2015 Special Edition Ornament

The Main Street Ronceverte program would like to unveil its 7th edition ornament for 2015. This special edition is to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the Ronceverte C&O Depot and the recent restoration of the historic property. 

The ornament will make its debut at the 1882 Heritage Days festival and will be sold at the temporary home of the Ronceverte Museum. Future sales locations will be at the Ronceverte Main Street office, Edgarton Café, First National Bank, Martin and Jones, and Greenbrier Cut Flowers. All sales of the ornament will help assist the Ronceverte Main Street program in the revitalization of the downtown district of Ronceverte, WV.

For more information please contact the Main Street Ronceverte program at 304-647-3140 or at mainstreetronceverte@gmail.com.

Ornament 2015 (3)

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1882 Heritage Days / Ronceverte Depot Centennial

Depot Back 2015September 4th, 5th, and 6th, 2015

Event Schedule:

Friday September 4th

9:00am-5:00pm Flea Market

5:00pm- Grand Opening of Ronceverte Museum

6:30 Parade-Island Park through Downtown

7:30pm-9:00pm- Squaredance Sponsored by the American Heritage Music Hall in Downtown Ronceverte

Saturday September 5th

 8:00am- Registration for the 5K Dana Morgan Harrison Memorial Run Sponsored by STCA

9:00am-4:00pm- Ronceverte Museum Open

9:00am-5:00pm Flea Market/Crafts

10:00am- C&O Depot- Ribbon Cutting

10:00am-5:00pm- Professional Train Displays at the Clifford Armory

10:00am-5:00pm- Street Food Vendors

10:ooam-5:00pm- Bouncy Jump for Kids

Free Music Entertainment Saturday:

10:30am Silent Islands

11:30am Vital Shock

12:30 pm The Seay Brothers

1:30 pm Absolute Love Affair

Live at the Depot Stage- Featured Entertainment:

2:00pm- 4:00pm-Martyr Kanin- Uniontown, PA

Martyr Kanin 2015

Martyr Kanin is an eclectic rock band from southwestern Pennsylvania, recognized for their Bon Jovi-like vocals combined with a Counting Crows-like artistry.

4:30- 5:45pm- Sassafrazz


The trio Sassafrazz serenades with an eclectic music mix from the Appalachian and Celtic traditions as well as vintage jazz, early country, contemporary folk and more.

Sunday, September 6th

10:00am-3:00pm- Professional Train Displays- Clifford Armory

11:00am- Community Worship Service

1:00pm-2:00pm- Bethesda- Contemporary Christian

2:00pm-4:00pm Harmony Creek Junction

Harmony Creek Junction 2015

Harmony Creek Junction is a 5 piece bluegrass band from Greenbrier County that performs across West Virginia

This is a fee event to be held in Downtown Ronceverte, WV.  Bring your lawn chairs and join us for a fun filled weekend.

For more information call the Ronceverte Main Street Office at 304-647-3140 or email: mainstreetronceverte@gmail.com

Special Thanks to Our Sponsors:

Greenbrier Valley CVB

Wallace and Wallace

The Aide Family

First National Bank

In Memory of G.W. Ford and Hazel Fry Ford

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This is “My” Ronceverte

For the past year Ms. Arabeth Balasko has been diligently working on a wonderful oral history of our town of Ronceverte, WV.  Please follow the link below to hear and see the stories of some of Ronceverte’s residents.


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Christmas Open House

Don’t forget this evening from 5 PM- 7 PM many of our local businesses will be staying open to offer refreshments before the annual Christmas Parade. Participating businesses will have balloons out front. JRS Video, located at 220 W. Edgar Avenue, will be filming the parade for purchase. Hope to see you there!Christmas Open House 2014

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New ornaments have arrived!



Ready for purchase!! The 1917 “The Smokestacks”

The Virginia Western Power Co., later known as VEPCO, constructed a steam plant along the Greenbrier River on West Monroe Avenue in 1917. The small stack, standing over 200ft., was built first along with the building. The second stack was completed in 1923 and rose to 328 1/2 ft tall, top be known as the tallest concrete smokestack in the world. The facility had its own water tower and railway access. The plant closed in 1951; stacks were dismantled in 1966.
This ornament is the 6th in a series and all purchases go toward the Ronceverte Development Corporation/ Ronceverte Main Street program. City National Bank sponsored the 2014-2015 ornament series.


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Historic Coca-Cola Mural Restoration

Historic Coco-Cola Mural Restoration Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony

Time:  July 9, 2014 5pm

Place: 812 Monroe Street, Ronceverte, WV

Refreshments (Coca-Cola products) Free.

Celebrate with us!!!

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The Green Corridor Plan of Ronceverte, WV: WI-FI in the City!!

$10,000 Grant Award

We are going Wireless in Downtown Ronceverte

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Sharing Your Story

Vintage microphone


“Memories are the key not to the past, but to the future.”
-Corrie Ten Boom

Have you lived in Ronceverte for 50 years (or more) or know anybody who has? Would you like to share your stories and experiences of growing up and living in Ronceverte? If you this sounds like something you would be interested in volunteering for, please contact the RDC’s 2013-2014 AmeriCorps member, Arabeth Balasko. Arabeth is putting together an oral history project of Ronceverte residents and is interested in talking to YOU.

