Appalachia, Bernice Ward, Carlos Ferrell, Chapmanville, Church of God, Garland Mounts, genealogy, Hallie Godby, Hassell Perdue, Herman Lucas, history, Huntington, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan County, Madison, O.F. Ferrell, Owen Moses, Tollie Ferrell, West Virginia
An unknown correspondent from Chapmanville in Logan County, West Virginia, offered the following items, which the Logan Banner printed on February 11, 1927:
Misses Tollie Ferrell and Hallie Godby from Logan spent Sunday with Miss Ferrell’s parents here.
Owen Moses’ parents and sister from Huntington visited him Sunday. They were dinner guests of Mr. and Mrs. Hassell Perdue.
It is sad to note the death of the small son of Mr. and Mrs. Garland Mounts. They have our sympathy.
Herman Lucas is spending a few days at Madison.
Carlos Ferrell made a flying trip to Logan Wednesday and hasn’t returned.
Miss Bernice Ward spent Sunday with her mother here.
The revival at the Church of God is still going on. We wish them success.
O.F. Ferrell is still improving over the fall while out hunting some time ago. We wish him quick recovery.
Mrs. Hoover continues ill at this writing. We wish her quick recovery as she has been ill for some time.
T. Lowe, the assessor of this district was a business caller in Logan Thursday.
The power line from Logan has been doing some work in our town for the last few days.
Good luck to the Banner.
From the Cincinnati Enquirer via the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, we find this editorial about coal dated 8 February 1927:
Coal is one of the present greatest factors in the life of civilization. But for this “bottled sunlight” we should have little other light or power. We ride the street cars, pass under the luminance of arc lights, enjoy the soft glow of the incandescents; we operate our mills and factories, we speed across the continents and oceans on trains and steamers largely because we have coal. Some day something else may take its place, but at present coal is the nerve of modern life and industry, of trade and commerce.
In the program being carried forward to make this city better known to its own people and to other peoples, the Chamber of Commerce does well to stress the importance of the city as a soft-coal center. The city is, in fact, the soft-coal center of the nation. The great cosmopolitan communities of the country would often be in hard way but for Cincinnati and its facilities with reference to soft coal distribution. We not only are the gateway to the South, but the gateway through which flows the essence which fires and lights practically the life and industry of the mightiest nation on the face of the earth.
The coal of West Virginia and Kentucky makes life brighter and more worth living on the island of Manhattan; it goes to the areas of cold and bleakness on, and beyond, the Northern lakes. It helps to feed the trains and ships which carry millions of passengers and billions of dollars worth of freight. It helps to light the Statue of Liberty and warm the halls of legislation. Blow out, over night, the effectiveness and influence of Cincinnati to serve the nation and chaos would be invited for a time.
There is a good deal to be known about Cincinnati–much that is valuable to the city, and much that is of value to the nation and to the world.
Aileene Raines, Appalachia, B.C. Ferrell, Chapmanville, Charleston, Ed Beckett, Ed Johnson, Fay Turner, genealogy, history, Huntington, John Beckett, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan County, Lone Eagle Tribe, scarlet fever, Stollings, United Fuel, Wallace Ferrell, West Virginia
An unknown correspondent from Chapmanville in Logan County, West Virginia, offered the following items, which the Logan Banner printed on February 4, 1927:
Wallace Ferrell, from Huntington, was visiting relatives in our town Saturday and Sunday.
Miss Fay Turner spent Saturday and Sunday with her mother here.
Mr. and Mrs. John Beckett and family, from Logan, have moved to our town. Wonder how they like our little city?
Miss Aileene Raines is on the sick list with scarlet fever. We wish her a quick recovery.
There are several with sore arms since the vaccination for scarlet fever.
Mr. and Mrs. B.C. Ferrell of Stollings were visiting in our town Saturday and Sunday.
Ed Beckett of Charleston, who is in charge of the meter deposits for the United Fuel was a business caller in our town last week.
Mrs. Ed Johnson’s sister of Huntington is visiting her at this writing.
