Old Turnpikes Marker (1937) with DAR "The Toll House" Monument view (1925) view to EastOld Turnpikes Marker (1937) with DAR "The Toll House" Monument (1925)
On the east corner of Staunton Avenue and 7th Street in Parkersburg, Wood County, West Virginia (New Deal Era US 21, US 50 and WV 2) is the New Deal Highway Maker. In the same location there are two non-New Deal markers — The Toll House which was marked by the Daughters of the American Revolution in 1925. This site was also marked with a Old Tollgate House State Historical marker in 1965 for the Old Toll House.
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.
Site Visit 27 May 2019.
“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.
Project originally submitted by Ernest Everett Blevins on July 31, 2019.
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