Historical Sign at the Early Oil WellsSubmission to SHPO for review and compliance added to HPI Form WD-2635)
One of the original program markers from 1937, installed by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration.
The West Virginia historical marker program began in 1934 with the beginning research for the markers with the intention of placing markers around the state to encourage tourism. Dr. Roy Bird Cook, a Charleston druggist, a longtime commission member, and avocational historian worked on the project.
5,000 sites were collected with 440 markers selected by the commission for placement. Most of these along 44 state and federal highways.
The money came from the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) and the Works Progress Administration (WPA). In addition to the markers, a book of the 440 markers was published in a format easy to place in a glove box.
The marker at the site of the old state capitol (which burned in 1921) was the first of these 440 markers installed and dedicated on 26 April 1937.
“Initial Historical Marker Will Be Installed Monday,” The Charleston Gazette, 21 April 1937, p. 18.
“First Historical Marker on Site of Capitol that Burned,” The Charleston Daily-Mail, 27 April 1937, p. 4.
West Virginia Historic and Scenic Highway Markers, Charleston, West Virginia, Mathews Printing & Lithograph Company, 1937.
Marking Our Past: West Virginia's Historical Highway Markers, Charleston, West Virginia, WV Division of Culture & History, 2002.
"Early Oil Wells Historical Marker," West Virginia State Historic Preservation Office, HPI form WD-2635. See https://mapwv.gov/shpo
Project originally submitted by Ernest Everett Blevins on August 20, 2019.
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