If you would like to learn more about this project, or volunteer to share your story, please call the RDC office at: 304-647-3140; message us here on Facebook, or send an e-mail to mainstreetronceverteamericorps@gmail.com

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Ronceverte Eco Community Plan

 The Ronceverte Main Street program, along with Downstream Strategies have developed a plan to encourage local economic growth and environmental sustainability.   The framework for the plan is based on three primary components—water, energy, and community—focusing on storm water management, energy efficiency, renewable energy development, and enhancing quality of life for residents.   The multiphase strategy will be implemented over the course of five years starting with small-scale projects like energy assessments and building up to more infrastructure-intensive projects, like the construction of an electric car charging station.   In addition to solar energy, Ronceverte is also considering the possibility of establishing hydropower, biomass, geothermal, and waste heat resources.

Please check our Eco Community Plan at www.downstreamstrategies.com/documents/reports_publication/Ronceverte_eco-community-plan_final.pdf


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Ronceverte Sustainability Fair

Sustainability Fair

April 20 — 10am-4pm

Clifford Community & Recreation Center


Want to reduce your energy consumption and save money ?

 Interested in energy efficiency and renewable energy options ?

Join us for our upcoming family-friendly energy fair that features exhibitors focusing on energy efficiency, recycling, and renewable energies such as solar and wind power.

You’ll find information, food, fun, games, live music, and energy saving gifts.  Free door prizes includes rain barrels and composters !!


If you are a vendor and want to participate, please call the Ronceverte Development Corporation at 304-647-3140.


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Super Sunday Football Party & Fundraiser

Ronceverte Development Corporation’s Main Street Program Hosts Super Sunday Football Party & Fundraiser


On Sunday February 3rd, 2013, the Ronceverte Development Corporation and its Main Street program will be hosting a gala Super Sunday Football party and fund raiser at the Clifford Recreation and Community Center (Clifford Armory) located in Ronceverte, WV.

The event promises to be an exciting and fun way to enjoy your super Sunday with friends and neighbors, and at the same time help to support the Ronceverte Development Corporation and the Main Street program that is working diligently on the revitalization and restoration of the downtown business district and the Ronceverte community at large.

Along with watching the Super Bowl, there will be food and refreshments as fine as any tailgate party you have ever attended and it is all included for a $12 donation.  There will also be games and raffles to win all kinds of wonderful prizes that have been so generously donated by the merchants of Ronceverte and surrounding communities.

Child care will be available for an additional donation and your children will have access to on site games and activities to participate in which will be fully supervised by our dedicated volunteers. If you are planning on bringing a child please call ahead to reserve a place in our child care room. To do so, call Kim Erskine at 304- 647-5455, between the hours of 9AM and 4PM Monday through Friday.

The doors for this event will open at 5:00 PM for pre-game activities. Kick –off time is 6:30PM.

The best part of it all is that when the party is over. We do the entire cleanup!!

Tickets for this event are available for a $12.00 donation at the door on the day of the event.

The Ronceverte Development Corporation is now accepting donations for this event and volunteers who are interested in being a member of our set up and break down team. Volunteer opportunities will be available both days prior to the event and the day of.  All volunteers confirming their participation with Lisa Circle, Main Street Program Manager by January 31st will receive free admittance to the event.

For more information you can call the RDC office at 304-647-3140.

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2012 Commerative Ornament Offered for Sale

Main Sreet Ronceverte annouces the release of their annual Christmas ornament with the 1928 Greenbrier High School building.  The ornament is the fourth in a series of historic landmarks in Ronceverte. Earlier ornaments included the C&O Depot, C&O coaling tower and Martin and Jones Hardware.

The Ronceverte High School was established in 1896 and combined with the Ronceverte Grade School, situated where the former Ronceverte Elementary School sits today. On January 24, 1917, a new building was constructed on Ronceverte Ave for the new Fort Spring District high school building, and the name was changed to Greenbrier High School. Since the high school was a district school, the name of the new school was Greenbrier instead of Ronceverte.

The building burned on January 31, 1938, when a fire started in the boys locker room. A bond issue of $99,000 was passed to secure funds for rebuilding. The classical revival-style school is a large two-story building constructed of yellow brick with a parapet roof. Its eaves are trimmed with a molded and dentil concrete cornice, while the facade is embellished with two slightly projecting entrance pavilions. The first-story windows are topped with blind arches with foliated carving produced on site by Italian stone carvers. The school served as the consolidation of the county’s high schools, and as a junior high school until 1992.

Constructed as Ronceverte’s lumber industry was waning, the school stands as a testimony to the town’s dedication to quality education. The historic high school was the first in a five-countyt area to be accredited and was known for its quality programs and educators. Although the building sits empty, it remains an important part of Ronceverte’s heritage.

“We are so very excited about having the Greenbrier High School honored in this way,” said Sue Ella Miano, member of the Main Street Ronceverte Organization Committee and graduate of the Class of 1947. “Greenbrier High School played an important part in the community and the quality teachers who taught there were without equal. The thousands of students who received their education in this building can provide testimony to the fine education provided.”

