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Look Back: Jackson County full of potential

Jackson County is improving, both in villages and farms; but not as rapidly as it ought to. We can see an improvement in Ravenswood where several houses have gone up and a new mill nearly completed. The splendid farms around it are being improved in a better manner than heretofore. Maj. Brown is setting a good example in the introduction of sheep on his hill land and in the improvements commenced on the bottom farm, which is unsurpassed in fertility, size and value by any on the Ohio River.

Ripley has already improved by the erection of a large woolen factory, which is filled with the best machinery and is doing a good business. E. Maguire has also erected a large store and tavern which will give him far more room and convenience than he now has. Other stores and houses have been erected since we were last there. The country around is rich, and if the dams in Mill Creek were removed or properly sloped so that the lumber could be got out at seasons, its improvement would be rapid. Sandyville, Angerona and Cottageville are also fine villages.

The county is a good wheat, corn, sheep and grape country, and all it needs is capital and energy to make it one of the best counties in the State.

The Parkersburg Weekly Times

Sept. 22, 1866

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Silver ore

The excitement among the natives of Jackson, Wirt and Roane counties still survives. A day or two since [ago], we were shown a specimen of mineral resembling silver from Reedy Creek, more than twenty miles distant from the silver mine shaft in Jackson County.

Ore from a Wirt County farm was sent to Cincinnati recently and the Elizabeth Gazette says “the weight of one dollar proved to be worth Ninety-one cents.” Too much entirely.

The Parkersburg Daily Times

June 19, 1867

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RAVENSWOOD is growing and improving faster, this season than ever before. We have the location and everything else that is necessary for the building of a city, so let us all keep moving and working, with that object in vision, creating an increase in all branches of trades and make work plenty for all. — News.

The Parkersburg Orthopolitan

June 28, 1875

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A gentleman by the name of Thomas R. Williams stopped in the SENTINEL office on Tuesday, to state that he had discovered silver in paying quantities on Spring Creek, Roane County, about six miles from Spencer. He produced several assays made in Chicago which showed the presence of considerable gold and silver. Mr. Williams says that he has sunk a shaft and run into rich carbonates as well as profitable quartz. He further states that the territory in that section is being rapidly leased by capitalists. We will add that we don’t take much stock in the story.

The Parkersburg Weekly Sentinel

July 12, 1884

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A famous tract of land

About eight miles below Ravenswood, on the Ohio River Road, is a tract of land which is sure to be noticed by nearly every traveler over that road. The tract consists of eleven hundred acres, and is part of the original Washington tract, surveyed by Father George himself. With the exception of 150 acres, it is all covered with the original forest of as magnificent poplars and oaks as ever grew in West Virginia. There are to be seen there hundreds of poplars three or four feet in diameter, tall and straight, as an arrow. The largest oak in all that county grows on this tract. A number of men in Jackson County wanted to send it to the Centennial at Philadelphia but the owner of the land, Mr. Rogers, of Baltimore, wouldn’t consent. He wouldn’t sell the land or a single tree on it for love or money.

The Parkersburg Daily State Journal

May 12, 1887

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Bob Enoch is president of the Wood County Historical and Preservation Society. If you have comments or questions about Look Back items, please contact him at: roberteenoch@gmail.com, or by mail at WCHPS, PO Box 565, Parkersburg, WV 26102.

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