Learn about West Virginia history with live reenactments!
Friends of Blackwater is sponsoring a presentation Sunday September 2nd at 3 p.m. at the Thomas City Park. Presenter Doug Wood will tell the story of Gabriel Arthur, a frontiersman who was the first white man to see the Kanawha River Valley in 1674. Arthur was part of an expedition sent out from Fort Henry in Virginia to explore western lands and establish trading relationships with the tribes that lived there. The expedition got off to a bad start, as the leader of the expedition was killed in an altercation with his guide. However Gabriel Arthur was able to continue to travel with a band of Yuchi Indians, following the Kanawha to near its confluence with the Ohio. The record of his journey provides historians with clues about what this region would have looked like 100 years before the American revolution.
Other similar events will be taking place around Tucker County that weekend, including a living history presentation in Canaan Valley State Park on Friday August 31st at 7 p.m., where Wood will be portraying Ostenaco, a Cherokee leader who played an important role in the French and Indian War. Ostenaco was a military leader who struck an alliance between the Cherokee tribes and the British during the war, and later engaged in treaty negotiations to try to create a permanent home for his people in the southeast.
All of these presentations are History Alive! programs of the West Virginia Humanities Council.