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About Arthurdale

Arthurdale, WV, was first known as ?The Reedsville Project? by the government employees who were sent here to establish the first New Deal community under the first of three Franklin Delano Roosevelt administrations.

Prior to FDR?s election in 1933, Eleanor became interested in the work of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), a Quaker organization which had begun a child feeding program in Pennsylvania and West Virginia at President Hoover?s request. Clarence Pickett, secretary of the AFSC, was invited to Hyde Park, NY, FDR?s home, to discuss the AFSC?s efforts at vocational reeducation and subsistence living projects. FDR, after his 1933 inauguration, promoted a bevy of bills to address the problems of the Depression. One of these was a bill to establish a subsistence homestead fund. This bill interested First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and she, along with Clarence Pickett, who by then had been appointed chief of the Stranded Mining and Industrial Populations Section of the Department of the Interior, became involved with The Reedsville Project.

The Reedsville Project, later named Arthurdale after Richard Arthur, from whom the land was purchased, was begun in 1934 as a homestead community. Land was purchased, residents were selected, homes were constructed, more residents were selected, more homes constructed? until there were 165 homes and several community buildings including a school complex, built on approximately 1200 acres in rural Preston County, WV. Today, most of the community buildings still stand and most are part of the New Deal Homestead Museum.

Many of the new residents were displaced miners from the Scott?s Run area near Morgantown, WV, but some moved here from other areas of Preston County and WV. Some of the homes housed the government employees who were assigned jobs here such as teachers, physicians, surveyors, engineers, secretaries, etc.

The homesteaders themselves were responsible for paying rent, working and farming their allotted acreage, and some were employed to build new homes and the administration building, forge, gas station, cooperative store, craft shop, center hall, and school buildings. Some found work in the schools, post office, barber shop, and the Mountaineer Craftsmen?s Association. Some were hired to work in the numerous business ventures which were enticed to the area.

The federal government liquidated its holdings in Arthurdale in 1947; all homes and community buildings were sold to private ownership. In 1984, the community celebrated the 50th Anniversary of its homesteading. This celebration resulted in the establishment of Arthurdale Heritage, Inc., whose mission is to preserve the historic community of Arthurdale.

  • Posted on Thursday February 20, 2020
    Arthurdale’s Volunteer of the Year for the 2018-2019 fiscal year, Melinda Shrout, was honored today in an annual ceremony held at the Culture Center in the Norman L. Fagan West Virginia State Theater in Charleston, WV.  There, she received a certificate award and was recognized as a “History Hero.”  Melinda has shown an extraordinary commitment to our purpose and is always willing to lend a helping hand or a bright smile!  She continues to make Arthurdale a better place, better read more The post Melinda Shrout Receives History Hero Award appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Tuesday February 11, 2020
    It is with deep sadness that we share with you the passing of S.L. “Bud” Bjorkman. Arthurdale gained another angel on February 10th.  Bud will be greatly missed by our community having been life long residents of Arthurdale and friend to all. Bud was born November 27, 1927 in Connersville (Dunn County), Wisconsin the son of Joseph & Olga (Hedlund) Bjorkman. He graduated from Masontown High School in 1947, where he was a standout in baseball, basketball, and selected all read more The post Remembering S.L. “Bud” Bjorkman appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Tuesday January 14, 2020
    Want an easy way to support Arthurdale? Consider signing up for Kroger Rewards! If you already have a Kroger card, simply sign in to your digital account and select Arthurdale Heritage (HA732) from the list of local organizations. Once you’re enrolled, AHI is rewarded EVERY time you use your loyalty card when you shop. This support comes at absolutely NO extra cost to you; all you have to do is shop as normal! DON’T FORGET! Once enrolled, you need to read more The post Kroger Rewards Help Arthurdale appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Tuesday January 07, 2020
    Sadly, we share with you news of the passing of William “Bill” Bauer. On January 4th, Arthurdale gained another angel when Bill was reunited with his beloved wife Barbara. Bill and Barbara lived in one of the historic Arthurdale homes and raised six children there. Many of us have wonderful memories of playing in the Bauer home as kids with Linda, Hank, Eddie, Jack. Suzy and Nancy. The family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to read more The post Remembering William “Bill” Bauer appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Friday December 20, 2019
    Arthurdale Heritage will be closed from December 23 to January 3 in observance of the Holiday season. Normal winter hours (Monday through Friday, 9-5) will resume on Monday, January 6. Have a very Merry Christmas and a Healthy, Happy New Year! The post AHI Closed for Christmas Break appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Wednesday December 18, 2019
    The votes have been counted and Arthurdale Heritage is happy to announce the three winners of our community house decorating contest! The effort and thought put into the decorations were clear, and the contest attracted visitors from out of town and truly made our community proud! We had three categories to win in, with prizes being $20 Visa gift cards donated by Mary West and handcrafted wooden ornaments and plaques made by Terry Day. Best Traditional Display: 603 CR Road, read more The post House Decorating Contest Winners Announced! appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Monday December 02, 2019
    Great news! Starting precisely at 8 AM EST tomorrow Facebook and PayPal will match donations up to $7 million world wide!   Thanks to YOU, we have made incredible strides on our historic preservation efforts this year, specifically on our beloved Center Hall.   In 2020, however, we need $93,000 to complete critical repairs to its porch beams and roof, the back of the Craft Shop, and to the deteriorating roof on our museum building.   Please help us continue read more The post Giving Tuesday at AHI appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Tuesday November 19, 2019
    Arthurdale’s Craft Shop and Visitor Center will be closed for the week of Thanksgiving, November 25-29. The Craft Shop will be open November 30th 11-3pm, starting our Saturday Holiday Hours. Additional Holiday Hours are: Saturday, December 7th 11-3pm Saturday, December 14th 11-3pm Saturday, December 21st 11-3pm Happy Holidays and have a great Thanksgiving! The post AHI Closed for Thanksgiving appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Monday November 18, 2019
    Arthurdale Heritage is in the process of updating the National Register of Historic Places nomination, which was completed in 1989. The boundaries of the historic district will not be changing, but in order to have the most accurate and up-to-date information needed for the state, we will be doing a resurvey of the district. A survey includes gathering information about the properties within the district, included but not limited to siding material, date of construction, and photos of the structures. read more The post National Register of Historic Places Resurvey appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »
  • Posted on Thursday November 14, 2019
    Let Arthurdale Heritage help get you in the Christmas spirit this holiday season!  Join us on Sunday, December 15th for a festive evening of Christmas decorations, a fun contest, open museum exhibits, hot chocolate and cookies, and performances by the Preston High madrigal choir!   Families and homeowners in the community are encouraged to partake in Arthurdale’s Christmas Decoration Contest. Voters will drive around, awe at the wonderful decorations, and vote for three categories: Best Traditional Christmas, Most Creative, and read more The post Community Christmas Contest appeared first on Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. Continue Reading »