Rev. Marcum, from Logan, is holding a revival at the Holiness church here.
Daily Happenings: Nelse calling on Brooke; Hermer going to Madison; Jack working on the road; Victor and his smiles; Maria going to school; Dr. Ferrell and his girls; Mary going to school; Gladys going to the post office; Walter calling on Carrie.
Though the charter applied for has not come, the Lone Eagle Tribe held its second meeting last Thursday.
Good luck to the Banner.
Appalachia, Buck Fork, Carl Adams, Charley Mullins Jr., Chicago, Garnet Mullins, genealogy, Harts Creek, history, Hoover Fork, Joe Kirk, Logan Banner, Logan County, Lora Martin, Mollie Robinson, Mud Fork, Rachel Kiser, Sidney Mullins, Trace Fork, Twelve Pole Creek, West Virginia, Whirlwind, Wilburn Mullins
An unknown correspondent from Whirlwind in Logan County, West Virginia, offered the following items, which the Logan Banner printed on February 11, 1927:
Wilburn Mullins was calling on friends at Mollie Robinson’s, Sunday.
Carl Adams was inquiring about the Bird on Hoover Sunday. You are mistaken this time, Carl. The bird’s home is on Trace.
Wonder why Wilburn looked so down hearted Sunday? Cheer up, Wilburn. It may not be so?
Sidney Mullins has been on the sick list for the past few weeks, we are sorry to say.
Wonder why Carl and Burnet Adams were out so early Sunday morning. Boys, the girls never went to singing.
Garnet Mullins left Hoover Sunday morning for Mud Fork where she will stay with her sister. Cheer up, boys. She will come back soon.
Charley Mullins, Jr., has returned from a visit to Chicago. Charley, we have missed you very much.
Rachel Kiser was the guest of Mrs. Lora Martin Monday.
Joe Kirk was seen going up Buck Fork Monday. Guess he was out on business.
We are all listening for the wedding bells to ring, especially on Buck Fork.
Daily acts: Burnet and his Bible; Carl going to Twelve Pole; Daniel and his cane; May and Alice quilting; Grover going to Gay; Nervie and her butter; Charley and his secret; Howard getting the news.
Abraham Trigg, American Revolution, Anthony Lawson, Botetourt County, Cabell County, Charles Lucas, Christian Snidow, Crump's Bottom, Culbertson's Bottom, David Price Lucas, Evan Shelby, Farley's Fort, Fort Chiswell, Giles County, Greenbrier County, Hezekiah Adkins Jr., Hezekiah Adkins Sr., James Burns, James Johnston, John Lucas, Joshua Butcher, justice of the peace, Kathleen Lucas, Logan County, Logan Court House, Lucas' Fort, Margaret Elizabeth Price, McGriff's Fort, Monroe County, Montgomery County, Muddy Creek, Muddy Fort, Nathaniel Mullins, Native Americans, New River, North Carolina, Parker Lucas, Parker Lucas Sr., Pittsylvania County, Ralph Lucas, Rich Creek, Sinking Creek, Summers County, Thomas Burke, Thomas Farley, Virginia, William Campbell, William H. Snidow, William Lucas, William Preston, William R. Lucas, Woods' Fort, Wythe County
William Lucas was born on 25 July 1749 to Charles and Kathleen Lucas in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. He married Margaret Elizabeth Price. They lived on Sinking Creek in present-day Giles County, Virginia. Lucas served in the American Revolutionary War (see pension records below). He was my great-great-great-great-great-grandfather. I descend through two of his grandsons, David Price Lucas (born c.1811) and William R. Lucas (born 1825).
