BUCKHANNON, W.Va. (WBOY) — A travelling history exhibit exploring the formation of West Virginia from the perspective of those who were there is coming to West Virginia Wesleyan College (WVWC), courtesy of the West Virginia Humanities Council, a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) affiliate.
According to a WVWC release, the college’s Annie Merner Pfeiffer Library will host the free and open “Born of Rebellion: West Virginia Statehood and the Civil War” exhibit on Oct. 6 to Nov. 1, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. There will also be a kickoff event held on Oct. 6 at 6:30 p.m.
“This is a complete revitalization of an exhibit the Council first released in 2005, and toured again during the Sesquicentennial,” the Council’s Program Officer, Kyle Warmack, said. “The original was fantastic, but focused narrowly on the legal question of statehood. This time, we widen the lens to include a kaleidoscope of West Virginia perspectives. 2024 is the 50th anniversary of the Council’s founding, so it felt appropriate to return all the way to the state’s roots.”
The exhibit looks at the stories of individuals around the state, taking quotes and experiences from soldiers and civilians and even drawing its section titles from the diary of Sirene Bunten, an Upshur County teenager who lived when West Virginia achieved its statehood in 1863.
“The original diary is part of West Virginia Wesleyan College’s collections,” Warmack said. “Experiencing this history feels different when reading the inner observations of a young girl who loses two brothers to the war.”
Born of Rebellion is supported by American Water, the NEH’s “A More Perfect Union” initiative and the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History.