of R. Swan, dealer & shipper of stock and Sligo Fire Brick Works in Hancock County.


Old Stone Bridge on National Road in Wheeling

View of Wheeling, ca. 1850s

Wheeling Suspension Bridge, 1887

Antebellum Studies

History Center
West Virginia Archives and History