Pension Application of William Lucas (R6507 VA)
Logan County November the 9th 1832
We the undersigned Justices of the peace for the County of Logan and State of Virginia, do hereby certify, that at the request of William Lucas, who from age and infirmity, is at present unable to attend at the courthouse of said County; We attended at the house of his son where he now lives; And he the said William Lucas, being duly Sworn, according to Law, made the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of an act of Congress in favour of revolutionary soldiers, passed on the 7th day of June 1832. That he enlisted in the company of Virginia Militia commanded by Captain Abraham Trigg in
Montgomery County Virginia; (The regiment was then Commanded by Colo. [Evan] Shelby; at an early period in our revolutionary War; and served in said Company and in said Regiment under the orders of General [William] Campbell in Carolina until the end of his eighteen months tour of Service [see endnote], when he again enlisted into Captain [James] Burns Company in the Regiment commanded by Colo [William] Preston Lieutenants name Snidow [Christian Snidow, pension application S17112] for some time, when he was discharged. He also Joined with his two Brothers in Montgomery County, in hireing men as Substitute, as the Law required, and he has never received any remuneration for his services. he is now 82 years of age, very infirm & poor & certainly well entitled to his Country’s aid; for he is intirely dependent on Charity for his support. Given under our hands & seals this 7th day of September in the year eighteen hundred & thirty two.
[signed] Nath’l Mullins [and] Anthony Lawson
Giles County To Wit [18 Jan 1833]
We Ralph Lucas and Wm H. Snidow two of the Justices of the peace in and for the said County of Giles do hereby certify that James Johnston [S5640] & Parker Lucas [S8868] appeared personally before us in said county and each being duly sworn according to Law the said James Johnston deposeth and said that in the year 1781 he served as a private in the army of the revolutionary war under the command of Capt James Burns on a call of the militia from the county of Montgomery that the company in which he served continued in Service about two months and he further sayeth that Wm. Lucas (who he understands now resides in the county of Logan and State of Virginia) Served as a private with him in the said company commanded by Capt James Burns which tour Served by Lucas he believes was about two months and further this Deponent sayeth not
James hisXmark Johnston
And the said Parker Lucas doth state that William Lucas he understands and believes now resides in the County of Logan and State of Virginia Served as a Private in the Virginia Militia Company in the Revolutionary war which Company was Commanded by Capt. James Burns which tower of Service he believes was about three months and Rendered in the State of North Carolina and he states further that the said William Lucas served Three months at Culbertson’s Bottom under Capt Thomas Burk which tour of Duty the said William Lucas served with this deponent and further this Deponent sayeth not.
Parker hisXmark Lucas
Virginia Giles County to Wit [28 Jan 1833]
We Ralph Lucas and Wm. H Snidow two of the Justices of the peace in and for the said County of Giles do hereby Certify, That Christian Snidow Sen personally appeared before us in said county and he first being duly sworn according to Law the s’d Christian Snidow deposeth and says that in year 1776 he served as a private under the command of Capt Thomas Burke on a call of the militia from the County of montgomery that the company in which he served continued in service about three months. And he further sayeth that that Wm. Lucas (who he now understands resides in the county of Logan) and State of Virginia served as a private with him in the said company commanded By Capt Thos. Burke which tour served by Lucas he believes was about three months, and he further sayeth that he served as Lieutenant in the year 1778 under the command of Cap James Burns that the company in which he served continued in service about two months and the said Wm Lucas served as a private under the command of Capt James Burns the same period above mentioned.
Virginia Giles County To Wit [28 Jan 1833]
We Ralph Lucas and Wm. H Snidow two of the Justices of peace in and for the said County of giles do hereby certify that Thomas Farley [W7244] appeared personally before us in said county and being first sworn duly according to law the said Thomas Farley deposth and said that in the year 1781 he served as a private in the army of the revolutionary war under the command of Capt Beirnes [sic] on a call of the militia from the county of Montgomery, and that he belives said Tour lasted about two months, and that he also knows that the said William Lucas served a Tour of Three months under the Command of Captain Thomas Burk, and Further this deponant sayeth not
Thomas hisXmark Farley
State of Virginia } To Wit
Logan County }
On this 16th day of February 1833 Personally appeared before me a justice of the peace for the County aforesaid William Lucas a resident of the county of Logan and State of Virginia aged Eighty three years on the 25th day July 1832 who first being duly sworn according to law doth on his Oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provision made by the Act of Congress passed the 7th day of June 1832 That he was drafted in the Militia service in the year 1781 by the order of Col. William Preston and that he served three Months in a company commanded by Capt Thomas Burk at Culvertsons bottom in the County of Montgomery Virginia and was then marched to Muddy fort [probably one of the forts on Muddy Creek] Greenbrier County and served their three months under the same Capt Burk against the Indians and was then ordered by Colo Wm Preston to march in the company commanded by Captain James Burns to fort Chissel [sic: Fort Chiswell in present Wythe County VA.] and then marched into North Carolina in the same company of Capt James Burns and Lieutenant Snidow and after serving two months was discharged by Colonel William Preston in North Carlina in the year 1781 – He hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or an annuity (except the present) and he declares that his name is not on the pension Roll of any agency in any state. Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid before me. Joshua Butcher, J. Peace.