This year’s ornament was sponsored throught the generosity of Greenbrier Physicians Clinic.  Greenbrier Physicians Clinic was established in 1974 from doctors from the former Greenbrier Valley Hospital in Ronceverte, when the new Greenbrier Valley Medical Center was constructed.

“We are truly indebted to John Trout and the Greenbrier Physicians Clinic staff for their sponsorship with this year’s ornament,” continued Miano.

The Greenbrier High Schoold ornament is available for $15 at the Main Street Ronceverte office 307 Frankford Rd, Martin & Jones Hardware Store, the First National Bank and Greenbrier Cut Flowers. It may also be ordered by calling 304-647-3140 or email: MainStreetRonceverte@gmail.com.


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Main Street Ronceverte announces Recipients of Main Street Awards

Main Street Ronceverte announces Recipients of the Governors Main Street Awards

On Thursday June 27, 2012, members of the Main Street community traveled to Charleston to attend the 2012 Governors Main Street Recognition awards held in the Cultural Center at the State Capitol Complex. Main Street Ronceverte would like to acknowledge the following recipients of awards for our community.

Ronceverte Volunteer of the Year: Peggy Crawford

Ronceverte Business of the Year: Gateway Industries, Inc,

Ronceverte Public Official of the Year: Mayor Gail White

Board Member of the Year: Becky Meriwether

Ronceverte was also awarded a $10,000 Governors Innovation award to develop a Solar Powered Automobile Recharging Kiosk (SPARK) that will be located along Edgar Avenue. The Kiosk will provide an energy efficient way to recharge electric vehicles and will help draw attention and visitors to our downtown business district.

We applaud the efforts of our award recipients and we truly appreciate their tireless efforts to improve the quality of life and strengthen the business community. . We hope that you will join us in congratulating them on their accomplishments. Volunteers are a critical part of revitalizing the Ronceverte community and we are always looking for people who are interested in volunteering with any of our ongoing projects. For more information about the Main Street Ronceverte Program, please call 304-647-3140 or visit our office at 307 Frankford Road

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Ronceverte Main Street Begins Planning Process


On July 12th the Ronceverte Main Street Program held it’s 1st planning meeting to begin to develop strategic plans that will create the vision and work that will carry the organization and the community into the future. The planning process is supported by a grant that the program received from The West Virginia Community Development office to hire a consultant to guide the process. The consultant is Terrill Ellis, from Terrill Ellis and Associates. Ms. Ellis, a former Director of Main Street West Virginia, once herself a small business owner and helped lead the revitalization of the West Charleston community. Ms. Ellis also was instrumental in conducting some of the earliest studies of Ronceverte with the goal of helping our Main Street program plan the initial revitalization process of our town. Upon her recent return to Ronceverte Ms. Ellis commented that she was impressed to see how much has been done to improve the community and the continuing renovation and restoration work that is currently underway. We are honored to have Ms. Ellis helping us with the project and are confident that with her background and knowledge we will come away with a truly wonderful plan.


The next planning meeting will be held on Thursday August 2 , 2012-from 5:30-7:30 PM,  at the Main Street Volunteer Center, located next to AC/KC  Items (under the old bridge and across from the Ronceverte Post office). The Board and Staff of the Ronceverte Main Street program would like to invite anyone from the community who is interested in determining the direction that our organization moves to attend. Your input into this process is important to us and vital to successfully restore Ronceverte to its former glory  remember it takes a “Town to rebuild a Town” For more information, please contact our office at 304-647-3140.

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Main Street Ronceverte Volunteer Opportunities

Community ideas and efforts are what drive our Main Street Ronceverte and every effort makes a difference!!

Opportunities to contribute to Main Street Ronceverte are as diverse as our
community – ranging from a one hour office project to helping lead one of our
four committees. People with all levels of experience and skill are welcome and needed.

Some opportunities include:

  • Serving on one of our committees:

:: Promotion

:: Design

:: Organization

:: Economic Restructuring

  • Distributing flyers and posters
  • Helping with mailings and office projects
  • Helping with special events such as the Community Super Bowl Party, flower plantings, or propose your own idea!
  • Contributing your expertise in finance, architecture, urban planning, etc. by serving on our Board of Directors or as an organizational advisor.

If you would like to learn more about volunteer and internship opportunities,
contact the Main Street Ronceverte Office at 304-647-3140

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Warm Weather Wednesday Vendor Information


Dear Businesses, non-profits, individuals, and community organizations,

Following the success of June’s Warm Weather Wednesday, The Ronceverte Development Corporation/Main Street Ronceverte is extending an invitation to any groups, businesses, or individuals who would like to participate in the upcoming July event

We will be hosting Warm Weather Wednesday on Wednesday, July 11th from 5-8 pm.  Downtown businesses and shops will remain open and free entertainment and refreshments will be served until 8pm on Edgar Ave.  This month’s event promises to be an exciting evening with a lineup of three new bands consisting of our area youth.

Vendor setup will be in the parking lot adjacent to the CSX train depot. Anyone in our community is invited to participate. There will be no fee for setup or sales.

