Estill Stone Blockhouse, Circa 1773, on Indian Creek

Estill Blockhouse. Built 1773. Indian Creek, Monroe County, West Virginia. This is the real thing. One of the coolest structures in all of West Virginia. A stone blockhouse fortified home from the Virginia frontier still standing, in its original location. With a history of Indian attack, and with a legendary frontier family. I had the …

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Scavengeology skills ID important-looking bald guy in painting found at yard sale, and it’s a good one….

Since I was able to identify the history and owner of the shark skin razor case, my father asked me to take a look at this painting sitting on the mantle of his cabin. He found it at a yard sale in Florida (which of course turn up a lot of things because people retire …

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18th century shark skin razor case “left” in America by a Scottish Lord in 1772.

This unusual case was found at an antique show in Florida, and when found, had an old historical society sticker on the bottom. like 19th century old. The sticker reads, “Presented to the Fairfield County Historical Society of Connecticut by Misses Peck of Stratford, CT, 188?, Left by John Sterling in 177?”. I originally believed …

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The Search for James Bryan, French Indian War Ranger, Revolutionary War Veteran, Survivor of Valley Forge, early Point Pleasant settler, and my 5th great grandfather

One of my first attempts at uploading some of the Facebook videos we did this winter, into one larger video for Youtube. This documents our search for the homesite and grave of James Bryan, my 5th great grandfather – the only paternal grandfather who’s grave I haven’t found. At least back to the first of …

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Byrnside’s Fort / “Willowbrook” Plantation

We recently acquired the “Burnside-Bierne-Johnson House” near Union, West Virginia. All we knew about it when we started was the 1993 National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form. Click the link to see it…. This is the narrative: Standing high and proud on the edge of a bluff, overlooking a ravine in which flows Byrnside …

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Houmas House Plantation in NOLA – and its Union, WV Connection

This is the famous Houmas House Plantation near New Orleans, Louisiana: Well, it has a deep connection to little ‘ole Union, WV. In Union, Monroe County, West Virginia, are two spectacular antebellum mansions, Elmwood, and Walnut Grove. Did you know that the owners of Walnut Grove also owned the Houmas House Plantation in New Orleans? …

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