William hisXmark Lucas
Virginia Giles County to wit
This day Parker Lucas Se’r personally appeared before the undersigned justices of the peace in and for said County, and made oath in due form of law, that William Lucas now of the County of Logan who he understands is now applying for a Pension, that the said William Lucas was forted at McGriffs Fort in the year 1772 to the best of his recollection, for a term of something like three months, and that in the year 1773 the said Lucas was forted at Lucas’s Fort [John Lucas’s Fort on New River] For a term of about three months, and in the year 1774 the said Lucas was forted at Bargers Fort [possibly Barager’s Fort, then and now in Montgomery County] for a like term of about three months, and that in the year 1777 to the best of this affiants recollection the said Lucas was stationed at Farleys Fort [at present Crumps Bottom in Summers County WV] and that in 1778 (as he believes) the said Lucas was stationed at Woods’ fort [Wood’s Fort on Rich Creek in present Monroe County WV] for the term of three months, and that the foregoing services were rendered in defence of the white People against the Indians, and that in the year 1781 (as this affiant believes) the said Lucas served a tour of Service in the militia under the command of Captain James Burns in the State of North carolina which tour he thinks lasted for the term of three months.
Parker Lucas Sr
We do certify that the foregoing affidavit was sworn to before us in the County of Giles and State aforesaid this 18th day of April 1834
Ralph Lucas J.P. [and] Wm. H. Snidow J.P.
Virginia Cabell County to wit
This Day Came Hezekiah Adkins, Sen’r [R290] personally appeared before me the under signed Justice of the peace in and for said County and made oath in due form of law that William Lucas now of the County of Logan who he understands is now applying for a pension that the said William Lucas he believes was forted at Mcgriffs fort but dont recollect how long the foresaid H Adkins to the best of his recollection the said Lucas was forted at Lucas fort for a turm about Three months and that the said Lucas was forted at wood and fort for the turm about three months and that the foregoing services ware rendered in defence of the white people against indians and this affiant believes that the said Lucas served two towers and believes one of them under preston and dont recollect how Long
I do certify that the said Hezekiah Adkins Senr is a or dained preacher of the gospel and do also certify that the forgoing affidavid was sworn to before me in County of Cabell and state of Virginia this 13th day of October 1834 Hezekiah Adkins Jur
Logan County Va. November the 1st day 1834
We the undersigned Justices of the peace for the County of Logan in the State of Virginia Do hereby certify that at the request of William Lucas who, from old age and infirmity, is unable to attend at the Courthouse of said County; We attended at the house of his son John Lucas, where he now lives, and the said William Lucas, being duely Sworn, in form of Law, made the following, declaration, in order to obtain, the benefit of an Act passed by Congress on the 7 day of June 1832. That he was drafted, in the year 1772 to go on a tour of Service; to protect the frontier of Virginia, a gainst the Indians, and also in 1773 and a gain in 1777 he was drafted, for the same Service, & was stationed at Farleys fort on New river for 3 months; and in 1778 he was Stationed at Woods fort for 3 months; He was shortly after drafted into the Virginia Militia, & served a tour of three months, in the Regiment Commanded by Colonel Shelby; in the Company of Captain Abraham Trigg, was with the army under Gen’l. Campbell in Carolina, at the end of this tour He enlisted into the regiment Commanded by his neighbour Col. Preston, and served a tour of three months, in the Company of James Burns; Lieut Snidow, when he was discharged. He also enlisted with his brothers in hiring substitutes, as the Law required; and alltho’ his brother in Giles County [Parker Lucas], in better circumstances has received a pension, he has received nothing in payment for his services, whatever; He is now 84 years of Age, and very infirm, and poor; and certainly well entitled to his Countrys aid; in the time of his great need; and utter inability to help himself–: He relinquishes every other Claim except the present, to any pension; & his name is on no pension Roll whatever in any State–
William hisXmark Lucas
Sworn to, and subscribed before us this 1st day of November 1834
[signed] Anthony Lawson J.P. Nath’l. Mullins JP
The following interogatories were then put by us as are required by the War office:
