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Well over a year ago, I wrote about a visit to Logan by two of Devil Anse Hatfield’s great-grandchildren, Grant and Joe Browning, who were childhood friends of Logan businessman Neal Scaggs, widely known and respected as a longtime businessman and owner of Baisden Brothers Hardware at Ellis …

There are two historically connected names that are mostly found in Logan and Mingo counties in West Virginia, and in Pike County, Kentucky. Those names — Chafin and Hatfield — are shrouded in past controversy and include numerous killings and murder. From Devil Anse to infamous sheriff Don …

Among the many things West Virginians tend to complain about is their public school system. People may take pride in their own community’s schools, but overall they tend to give the public school system poor grades — justified or not.

Voters in some parts of West Virginia will have fewer members of the Legislature to vote for next year as the House of Delegates has eliminated multimember districts. It’s a change that has been in the making for decades, and now voters can see whether West Virginia benefits from a practice …

Most of us have heard the old expression, “You’ve got to change with the times.” Well, I fully understand that time changes nearly everything and that progress invariably is the result of change. However, change is not always for the better — at least not when it comes to the newspaper business.

The history of Logan County is vast, and its longtime existence is marked by numerous tales of murder, beginning as far back as the 1700s when Aracoma and her tribe were attacked at what is now Midelburg Island in Logan. There’s no other way to put it — the Indians were murdered.

The Marshall University Board of Governors could have chosen a safe, boring path when it chose the person to be the university’s next president. Instead, it took a different direction by hiring Brad Smith, a former Fortune 500 CEO with no experience in handling the day-to-day affairs of a st…

I had every intention of concentrating today’s writing on another one of Logan’s landmark locations, one situated directly across Stratton Street from the Logan County Courthouse. The property, which last was operated as Gordmans’s Department Store, recently sold for the third time in the pa…

In August, right before the backup of intermodal shipping containers in the Los Angeles area came to the public’s attention, Norfolk Southern announced it would reopen its intermodal facility at Greencastle, Pennsylvania, about 30 miles north of Martinsburg, West Virginia. The railroad close…

President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Public Broadcasting Act in 1967 and, according to the Knight Foundation, saw it as “a vital public resource to enrich our homes, educate our families and to provide assistance to our classrooms.” For years public broadcasting stations run by individual …

Political corruption in Logan County can be traced all the way back to the days of the Hatfield-McCoy feud. In fact, history shows that there has yet to be a decade in the past 120 years where some sort of illegal political activity hasn’t emerged within Logan County. Perhaps, though, the de…

Sins in the realm of the insular principally extend from the singular offense of being an auslander, a foreigner, a Not One of Us. To this group, Us, which means Not You if you are Not One of Us, few crimes disturb so greatly as that of Outsiders setting foot in the realm, a violation declar…

“Because of the nature of a crime such as this, that is occurring in the early morning hours in a person’s home when no one is around, no actual eyewitnesses to the crime, it is never really possible to know exactly what has happened, or exactly who all is involved in it, unless you do find …

As Halloween gets closer daily, I find myself wondering just what a “kid” would look like if he or she were to desire to dress up and go trick-or-treating as COVID-19 for the upcoming ghostly holiday. I would think that even a spooky COVID-19 character would have to wear a mask. But what wou…

In all my years of public service, it’s always been a point of pride for me to listen closely when I hear complaints and concerns from friends and neighbors. The most recent uproar has me as concerned as ever.

We’ve all heard stories of people who win millions of dollars in the lottery, waste it and end up worse off than before. Every now and then we hear of people who win millions and use it to improve their lives or the lives of others.

I’m confident that 100 years or more from today someone, who like myself enjoys researching history, will be reading about today’s times and wondering what it would be like to have been alive in 2021. Meanwhile, until the time machine is invented — and it will be — I find myself thinking abo…

Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee, little known to those who surf the net rather than scrutinize its origins, is the inventor of the World Wide Web, the match the newspaper industry used to set itself on fire. This analogy is, of course, ridiculous, not because of the result it depicts but becaus…

When one hears the name of Don Chafin, most knowledgeable people immediately identify the former Logan County sheriff with the historical Battle of Blair Mountain. And although that identification is appropriately accurate, there is much more to the man some considered the “savior” of Logan …

This month, the nation marked the sorrowful 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Americans who were then school aged or older remember precisely where they were and their emotions as death and destruction engulfed innocent people in New York City, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pen…

This being the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Blair Mountain, I thought the following story would be of interest to those readers who actually care about local history. While the background of this particular subject is important, it is in fact the amazing future that lies ahead for it t…

My gallant therapy dog Cooper, a Shepherd-Husky mix, and yours truly have been helping one another grow older ever since we adopted him from a Chesapeake, Ohio, couple who’d fished him and his sister out of a creek. Ungallant human types had pitched the 12-week-old pups into that creek to dr…

The town of Gilbert in Mingo County and the town of Man in Logan County have benefited from ATV trails there. Where coal trucks once dominated state roads through those communities, ATVs are now a common sight. Lodging and food service businesses have sprung up to service the thousands of in…

Children across West Virginia have been experiencing food insecurity for far too long. As a father of four, it breaks my heart to know that right now 1 in 5 children in West Virginia is struggling with hunger and facing long negative health effects as a result. Our lawmakers must act now to …

I will apologize ahead of this writing for what may appear on the pages of this particular column — a totally unprepared narrative caused by both life and death. Frankly, though, every written word that follows in this particular composition I’m simply going to blame on the pandemic. And why not?

My father was a coal miner, as was my grandfather, most of my uncles, several cousins, and nearly every neighbor I had while I was growing up in my little coal camp community of Verdunville, more specifically called No. 16 camp, where the post office and Island Creek Coal Company store were …

West Virginia is home to rolling hills, roaring rivers, and vast forests that make our state Almost Heaven. Those same treasures make for rough terrain and communities that lack access to broadband and upgraded infrastructure. Across the Mountain State, 1,545 bridges and more than 3,200 mile…

By the time you are reading this, I will have already attended my 1971 Logan High School class reunion that was this past Friday and Saturday, and I now am looking forward to our annual family reunion to be held, as usual, the second Saturday of the month at Chief Logan State Park, this year…