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Amazing Berkeley County Facts

Did You Know?

  • …that Berkeley County was formed from Frederick in 1772. It was named for Norborne Berkeley, Baron Botetourt, governor of Virginia, 1768-1770. IT WAS THE Home of many leaders in the Revolution. As early as 1774, George Washington had orchards planted here.

  • …that the Martinsburg Historical Marker is at the intersection of North Queen Street and Eagle Schoolhouse Road in Martinsburg. Martinsburg was founded in 1778, by Gen. Adam Stephen. It was named for Thomas Martin, nephew of Lord Fairfax. It was the home of Admirals Charles Boarman and C. K. Stribling. Locomotives were seized here, in 1861, in Jackson's raid were drawn by horses to Winchester, Va.

  • …that the Hedgesville Historical Marker on WV 9 in Hedgesville. It was the site of a stockade fort built during the early Indian wars. Mt. Zion Episcopal Church was built soon after. A mile west is the tavern, built, 1740-1750, by Robert Snodgrass on land patented in 1732 by William Snodgrass, pioneer settler.

  • …that on US 11, two miles north of Martinsburg is the Fort Neally Historical Marker. During the French and Indian War, Fort Neally was captured and its garrison massacred, on September 17, 1756. Many settlers in the vicinity also were killed. Among captives was Isabella Stockton, later wife of Col. William McCleery, Morgantown.

  • …that the Boydville Historical Marker is at the 600 block of South Queen Street in Martinsburg. It was built in 1812 by Elisha Boyd, general in the War of 1812, on land bought from Gen. Adam Stephen. The mansion was noted for its fine workmanship. It was the home of his son-in-law, Charles J. Faulkner, Minister to France, and his grandson, U.S. Senator Faulkner.

  • …that at 300 West King Street at Old Federal Building in Martinsburg is the Berkeley Riflemen Historical Marker. The Berkeley Riflemen from Eastern Panhandle counties, was under Capt. Hugh Stephenson. They were the first southern troops to join Washington in 1775 at Boston. In a "bee line" from Morgan's Spring, they marched 600 miles in 26 days.

  • …that Gen. Adam Stephen Historical Marker is at 309 East John Street in Martinsburg. Here was the home of General Adam Stephen, founder of Martinsburg and county's first sheriff. He was famous as fighter in French and Indian Wars, and as major-general in the American Revolutionary War.

  • …that at the end of East Martin Street and Roundhouse Drive at Caperton Station in Martinsburg is Railroad Strike of 1877 Historical Marker. On July 16, 1877, workers of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad went on strike and closed this railroad yard to protest a cut in wages. Their action sparked the largest nationwide strike the country had seen. Extensive damage was done to company property at Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Wheeling, and over 50 workers were killed before the strike was crushed. Federal troops were used for the first time in a labor dispute. As the country's first general strike, it focused national attention on labor's grievances and made workers aware of the power of collective action.

  • …that the Roundhouse and Shops Historical Marker at the end of East Martin Street and Roundhouse Drive at Caperton Station in Martinsburg The B&O Railroad reached Martinsburg in 1842, and by 1849, a roundhouse and shops were built. These first buildings were burned by Confederate troops in 1862. The present west roundhouse and the two shops were built in 1866. The east roundhouse was built in 1872. These buildings represent one of the last remaining examples of American industrial railroad architecture still intact and in use. These structures serve as important reminders of the status of the railroad in the mid-19th century and the role it played in the economic development of Martinsburg, the county, and the state.

  • …that the Tuscarora Presbyterian Church, which was built before 1745 by Scotch-Irish Presbyterians. Rev. Hugh Vance, first pastor, was buried here. During Indian days, worshipers hung their guns on pegs in the walls while they sang and prayed. The Tuscarora Church Historical Marker is on Tuscarora Pike at entrance to church, about 0.5 mile west of I-81 Exit 13.

  • …that Swan Pond Manor Historical Marker at WV 45 and Secondary Road 45/2, four miles east of Martinsburg. 1.5 miles north is Swan Pond Manor, a 2,000 acre retreat set aside in 1745 for use of Thomas Lord Fairfax, once the proprietor of the Northern Neck of Virginia who established an estate at Greenway Court, Frederick County in 1738. So named because wild swans inhabited site. Conveyed in 1775 to John Lewis and in 1801 to Dr. Edward O. Williams who built present manor house circa 1810.

