Goodbye to Long Tom

It saddens me to learn that “Long Tom” is being traded for a slice of land big enough to hold a row of picnic tables. He is being removed from his home of a hundred years to go back to Boreman where he spent 22 years and was abandoned. According to The Parkersburg News dated Oct. 20, 1920, HD Matthews, Post Commander of the local American Legion, learned the cannon was sold to Parkersburg Junk Co. to be cut up for scrap. Matthews purchased the cannon for the Legion and the rest is history.

The cannon is as much a part of the City Park as is the fountain. I am surprised that it is not being rebuilt at Boreman. There are many of us and our ancestors who have enjoyed the city park and “Long Tom.”

As Blair Couch said at a council meeting some 10 years ago, “What is a park without a cannon?” Well, now Boreman will have three and the City Park will have none!

I also don’t understand if this tiny parcel of land is a burden on Wood County, and the City of Parkersburg needs it to help control the downtown property, why the county wasn’t generous enough to just donate it to the city or sell it for a dollar. This has been a problem for downtown Parkersburg for over 10 years. I don’t understand the county’s reluctance to turn it over to the city.

I hope “Long Tom” doesn’t just disappear after being removed from his home in the City Park as some of our other historical pieces have just simply vanished.

Again, I am saddened at the county commissioners and city council members’ decision to remove “Long Tom” from our historical city park. Also, some of us enjoy our City Park and don’t frequent Boreman.

Good bye old friend.

Karen S. Asbury



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