Church groups and community organizations/clubs are encouraged to attend. Vendors are welcome  but not required to sell anything. They may simply be informative, entertaining, or advertising services.

Farmers and crafters are welcome to bring fresh produce and homemade goods to sell.

Please no yard sale or flea market items.

Tables can be provided if needed. Setup will begin at 4pm on July 11th.

Please contact Jessie Grist or RDC to reserve a space or receive more information.



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Ronceverte to host “Warm Weather Wednesdays”

The Ronceverte Development Corporation/Main Street Program will be hosting “Warm Weather Wednesdays,” a business open house, in downtown Ronceverte on the second Wednesdays of June, July, and September. The first event will be Wednesday, June 13th from 5-8 pm. Businesses will stay open late and offer light refreshments, and there will be a gift basket drawing for visitors. There will also be vendors, free popcorn, participation from the Ronceverte Volunteer Fire Department and the Ronceverte Police Department, as well as other kid-friendly activities. The popular local band “The Jarmovers” will perform at 6:00 pm behind First National Bank. Come out and have some fun and help us revitalize our city!


Vendors are welcome, and Classic Cars are encouraged to come be a part of the fun.
Please call 304-647-3140 for more information.

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Ronceverte “Green Team” to hold organizational meeting

Please join the Ronceverte “Green Team” at our community informational meeting on Tuesday June 19, 2012 at City Hall.  The meeting will begin at 5:30 and will offer information on the following potential projects:


Development of a community garden

Installation of Rain Barrels

Strengthening Community Recycling

Renewable Solar Panels for lighting at the Horseshoe Pits, Skate Park, and Basketball Courts

Ideas for business energy audits and related energy savings

Reestablishing a Farmer’s Market

Discussion of Food Co-Ops

Ideas for a Community Kitchen

Other Projects that are suggested by the community



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Daniel Louis Friedman Memorial Fountain Dedication

Please join us on Sunday, June 10 at 2:00 at the Island Park Skate Park as we dedicate the fountain in memory of Daniel Louis Friedman. Thank you to Daniel’s Teachers, Classmates, and Friends who joined together to work on this project in Daniel’s Honor.

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Main Street Ronceverte Volunteer Opportunities

Community ideas and efforts are what drive our Main Street Ronceverte and every effort makes a difference!!

Opportunities to contribute to Main Street Ronceverte are as diverse as our
community – ranging from a one hour office project to helping lead one of our
four committees. People with all levels of experience and skill are welcome and needed.

Some opportunities include:

  • Serving on one of our committees::: Promotions

    :: Design

    :: Economic Restructuring

    :: Organization


  • Distributing flyers and posters
  • Helping with mailings and office work
  • Helping with special events such as the Community Super Bowl Party, flower plantings, or propose
    your own idea!
  • Contributing your expertise in finance, architecture, urban planning, etc. by serving on our
    Board of Directors or as an organizational advisor.

If you would like to learn more about volunteer and internship opportunities,
contact Tony Benedetto at 304-647-3140


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Ronceverte Welcomes New Business

On February 1, 2012, Mrs. Barbara Weikle opened a new retail shop in the downtown
Ronceverte business district. The business known as AC-KC,  features a variety of
items, including beautiful purses, handbags, jewelry and an interesting array
of other items.  The Weikles, have been featuring their wares  at local and
regional fairs for a number of years and  have established a following
of loyal customers. The Weikles decided to open their own retail store in
Ronceverte because ” they have been watching as the city is becoming
rejuvenated” and  new businesses are being opened.

The store is located at 211A Chestnut Street,  next to the post office.

Business hours will be Tuesday-Saturday 10am-6pm

On Saturday Feb. 11, 2012, from 10am-6pm, AC-KC will
be hosting an open house at the store and all are invited to attend.

Come out and show your support to our newest addition to the Downtown Ronceverte
Business district.

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Ronceverte Clifford Community and Recreation Center

The Clifford Community and Recreation Center is a 15,000 sq foot building that provides a
gymnasium and facilities suitable for birthday parties, reunions, sports, and
special events. The gymnasium and other space rents for $35 per hour or $100
for a 3 hour period.  For more
information and for reservations, please call the Ronceverte Development
Corporation Office at 304-647-3140.

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It’s Party Time in Ronceverte !!

On Sunday February 5th, 2012, the Ronceverte Development Corporation and its Main Street program will be hosting a gala Super Bowl party and fund raiser at the Clifford Recreation and Community Center (Clifford Armory).

 The event promises to be an exciting and fun way to watch the Super Bowl with friends and neighbors, and at the same time help to support the Ronceverte Development Corporation and the Main Street program that is working diligently on the revitalization and restoration of the downtown business district and the Ronceverte community at large.

Along with watching the Super Bowl, there will be food and refreshments as fine as any tailgate party you have ever attended and it is all included in the price of admission.  There will also be games and raffles to win all kinds of wonderful prizes that have been so generously donated by the merchants of Ronceverte and surrounding communities.

 For a small additional donation you can have access to on site games and activities for your children to participate in which will be fully supervised by our dedicated volunteers.

 The doors for this event will open at 4:00 PM for pre-game activities. Kick –off time is 6:30PM.

