Marion County, WVGenWeb

Mannington District, Marion County, WV

The soil of this district is loamy, with a clay sub-soil, and is well adapted to blue grass; the hills are high but generally with regular slopes, free from precipitous bluffs, and capable of successful cultivation. The principal timbers are different species of oak, wild cherry, poplar, white and black walnut. hickory sycamore, sugar maple, and abundance of gum. A fine quality of sandstone is quarried from the hills in all parts of the district, and coal and lime in abundance in the eastern part; gravel beds are found along Big Bingamon creek, and the bottoms of the other streams are all slate rock; in the western part a nine-foot vein of coal is found at a depth of 300 feet, and the blossom of coal crops out of all the hills; petroleum has been found in small quantities in the eastern part, principally along Little Bingamon creek. The principal stream is Buffalo creek, which has numerous branches, and heads in the western part of the district, at the water divide between the Ohio river and the Monongahela, and empties into the latter river near Fairmont. Its branches in the district are Piles Fork, which heads in the northwestern part of the district, runs southeast ten miles, and empties near Mannington; this stream has several tributaries — Flat run, Slate fork, Campbell run and Big run. Dents run, Whetstone, Bartholomew, Marion fork and Owens Davy are other branches of Buffalo creek. Little and Big Bingamon head in the eastern part of the district.

Among the first settlers of this part of the county were Nehemiah Glover, Jacob Metz, Aaron Youst, Isaac Lemaster, James Michael, Thomas and Robert Campbell, Alexander Beatty, Rawley Ice, William Haynes, George Hawkins, Robert Downs, Henry T. Floyd, Joseph Vankirk and Vinzant. The latter settled on Buffalo creek three and one-half miles above Mannington, about the year 1790; Rawley Ice moved on to his place from Barracksville, and it is now occupied by Dr. Rawley E. Ice, his son. Adam Ice, who is buried at Barracksville, was the first white child born west of the Allegheny mountains in Virginia; he established Ices ferry on Cheat river, and afterward removed to Barracksville. Adam lce‘s son Rawley, and his brother William B. (ex-state senator) cut the first road from Barracksville to the head of Buffalo creek.

The first grist mill was built about fifty years ago by Jesse Ice, on Piles fork, two and one-half miles from Mannington; when the water of the creek was insufficient to turn the Wheel, it was run by horse power. Several years afterward John Fruland attached a saw mill to it.

A school of about twenty scholars was taught near Mannington, about the Year 1820, in a primitive school house, built of round poles. There are now thirty-six neat, frame school buildings in the district, all comfortably furnished, and the enrollment of Scholars in each sub-district is as follows: Number one, 29; two, 26; three, 220; four, 54; five, 42; six, 39; Seven, 78; eight, 58; nine, 75; ten, 52; eleven, 41; twelve, 42; thirteen, 57; fourteen, 58; fifteen, 62; sixteen, 63; Seventeen, 73; eighteen, 59; nineteen, 49; twenty, 90; twenty-one, 39; twenty-two, 56; twenty-three, 36; twenty-four, 58; twenty—five, 27; twenty-six, 53; twenty-seven, 24; twenty—eight, 50; twenty-nine, 31; thirty, 45; thirty-one, 41; thirty-two, 40; total, 1,760, for school year ending June 30, 1882.

The first postoffice was located four and one—half miles above the present town of Mannington, on Buffalo creek; first called Beattys Mills, then Logansport, now Brant. The names of the present postoffices in the district are as follows: Mannington, Glovers Gap, Brant, Grangeville, Bingamon, Metz and Myers.

Religious services were first held at the house of Richard Roberts, one mile from the mouth of Dents run, at which time the Methodist Episcopals formed a society. Rev. David Cunningham was their first minister, who died in 1880; Thomas Snodgrass, Phillip Green and Caleb Foster were also traveling preachers here about the same time. The society erected a church building at the mouth of Dents run while Rev. Foster was the missionary minister, and Moses Tichner was the presiding elder, who dedicated the church. This (the first church edifice in the district) was a hewn-log building, 24 by 30 feet, and heated by a stove, which was a rare article of furniture at that time. The class was organized in 1840, and the church was built several years afterward, and called Buffalo Chapel. The original members were Richard and Sarah Roberts, Oliver and Tiffany Nay, Henry T. Floyd and wife, Rachel and Elizabeth Floyd, James C. Beatty, M. B. Alexander and Elizabeth Beatty. The second church built was located one mile from Mannington, and known as Mt. Zion Chapel, which was originally a hewn-log house, similar to that at Dents run. The third church was located at the town of Mannington; it was also of the Methodist Episcopal denomination, was formed by a consolidation of the first and second societies, and is still in existence. There are now seventeen church buildings in the district (three of which are log, and the balance one-story frame), owned and occupied as follows: 9 Methodist Episcopal, 1 Methodist Episcopal (south), 2 Regular and Missionary Baptist, 1 United Brethren and Methodist, 2 United Brethren, 1 Presbyterian, 1 Roman Catholic; there are several organized societies which have no building. The principal towns are Mannington and Glovers Gap.

Source: Hardesty’s West Virginia Counties; Volume 2; Pages 72-74
             Jim Comstock – Richwood, WV