Satellite image provided by NASA of Hurricane Sandy churning off the East Coast
Satellite image provided by NASA of Hurricane Sandy churning off the East Coast

This Week in West Virginia History: Oct. 27-Nov. 2

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The following events happened on these dates in West Virginia history. To read more, go to e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia at

Oct. 27, 1879: Howard B. Lee was born in Wirt County. He was elected state attorney general in 1924, and served for eight challenging years. His term saw the impeachment of a state auditor, the lawlessness of Prohibition, and labor troubles in the coalfields.

Oct. 28, 1972: Brad Paisley was born in Glen Dale. In 2010, Paisley received the Entertainer of the Year award from the Country Music Association.

Oct. 29, 1861: Confederate troops pulled out of Charleston, never to return. At the beginning of the war, Charleston was a Virginia town with much sentiment for the Southern cause, but the ease of river access to Ohio and the difficulty of traveling overland to Old Virginia doomed Confederate attempts to secure the Kanawha Valley.

Oct. 29-30, 2012: Following Hurricane Sandy, heavy, wet snow fell across West Virginia. With accumulations approaching 40 inches, it surpassed all previous known snowstorms.

Oct. 30, 1825: Randolph McCoy was born in Logan County. In 1878, McCoy accused a cousin of Anderson ‘‘Devil Anse’’ Hatfield of stealing a hog. It was the first episode of the Hatfield-McCoy Feud.

Oct. 31, 1877: Herman Guy Kump was born in Capon Springs, Hampshire County. He was the 19th governor of West Virginia, serving from 1933 to 1937.

Oct. 31, 1940: Gale Catlett, West Virginia University basketball player and coach, was born in Hedgesville. Catlett coached WVU to 13 20-win seasons before he retired in 2002.

Oct. 31, 1946: Labor leader Cecil Edward Roberts Jr. was born on Cabin Creek, Kanawha County. A sixth-generation coal miner and a fiery orator, Roberts has served as president of the United Mine Workers of America since 1995.

Nov. 1, 1688: Morgan Morgan was born in Wales. Morgan is traditionally considered the first white settler of West Virginia. He settled in the Bunker Hill area in 1731, building a log house that still remains.

Nov. 1, 1848: Israel Charles White was born in Monongalia County. White was West Virginia’s first state geologist, appointed in 1897 and serving until his death in 1927, working without pay for all but two of those years.

Nov. 1, 1961: The first non-commercial radio station in West Virginia, WMUL-FM at Marshall University, began broadcasting.

Nov. 2, 1859: John Brown was tried for murder, treason, and insurrection in the Jefferson County courthouse at Charles Town. Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry galvanized the nation, further alienating North and South and drastically reducing any possible middle ground for compromise.

Nov. 2, 1952: Tri-State Airport in Wayne County was dedicated, with the first official landing made at 11 a.m. by Piedmont Airlines.

e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia is a project of the West Virginia Humanities Council.  For more information, contact the West Virginia Humanities Council, 1310 Kanawha Blvd. E., Charleston, WV 25301; (304) 346-8500; or visit e-WV at

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