Look Back: A glance down memory lanes

Historical newspaper excerpts from the Wood County Historical Society

Image Provided The advertisement above, taken from the December 1918 edition of the Parkersburg High School The Quill, shows that a change in ownership of the bowling alleys at 718 Market St. had occurred since the 1913 item below.

Bowling alley

A company of very respectable gentlemen assembles every night at the room of the Parkersburg Bowling Association, who amuse themselves in the harmless and healthy exercise of rolling balls.

As only members are admitted, no fears need be entertained of coming in contact with undesirable individuals. It is the place to go to spend a few pleasant hours.

The Parkersburg Daily Times

Jan. 19, 1872


The Parkersburg Bowling Association is the healthiest, safest, and most innocent place of amusement. The association is composed of gentlemen, who know how to amuse themselves in a rational manner.

The Parkersburg Daily Times

Feb. 8, 1872


At Fries Park

This resort was visited by several thousand people during the day and evening. An orchestra was in attendance and there was dancing all day. The bowling alleys also did a land office business.

The Parkersburg Daily Sentinel

July 6, 1896


A bowling party

Mrs. W.W. Moore gave a bowling party at the Terrapin Park alleys on Thursday afternoon, and the bowling would have done credit to the experts at the game. Mrs. Henry Kurtz , won the first prize with 146 points to her credit, but in the next game Mrs. Moore had 150 pins. Mrs. Wiley got the booby prize. The party was composed of Mrs. Theo. Wiley, Mrs. Dan Schneider, Mrs. Carl Hebrank, Mrs. S.H. Biddle, Mrs. Henry Kurtz, Mrs. Frank Vierheller and Mrs. W.W. Moore.

The Parkersburg Sentinel

July 7, 1899


Local bowlers were defeated

The McCormick duckpin team, after winning from the Marietta by nineteen points on Tuesday night, suffered defeat Thursday night at Marietta by ten points, by the following score: Marietta — Joe Smithberger, 242; D. Rose, 287; C. Kidd, 266; Ray Smithberger, 262; J. Parlin, 260. Total pins, 1315.

Parkersburg — Tub Johnson, 246; P.T. Barnum, 261; J. Rudge, 257; George Samuels, 257; Krank Kennedy, 284. Total pins, 1305.

The Parkersburg Sentinel

Jan. 7, 1910

(Major differences between Duckpin bowling and10-Pin bowling is that the duckpin ball is just a bit larger than a softball and has no finger holes. Duckpin bowlers get three balls per frame and the pins are shorter and have somewhat a “fatter” shape than 10-pins.)


The commissioners approved a license for Proudfoot Bowling Alleys after they produced evidence of their being persons of good moral character and not of intemperate habits and that they have not been convicted of a felony or for selling intoxicating liquors on Sunday. The license permits them to keep for public use or resort, two bowling alleys at 718 Market Street.

From Wood County Order Book 15 Page 413, October 8, 1913


Bowling at Terrapin Park

By April 1899, a six-lane bowling alley was constructed between the Casino and Dudley Avenue. The lease for the alleys went to Capt. Samuel B. Baker. The first organized team of bowlers at Terrapin Park called themselves “The Pioneers.”

An excerpt from Terrapin Park,

Parkersburg, West Virginia,

A History by Jeff and Christy Little


Bob Enoch is president of the Wood County Historical Society. Would you like to help preserve our past for future generations? The society offers informative monthly meetings and an interesting, 20-page quarterly newsletter. Dues are just $20/year. Send to: WCHPS, P.O. Box 565, Parkersburg, WV 26102.