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The “Venturesome” Virginia Frontiersman – Part 1

As the 45-year-old frontiersman began his careful descent along the steep western slope of the long flat mountain he had climbed earlier that morning, he could faintly make out rays of daylight ahead, a sure sign of a clearing in the forest, as dark forest turned to bright meadows in the foothills below. Being a veteran longhunter, Joseph Swope immediately recognized the old clearings ahead….

The site of Fort Clendenin and the origin story of Charleston, WV

This is the actual site of Fort Clendenin – also called “Fort Lee” – on the North bank of the Kanawha River in present day Charleston, West Virginia. The spot is located exactly at the corner of Brooks Street and Kanawha Boulevard, in downtown Charleston, West Virginia, and is now the site of a somewhat …

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The actual site of Fort Washington – now downtown Cincinnati – circa 1789

If you’ve read the Allen Eckert books, or studied the expansion of the American frontier in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s, then you’ve read about Fort Washington. It was located in an important spot. And because of that, it’s completely gone, with a large city built over it: Cincinnati, Ohio. The large well-constructed log …

Read moreThe actual site of Fort Washington – now downtown Cincinnati – circa 1789

The flintlock the early Virginia frontiersman likely would have carried.

When the first settlers came into the Greenbrier Valley in the 1750’s, this is likely the type of firearm they brought with them. A civilian owned smoothbore fowler. This longarm is exactly 6 feet in overall length. It has a bore of exactly .70 caliber. It could fire a solid round lead ball. Or it …

Read moreThe flintlock the early Virginia frontiersman likely would have carried.

18th century pack saddles, 2 found in Greenbrier County

These are 3 original pack saddles in the 18th century style, 2 of which were found in Greenbrier County, WV. These were used by the early long hunters on the frontier to transport their belongings, which most importantly included their furs, hides, meat, etc. They were also used by the early settlers to bring their …

Read more18th century pack saddles, 2 found in Greenbrier County

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 …

Read moreEstill Stone Blockhouse, Circa 1773, on Indian Creek