Barbour County Local History Queries

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Jarad Garlesky 30 June 2012
Criss Cemetery

We have been searching high and low for the "Criss cemetery" in Barbour county west Virginia. I have found listings on various websites with pictures and a church still present in the background. No site whatsoever has an address listed and I have ancestors there and would like to nail down a location. Where is this cemetery. Has it been renamed?

MCL Note: The Criss Church graveyard is in the Union District, located on US Route 119.

Christine Phillips 13 April 2012
Belington School

Hello- I am looking for information on a school located in or near Belington around 1930-1932. My grandfather Hobson Dewey Phillips was a teacher in the area up to his death in 1932. I would love the name of the school, how long he taught, and of course, any pictures or stories/information about him, his immediate family, or the school. My dad was very young at the time of his father's death and remembers very little [and they left the area shortly after his death]. I am trying to track down information for him.
Many thanks!
Christine Phillips

Bertine Lockhart 29 October 2010

In Barbour County there used to be a coal mining town name of Berryburg. My grandparents and their children lived there for awhile. This was back in 1902 they went back and forth for awhile, my mother was born there in Berryburg, March 1910. In trying to find some info on a death I was told by an uncle long ago that the courthouse in Berryburg burned and all records lost. Did Berryburg actually have a courthouse or was it reported in Philippi perhaps? I can't find anything online and I sent away for the book that listed deaths in that timeline. Can you help me out on anything at all regarding this town?
Thank you so much
Bert at:

William J. Robinson Tuesday March 14, 2006
Taylor's Drain Cemetery

I have just set up a non-profit association for the Taylor's Drain Cemetery in Barbour County, WV. The West Virginia Methodist Conference is now in the process of deeding the cemetery over to the association. We will be repairing tombstones; filling in graves; putting up a fence and gate; and improving the grounds as needed. We are looking for old photos, records, newspaper articles, etc. for the possible publication of the history of the church and of those people buried in the cemetery. Any help would be appreciated.

You can e-mail me or mail the information to:
William J. Robinson
Taylor's Drain Cemetery Association, Inc.
6138 Rohrersville Road
Boonsboro, MD 21713-2749

or feel free to call after 7:00 p.m.

Ron Kuzemchak Thursday December 22, 2005

John HEISLEY WEAVER - philadelphia businessman - supposedly had several coal mines in Barbour and Preston counties (1890-1930). One mine / town was supposedly called 'HEISLEYWOOD'- anyone know of its location? JHW was also a 'president' of the West Virginia Northern Railroad at some point!

Freda Windle Saturday July 2 2005
Moatsville info

I need directions to Moatsville and its cemetery. My ggggrandmother Sarah Frey Annon is buried there with other relatives. Any help is appreciated.

Robert Bonar Monday April 18 2005
High Schools

I am looking for information regarding a black high school once operated in Philippi. The only thing I know about the school is that it was in operation during the 1939-40 school year, when it was listed as "Colored High School" in the state educational directory. I would appreciate any information (dates of operation, name of school, mascot and school colors). I would also like to hear from someone who knows the histories of Belington, Kasson, and Philippi high schools and may have pictures of them.

Emily Cary Weds March 30 2005
Churches in Nestorville c.1887

I am writing a book about my grandmother's experiences as the wife of a West Virginia minister and am eager to know what churches existed in Nestorville at the time of her marriage to Rev. Millard Fillmore Pritchard in October 1887 and if they are still in use. My grandfather later transferred to the West Virginia Methodist Conference, but I believe that his Nestorville charge was a United Brethren Church. His first wife, Margaret (Maggie) Cerilda Kelley, died in childbirth January 12, 1887 at age 22, leaving two children. Incidentally, I see that his initials are incorrectly listed as N. E. Pritchard in the records of Nestorville Cemetery, Barbour County, no doubt because they had become indistinct on her gravestone by the time it was enumerated. He was named for U.S. President Millard Fillmore; thus, his initials were M. F. Pritchard. He married my grandmother, Rosa Bell Nestor, a member of his church, within the year and they had three children of their own, one being my father, Ernest Markwood Pritchard.
Sincerely, Emily Pritchard Cary,

Susan Crites Thu December 30 2004
Notable West Virginians in the Civil War

I am writing abook about Notable West Virginians in the Civil War and wondered who was the most notable Union and most notable Confederate in the Civil War. Any help would be much appreciated.

Christy Heatherly Thu November 25 2004
Hackers Creek

I am interested in the settlements on Hackers Creek in Barbour County. Any information would be appreciated. Surnames: HEATHERLY - SWIGER - WILLIAMS.

Robert Ryczak Mon May 10 2004

My great grandfather, Robert BERNOSKY, a Hungarian immigrant, died in a coal mine near Century, WV, around Sept 1903, 3 months before my grandfather was born. Don't know if he's still in the mine or was buried elsewhere. Looking for details about the town, the mine, local Hungarian immigrant life, how Hungarians found out about coal mines in WV, who brought them there, any local mine disasters around that time and place.