  • …that the Van Metre Ford Bridge Historical Marker is at Needy Road (CR 36) at southeast end of bridge, two miles east of Martinsburg. It was named for the property owners this stone bridge built in 1832 across Opequon Creek was major improvement for travelers on Warm Springs Road connecting Alexandria and Bath, Va., site of famous mineral waters. The Berkeley County Court established a commission to study and contract for construction of bridge. Silas Harry erected at local expense 165 foot bridge at reported cost of $3,700.

  • …that the Veterans Administration Center Historical Marker is on WV 9, 4.5 miles south of Martinsburg. It was established as the Newton D. Baker General Hospital, U. S. Army. It was named for Newton D. Baker, a native of Martinsburg and Secretary of War, World War I. It was opened for patients in 1944. It became Veterans Administration Center in 1946.

  • …that on US 11, south of Martinsburg (missing) is the Fort Evans Historical Marker.  Fort Evans was built here in 1755. It was attacked by Indians in 1756. The men were absent but Polly Evans, whose husband, John, had built the fort, led the women in its defense. The Big Spring here was noted camping ground of both armies, 1861-1865.

  • …that the Gerard House Historical Marker is on Secondary road 51/2 about 0.1 mile south of intersection with US 51 in Gerrardstown. The house was built by John Hays in 1743. It became the home of Reverend David Gerard, who founded Gerrardstown in 1787. His father was Reverend John Gerard, the first Baptist Minister west of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

  • that Gerrardstown was established as a town in 1787. It was named for John Gerrard, first pastor of Mill Creek Baptist Church, which was organized by early settlers about 1743. The congregation reorganized after Indian hostilities during the French and Indian War. The Gerrardstown Historical Marker is located on WV 51 at Gerrardstown west of intersection with US 51/5.

  • …that Darkesville was named for Gen. William Darke, veteran of the Revolution and the Indian wars. He saved the remnants of St. Clair's army from massacre in 1791 when badly defeated by the Miami Indians. His son, Capt. Joseph Darke, lost his life. The Darkesville Historical Marker is located on US 11 at Darkesville.

  • …that in Morgan Park, US 11 at Bunker Hill is the Morgan Morgan Historical Marker. Morgan Morgan, a native of Wales, established his home at Bunker Hill before 1732, and was leader in the Eastern Panhandle's early development. His sons gave name to Morgantown, and fought in Indian and Revolutionary wars.

  • …that Morgan's Chapel was the first Episcopal Church in West Virginia. It was fostered, 1740, by Colonel Morgan Morgan, an early immigrant from Wales, who established his home here. The present structure, built in 1851, is still used as a place of worship.  The Historical Marker is on US 11 and secondary road 26 in Bunker Hill.

  • …that "Morgan Acres" Historical Marker is in Morgan Park, US 11 at Bunker Hill. Two miles west is the site of the first house in present West Virginia. It was built by Col. Morgan Morgan who came from Delaware in 1726. It was destroyed and the one now there was built in 1800 by another Morgan.

  • …that on WV 26 2.2 miles west of US 11 on east side of Runneymead Road is the Morgan Cabin Historical Marker. It was originally built between 1731-34 as second home of Morgan Morgan-first white settler in West Virginia. It was rebuilt with some of original logs in 1976 as a State and County Bicentennial project. It was here during the Revolution that James Morgan, the grandson of Col. Morgan Morgan, was shot and killed by a group of Tories. Since then, this area has been known as Torytown.

  • …that by act of the Virginia House of Burgesses in 1744, a ferry was established extending from the mouth of Canagochego Creek in Maryland across the Potowmack to the Evan Watkins landing, about 250 yards southeast. This landing was also the entrance of Braddock's Road into what is now Berkeley County, West Virginia, where Washington and Braddock crossed in 1755 on their way to Fort Duquesne. To the northeast is Maidstone-on-the-Potomac, home of Evan Watkins in 1744. The Watkins Ferry Historical Marker is on the west side of US 11 North beside bridge across Potomac River.

  • …that in Martinsburg is the J.R. Clifford Historical Marker. Clifford was born in 1848 in Hardy Co. He was a Civil War veteran, Storer College graduate, teacher and principal at local Sumner School. He published Pioneer Press (1882), first African American paper in state. First of race to pass state bar exam (1887); he argued two race discrimination cases before Supreme Court. A founder of Niagara Movement, a predecessor of NAACP, and its 1906 Harpers Ferry meeting. He died in Martinsburg in 1933.


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