The History of Taylor County Chapter Three Hundred-Twelve

First Settler Passes

George F. Hall perhaps one of the most popular comedians who ever appeared before the local theatrical public on numerous occasions came to the Opera House with a brand-new melodramatic vehicle entitled “A Ragged Hero,” and was greeted by a fine audience who gave him an ovation in his efforts to please his public on the night of February 10,1905. 

The congregation of St. Paul’s Methodist Episcopal church in West Grafton elected Hon. John H. Holt, George W. Brown, Forrest Outland, Lawrence Sinsen, Lucien Davis, Mays Williams, Homer Holt, Guy Leonard, Jacob B. Jefferys, Professor J.H. Gorby and John R. Cole officers for the year 1905. Miss Nena Davis, Miss Ethel Roach, Mrs. C.L. Beard, Mrs. G.W. Bent and Mrs. Rachel Marple were chosen as teachers of the year. 

William Mallonee established a roofing business on Boyd Street and solicited bids from all prospective persons who contemplated erecting homes and those who are considering replacing old roofs for new. His repair department was also available at the shortest notice for all alterations and needed repairs. 

The William M. Myers Stock company came to the Opera House for the week of February 13,1905 and played to an audience that numbers 4,512 persons that practically filled the house throughout the week and warmly greeted the stars, Miss Irene Myers and her leasing man, William Ward. 

George Nuzum, son of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Nuzum, a graduate of Grafton High School in the class of 1899, who after graduation accepted a position with Ruhl and Company as floor salesman in the wholesale house on lower Latrobe Street and was considered one of the brightest employees of the firm, died February 19, 1905, and interred in Bluemont Cemetery. 

Considerable agitation was felt when it was announced that Fairmont and Grafton Gas Company was considering a raise in the price of natural gas to local consumers, their fears were settled when A.L. Lowrie assured the Grafton folks no raise in the price of gas to domestic users was contemplated. Mr. Lowrie was asked why gas was furnished to manufacturing concerns at a price of five cents per thousand feet while domestic consumers were charged 10 cents. He replied to this rate to manufacturing concerns was for the purpose of encouraging factories to locate along the line which if built will benefit every town and hamlet in this territory. 

Gus Bothner brings Hoyt’s “A Bunch of Keys” to the theatre on February 21,1905 and did a fine business with this amusing comedy in which Miss Ada Bothner was the star. This comedy, which is laid in the office of a modern hotel with its ornate stairway that collapses and precipitates the guests and bellboy from the second story to the lobby appealed to the risibility of the audience provoked shouts of laughter at this bit of comedy in the play. 

Thomas Tibbets and Son established a shop over in West Grafton for supplying homes and business houses with steam and hot water heating and were prepared to furnish estimates on all kinds of plumbing, heating and gas fittings. 

That story of New England life that had such a long run on the stage of the large cities entitled “Way Down East” came to the Opera House March 2, 1905, and drew one of the largest audiences of the theatrical season at high prices. The play and cast caught the fancy of audience who laughed and cried at this homely human interest story of New England life. 

Mrs. Emily Mackin, widow of William Mackin, who with her first husband James Alexander Yates came to West Grafton and purchased the land on that side of the river known as the Stewart Farm in 1847 some five years prior to the settlement of Grafton and occupied the old log cabin on the land which stood on the site now occupied by the Standard Filling Station on Beech Street in which Mrs. Yates gave birth to the first child of record in what is now the town of Grafton in 1850 died at her home on Pearl Street in 1905. 

For nearly six decades this woman the first resident of West Grafton watched the history of Grafton unfold from the time the first settlers erected their log cabins on the opposite bank of the Tygart Valley River from her home tot he many changes that time and man wrought to the time of her passing some of which seemed incredible to those first pioneer settlers. 


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