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C. A. Witt --
A True Visionary, Part 2
by Helen Morris, Bill Bailey and the descendants of C.A. Witt

Updated on Wednesday*:

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(The second in a two-part series on C.A. Witt.)

Witt entered the passenger steamer business in 1919 with Foster Johnson and William Deems to provide service between Grantsville and Creston. He was also elected mayor of Grantsville.

Dexter, Helen, and Mannard Ball.




Photos above are from the flood of 1939

He added a livery and feed barn to the mill and became the International Harvester truck dealer for the Grantsville area. Witt was also president of the newly formed Grantsville Hotel Co.

 In 1921, he added a freight boat to his business. It was at this time that the Witts purchased a home in Parkersburg for use only during the school year so that their children could be “properly educated.”

The flour mill was sold around 1923, and he became an authorized dealer for Dodge Brothers cars, McCormick-Deering and International Harvester farm machinery, Graham trucks, and Maytag washing machines. He was also president of Grantsville Automobile Club.

In 1927, he bought the property at Main and Bridge streets for a building to house all of his dealerships. This later housed Francis Hardware Store, Consolidated Supply, and Pursley’s Furniture Store.

In 1928, he was elected to the town council and was appointed a director of the Bank of Grantsville. In 1929, he acquired the Chevrolet dealership.

In the late 1930s, he served on the State Road Commission and in the late 1940s, he was as a justice of the peace.

In 1955, Consolidated Supply was organized from portions of his previous business interests, in partnership with John, Roxie and George Ball. They later purchased his interest in the business.

His grandson, John Holliday, remembers his Grandpa in this way: “He was always friendly, even tempered, non-critical, encouraging, interested in me, busy, and a man of many skills and talents. When I entered the WVU College of Engineering, he presented me with a brand new K&E slide rule for doing computation. This was the 1950’s version of the pocket computer. He kept up to date with technology and knew what I needed.”

C. A. Witt listening to music with headphones.

When the new Grantsville bridge was opened in 1963, Witt cut the ribbon to open the structure.

He was a well-known cabinetmaker in the area, served as deacon of First Baptist Church, and served one term on the Calhoun County court.

He and wife Emma were members and active participants in the affairs of First Baptist Church and involved in the civic improvement efforts of Grants-ville and the surrounding area.

Grantsville and Calhoun County benefited from the life and works of Cary Albert Witt and many other members of the community that have been forgotten in the mists of time.

To read part one of this 2-part series click here

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By Helen Morris:

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