Agent of pension
1. Question. Where and in what year were you born?
Answer I was born in Pittsylvania County Va. in the year 1749.
2. Question Have you any record of your age &c?
Answer. I have no record of my age, nor do I know of any.
3. Question. Where were you living when called into service, where have you lived since, and where do you now live?
Answer. I was living in Botetourt County Va. – I have lived Chiefly since in Montgomery
County; and now, & for 7 years last past in Logan County Virginia –
4. Question. How were you called into service, were you drafted, or were you a Substitute, and if a substitute for whom?
Answer. I was drafted frequently & also volunteered –
5. Question. State the names of some of the regular officers, who were with the troops where you served; such continental and Militia Regiments, as you can recollect & the general circumstances of our services.
Answer. I remember the names of Col Shelby, Col Preston; Capt Trigg, Capt [Thomas] Burke, Capt. [John] Lucas; Capt Burns; & Lieut Snidow.
6. Question. Did you ever receive a discharge from the service, & if so; by whom was it given; and what has become of it?
Answer. I believe that I received a discharge from Col. Preston but have lost it many years ago–
A letter in the file explains that Lucas’ first declaration was questioned by the Pension Office because the claim for a militia tour of 18 months was out of the ordinary. The claim for a pension was ultimately rejected because Lucas’s later declarations were inconsistent with each other and the supporting statements. In his own pension application James Johnston did not claim to have served in 1781.
American Legion, Appalachia, Coal Exchange Building, Gunther-McNeely-Nowlan Post, Harry H. Gardiner, history, Huntington, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan Court House, Manning Clothing Company, Mountaineer Hotel, Muscle Builder, Pioneer Hotel, The Human Fly, West Virginia, White & Browning Building, Williamson
In 1927, Harry H. Gardiner, known as “The Human Fly,” visited Logan, West Virginia. His visit followed an appearance at Huntington, WV, and preceded a visit to Williamson, WV. For more on Gardiner’s general biography, follow this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Gardiner
From the Logan Banner (25 January 1927):
“Harry H. Gardiner, ‘The Human Fly,’ has come to Logan. The boyish-looking man of 57 years, whose death-defying exploits in scaling the walls of the world’s highest buildings have thrilled millions of onlookers, will give an exhibition here Thursday night, under the auspices of McNeely-Gunther-Nowlan post, American Legion. Gardiner is billed to climb from the ground to the dome of the Court House and unfurl the Stars and Stripes to the Guyan breezes from the apex of that structure. This he will undertake to do at 7:30. As he climbs he will perform many a stunt to amuse and startle the interested throng. All this time his figure will be in the glare of a searchlight provided for the purpose and his test will be done without the aid of any mechanical device. Preceding this act there will be some martial music on the Court House square, and some local citizen will deliver a four-minute speech. And someone in the crowd will receive a gift of $15 in gold from the Manning Clothing Co. Just a few days ago Gardiner thrilled an enormous assemblage in Huntington by scaling the walls of the Coal Exchange building, which is 200 feet high, and as high as any building in the state. In an article published in Muscle Builder in the 1926 Gazetteer [he] is quoted thus: ‘One hundred and twenty of those who have sought to imitate me in this hazardous profession have fallen to death. There is no chance of rehearsing your performance. Each new building is an unknown problem. If you do not guess the right answer, death awaits below, with a breath of up-rushing air, and arms of concrete.'”
