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A lot to celebrate Sunday

Commemorate West Virginia’s 158th birthday by  visiting various historic sites in Preston County. Learn more about many aspects of life experienced in recent centuries.

On June 20, you can also celebrate Preston County History Day at Arthurdale Heritage, open 1-5 p.m.; the Aurora Area Historical Society Museum, 1-4 p.m.; the McGrew House in Kingwood, 1-3 p.m.; the Szilagyi Center museums in Rowlesburg from noon-4 p.m.; and the Tunnelton Train Depot from 1-5 p.m. 

Learn why the groundbreaking efforts of the nation’s first New Deal subsistence homestead project at Arthurdale were made. Eleanor Roosevelt, America’s first lady, was involved from the very first days in creating the prototype settlement.

Appreciate why Aurora, one of the first areas settled in the county, was once a summer resort town for wealthy city residents coming to “take the mountain air.”

Understand the unique legacy of Kingwood businessman, James C. McGrew, who also helped West Virginia to become the nation’s 35th state. Learn how Persis McGrew, his wife, also enhanced Preston County life in the mid- and late-1800s.

The Szilagyi Center in Rowlesburg has multiple museums that give visitors extensive connections to World War II’s challenges, Preston County’s own sports heroes and railroad bridges.

The Tunnelton Train Depot museum shows railroad life and commerce that continued late into the 20th century. The 1913 brick depot was used by the B&O Railroad, and there are two historic tunnels nearby.

Also, there are three outdoor Civil War Trail sites near Aurora and Rowlesburg.

These county sites will be open the third Sunday of each month through Oct. 17.

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