WHEELING, W.Va. – The West Virginia Independence Hall (WVIH) Foundation will present a “Spirits from the Past”program at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019 at West Virginia Independence Hall, 1528 Market Street in Wheeling. Admission is $10 per person and reservations by Oct. 15 are strongly suggested since attendance will be limited. The program is not recommended for children 12 and under.
Costumed actors portraying “spirits” from Wheeling history will dramatically recount true events that have occurred in the city over the years. As is fitting for the Halloween season, the tales will include a murder, a disaster, reported hauntings and a robbery, with some humorous details. Each of the four presentations will be approximately 10 to 15 minutes long. Light refreshments will be served at the conclusion of the event. This event is a fundraiser for the WVIH Foundation.
“West Virginia Independence Hall, the birthplace of West Virginia, is not usually open after dark,” said board member Joe Laker. “We think this is a fun and informative way to bring visitors into this very historic structure while they learn about some of the more bizarre stories from our past,” he added.
The spirit of Archibald Campbell, the historic editor of the Intelligencer newspaper portrayed by Tim Thompson, will describe the horrific Wheeling Wharf explosion of 1853; Robert “Doc” Poole, portrayed by Walt Warren, will explain the gruesome murder of Adam Buch; weird occurrences said to have happened around Tunnel Green will be recounted by “Annie Greenteeth,” portrayed by Judi Hendrickson; and the spirits of two unknown thieves, portrayed by Dave Clutter and Dave Barnett, will describe the attempted robbery of more than one million dollars from the Custom House safe during the Civil War.
To make reservations, call Judy Hendrickson at (304) 232-5903. Please make checks out to the West Virginia Independence Hall Foundation and mail them to Judy Hendrickson, 1 Woodlawn Court, Wheeling, WV 26003. Payment will confirm your reservation.
West Virginia Independence Hall has been on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) since 1970. It was originally built as a federal custom house in 1859, served as the home of the pro-Union state conventions of Virginia during the spring and summer of 1861 and as the capitol of loyal Virginia from June 1861 to June 1863. It also was the site of the first constitutional convention for West Virginia.
Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1988, the museum is maintained and operated by the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History, with the cooperation and assistance of the West Virginia Independence Hall Foundation. The museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, except major holidays. The museum is located on the corner of 16th and Market Streets in Wheeling.