From the Logan Banner (28 January 1927):
“Nerves of steel, nimble and well-trained hands and feet, a lithe body, and a resourcefulness born of experience enabled Harry H. Gardiner to scale the north wall of the Court House before an enormous crowd last night. Atop the dome he unfurled the Stars and Stripes, and from that point of vantage the flag is now waving for the first time. Saturday night he will scale the White & Browning building, a much higher structure. This performance will start at 9:30, or after rather than before the Logan-Huntington basketball game. Last night’s exploit was thrilling–except to those who expected the ‘Human Fly’ to do the impossible, or to crash into the concrete to provide a super-thrill. Of course, there were a few who supposed evidently that he would walk up the wall with his body at a perfect right angle to the wall and that he would surmount the roof projection like a fly walking on a ceiling. Thousands of people were present: they occupied all the space in front of the Court House from which the performer could be seen, except what a few automobiles occupied and except for the lanes kept open that motor traffic might not be blocked. That crowd at a political rally would have been estimated at 10,000. The Banner is convinced that it exceeded 5,000. Saturday night’s performance as was last night’s will be under the auspices of Gunther-McNeely-Nowlan Post, American Legion.”
From the Logan Banner (1 February 1927):
“In view of a crowd that packed Stratton street for the distance of nearly a block, Harry H. Gardiner, the ‘Human Fly,’ climbed the front of the five-story Pioneer Hotel Saturday night. With the aid of a hook at each window, he was able to get finger holds on the sills and then lift himself to safety and prepare for the next step upward. To scale the last lap and reach the roof he made use of the braces for the electric hotel sign for a foothold and also the lowered hook to get a finger hold on the edge of the roof. As on Thursday night when he scaled the court house and tied a flag to the apex of the dome, his performance aroused both admiration and scorn. There were evidently many persons who believed a ‘Human Fly’ would walk and maybe fly like a fly. While as indicated the main section of the crowd of spectators was on Stratton street, it extended for 60 to 70 feet out on Cole street, and besides, hundreds of persons watched from the windows of the nearby buildings. Gardiner himself announced that he had been unable to get permission to climb the White & Browning building and for that reason substituted the hotel which is about the same height. He will climb the Mountaineer Hotel in Williamson Thursday night.”
Appalachia, author, authors, Chicago News, coal, Elk River Coal and Lumber Company, Fancy's Hour, history, Island Creek Coal Company, J.G. Bradley, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan County, Monaville, Mud Fork, National Industrial Secretary, Norman Schlichter, poetry, Rivers of West Virginia, West Virginia, Whitman Creek, Y.M.C.A.
From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, we find this item dated 5 November 1926:
“Norman Schlichter, poet and story writer, has been reading from his books to the pupils of schools of the Island Creek Coal Company properties, at Whitmans, Mud Fork, Monaville, this week. His coming was due to the desire of General Manager Beisel and General Superintendent Hunt to give the schools an opportunity to hear work that is being received with delight by boys and girls all over the United States.
“Mr. Schlichter was for many years National Industrial Secretary of the Y.M.C.A. and is widely known among the mining men of the State. Recently he has been devoting all his time to writing and lecturing. His children’s poems and stories are attracting wide attention. The Chicago News radioed his book, ‘Fancy’s Hour.’ The author is loud in his praise of the great educational advances in West Virginia, especially in the mining communities. Last week he was the guest of Mr. J.G. Bradley at the properties of the Elk River Coal and Lumber Company. He is the author of the ‘Rivers of West Virginia,’ a poem widely known in his state. This poem is reproduced in another column.”
