Archive for July, 2011

The two articles below from 1932 issues comes by courtesy of Howard Osburn, treasurer of the Wayne County Genealogy Society.  Howard, as mentioned in an earlier post, does extensive research on the history of Wayne County.  Our thanks go out to him for this new information as well as the previous information that he provided for an earlier post.

One would have to  remember that when the Butler District High School (later to become FGHS) was being built, it was in the early throes of the great depression of the thirties.  What a struggle it must have been and there had to be strong-willed individuals behind it all to drive it forward to completion as they did.

It appears from the articles below that Fort Gay also had some pretty good tennis players at the time.  I wonder where they would have practiced.  Is anyone aware if there were tennis courts in the immediate area at that time.  I hope the following arouses some pleasent memories of events and people from the past.

(WCN – 8/11/1932)




Wayne County ran away with the honors at the Marshall College Tennis Tournament again this summer when Wardy C.

Lovely, teacher in the Fort Gay Junior High School and Jack Thompson, athletic coach at Butler District High School, Fort

Gay, won the doubles championship for the summer. The Wayne county pair played two matches Thursday afternoon,

August 4, defeating Dale Henderson, Richwood, W. Va., and Clyde Alford, Ravenswood, W. Va., in the first match and

Landis Litchfield, and Charles Gillian of Huntington in the finals, with a score of 6-3; 6-2.

Wardy Lovely upset the dope in the singles tournament by defeating Jonathan Lowe, of Milton, singles champion of last

summer, by a score of 6-4; 6-3. It will be remembered that last summer the Wayne pair were the doubles champs while

Rebecca Lambert, of Wayne, was the girls singles champ.


(WCN – 10/6/1932)





M. W. Zinn, contractor, resumed work on the new high school building at Fort Gay this week, and will rush the outside

work to completion within 60 days. The first story was completed last year with a special levy of 30 cents on each one

hundred dollars valuation. This year the legislature reduced expenditures of Boards to 85 percent of what they spent last

year, and as a result the Butler High School Board of Directors will be unable to complete the inside of the building for

use this year, the amount of the reduction being equal to the amount to finish the inside.

It is hoped that some money may be obtained from the Reconstruction Finance Corporation to finish the building this

year, and thereby save the amount that would be spent for rent.

The enrollment of Butler High has increased this year considerably, there being approximately 115 in Jr. High and 120 in

Senior High, making a total of 235 students.

Butler high school is a first class temporary high school, all teachers holding degrees from standard colleges, all

equipment being first class, and meeting all the requirements of the State Department of Education, except buildings or

rooms. As soon as the school is housed in its permanent quarters this temporary standing will be removed and the

school will be first class without any restrictions.

All students taking the teacher’s examination this year were permitted to substitute their high school work for grades on

their certificates.

The faculty is composed of N. E. Plymale, principal, Iliff West, R. J. Thompson, R. W. Gillette, Mrs. Madge Matthews, Mrs.

Opal Lycan.



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Below is listed the contact information for anyone wishing to buy tickets on the FGHS quilt being given away on Labor Day weekend at the FGHS Alumni reunion.  The quilt is queen size.  Tickets may be mail ordered from Dan Watts, PO Box 248, Fort Gay, WV 25514.  All checks should be made payable to FGHS Class of 59.  As indicated below, tickets are one dollar each or six for five dollars.

 Tickets are ONE dollar each or six for FIVE  Contacts are Dan Watts 606 638-4777. Doris Brumfield Staton 304 525-8623,  and Lynette Thompson Chaffin 606 638-3796.  Dan left our home today with the quilt so it may be view by contacting him.

               Dave Rossman Class of 59

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With five weeks to go, the 2011 reunion of the Fort Gay High School alumni is rapidly taking shape.  Letters have been mailed to all of those that have attended FGHS that we have addresses for.  If you are an alumnus and have not received a letter, that means we do not have your mailing address.  Please consider this as your invitation.

Reservations are coming in for our Friday, September 3, banquet.  Reception will begin at 5 pm. followed by our banquet at 6 pm.  Cost is $25.00 per person and you will need reservations.  Reservations and information may be had by contacting Paul Salmons, phone 606 652 4048, email psalmons@hotmail.com.

The FGHS Memorial Scholarship benefit golf tournament is being held on Friday, September 2, at Eagle Ridge Golf Course located just outside Louisa.  The tournament is a best ball scramble format.  Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. and tee times will be about 8:30 a.m.  You will be provided snacks, a continental breakfast, and lunch at the golf course.  The cost is $50.00 per team member which includes the above plus cart and greens fee.   If you are unable to recruit a team, the golf chairman will assign you one.  All proceeds go to benefit the FGHS Memorial Scholarship.  For additional information and/or reservations, please contact Joe Damron, phone 304 6487265 or email mursayds@gmail.com

If you are a FGHS grad and would like to be placed on our mailing list, you may contact me, Richard A. Plymale, at 1468 Pine Meadow Rd., Lexington, KY 40504,  phone 859 255 5836, email richard.plymale@insightbb.com.   Our goal is to be able to mail each and every person that attended FGHS during its many years of existence.  If you have friends that attended FGHS but do not receive mailings or visit this site, please pass this information along to them.



