The window display below is the historic feature currently at the John Henry Museum in Hinton, WV. It depicts the inside of the building when it was a general store in the early 1900’s. L.G. Rhodes Store, built in 1905, served the needs of the people in the small town of Talcott, WV, for more than 107 years. At one time, the once thriving railroad community had numerous stores, restaurants, service stations, hotels, boarding houses and other businesses. The John Henry museum is telling the story and educating visitors about how the expansion and construction of the C&O Railway brought vitality to the area. Not only did it bring new business but many of the workers decided to relocate to the Talcott area and made it their home. NRGRDA’s Community Development Agent, Stacy Ford, is assisting the program with this educational effort and works through many avenues to make the historic past of Summers County available to all residents.
These window panels give you a glimpse of what the inside of the store looked like in its boom. When the John Henry Historical Society received the building and began renovations they restored the original hardwood floor as well as the original shelves that used to be full of merchandise. These shelves now hold pieces of history as well as serve as part of the gift shop.
The window coverings also have a much-needed UV protection to help preserve the museum items. This project is just one of many that I’ve been working on with funding from the Coal Heritage Authority. I hope to wrap up the projects by the end of May in time for the Museum to open for the season. We are working on installing four educational panels along with two original drawings of the Great Bend Tunnel.