This Week in West Virginia History: June 22-28


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 www.wvencyclopedia.org.

June 22, 1926: Earl Olgebay died in Cleveland. He was one of West Virginia’s most successful industrialists and a generous benefactor. 

June 23, 1944: A tornado struck Shinnston and the surrounding area, killing 103 people and injuring hundreds more.

June 23, 2016: Eight inches of rain fell in a 12-hour period. The Meadow, Cherry and Elk rivers, as well as Howard Creek, flooded downtowns and The Greenbrier resort and killed 23 people.

June 24, 1842: Author Ambrose Bierce was born. Bierce found the setting for some of his famous short stories in the mountains of Civil War-era West Virginia. 

June 25, 1811: Bridge builder Lemuel Chenoweth was born near Beverly, Randolph County. His many bridges also included the earliest covered bridge at Beverly and the famous Philippi covered bridge.

June 26, 1887: Sheriff Don Chafin was born in Logan County. Chafin was a bitter foe of union organizers and, with financial support from coal companies, used his many deputies to keep labor organizers out of Logan County.

June 26, 1892: Pearl Buck was born in Hillsboro in the home of her maternal grandparents. She received the Nobel Prize for Literature for The Good Earth.

June 26, 1936: Basketball star Harold Everett ‘‘Hal’’ Greer was born in Huntington. Greer was the first African-American athlete to play at Marshall College (now University). During his three-year college career, Greer scored 1,377 points and averaged 19.4 points per game.

June 27, 1897: Musician Maceo Pinkard was born in Bluefield. Pinkard became one of the most successful songwriters of the 1920s Jazz Era.

June 28, 1936: Athlete Charles Louis ‘‘Chuck’’ Howley was born in Wheeling, Howley played linebacker for 12 seasons for the Dallas Cowboys. He was named All-Pro six times and named to six Pro Bowls.

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 www.wvencyclopedia.org. 

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