ROWLESBURG, W.Va. — On Oct. 16, 12 News visited the “World War II Exhibit,” within’ the Janet and Imre Szilagyi Center.
Every third Sunday of the month, Preston County celebrates a day of its history. On Oct. 16, the county of Preston wanted to showcase the museum and the faces who took part in such an important piece of history.
The walls inside of the center are filled with pictures of men and women from Preston county who served in World War II. There are also real uniforms that were collected, medals, guns, and other artifacts from the historical event. Jef Verswyvel, owner of the museum, with help from Maggie Deweirdt, designed the settings for his many WWII figures in the authentic military uniforms. Verswyvel even physically made and crafted the faces and figures within’ the museum.
Docent, Kathleen Wolfe-Orescanin, mentioned the importance of having this museum for West Virginians to come and learn some of the history that involved a ton of local members. She said, “some us can relate to world war two, some of us not. Others can relate to other items of history, and um, as someone has said before, uh, you have to learn from history so that you don’t repeat it.”
Be sure to check the exhibit out before its season comes to an end on the last weekend of October. It is open on Saturdays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. However, if anyone is interested in a tour during the day of the week, you can call Shirley Hartley-Meissner at (304) 329-1240 or Kathleen “Katie” Wolfe-Orescanin at (304) 454-9232 for more information. The center will re-open in May of 2023, where it will continue to stay open until next October.
You can find the museum at the old Rowlesburg school located at 56 South Buffalo Steet.