By Eliza, Preserve WV AmeriCorps
The “biggest thing” that occurred during my second quarter of service was the Old Hemlock Reunion. While LeJay and other Old Hemlock Family members did most of the planning, I felt as though I learned and grew in my role as an AmeriCorps member substantially through my experience at the reunion. Having attending the reunion and met most of the members of this community, I finally feel as though I am a member of the family and that I have acquired a greater level of understanding of the current legacy of George and Kay. My two major contributions at the reunion were the completion of 18 oral history interviews and the creation of a solution to LeJay’s sign-up problem (signupgenius.com). I also gave a presentation of my personal thoughts and reflections on George’s legacy, which was very well received. I indexed 1000 minutes of interviews with George and Kay. These were the interviews that Kathy Harper recorded while writing George’s autobiography. LeJay and I felt as though it would not be a practical use of my time to transcribe these interviews, so I created an index instead. It has already proved to be useful.
Over the last month I have been developing an educational outreach plan for Craik-Patton House in Charleston called Traveling Trunks. It is essentially a program the Craik-Patton House is offering to Kanawha County elementary schools, beginning this fall, where we will travel to the school free of charge and give a living history presentation in class. There will be two separate programs: the first will be for grades 1-3 and the second for 4th and 5th graders. The goals of the traveling programs are to increase awareness of the Craik-Patton House by sharing its history, as well as the early history of the settlement of the Kanawha Valley. For the younger students this will also include a fun history of toys and games children would have played, and for older students, a chance to see what it was like for children during the Civil War. We want to make history interactive, fun, and relevant for grades 1st through 5th. Currently, I have purchased one trunk, and a volunteer has offered use of his trunk as well, and we have several toys, clothes and kitchen items ready for the fall. The state museum has also graciously offered their reproduction items for our use as well. Needless to say, this has been a tedious and involved process thus far, but we have had significant successes. We hope this fall will be an excellent pilot program for the schools.
One of the best achievements I have had with the planning of the program, is the opportunity to speak at the spring meeting of Kanawha County Schools elementary principals to let them know what we are wanting to implement for the fall. I spoke to over 50 principals, the superintendent of elementary schools and the superintendent of Kanawha County Schools on April 2, and they were thrilled this program was being offered. We have had seven schools contact me to let me know they want our presentation at their school, and all the principals were eager to get the program up and rolling. I was very excited that the program was received so well, even in the beginning stages, and it has truly lit the fire inside me to make it a success and something kids will love.
Presented at the Cockayne House, 1111 Wheeling Avenue, Glen Dale, “Women of the House” is open until Labor Day. Admission to the exhibit is included with a tour of the ca. 1850 farmhouse. Admission is $5.00 for adults; admission for students (grades 1—12) and senior citizens is $3.00; pre-school children are admitted for free. The Cockayne Farmstead is open for tours daily, Monday through Friday, between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., and tours begin on the hour. Weekend and group tours are by reservation; credit cards are accepted. Free off-street parking is available adjacent to the Cockayne Farmstead office at 1105 Wheeling Avenue.
Please call Caitlin Hucik or Tom Tarowsky at 304-845-1411 for group or weekend reservations, or with questions.
The Cockayne Farmstead is a site project for the Preserve WV AmeriCorps, a service initiative administered by Preservation Alliance of WV. For more information, visit our Preserve WV Program page.
Rodney Bohner, PAWV’s Preserve WV AmeriCorps, organized a few AmeriCorps members. With oversight provided by Lynn Stasick and Pete and Carolyn Stephens, the volunteers covered the logs with a large tarp. It was a sunny day with strong winds, which made it difficult to secure the 30′ x 40′ tarp. However, it was a successful day, and the members were able to ensure this precious resource is protected from the elements until the fort can be reassembled.
Hello everyone, my name is Caitlin Hucik and I am serving with PreserveWV Americorps at Cockayne Farmstead in Glen Dale, WV. My family roots lie in the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia and Western Pennsylvania. I am lucky enough to have been raised in two communities with rich history-Weirton, WV and Windber, PA. From a very early age, I have been exposed to history -the perks of being a teacher’s daughter I suppose. So, working in a museum seems like second nature to me.
I received a Bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master’s degree in public history from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and also spent time studying abroad on Semester at Sea through the University of Virginia. Before moving to the Wheeling area, I worked at numerous museums in Johnstown and Somerset, PA. My passions in life are travel, women’s history, and saving historic places so when I learned about PAWV’s AmeriCorps position I did not hesitate to apply. Being able to return to my home state and share a piece of its history is a best-case scenario.
The Cockayne Farmstead, originally called Glendale Farm, is a circa 1850 farm house. The Cockayne family came to West Virginia in the 1790’s and built a prosperous sheep farm by the 1890’s. Their American Marino sheep where sold as far away as Australia and their wool won a bronze medal at the Philadelphia Exposition in 1876. The family was influential locally as well; the Cockayne women were talented musicians and artists while the Cockayne men ran for political office and contributed to the commerce of Marshall County. Their stories combine to create a colorful history, one which I am privileged to learn and share with others.