The best part of it all is that when the party is over. We do the entire cleanup!!

Tickets for this event are available for a $10.00 donation and can be purchased in advance at the RDC office located at 307 Frankford Road, Ronceverte (across from the Exxon station). ALso available at the door on day of the event.

 For more information you can call the RDC office at 304-647-3140.




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Local Author’s Book On Sale at Ronceverte Library

One-hundred and fifty years ago, at the age of 23, Alfred Mallory Edgar left the comfort of the “Old Edgar Homestead” in what is now Ronceverte and volunteered to take up arms as a member of the Greenbrier Rifles, which later became the 27th Virginia Infantry, “a regiment in the famous Stonewall Brigade of the Confederate Army. It is appropriate that this year, the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, Edgar’s memoirs were published in a book titled, “My Reminiscences of the Civil War with the Stonewall Brigade and the Immortal 600.” Edgar’s grandson, Allan N. Clower, of Ronceverte, finalized this work, which began with Edgar’s writing, the text of which was safely preserved by Clower’s grandmother, Caroline Crouch Edgar. “My efforts to complete Great-grandfather Edgar’s reminiscences of The War Between the States are in memory of my grandfather, Allan Penick Edgar; my aunt, Ann Davis Edgar; and my mother, Carolyn Edgar Clower,” Clower writes. “Each of them worked to complete this over many years but was interrupted by the demands of children, school, work and death.” Alfred Mallory Edgar was born July 10, 1837, in Greenbrier County, the son of Archer Edgar and Nancy Howe Pearis. At the beginning of the Civil War the family owned 10 slaves, five male and five female. Though not a large holding of field and household help, life was comfortable, and it was a far cry from where Edgar found himself as a soldier, and later as a prisoner of war. Edgar’s story begins as he prepares to leave his home. “It is the 14th day of May, 1861. The morning is bright and the air balmy. The singing birds, as they fly through the shade trees, and a few spring blossoms starting up over the large green yard of the “Old Edgar Homestead” seem to vie with each other, to make the surrounding of the neat, white cottage, with its long porches and tall columns, cheerful and everybody happy.” But the family is not happy, as their son and brother will soon leave the idyllic setting for the unknown land of war. “A fine lunch is prepared, but one thing is missing to make the meal enjoyable,” Edgar writes. “And that is an appetite. “We all permit one plate to be helped as the two colored girls waited on us with special care, and I might almost say, tenderness, because they can appreciate how uncertain it is when “Mars Alfred” will sit at that table again, seemingly unconscious of the fact that their race was the innocent cause of the war.” Edgar recalled the “hearse-like sound” of the carriage wheels which would deliver him to Lewisburg to begin his career as a soldier. And “taking a last glance at his home place,” little knowing then that “the next four years for the family would be as checkered and sad” as for him. Arriving at Harper’s Ferry a rumor circulates that the Federals have crossed the Gauley River and are marching on Lewisburg. Desperate to return to protect their own homes, the pleas of Edgar and other soldiers were denied by their commanding officers, who threatened military discipline if they persisted. In the end, it was merely a rumor and the families of the Greenbrier Valley were in no danger, at the time. As the company moved toward Manassas, Edgar recalled the words of his friend, John Fry, of the Shriver Grays of Wheeling. “Alfred, we are going to have a tremendous battle, and I am going to be killed.” After the first Battle of Manassas, the Confederate flag was adopted, and all the state flags were discarded. And of that battle, Edgar writes, “…panic commences and the whole Federal force retreats in great disorder. Throwing away their guns, knapsacks and running at breakneck speed, over each other, end over end, helter-skelter, pell-mell, on and on they go, like frantic creatures! Not a man stops this side of the Potomac, and some may not stop this side of home.” Although a great victory of the Confederacy was won, Edgar’s friend, Fry, was lost in the battle. Messages, money and provisions came to the soldiers by way of hometown friends, one of which was Mr. Johnston E. Bell, of Lewisburg. “He brings each of us a box of provisions, cooked at our own homes.” In addition Bell brought news of the soldier’s families, and carried messages back home. Edgar was granted furloughs from time to time and savored the peace of home, but too soon would return to duty. To prevent “becoming soft,” Edgar always slept on the floor during his visits. At the Battle of Port Republic, Edgar is injured, but makes the decision to heal on his own. “I hope soon to regain the use of my arm, and decline going to the hospital, for which I have an even greater horror than for a battlefield.” Edgar writes of the Battle of Lewisburg. Though not a part of his military service, he thought it would make his writing more interesting to the Edgar family. But his reminiscence of the Battle of Chancellorsville in which the beloved Stonewall Jackson was gravely injured tells of that great loss. “We felt that he [Jackson] was guided directly from the mouth of Jehovah, as was Joshua when he led the Israelites to battle. This we felt almost to the verge of idolatry. I believed the same feeling persuaded most of the Stonewall Brigade.” Adding to the horrors of the battlefield, Edgar tells of the infestation of body lice which “became a natural and unavoidable consequence of war. “Lice was considered a more convincing evidence of a faithful solder than brass buttons,” he writes. Following a furlough at home, Edgar is taken prisoner of war at Spotsylvania Courthouse. He is held at Fort Delaware, Morris Island, South Carolina, and Fort Pulaski, Georgia. During this time, it is the brass buttons from his coat that help to bring him comfort. In “dire want of a blanket,” Edgar carved rings from the buttons of his uniform and sold them to the Yankees, using the money to purchase a “double U. S. blanket.” After years of battle and imprisonment, Edgar writes of that acquisition, “I thought I was rich.” The end of captivity drew near with the news, “Richmond has fallen” and Lee’s surrender to Grant at Appomattox Courthouse. Edgar was released June 17, 1865. But Edgar endured loss in realms other than the battlefield. By the end of the war, both of his parents were gone and he returned to the “homestead,” the landscape of which had changed as well during the war years. Rev. James C. Johnson wrote of Edgar’s return home. “During his absence his father and mother had died and the feeble and discouraged soldier came home to find a lonely hearthstone and new economic conditions. Like thousands of returned veterans he addressed himself resolutely to the task of conserving the shattered fortunes of the family and adjusting himself to the changed condition that the war had brought. “He lived quietly in Greenbrier County until June 1875, when he married Miss Lydia, daughter of Col. Paul McNeel, and thereafter took up his residence in the Little Levels of Pocahontas County, there to spend the remaining years of life in the quiet pursuits of farmer and stock raiser.” Moffett McNeel, of Hillsboro, is the last surviving grandchild of Captain Edgar. “My Reminiscences of the Civil War with the Stonewall Brigade and the Immortal 600″ recounts the Battles of First and Second Manassas, Kernstown, the Shenandoah Campaign, Port Republic, Cedar Mountain, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Spotslyvania Court House, and is available through the Pocahontas County Historical Society, at The Pocahontas Times, 206 Eight Street, in Marlinton.

