Virgil A. Lewis: Home of first state historian in disrepair, but should it be relocated? (W VA)





Virgil A. Lewis used his life to capture the past.

Born in 1848, Lewis wrote the first textbook of West Virginian history ever used in public schools. In the early 1900s, he served as the first state historian and archivist. He founded the West Virginia Historical Society and the Southern Historical Magazine.

But now, 95 years after Lewis’ death, some in Mason County fear that the remnants of his own personal history are fading away.

In 1979, his 141-year-old home in the town of Mason was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today, the musty structure is slowly deteriorating.


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