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I kept some notes that were made while I watched a movie about West Virginia during a low time in history. The scene opens with a couple that has nothing much but a rocking chair, bed and a few other items that we would consider necessities. They had just been setting around worrying and feeling down. She says, “A person can do anything, but if people don’t care, it won’t work. I just got up one day and said, ‘We have to start somewhere,’ so I started cleaning the cabin. I’m going to pray to God to forgive me for not having enough faith in Him and also my fellow man.”


Another of her comments was, “There is a man who had a stroke and gave up to die. Now he goes to church each week and helps in town. He says, ‘I knew this town that I love would live on. This is where I want to spend my last days’.”


The last comment was, “We have us a town again. The things I want to do, I can’t put off until tomorrow. I am scared and angry. I think about life and the wonderful memories. It all took place here. That’s why I came back. Don’t waste time. Trust God and make yourself some good friends.”


These words have haunted me whenever I feel we are not moving to change a bad situation, but this time, there was another meaning.


I went to Calhoun County Park to visit my re-enactor friends, Dennis, Terry, Nub, John and Aaron. I heard that they were building a house to represent the home of Adonijah McDonald, and I wanted to check their progress. These men have studied the actual happenings and will be portraying the events in a historically correct manner, as much as possible. In an hour, I learned more about the conflicts that tore families apart, and that recorded history does not always portray what happens in the “less important” events.


These men and their comrades will give you a chance to experience living history on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 19-20. If you allow yourself to go back in time, you will be more appreciative of what has been done to establish the fierce independence, love of God, and concern for our neighbors that we know today.



They do not choose up sides of North or South. A change of jacket colors can be made in an instant when necessary. I have not felt any animosity in the few years I have known these men as soldiers. This is not just grown men playing war, it is an expression of brotherhood.


 As I walked back to my car and the 21st century, I was overcome by the strong love of Calhoun people, at the county park, and even at a wedding reception 100 miles distant in Elkins. I took time to look toward the hills, green fields, blue sky . . . and thank God again that I am a Calhouner!


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