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Virginia Blake will celebrate her 90th birthday on Sunday

Virginia Blake, Ronceverte’s beloved, well-known icon will celebrate her 90th birthday on Sunday, Dec. 11, between 2 and 4 p.m. at the Clifford Armory at 301 Edgar Avenue in Ronceverte. Hosted by the Episcopal Church of the Incarnation and the Ronceverte Women’s Club, the public is invited to join the festivities in honor of Virginia.

In a phone interview, Virginia exclaimed, “I was flabbergasted when I was asked to attend a birthday celebration and found out it was for me!”

Born Dec. 15, 1921, in Ronceverte, Virginia Blake (nee Butler), has remained an active participant in her hometown affairs for many years. Virginia’s engaging personality and persistent promotion have lent support to many town events. “She is a remarkable woman,” enthuses Sue Ella Miano, a fellow Roncevertian and a friend for many years. “Anyone in Ronceverte will tell you Virginia is an incredible recruiter. She can get you to do something you may not have thought you wanted to do,” Sue Ella said. “I have the greatest admiration for her.”

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horseshoes.jpg. RONCEVERTE — Two-time state horseshoe pitching champion Allen Withrow recently captured the 2011 Moose International championship. The Ronceverte man also currently holds the 30th slot in the rankings maintained by the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association of America.

Retired from a 39-year career with the Division of Highways, Withrow has lived in Ronceverte since the age of 12. He took up horseshoes in 1976, competing in the Ronceverte league that competes on the Island Park courts.

“Everyone holds the shoe a little different,” Withrow describes his sport. “But timing and concentration are the most important factors to success for anyone. It takes a lot of practice, concentration and eye-hand coordination.”

The Island Park league, which Withrow has served as secretary/treasurer since 1995, holds matches from mid-May through August each year and is required to conduct two tournaments or sanctioned events each year in order for members to establish a scoring average to qualify for the state tournament.

Players’ scores in those sanctioned events are recorded with the national organization and used to determine seedings at the sport’s various large-scale tournaments.

Withrow explains that in tourney play, competition is on a “cancellation” basis, meaning two players go head-to-head in each game. If both players get ringers in a given pitch, neither gets a point on that pitch; they have canceled each other out. But if one gets a ringer — which is worth 3 points — and the other’s pitch misses but is within 6 inches of the pin — worth 1 point — the first player will be credited with 2 points, as only 1 of his points was canceled by his opponent’s throw. The player who gets to 40 points first wins.

The organization in Ronceverte is a handicap league, however, meaning games there allow each pitcher 50 shoes, with no cancellation in effect. The winner is determined strictly on the basis of who tallies the most points, with each game lasting about 30 minutes.

“We have 12 members now, but it has been up to as many as 25,” Withrow says, noting membership has dropped off in the past three or four years.

The courts on Island Park are also open to the general public except when a tourney is under way, as the league usually only occupies about half of the eight courts in the venue.

Withrow estimates he competes in eight to 10 tournaments a year, now that he is retired.

“My biggest fan is my wife, Kay,” he says with a grin. “She follows me to every tournament. Sometimes I’m pitching five or six hours a day, so it has to be lonely for her, but she’s right there the whole time.”

The bigger tourneys draw a large field of entries, Withrow notes, saying this year’s world championship attracted around 170 pitchers, while the Moose International competition he won in Strasburg, Va., boasted close to 300 entries.

