Hidden History Weekend

ranger with visitors by historic buildings
A Ranger leads a guided walk through the historic railroad town of Thurmond.

NPS photo

 

Join us for the 14th Annual Hidden History Happenings

 
Collection of historic images of young boys playing the banjo, a baseball team, a civil war cannon, and a wooden building
 

Schedule of Events

September 16

2:00 pm to 2:30 pm – History Patio Talk: Life of Coal Miners at Canyon Rim Visitor Center

Hear what it was like to be a coal miner in the New River Gorge in the early 1900s. Tools of the trade and historic photos help paint a picture of the many challenges faced by the laborers.

7:30 pm to 9:30 pm – Fireside Tales on the Trail (Reservations Requested) at Grandview Visitor Center (1 mile easy walk)

Hear tales of Appalachia along the trail and around the campfire. These family-friendly tales will include local legends, folklore, and a few spooky stories. Wear good walking shoes. Bring a flashlight.

September 17

10:00 am to 6:00 pm – Babcock Gristmill Open House at Babcock State Park

Come and go as you please to see the Glade Creek Gristmill inside and out. The miller will be on-hand for informal discussions about the history of this structure and how the mill works.

10:00 am to 12:30 pm – Nuttallburg Headhouse Hike at Short Creek Trailhead (2 miles with moderate to strenuous terrain)

See the area’s most intact 1920s-era headhouse and coal conveyor in the New River Gorge on this hike to the historic Nuttallburg mine. Hear what work was like both in and outside the mine for workers at this site.

11:00 am to 12:00 pm– History Patio Talk: Riding the Railroad Ranks at Thurmond Visitor Center

Working on the railroad was more than just hard work. For many, it presented the chance for lifelong jobs. Join a ranger in the historic town of Thurmond to learn more about the different types of railroad jobs and see if you have what it takes to work your way up the ranks.

12:00 pm to 3:00 pm – Graham House Annual Chili Dinner at Graham House

Visit the historic Graham House, one of West Virginia’s oldest homes built in the 1770s. Explore this historic house that still looks much like it did 200 years ago, plus enjoy this annual chili dinner. Tour the house, take a turn at churning apple butter, enjoy fresh-pressed apple cider, listen to live music, and shop local vendors. The event is free; chili dinner is $10.00.

2:00 pm to 2:30 pm – History Patio Talk: Industries of the Boom at Canyon Rim Visitor Center

Hear how the industries of coal, railroad, and timber once thrived in the New River Gorge in the early 1900s. Tools of the trade and historic photos helps paint a picture of those busy days gone by.

2:00 pm to 9:00 pm – Follow the River Walk and Movie at Summers County Visitor Center

Explore the story of Mary Draper Ingles, whose family settled along New River in the 1750s. This two-park program includes a walk to a subsistence farm and an evening movie in town. Parking available in town.
  • 2:00 – 5:00 pm WALK - Meet at Summers County VC for this walk from Hinton Historic District to the Richmond Hamilton Farm and back. Listen to Mary’s story along the way, enjoy refreshments at the farm with a ranger, then back to Hinton. Wear comfortable walking shoes.
  • 5:00 pm Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 pm MOVIE - Meet at Hinton City Park to watch the movie Follow the River, the story of Mary Draper Ingles. Bring a blanket or chair. Be prepared for weather.

September 18

10:00 am to 6:00 pm – Babcock Gristmill Open House at Babcock State Park

Come and go as you please to see the Glade Creek Gristmill inside and out. The miller will be on-hand for informal discussions about the history of this structure and how the mill works.

10:00 am to 11:00 am – Castle Rock Trail Guided Hike at Grandview Visitor Center (0.6 mile strenuous hike, round trip 1.1 miles)

Join a ranger on this hike to enjoy close-up views of towering fortress-like rock walls and exposed coal seams. Trail begins near Main Overlook and ends where it intersects with the Grandview Rim Trail, approximately 0.5 mile easy walk from Main Overlook. Sturdy shoes are strongly recommended for this hike.

