Weston Residential Walking Tour (1)
Starting at the coffee shop, see some of Weston's most historic homes as you loop through downtown and end at the Mountaineer Military Museum.
This house, built in c. 1920, was later converted into a funeral home, and now a coffee shop. It is a two-story hipped-roofed American foursquare with an asphalt shingle roof and features gable dormers with fluted pilasters. The building sits on a brick foundation and has quoins at the corners. The wrap-around porch is fully enclosed and is covered by a single story hipped-roof.
This 1884 home is a two-story, front facing L-shaped Italianate house with a rear gabled wing. The home has an asphalt shingle roof and a parged interior chimneys. It features vinyl and German siding with 6/1, 2/2, and French windows. The 2/2 windows have decorative hoods. There is a one-story, projecting, three-sided bay on the front with brackets and paneled bulkheads below the windows. A one-story shed-roof covers the front porch with chamfered posts and scrolled vergeboard.
This two-story, hipped-roof Queen Anne-style house was built in 1886 and has a red brick façade and asphalt shingle roof. The front brick work has decorative rosette blocks set in. The home features two-story, three-sided, projecting, gable bays on the front and the side. Both gable bays have decorative wood work in gable end and solid brackets with a dropped finial. The front gable bay has two windows in the center of the second floor with stone gabled hoods and sills. There is a one-story, wraparound porch with gable pediment, curved entablature and Ionic columns.
Built in c. 1915, this two-story, Colonial Revival-style hipped-roof house has gable dormers and a front gable bay. The dormers have partial return cornices and stylized Palladian windows. The home has blonde brick with brown brick quoins and a red clay tile roof with cresting. The front porch is covered by a one-story, hipped-roof with square brick columns on an enclosed brick balustrade.
This c. 1910 home is a two-story blonde brick Colonial Revival-style, hipped-roof house with projecting bay on left with pointed roof. It features a half-circle dormer on the front with cornice and pilasters and a partially recessed gable dormer in left bay with partial return cornice and shallow arched window. The house has a metal shingle roof with cresting and denticulated partial return cornice. The front porch has Ionic columns and a spindled balustrade and is covered with a one-story, hipped-roof.
The second oldest house still standing in Weston, built in 1844. This historic two-story, rear facing L-shaped vernacular house has two interior chimneys. The roof is covered with asphalt shingles and features a partial return cornice with small dentils. The entrance is covered with a flat roof that is supported by wrought iron posts.
An 1893 two story, hipped-roof home that features wood shingle-style siding and a red clay tile roof. There is a three-sided projecting bay on the left of the home with a pointed roof. It has a single-story, hipped-roof, wraparound porch that is enclosed with novelty windows. An iron fence surrounds property.
A two-story brick residence constructed 1883; it exhibits many Italianate features. The gable roof is now covered with asphalt shingles. The tall, narrow arched windows are double-sash four over four, capped with stone hood molds. Decorative bargeboard edges the projecting eaves and the gable end is set with a louvered oculus outlined with brickwork. A large three-sided bay with bracketed cornice projects from the first story. Another semi-circular bay on the south side of the house is set with three stained glass windows and also has a bracketed cornice. On the north side is a two story bay, three-sided, with three windows on each floor. The front porch of the building has been remodeled with brick and glass. The large one story three-bay porch on the north has been left intact, with turned balusters, square columns, and supporting brackets.
West Virginia is well known for its glass manufacturing on a small artisan scale and also a large factory scale. The Museum of American Glass is a non-profit museum that was founded in 1993 with a goal of preserving any component of the glass industry in West Virginia as well as the United States. The Museum of American Glass focuses on the whole history behind glass work in West Virginia and gives insight to the people, factories, and products that made glass such a valuable piece to West Virginia's history. The WVMAG also contains an archive of oral histories from the glass blowers and archives from the American Flint Glass Workers Union, which is one of the oldest unions in the United States. From 1777 until 1795, this site was occupied by a log building used by the Indian Spy Service of the Virginia Melita. Two buildings have succeeded it: The original Bailey House hotel, where the future Stonewall Jackson took the examination for admission to West Point. The building burned in 1877 and was replaced by the current structure build in 1885 by PM Hale and the home of the Lewis County Bank in the first quarter of the 20th century. It is now occupied by the West Virginia Museum of American Glass. The side of the West Virginia Museum of American Glass has a mural which illustrates the community’s rich history in the glass industry. Each piece of glass painted on the side of the building is available to view at the museum. This mural was completed in 2020 by West Virginia artist, Jesse Corlis.
Weston’s largest commercial structure, on the northeast corner of Main Avenue and Second Street (202-214 Main), now occupied on its first and in part, second floors by the United Bank, was erected in 1896. The three-story, steel frame building, faced with Milwaukee, yellow-orange, and terra cotta brick and trimmed with Cleveland stone, featured a flagpole-topped, conical turret towering above all else on the street intersection corner. (A flag is no longer flown.) Inside, it boasted natural gas-fired steam heat, electric lights, wired in accord with the latest rules and regulations of the Chicago Fire Department, hot and cold running water, and modern, flushing toilets throughout. These Innovations seldom found in small town America at the end of the 19th century. The original occupants were the National Exchange Bank, immediately on the corner; the 40-room R. P. (for Richard Pindall) Camden Hotel, its main entrance and lobby centering the building on the Main Avenue side ground floor (206-208 Main), its bedrooms on the second and third stories; and the Camden Opera House, whose entry was on Second Street (115 East Second).