My goals for this year are to build the volunteer base at Cockayne, organize and repair over 12,000 primary documents, and create the first temporary exhibit focusing on the Cockayne women. I am thrilled to be serving at such an interesting site and I look forward to the rest of my year here.
This service initiative is administered by the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia, the statewide grassroots nonprofit dedicated to the support and promotion of historic preservation in the Mountain State. The PreserveWV AmeriCorps members develop and participate in a variety of community projects related to historic resource improvement, historic preservation, heritage tourism development, and nonprofit organizational capacity building. For more information, visit www.pawv.org. PreserveWV AmeriCorps is funded in part by Volunteer West Virginia, the state’s Commission for National and Community Service, and by the Commission for National and Community Service.
Join Main Street Morgantown at Barnes & Noble (3000 University Town Centre Dr.) from Friday, December 13 – Sunday, December 15 for the Barnes & Noble Bookfair Supporting Main Street Morgantown. For every customer that mentions Main Street Morgantown’s name prior to making a purchase during these days, Barnes & Noble will donate 20% of the proceeds to MSM.
At 1:00 p.m. this Saturday, December 14th, Main Street Morgantown has arranged for Lynn Stasick, PAWV Statewide Field Services Representative, to host a preservation talk at Barnes & Noble. The talk will give a brief overview of preservation related topics, followed by a Q & A. Lynn has created a list of his favorite preservation books, including A Field Guide to American Houses, Old House Dictionary: An Illustrated Guide to American Domestic Architecture 1600-1940, Historic Preservation: An Introduction to Its History, Principles, and Practices, and Nearby History, Exploring the Past Around You, which will be available for purchase at Barnes & Noble during the event.
Lynn works with the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia to provide on-site assistance with needs assessment, redevelopment, sustainability plan creation, funding source identification, and preservation project grant-writing assistance. For more information about Lynn and his preservation activities, please visit PAWV’s website http://www.pawv.org/newhire.htm.
MSM, Monongalia Arts Center, Barnes & Noble, and PBS have also partnered to provide an array of other events throughout the three day event. These events will encompass activities focusing on topics including Downtown Abbey, historic preservation, poetry, prose, and a children’s art activity.
Main Street Morgantown, a tax exempt not-for-profit organization, is dedicated to the betterment of Morgantown’s Downtown and Wharf Districts through thoughtful revitalization. MSM focuses on creation of a safe and welcoming physical design in the district; active recruitment, retention and promotion of the district; preservation of local history through architecture and design in the district; and achievement of a vibrant and successful business community through partnership with local stakeholders, both public and private. For more information please visit our website or Facebook at http://www.downtownmorgantown.com or http://www.facebook.com/mainstreetmorgantown.
I have experience in digital marketing, event planning, archaeology, volunteer management, copy editing, and web content development. Ultimately, my goal is to pursue a master’s degree in cultural resource management.
I am thrilled to be serving at Main Street Morgantown (MSM), the most decorated Main Street in West Virginia. MSM won the Great American Main Street Award in 1998 and has won over 80 individual, committee and project State awards in the past 23 years. In addition to helping with Small Business Day, Chocolate Lovers’ Day, MedExpress Kids’ Day, Art is Food, Arts Walk, and the many other events MSM hosts in Downtown Morgantown and the Historic Wharf District, I will be dedicating a lot of my time to revamping and marketing the Historic Downtown Morgantown Audio Walking Tour and establishing the Downtown and Historic Wharf Districts as a cultural district. Overall, I can’t wait to learn more about wild and wonderful West Virginia and the beautifully historic town of Morgantown.
This service initiative is administered by the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia, the statewide grassroots nonprofit dedicated to the support and promotion of historic preservation in the Mountain State. The PreserveWV AmeriCorps members develop and participate in a variety of community projects related to historic resource improvement, historic preservation, heritage tourism development, and nonprofit organizational capacity building. For more information, visit www.pawv.org. Preserve WV AmeriCorps is funded in part by Volunteer West Virginia, the state’s Commission for National and Community Service, and by the Commission for National and Community Service.
My name is Malina Suity. I’m a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and it’s becoming a pattern in my life that I just keep leaving and coming back home over and over again. I’ve left this time to serve in Preserve WV AmeriCorps at Main Street Fairmont, to learn how to, and help, preserve and develop some true architectural treasures a little bit further up the Mon than I’m used to. In the past, I left to attend Ohio Wesleyan University and receive a BA in English and Medieval Studies. I came back, left Pittsburgh again to see what life was like in New York City, and came back when I realized it wasn’t for me. I left again to pursue a Master’s degree in Public History at the University of West Florida in Pensacola. And when I came back home again, I thought it was for good. I served in AmeriCorps in Pittsburgh through KEYS Service Corps at Reading is Fundamental Pittsburgh. That opportunity raised my awareness of the crisis in education, but also in our historic neighborhoods, not just in my city, but across the region. And when I finished my term, I decided to join up again, this time with a focus on my passion: history and preservation.
Read about PreserveWV AmeriCorps member, Eliza’s, recent adventure at the Old Hemlock Foundation.
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