Maureen Richie October 27 2003

Hi, can anybody please help me? My great grandmother used to live in Barbour County, and when she was a little girl she attended Brushy Fork Church. She was born in 1893. I am presuming then it would date back before the early 1900's. Please email at Also please put Brushy Fork in the subject line.
Thanks, Maureen

Martha Boone Sun October 26 2003

I would like some information regarding the black population in Barbour county. I was born in Galloway, West Virginia. My fathers surname was Johnson and my mothers maiden name was Cosby. I would like to know if anyone has done any research or has any history of the black families that resided in Galloway or Brownton West Virginia. My family all graduated from Philippi High or Philip Barbour High School. I would appreciate any information.

Nanette Forrester June 3 2003

Does anyone know how the town of Tacy got it's name, or any of it's history. Thank you.

Ralph P. Bennett April 21 2003

I am doing research on Draper Trimble who enlisted in Company D, 20th Virginia Cavalry on May 1, 1863. His place of enlistment was listed as 'ELK', West Virginia. In Barbour there is no longer an Elk town name. There is an Elkwater. I have seen "Elk Twp" listed in birth, death registers. Can anyone help me sort out this place of enlistment. Are or were the place names interchangable or separate? Do you know the exact location Of Elk? Any assistance would be greatly appreciate. Thanks, Ralph Bennett

Howard Ashenfelter Feb 27 2003

Does anyone have any information on the family that owned the Ashenfelter house, spelled Ashenfidter in the "Walking tour" section of the Barbour County Home Page? Col. Kelley was taken there after being wounded during the Civil War battle in Philippi.

Does anyone know what became of Jacob Ashenfelter who owned the house? Did Jacob die? Was he killed during the war? How about his son Thomas? What became of him? Jacob Ashenfelter was my grgr grandfather. What happened to the family and the house after the Civil War battle.

I know what happened to the son, from whom I'm descended, but nothing of the rest of the family. When did the family come to the county? Any information would be appreciated. Howard Ashenfelter

Anna Ringler Sep 13 2002
Barbour County Natural Gas Company

I am seeking information on the Barbour County Natural Gas Company. Whether it changed names, was sold, anything. We have stocks from this company dating from 1921-1925 any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Phil Phillips Sun Nov 11 2001
Phillips Fort

Does anyone have any information on the Phillips Fort that was located at Meadowville, Barbour County, WV.
Thanks, Phil Phillips,

Lulu Grubb Tue Aug 21 2001
The town of Claude, Barbour County

Does anyone have any information on the town named Claude in Barbour County? How did the town get its name? Was there a mine or a mill or was it always farms? My husband and I found Claude Road. We stopped and asked where the town was and we were told the whole area was Claude. Any information will be appreciated. E-mail:

James F. Wisecup Tues May 22 2001

Dr. William BIGGS lived on a farm near Laurel Hill. His farm was in between the north and south in the Battle of laurel Hill. Can anyone pinpoint the location of this farm for me?


Lee F. McGee Tue Jan 30 2001
Taylor's Drain Church

Does anyone know anything about layministers in the Methodist church in Barbour County? In particular, I'm looking for pastors or ministers, ordained or otherwise, of the Taylor's Drain Church. I know that Thomas Proudfoot was at least one, but if anyone has any idea of others please let me know. I'm particulaly interested in the mid 1800's. Also, does anyone know what would have happened to the records of the Taylor's Drain church after the tornado in the 1940's? I'd also be interested in any pictures anyone might be willing to share of that area after the tornado. Thanks again, all! Lee

Ed Bennett Wed Jan 17 2001

I enjoyed reading about Barbour County, West Virginia. I have been trying to find information on the vote of the present West Virginia counties to leave Virginia and form their own state. Do you have a county by county vote tally, and were any of the counties west of the border counties loyal to Virginia? Have there been any books published on the proceedings? Thank you very much for your time. Edward Bennett/Roanoke, VA, E-mail:

Sandra DeVault Tue Jan 16 2001
Philippi Covered Bridge

I am trying to locate information on how long it took to build the original covered bridge at Philippi?

Ralph Appy Mon Oct 30 2000

My mother was a Coffman whose family came from Kasson area: William, Henry, George etc. I noticed a reference to an article written by "the Coffmans" in the Kasson home page and was wondering where I might obtain a copy. Appreciate any help you could provide. Ralph Appy

Dave Copenhaver Sun Aug 20 2000
Elk City Mayors

Looking for a list of the previous mayors of Elk City, Barbour County, WV, c. 1870.
Thanks, Dave Copenhaver Sr. E-mail:

Wes Shaffer Wed Jul 19 2000
Photos of Barbour Civil War soldiers

Wanted: Photos of Barbour Civil War soldiers. I am completing a history of Barbour County during the Civil War and would like to include portraits of soldiers who served from the county. If you have a photo, please contact Wes Shaffer at

Lee F. McGee Wed Jul 19 2000
The Hall Mill

Does anyone have any photos/memories/stories about the Hall mill, built by David Hall? It was along the Buckhannon River, on the west side, just south of where the new bridge is being constructed. Thanks, Lee F. McGee

Suzanne Hurtado Tue Jul 18 2000

Do you not have any available information on Brownton, WV in Barbour County. I grew up there and attended Mt. Vernon Elementary school and Philippi Jr High and Philip Barbour HS. I am starting to accumulate information on my family history and would like to see some information relative to this town. It was unincorporated and had a thriving coal mining industry at one time. Thanks for any information you can provide. E-mail:

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June 21, 2000-2011
Last Updated: 5 February 2011.