Upshur County, West Virginia was created in 1851 from Randolph, Barbour, and Lewis counties. Upshur’s early history and the lives of its more prominent pioneers and nineteenth-century Native Sons are ably captured in this tripartite volume. Part I, a condensed history of the state prepared by Hu Maxwell, ranges over everything from the first explorations of the Blue Ridge, the French and Indian War, and the Revolution to West Virginia geography and geology, formation of the state, and the Civil War in West Virginia. In Part II, Mr. Cutright lays out the history of the county, with emphasis on the Indian Wars, religious life, geography, formation of the county and its political and governmental institutions, Upshur County and Upshur countians in the Civil War, as well as a whole host of miscellaneous topics, such as turnpike and railroad construction, newspapers, financial institutions, the birds of Upshur County, and much more. In the final third of the volume we find an alphabetically arranged series of over 600 biographical/genealogical sketches of Upshur countians (some of them illustrated), which range from several paragraphs to several pages in length. In the majority of cases the subjects, who were mostly born around mid-century, are identified by their year of birth, the name of one or more parents, and the names of their spouse(s) and children. In addition, we learn something of each subject’s career, military service (if any), and his/her movements to and from Upshur County.
In short, given the book’s 607 densely packed pages of historical and genealogical detail, this is the starting point for Upshur County research.
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