Saturdays at the Scott’s Run Museum in Osage are the days friends gather. This Saturday was a bit different, as the museum hosted and held the Scott’s Run Street Fair. Mary Jane Coulter said the street fair has been going on since 1994.
“Sometimes it’s bigger than others. Last year we had a huge turnout,” said Coulter.
Coulter, who is the executive director of the museum, said Scott’s Run has a significant heartbeat and a love that runs deep for the community.
“We are unfortunately in this bowl now because of I-79. All the houses on Osage Hill, I think there’s three left,” said Coulter.
She also grew up in Osage. She said once the coal industry left, and the interstate took people’s houses and they had to relocate the population of Osage has dwindled. The street fair and the museum gives those who left Osage a chance to come back home.
Coulter showed pictures of a train running right through the street where the fair was taking place. She remembered in the 60s when the train tracks were still there. The museum has occupied the building it calls home since 2012.
“Sometimes it’s standing room only on Saturdays. I get a lot of people from out of state, out of the county. Because, at one time, Osage brought in 19 ethnic groups,” said Coulter.
Not only is the town marked where buildings and businesses once stood, but residents and former residents of Scott’s Run gather at the museum to share stories and memories of the place they at some point called home. The street fair offered music and food along the streets for residents to enjoy.
Coulter said seeing people come and reminisce and remember the times they spent in Osage makes her job worthwhile.
“The heartfelt moments that they have make it worth it,” she said.
Eve Faulkes, professor of graphic design at WVU has become part of the family with the people of Scott’s Run. She and her students have created all the picture displays, several books and a panorama photo of residents that dates back to 1996. People could identify those who they may have known from back then.
On Saturday, students were cooking Scott’s Run recipes for the public. Faulkes said it’s such a wonderful demographic for students to learn about. Faulkes worked with each community in Scott’s Run to create the work she’s done for the community.
“The story of this whole place is contemporary, I think, because it was integrated before that was a word,” said Faulkes.
She said the museum was meant to educate the public, which it does, but it’s also a “third place” for many people who have lived in Scott’s Run.
“You have your home, work and your third place might be church or it might be someplace like this,” said Faulkes.