Governor Joe Manchin III is announcing that he has eliminated the admission fees for Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex in Moundsville, Marshall County, and West Virginia Independence Hall Museum in Wheeling, Ohio County, effective immediately.
Commissioner Randall Reid-Smith of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History which operates both facilities said, “We are extremely grateful to the governor for making it possible for these historic sites to be more accessible to the citizens of the Mountain State and the other visitors from across the country by removing the fee. The initial response we’ve had from the public is pure delight.”
West Virginia Independence Hall Museum and Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex have always had a minimal entrance fee of $3 per adult and $2 per child/student. Visitors under 12 years of age at both facilities are still required to be accompanied by an adult.
Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex will be celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. The complex features one of the largest and most famous burial mounds built by the prehistoric Adena people. A massive undertaking, construction of the mound took place in successive stages from about 250-150 B.C., and required the movement of more than 60,000 tons of earth. Exhibits and displays in the complex’s museum interpret what is known about the lives of these prehistoric people and the construction of the mound. The complex had a grand opening for its new 9,600-square-foot research center which will house West Virginia’s archaeological collection earlier this week. In addition to a state-of-the-art collections storage area, the wing features a conservation laboratory for curators, study area for researchers, library, and an observation area where the public can view the activity in the lab.The Archaeological Complex is located at 801 Jefferson Ave., in Moundsville. Contact the museum at (304) 843-4128 for information regarding group registration and detailed driving directions. The museum is open to the public Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m.
West Virginia Independence Hall Museum, originally built as a federal custom house in 1859, served as the home of the pro-Union state conventions of Virginia during the spring and summer of 1861 and as the capitol of loyal Virginia from June 1861 to June 1863. It also was the site of the first constitutional convention for West Virginia. Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1988 and listed on the Civil War Discovery Trail, the museum is maintained and operated by the Division, with the cooperation and assistance of the West Virginia Independence Hall Foundation. The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., with the exception of major holidays. It is located on the corner at 16th and Market Streets in Wheeling. Contact the museum for directions or tour information at (304) 238-1300.
For more information about the Division of Culture and History, contact Jacqueline Proctor, deputy commissioner for the Division, at (304) 558-0220.
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. Its administrative offices are located at the Cultural Center in the State Capitol Complex in Charleston, which also houses the state archives and state museum. The Cultural Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. The agency also operates a network of museums and historic sites across the state. For more information about the Division’s programs, visit www.wvculture.org. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.
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