1:00 pm to 2:00 pm – Living with the Landscape at Grandview Visitor Center (0.5 mile easy walk)

Explore the remains of the old Carper family farmstead and orchard. Learn how early gorge residents learned to live with the natural landscape on this leisurely stroll.

3:00 pm to 4:00 pm – Carnifex Civil War Battlefield Tour at Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park (1 mile easy walk)

Step back in time at a place where history happened in 1861. Walk the battlefield site, cemetery, and see the Patterson house to learn more about what happened here during the Civil War.

September 22

10:00 am to 12:00 pm – Country Roads Walk at Pipestem Resort State Park (1.5 mile easy walk)

Explore the area’s pre-park history on this walk to old farm sites, foundations, and more, painting a picture of the past.

September 23

10:00 am to 1:00 pm – History’s Helpers: Nuttallburg Tipple Veg Cleanup (Reservations Requested) at Nuttallburg Bottom

Lend a hand at the historic site of Nuttallburg by joining National Park Service staff manage aggressive vegetation around the coal tipple. Hand tools will be used for this resource stewardship project. Bring water and a lunch. Wear work boots, long pants and sleeves. Bring work gloves and safety glasses or some will be available. 15 participant limit.

Travel Notice: Keeneys Creek Road is a small single-lane road with some rough areas. Vehicles with moderate clearance recommended. Be prepared to maneuver with oncoming traffic, including backing up.

7:00 pm to 9:00 pm – Haunted History Hike (Reservations Requested) at Rend Trail (2 miles easy walk)

Hear legends and stories from Appalachia into the dark of night. Program not recommended for children under nine years old. Wear good walking shoes. Bring a flashlight.

September 24

9:30 am to 11:00 am – Spirits of the Gorge Part 1: Dun Glen and Church Hike at Rend Trail (2 miles easy walk with a short strenuous section)

Explore the spirited side of history on this Thurmond area tour, from religious to rowdy. First hike to the First Baptist Church and cemetery, an African American church used for nearly 70 years. Then car caravan to the site of Southside where saloons and gambling halls once thrived. Wear good hiking shoes. Bring water. Be prepared for a small section of steep terrain. Meet at the Rend Trailhead (located on the road to Thurmond)

10:00 am to 6:00 pm – Babcock Gristmill Open House at Babcock State Park

Come and go as you please to see the Glade Creek Gristmill inside and out. The miller will be on-hand for informal discussions about the history of this structure and how the mill works.

10:00 am to 4:00 pm – Historic Hinton Walking Tours at Summers County Visitor Center (0.75 mile walk)

Discover the rich history of Hinton as you take a guided walking tour of town with trivia tossed in. Snack bags provided as well as special gifts for those that find the answers to the trivia questions.

10:00 am to 6:00 pm – Lumberjack Fall Festival at Twin Falls Resort State Park

Enjoy live music, art and craft vendors, chainsaw artists, a blacksmith, hayrides, food, and fun activities for kids. Free event unless you purchase from a vendor.

11:00 am to 12:30 pm – Spirits of the Gorge Part 2: Thurmond and Church Walk at Thurmond Depot Visitor Center (0.5 mile easy to moderate walk)

Continue this look at the more spirited side of history on this tour of downtown Thurmond. Explore the business district, plus go behind the scenes on an inside tour of the church. Wear sturdy walking shoes. Bring water.

2:00 pm to 4:00 pm – Appalachian Early Days at Richmond Hamilton Farm

Come and go as you please to learn more about early Appalachian lifeways traditions. Explore the historic site of Richmond Hamilton Farm to learn more about traditional tools, musical instruments, quilting, foods of the time, and more at talks and demonstrations

2:00 pm to 3:30 pm – Diamonds in the Coal Fields: Coal Camp Baseball at Canyon Rim Visitor Center

Take a closer look at America’s favorite past time, baseball. Learn the importance this sport played in the coal towns of the gorge and region, followed by a screening of WV Public Broadcastings documentary Extra Innings: Coal Camp Baseball.