“They’re a lot of fun,” Withrow says of the tournaments in which he competes. “I’ve met some great friends through horseshoes. In all the years I’ve been pitching horseshoes, I’ve only run into one or two who were not friendly.”

Withrow says his biggest accomplishment in his sport was being elected in 2001 to the West Virginia Horseshoe Pitchers Hall of Fame.

“I guess that’s what I’m proudest of,” he says.

As the top-ranked West Virginian in the current national rankings, Withrow shows a ringer percentage of 65.90.

He and his wife are the parents of one son, Michael Withrow, who lives in White Sulphur Springs. They have four grandchildren.

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Greening Main Street – Ronceverte’s Eco District

Historic and high tech are not often mentioned in the same breath – that is, unless you’re visiting Ronceverte’s Eco-District. Here, solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and geothermal projects are part of an award-winning business strategy for community revitalization. In May, the Ronceverte Development Corporation’s Main Street Program won the 2010 Governor’s Main Street and On Trac Community Award for Economic Development Innovation, along with a $15,000 award to advance their eco-district planning.

The development of a comprehensive plan calls for three phases.

  • First, send members to an eco-district conference in Portland, OR so they can learn more about the concept and bring back information for the RDC and community.
  • Second, to bring in experts to the community who understand renewable energy, greening of downtowns, rain gardens and other concepts associated with the eco-district concept to develop a plan that is specific to Ronceverte.
  • Third, once a plan is completed, hold community support and education meetings to discuss how this unique little town can benefit from becoming an Eco District.

The RDC wants to work with the community and city to create an overall plan that encompasses historic preservation, energy efficiency and sustainability of our buildings, while promoting rain gardens, geothermal heating and cooling systems, solar PV panels, and energy from wind and water.  For instance, by using PV Panels, a business could put any extra energy from solar panels back into the power grid – or use it to power a city streetlight on their corner. The group is also exploring putting in geothermal wells under the city’s parking lots that face the commercial district of downtown and then utilizing those wells for heating and cooling the buildings.

 The RDC is helping to shape a progressive direction for the redevelopment of downtown. There is keen business logic behind the green plans. Making the buildings as energy efficient as possible, not only helps the businesses save money, but it also serves as a marketing tool to promote Ronceverte as a smart place to locate a business.  The reduced energy costs translates into a greater profit for businesses, a concept that any owner will tell you is a win-win for both Ronceverte and the business.

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Big Dreams,Restless Spirit-Sept.15th-18th 8:00 Pm

The play which has been a treat for West Virginians for years will be back again to the delight of all. The play will be held at the Island Park Amphitheater – Lawn Seating is $ 8.00, $5.00 for children and preferred seating is $10.00. Tickets are available at First Natioal Bank in Ronceverte and at the Ronceverte Development Corporation beginning on August 17th. We look forward to seeing you all then.

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The Ronceverte Women’s Club



In honor of the Federation of Women’s Club in Ronceverte, established in 1946, Mayor Gail White read an ordinance marking Apr. 24 as Federation Day in Ronceverte. On behalf of the city council, she expressed appreciation for all the work the ladies of the Ronceverte Women’s Club do for the benefit of the community.

Every year the Women’s Club schedule an annual volunteer clean-up day, together with the Ronceverte Development Corp., in Ronceverte’s downtown public areas as one of their contributions to the community. This year’s clean up day is scheduled for Saturday, Apr. 16. All volunteers are asked to show up by 8 a.m. at the Depot across from the post office.

But the ladies had more to say about the state of Ronceverte’s city streets. Out in force at the Monday evening city council meeting, the Ronceverte Women’s Club members came to register their collective protest to Ronceverte’s downtown litter problem described as “disgusting” and “aggravating.” As Kathleen Williamson said, speaking for the nearly two dozen club members present at the meeting, after their clean-up efforts, “…the very next day it’s as if we hadn’t done a thing!”

Citing cigarette butts as the most prevalent litter item, club members were vociferous and adamant in their complaints to council members. Remarks overheard in the crowded council chamber included, “This is a negative image for Ronceverte!” and “Personally, I’m embarrassed to say I live in Ronceverte!”

In addition to the downtown areas, several owners of rental properties were also named by club members and termed “slum lords.” Photos were presented to the council displaying a number of residences which have consistently shown no improvements.

Mayor White said a city ordinance calls for trash and litter to be in cans and set out the night before trash pickup dates, but she admitted that some of those properties lie beyond the city limits.

Asst. Chief of Police Rusty Byers, weighing in on the matter, said the city has a law on the books requiring homeowners to clean up consistent and excessive debris and trash on their property. They are fined every day they remain in violation of the law and if the property is not cleared by a deadline date, the house is condemned.

The mayor said the City Administrator Pamela Stevens would draft a letter to all the downtown business owners, as an initial step to encourage responsible action on clearing the sidewalks and gutters in front of their places of business.

Williamson said, “We hope this problem can be taken care of on a regular basis.” In other business:

• This Apr. 10 the annual state clean up project, Make It Shine Clean-Up Day, conducted by Friends of the Lower Greenbrier River, will focus on the river front and Island Park. Volunteers are asked to come to the park at 1 p.m.