The Tracy block was built in 1891 by Father Tracy. The building is a well preserved example of iron storefronts and details supplied by Geo. L. Mesker & Co. out of Indiana. The building still boasts the metal plates signifying the Mesker mark. This building is two stories, consist of five bays and made of red brick.
Since 2006, this historic building has been home to the Mountaineer Military Museum. The museum offers exhibits drawn from the collection of museum founder Ron McVaney. The museum is supported by the Lewis County Board of Education that offered this space to McVaney for the purpose of maintaining a museum. The building was previously home to Weston Colored School, the first and only public school for African Americans in Weston from 1882 through May 1954. The school included eight grades and taught children ranging in age from six to sixteen. The building includes a marker and information about the school. Growing up in a little coal mining community in Harrison County, WV, three young men received their Draft Notices. Ron McVaney was assigned to Germany…and his two friends were sent to Vietnam. Ron was the ONLY one to come home. Asked to be a pall-bearer at his best friend’s funeral…he made a graveside “PROMISE”: “I won’t let anyone forget you.” It is “THE PROMISE” that is the underlying Theme of The MOUNTAINEER MILITARY MUSEUM! Since that time, Ron began to collect military items from yard sales, flea markets, surplus stores and an occasional Military Collectors Show. “I thought having those things around would help me remember my friend.” The collection grew, and SOON filled every nook and cranny available. Ron retired from his job, and his wife suggested that he “…share the collection with others, and tell the story of his friend…and others like him…who served in Vietnam.” Ron took the bulk of his retirement and rented a building in Buckhannon. The collection opened there in May 2003…but by October, the Museum had to close its doors due to lack of funding and support. By the end of October, the Museum had found a temporary home in one room of The Weston State Hospital. The Museum was well received, and was invited to return the following spring tourist season. During that time, the group of caretakers invited the McVaney’s to relocate the collection to a larger suite in the front of the building. The Museum reopened in May of 2005. But, by October 2006, the “Hospital” was locked down due to fire code violations. The McVaney’s collection had to be packed away. Soon…bins and boxes overtook the McVaney’s home. The search began to find a new site. It was suggested that Ron approach the Lewis County Board of Education, who owns the Historic Weston Colored School. The local Convention and Visitors Bureau was using the building, but was getting ready to vacate to another site. With a scrapbook of pictures in hand, the Board agreed to give the McVaney’s a perpetual lease to the School Building. The McVaney’s moved items to the site in February of 2006…and Ron began building. The School House gave the collection 700 square feet of display space…and it didn’t take long to fill every inch. In May 2006, a ribbon cutting was held with local dignitaries, families of Vietnam Veterans, and several members of the Community. The Mountaineer Military Museum was very well received. “THE PROMISE” had a new home. Soon, word spread, saying: “You should see the Mountaineer Military Museum in OUR TOWN!” Folks came…from all over! With support from the Lewis County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Museum was able to get travel cards sent to Welcoming Centers all over West Virginia, and added to the West Virginia Tourism Travel Guide. The collection continued to grow, as local families began to bring artifacts and remembrances of their Military Heroes to be placed in the Museum. THE HALL OF HEROES was conceived to be a place to bring pictures of your service member to have a permanent place of Honor and Remembrance. Display spaces that were initially used to house items from a particular era, were reconfigured to be windows to honor an Individual. Some very rare and unique items have found their home at the Museum. After a few years, the small 700 square-foot space had served “THE PROMISE” to its capacity. Early 2011, The Lewis County School Board secured funding to begin construction on an addition to the Museum. This addition space utilized the ‘back-yard’ of the Colored School. ANOTHER “Chapter” was beginning. By construction’s end, an additional 2,100 square-feet of space had been added. Ron and a local Vietnam Veteran, Gary Rogers, began building display spaces and dioramas. The addition was build and opened in two stages. The first part opened in 2012, the second in 2014. In the “Joseph Mace Annex”, named for (then) Lewis County Board of Education Superintendent and Vietnam Veteran, the space was used to arrange artifacts by “Eras”: CIVIL WAR, WWI, WW II, KOREA, VIETNAM, IRAQ/WOT. The McVaney’s are often asked, “What is the Admission cost?” Their answer: “THE VETERAN PAID THE PRICE FOR YOU!” The Museum does not charge admission, but operates solely on donations received from visitors, tour groups, and groups and organizations from the area throughout the year. Summer fundraising yard sales and raffles supplement the Museum’s Winter Utilities and Building Maintenance Funds when the Museum closes for the winter months. From December through April, the McVaney’s use that time to redo displays and provide Building maintenance. The Museum’s NUMBER ONE Fundraiser is “THE PROMISE” PATCH. This embroidered patch was conceived as a perpetual fundraiser for the Museum. It works like this: The Patch costs $25.00. With your ownership of “THE PROMISE” PATCH, you are then making YOUR “Promise” to support the Museum with a yearly financial donation! “THE PROMISE” Patch has owners as far away as Hawaii and New Zealand…and everywhere in between. Contact us, if you would like to make YOUR “Promise”. The Museum reopens each Spring on the first Saturday of April. The Museum has several events during the year to raise funds for building maintenance and display upgrades, sponsored by local Veterans, Civic, and Motorcycle Groups.