From the Logan Banner of Logan, West Virginia, dated October 23, 1914, we find this editorial:
“Politicians of Logan County are accused by citizens of other counties, and it can be heard in our own county, too, that there is never an election where officers for the county offices are to be elected that a great deal of liquor and money is not used for the purpose mostly of buying votes. If this accusation is true and we believe it is, limited to the August election, the good citizens of this county ought to bring every iota of influence which they may have to bring such an iniquitous and unlawful practice to the bar of justice. A candidate who buys his way into office is dishonest through and through, and is not fit to represent the people in the most trivial matter. A grand jury would do the most noble service for this county if it would be the means of bringing before the court for trial offenders of this type. Already it is being mentioned that a great deal of money will be used in the coming election, mainly for the purpose of buying votes and buying WHISKEY with which to buy votes.
“West Virginia was voted dry on last July 1st, and while our laws do not prohibit liquor from being brought into the State it certainly does prohibit the giving away of it or the selling of it in this State; and every one knows that our late law was not required to make the use of it on election day, for the purpose of influencing votes, illegal. This paper intends to let people know, if the astuteness of those indulging in this phase of illegality does not make it impossible to get the information, just who are the offenders, and just what candidate was the one to profit by such insidious practice. We except candidates from no party.”
Appalachia, ballads, Clayton Buchanan, crime, history, John C. Elkins, John Harrington Cox, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan County, Logan County Jail, Logan Court House, Market Square, Moundsville, music, West Virginia Folklore Society, West Virginia University
“Logan County Court House” or “Logan County Jail” is one of several songs written about events in Logan County, West Virginia. From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, dated 24 September 1926, we find this:
“For a dual purpose The Banner herewith reproduces one of the four known variants of the song entitled “Logan County Court House.” In the first place it should be of interest to those who have never read it or any similar version. Secondly, this paper is desirous of learning something about the authorship of the song.
“Who wrote it? And when and under what circumstances? Many a Banner reader may have some information on this matter which he or she should be willing to communicate.
“The variants of this song are reproduced in Prof. John Harrington Cox’s volume of ‘Folk-Songs of the South’ published last year. The following one was sent to that author, a member of the faculty of West Virginia University, by Miss Snoah McCourt, of Ornoff, Webster county, this state:
When I was a little boy, I worked on Market Square.
O’ money I did pocket, but I never did it fair.
I rode upon the lakes and learned to rob and steal,
And when I made a great haul, how happy I did feel.
I used to wear the white hat, my horse an’ buggy fine.
I used to court a pretty girl I always thought was mine.
I courted her for beauty, her love for me was great.
And when I’d go to see her, she’d meet me at the gate.
One night as I lay sleeping, I dreamed a mighty dream.
That I was marching down on the golden stream.
I woke all broken-hearted, in Logan County jail,
And not a friend around me for to go my bail.
Down came the jailer about ten o’clock,
And the key in his hand he shoved against the lock.
“Cheer up, cheer up, my prisoner!” I thought I heard him say.
“You’re going around to Moundsville, seven long years to stay.”
Down came the jailer about ten o’clock,
And with the key in his hand he shoved against the lock.
“Cheer up, cheer up, my prisoner!” I thought I heard him say,
“You’re going around to Moundsville, seven long years to stay.”
Down came my true love, ten dollars in her hand.
“O my dearest darling, I’ve done all that I can!
And may the Lord be with you, wherever you may go,
And Satan snatch the jury for sending you below.”
Sitting in the railroad, waiting for the train,
“I am going away to leave you, to wear the ball and chain.
I’m going away to leave you. Darling, don’t you cry.
Take a glass of whiskey and let it all pass by.”
A subsequent story printed on 28 September 1926, provided more information about the song’s history:
“Publication in last Friday’s Banner of the old ‘Logan County Jail’ song, with an inquiry as to its authorship, has brought a reward in the form of an interesting letter from John C. Elkins of the sheriff’s office. This letter reveals the name of the songwriter, and gives a glimpse into his life after his soul found a measure of relief in rime and rhythm.
“Doubtless many of those who last week read the song for the first time and others who re-read it with more or less eagerness will be interested and even pleased to learn that the prisoner escaped from jail and a long term at Moundsville: went west, reformed, and entered the ministry; then in the flickering twilight of his eventful life, he came back to die amid the mountains he loved so well.