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7/25…Family…You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, but you can’t pick your family.

7/26…If someone divulged a secret that he/she shouldn’t have, you might say…Lettin’ the cat out of the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back.

7/27…Simple Task…It was as easy as sliding off a greasy log.

7/28…Uf tiy’re talking about a person you detest, you might say…I wouldn’t poke air holes in the top of a pickle jar if he were stuck inside.

7/29…Contrarian…If you offered him heaven and earth, he’d want a tater patch in hell.

7/30-31…Foolish…That makes as much sense as goin’ out in a tornado with an umbrella.

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Below are pictures of a quilt that was commssioned by the FGHS class of 59 to be made by an Amish quilter.  Raffle tickets will be sold thoroughout the reunion weekend by class members in support of the FGHS Memorial Scholarship.  There will be a later post with contact information so that anyone wishing to purchase tickets on the quilt prior to Labor Day weekend may do so.  The winning ticket for the quilt will be drawn on Saturday night, September 3, 2011.  It will not be necessary to be present to win.

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I bet someone from Kentucky has it.

Grave Creek Tablet

Gravecreekstone_up_mediumThe Grave Creek Tablet is West Virginia’s most controversial archeological relic. According to local legend, the tablet, an engraved piece of sandstone measuring approximately 1 1/2 by 2 inches, was discovered in the spring of 1838 when Abelard Tomlinson and others first excavated Grave Creek Mound at Moundsville. Although accounts differ slightly, all agree that the tablet was found as laborers excavated near the mound’s upper burial vault. Tomlinson, whose family owned the mound, claimed to have found the stone under the floor of the upper burial vault. Others who were present claimed to have found it themselves or said that it was pulled from a wheelbarrow of dirt taken from around the upper burial. At the time of its discovery, Tomlinson and the others did not attach any significance to the tablet, believing the characters carved into one side of the stone simply to be Indian hieroglyphs.

Soon after, however, Henry Rowe Schoolcraft, an eminent ethnographer, studied the tablet and became convinced that the characters were carved by Celts from ancient Spain or Britain, rather than early American Indians. With this pronouncement, the Grave Creek Tablet became the center of controversy. Different scholars concluded that the characters resembled those in a variety of ancient alphabets, including Tunisian, ancient Greek, Egyptian, Etruscan, and Phoenician, as well as those from Algiers, Libya, and the African interior. Other scholars, most notably archeologist Ephraim George Squier, denounced the stone as a fraud. Despite years of study and debate, the origin of Grave Creek Tablet was never conclusively resolved. The present location of the tablet is unknown, although the Smithsonian Institution has four casts of it.



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Charles Dawson did not attend Fort Gay High School, however, he had many friends and relatives in the area.  He was a cousin of John Raines and was also a cousin of mine.  We extend our sympathies to the surviving family members.


(Jul 19, 2011)CHARLES WALLACE DAWSON, 82, of Milton, W.Va., passed away Saturday, July 16, 2011 at the Spring Valley VA Medical Center. He was born October 14, 1928, in Fort Gay, W.Va., the eldest son of George Wallace and Jessie Raines Dawson. He was raised at Crum, W.Va., and he graduated from Wayne High School in 1946. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps, where he was a staff sergeant and a cryptographer at the time of his discharge in 1949. He entered what was then Marshall College and graduated with a BA in Business Administration in 1952. He then married Sally Janet Dameron, who preceded him in death, and with whom he had two sons, Charles W. (Anita Tabor) Dawson Jr., and Jon Preston Dawson, all of Milton. He is also survived by three grandchildren, Jon Preston Dawson Jr. and Alexandria Dawson of Milton, and Elizabeth Hughes Taylor of Dallas, Texas; two brothers, Herbert Dawson of Crum and Jack Dawson of Columbus, Ohio; and one sister-in-law, Ima Jean Dawson of Crum. He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, James Franklin Dawson and Ralph Leon Dawson, and two sisters, Mary Carroll Reinhardt and Phyllis Ann “Dolly” Browning. He was owner and president of Hogan Storage and Transfer of Williamson, W.Va., at the time of his retirement. He was a member of the Wayne County Genealogical and Historical Society, a Kentucky Colonel, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Sons of the Confederacy, and the Fifth Avenue Baptist Church. He was also an avid fan of the Thundering Herd football team and never missed a home game for over 20 years. Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Wednesday, July 20, 2011, at the Wallace Funeral Home, Milton with Dr. Allen Reasons, pastor of Fifth Avenue Baptist Church, officiating. Visitation will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Wallace Funeral Home, Milton.


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