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Wyatt, West Virginia

Wyatt, West Virginia

Wyatt, is a small village, located on the banks of Big Bigamon Creek, was settled in 1865 by Eli Sharp.

Mr. Sharp raised geese for a living, thus the village was called "Goosetown" In later years however, Dr. Z. W. Wyatt brought the small village though an epidemic of diphtheria, so the grateful people named their little settlement "Wyatt" in his honor.

According to the late historian, W. Guy Tetrick, Big Bingamon Creek attained its name from the famed Indian Fighter, Samuel Bingamon who fought with a band of Indians on the Jeremiah Hess farm, and became of the heroic act the creek was named "Big Bingamon".

The farming community had a harness shop, boot maker, millinery shop, ice cream parlor, grocery store, doctors office, jewelry store, post office, and barber shop.

The first school was built in the late 1880's was a 2 room structure. In 1896 it had classes 1-7.

It was located in the bottom behind the present I.O.O.F. hall.

The present Wyatt Church was deeded on Feb. 20, 1890. It was called "Salem Chapel". Land for the church was donated by Eli Cunningham. The first trustees were M. J. Anderson, George H. Berry, Lewis Tetrick, Daniel Cunningham, S. McIntire, J. W. Hess, and James L. Hardesty. Records show the first United Brethren minister to be Rev. W. A. Hotsleader 1882.

The first Methodist minister, Rev. J. F. McClure, came in 1903. The Universalist Church was founded by Jesse Sturm between 1870 and 1885. Mr. Sturm also built a grist mill in Wyatt 1870 on the ground purchased from Col. Elam F. Piggot, an influential land dealer in the area. The mill later was owned by Daniel Ashcraft who operated the mill until 1917.

The Western Maryland Railroad bought the land when the Consolidated Coal Co. opened a mine in Wyatt.

The mine was operated from 1917-1928.

A camp of mining houses were erected on the hill above the present school.

A new school was started in 1919. For a period of 9 years housed both grade and high school. Later a gymnasium and cafeteria was added.

During the coal boom there was a bank, and emergency hospital, recreation hall, a movie theatre, company store, and several grocery stores.

The mining houses were sold and torn down in 1936.

The I.O.O.F. Lodge was established in 1897; Rebecca, lodge 1941.

There have been P.T.A.'s, Jr. Order of Mechanics, Ladies Aid, Farm Womens Club, Youth Fellowships, and Soft Ball and Base Ball teams at various times and the Lions Club formed in 1974.

In 1946 a flood central project was undertaken by Mr. Chester W. Martin, a much respected retired principal at Wyatt School. He appealed to Senator M. M. Neely for helping controlling the flood waters which ravaged our community. A petition was signed and the goal accomplished.

A lot of good families live in our community. My husband summed it up pretty well, when we were visited by the new minister right before his death. He said, "Preacher, you'll find the nicest people you'd find anywhere living on Bingamon Creek. They're a little headstrong, and set in their ways, but they are always ready to help anyone in need. 'They are the salt of the earth..'

From an article written by Virginia M. Heldreth, Wyatt, W. Va., A History of Northern Harrison County West Virginia Clay, Eagle, Sardis, Recalling the Past, Looking to the Future, Shinnston Historical Association, 1982. Lula Fae Parsons Doverspike owned a copy of this book.

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