“Here is the letter dated Sept. 27, which outlines the strange story:
“Question: Who was the author of the song ‘The Logan County Jail’?
“Answer: This song was composed by a Logan county boy whose childhood had been thrilled by the horrors of the war of 1861-65. His song tells the story of his life, his crime, his sentence, his thoughts of and goodbye to the girl he left behind, the invitation to take a glass of whiskey and let all worries pass by. He climbed the prison walls and made his escape into the west. There he became a minister. Some years later, broken in health, he returned to his native county and died about 20 years ago. The song was written 50 years ago and its author was Clayton Buchanan.
“To the Banner these revelations come with an irresistible appeal; and while thanking Mr. Elkins, the regret is expressed that he did not go into greater detail in unfolding this story–a story teeming with dramatic values.”
One additional story about the song appeared in the Banner on 5 October 1926:
“What the Banner has been publishing in recent issues relative to the authorship of the ‘Logan County Jail’ song has been read with interest by Prof. John H. Cox, head of the department of English, West Virginia University. It was from his book, ‘Folk Songs of the South,’ that this song was reproduced in these columns.
“From Prof. Cox the following letter dated September 30 was received by The Banner:
“This is to thank you for the clipping from The Logan Banner concerning the origin of the song, ‘Logan County Jail.’ It is very interesting and I have no doubt it is correct. I wonder if any records of Clayton Buchanan’s trial are in Logan County courthouse? I should like very much to have the details of the crime, the trial, the escape, and the death of this man for the files of the West Virginia Folk-Lore Society, of which I happen to be the president, archivist, and general editor. Could you not prevail upon Mr. John C. Elkins either to write out or dictate to some stenographer all that he knows about the case and have it printed in The Banner? It would be a real worthwhile piece of work.
“You may be interested to know that I am at work on a second volume of West Virginia Folk-lore, a volume which we hope to make as interesting and valuable as the first. We shall be glad to have any material of any kind that may be found.
“John H. Cox
“34 Campus Driveway
“P.S. A transcript of the record in the courthouse, if there is one, would be especially valuable.”
From the Logan Banner of Logan, West Virginia, dated January 5, 1911, we find this editorial:
“The bounteous harvest of holiday business is past, and the so-called dull season is upon our business man. But why a dull season? Some of our business men are going around with a face as long as a shingle, and to see them and hear them talk about dull business reminds one of a man in the last stages of consumption who is resigned to his fate. They appear as though they see bankruptcy staring them in the face. What they need is a little stiffening of the backbone. They need not expect business to be as good as it was through the holiday season, but they should remember that the people of this generation must be fed and clothed and furnished with whatever comforts they can afford, and as long as this is the case, there will be a continued demand for goods and merchandise of all kinds, and business will go on in the same old way. The trouble with the business men of this city is that they talk down instead of talking up. If the merchant talks dull times, the farmer, the miner, the teamster, the carpenter, the professional man and all others will catch the contagion, and then business will be dull, but if they take an optimistic view of the matter and talk up, the opposite will be the result.
“There is no county in the state, and probably not in the union, that has a more brilliant future than Logan. Logan is today the best town of the state of its size, and it has much to be proud of. The coming year will witness greater development throughout the county than any two previous years, and instead of our business men going around with their lips hung down, they should be right now planning a vigorous campaign to capture their fair share of the prosperity that is sure to abound. Let them rouse themselves from the lethargy which now enshrouds them and be up and doing. Logan is all right. The fault is your own if you do not prosper. It is here for you. If you don’t get it, it will be your own fault. With the railroad going on up the river, and new coal operations opening up within sight of one another, and with our fine quality of coal and timber, nothing but Divine intervention can keep the Guyan Valley from blossoming as the rose. Stop your whining or get off the earth. Take hold and boost or the wheels of progress will mash you into smithereens.
“Logan is all right.
“It may be that you are too slow to keep up.”