6:00 pm to 8:00 pm – Sounds of Time at Pipestem Resort State Park

Enjoy this “sounds of time” in a mixed media Las Vegas-style variety show of musical flavors from the 1950s to today’s hot hits. Dress for evening weather for this free, family-friendly performance.

7:30 pm to 9:30 pm – Sunset on the Farm into Night (Reservations Requested) at Trump Lily Farm (0.5 mile easy walk)

Discover what life was like on a southern Appalachian subsistence farm around 1900. Historic home and farm buildings help paint a picture of the past, but the coming of night puts life on the farm in a new light. Explore the farm at sunset then continue with starwatching. Wear good walking shoes. Bring a flashlight.
 
Poster with banjo and schedule of events for Sounds of Appalachia
Experience rich Appalachian musical history through musical performances, hands on activities, and talks.

NPS

September 25

10:00 am to 5:00 pm – Sounds of Appalachia at Canyon Rim Visitor Center

Explore how the tradition of music and verse rings throughout Appalachia. Hands-on activities, talks, and performances throughout the day bring the heart of these traditions to life.
  • 10:00 am to 11:00 am HISTORY Through Verse: a Family Storytelling Mini-workshop. Everyone makes history! That history is often told through stories, often in verse and song. Hear tales and tunes that breath life into historic places, plus try your hand at preserving your own stories.
  • 11:00 am to 11:30 pm Spoons and Washboards: Hands-on Appalachian Instruments. Hear how traditional mountain music was often created with tools people had on hand, from washboards to pop bottles. See how combining these tools with traditional instruments like a dulcimer can create beautiful music in this hands-on talk.
  • 11:30 pm to 12:30 pm Mountain Traditions: Origins of Appalachian Instruments. See traditional Appalachians instruments and hear how these musical tools were introduced to this mountain region. Hear songs that were influenced by these early traditional tunes.
  • Music Performances: Enjoy diverse musical performances by regional musicians, from Bluegrass to gospel. Bring a lawn chair or blanket.
    • 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm: Long Point String Band
    • 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm: CODA Mountain Academy
    • 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm: Gospel Singaleers

10:00 am to 6:00 pm – Babcock Gristmill Open House at Babcock State Park

Come and go as you please to see the Glade Creek Gristmill inside and out. The miller will be on-hand for informal discussions about the history of this structure and how the mill works.

11:00 am to 5:00 pm – Lumberjack Fall Festival at Twin Falls Resort State Park

Enjoy live music, art and craft vendors, chainsaw artists, a blacksmith, hayrides, food, and fun activities for kids. Free event unless you purchase from a vendor.

2:00 pm to 5:00 pm – Brooklyn Mine Hike at Brooklyn Mine Trailhead through Active Southern West Virginia (5 mile moderate hike)

Get active in the park with Active SWV Community Captain Linda Stein to explore the historic coal mine site of Brooklyn. Old industry foundations and the mine entrance help paint the picture of what it was like at this once-booming coal mine operation in the early 1900s. Wear sturdy hiking shoes and bring water.

2:00 pm to 4:00 pm – Historic Bramwell Walking Tour at Coal Heritage Interpretive Center (four block easy walk)

Join Mayor Louise Stoker for a sidewalk tour of historic downtown Bramwell. Hear stories about this town and the coal operators who lived here in the early 1900s.
 
three video intro pages

Hidden History Highlights Videos

Matewan Unscripted: A Guided Tour in Honor of the Battle of Matewan Centennial

Hidden History Highlights video series: Several short videos featuring specific stories from from historic sites throughout the park.
 

2022 Hidden History Photo Challenge

Details Coming Soon!

Auto Tours / Scenic Drives

African American Heritage Tour

Fayette Station Road

Coal Heritage Trail

Paint Creek Driving Tour

Walking Tours

Historic Thurmond

Historic Hinton



Last updated: September 20, 2022

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Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 246, 104 Main Street
Glen Jean , WV 25846

Phone:

304-465-0508

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