• The Second Reading of the Pawn Shop Ordinance was approved, paving the way to aid the police in investigating thefts of stolen goods by requiring detailed listings of all items bought and sold in pawn shops. The ordinance parallels one issued by the state.

• The traffic pattern on Pocahontas Street, locally referred to as “Brick Street,” was on the agenda with a plan to change it from a two-way to a one-way street, with the direction of traffic going up the hill. The downhill traffic would be routed to turn left at the intersection of Chesapeake and Pocahontas, and then down toward Greenbrier Avenue. Council member David Smith moved to table the action so that a public meeting could allow residents a say on the issue. The public hearing is set for Apr. 19 at 6 p.m.

• A special meeting to Lay the Levy was set for Apr. 19.

• The Ronceverte Municipal Election is June 11. The mayor said last year only 70 Ronceverte residents voted. A larger turnout is hoped for this year.

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Grant Awarded for Depot

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Historic preservation grants for construction and planning at historically significant sites across West Virginia were announced Tuesday by acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.

Among the larger grants announced Tuesday:

* $50,000 to rebuild masonry, repair a collapsed wall and repair doors and windows at an 18th-century brick home at Fort Pleasant in Hardy County.

* $31,923 to repair roof, parapet, trim, and internal walls at a terminal building along the Midland Trail National Scenic Highway.

* $16,000 to assess the condition of the C&O railroad depot at Ronceverte.

* $16,000 to repair the east wall and exterior siding of the Campbell Mansion at Bethany College. The building was started in 1795 and completed in 1840.

* $14,000 to restore windows and bronze door to a newly renovated concessions area at Wheeling’s Capitol Theater, once on West Virginia’s Endangered Properties List.

* $12,600 to research, develop and print a walking tour brochure and install interpretive signs in Thomas, Tucker County.

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Shanklin’s Grand Theatre in Ronceverte on WV Endangered Properties 2011 List

Shanklin’s Grand Theatre in Ronceverte on WV Endangered Properties 2011 List
Shanklin’s Grand Theatre in Ronceverte designed by John Norman, Sr., one of the first of West Virginia’s African American architects, is on the 2011 Endangered List Properties. The Ronceverte Development Corporation intends to purchase the property, which sits in the heart of the downtown, to protect it from demolition.

Preservation Alliance of West Virginia (PAWV) selected eight historically significant sites for their 2011 Endangered Properties List. Sites from around the state include three former schools including a training facility for “colored” orphans, a coal town high school, and a private academy. Industrial sites listed include a historic train depot, coal company store, and a coal and coke company railroad building. A cemetery chapel and art deco theatre complete the list. PAWV will provide preservation assistance and advocacy to help local supporters in their efforts to save and reuse these significant sites.

Among them is Shanklin’s Grand Theatre in Ronceverte (Greenbrier Co.) designed by John Norman, Sr., one of the first of West Virginia’s African American architects. Built circa 1937, it is the best remaining art deco theater in the county. The Ronceverte Development Corporation intends to purchase the property, which sits in the heart of the downtown, to protect it from demolition. Future plans include restoring the theater for public use and as a community college cinema arts classroom. The old WRON Radio studios on the second floor will be converted for use as a recording studio.

Endangered lists are used by preservation organizations to bring attention to the plight of at-risk properties and to provide assistance to the dedicated organizations involved in their preservation. The selected properties contribute to our understanding of our heritage, which will be diminished if they are lost. PAWV revived its endangered list program in 2009 with a competitive application process and with technical assistance provided to the selected properties.

Thanks to the Partners in the Field Challenge Grant from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the committed donors who have stepped up to that challenge, PAWV field representative, Lynn Stasick, provides endangered list sites with assistance such as needs assessment, preservation expertise, capacity building, raising public awareness and advocacy. Stasick explains “I work with each property and each community in an effort to rehabilitate and adaptively re-use these unique historic sites.”

Properties selected for the PAWV Endangered List must be listed or eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places and meet other criteria such as historic significance, preservation emergency, and local support. Preservation Alliance of West Virginia is the statewide, grassroots organization promoting historic preservation and our state’s cultural heritage.

To follow the fate of past Endangered List Properties, look for updates in the Saving Sites section of our website. More information about listed sites and nomination forms for next year’s Endangered Properties List is available at: www.pawv.org/endanger.htm.

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Welcome to Ronceverte

A town as unique as its name!  Founded on the banks of the beautiful Greenbrier River, we are Ronceverte, West Virginia, and we invite you to experience the Friendly River City. From the French for “Green Bramble”, our name is as unique as the people who make up this community and combine together to create our community’s distinctive identity.

We are a city with a “can do” attitude, and we celebrate our successes in our restored Historic Buildings, improved streetscapes, new recreational resources, and our systematic revitalization of our hometown.

Banks of the Greenbrier

Banks of the Greenbrier

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Building Donated

The Lewisburg Wholesale Building was donated to the City of Ronceverte by Kay Hardesty.  The building is currently being studied by the EPA Brownsfield Grant to determine any hazardous materials that may have been left at the site.

Plans for the building include making it available for private or public re-development.

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