For want of alcohol we visit Huntington, West Virginia


Our first day was long.  We picked up the rental car;  we drove through lovely landscapes:  WVwe stopped for lunch somewhere in West Virginia :WV lunch and we got to our stopping point for the day; South Point, Ohio. South Point, with a population of about 4,000, is the most southerly point of Ohio.   The town overlooks 3 states (Ohio, Kentucky & West Virginia) and two rivers, the Ohio and the Big Sandy (which is actually just a 29 mile tributary of the Ohio river).  South Point is in Lawrence County and after we’d checked into our hotel we were hankering for a bottle of wine….. only to discover Lawrence is a dry county!!
It seemed a little bizarre to be crossing back over the border into West Virginia to get a drink!   Luckily Huntington is just over the Ohio river.   (yes, I know the photo does not show wine but I had not seen mason jar spirits before).WV moonshine
First settled as Holderby’s Landing in 1775, in what was then Virginia, in 1873 it became “Huntington” as the western terminus of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway (C&O).   Huntington sign
It is home to the Cabell County Court House –  built in beaux-arts classical style in 1899.   In 1895 an order was made to receive plans and specifications for a courthouse:   “to be of stone and brick or of stone or brick, two stories, high slate or clay roof, lighted with gas and electricity, heated by steam or air, it must have three fronts and four entrances and must contain rooms for Circuit Court, for County Court and for clerk’s offices of each court, with fire-proof clerk’s offices or vaults attached and must range in cost from $60,000 to $100,000.”    The building was subsequently built of Berea sandstone with a copper roof and cost substantially more!  We would’ve liked a peek inside but it was after 5pm so the building was closed.DSC04749a.
Cabell County Court House 2 .
Huntington is seemingly home to a lot of churches ….  these 5 were on the same street and we could see more in the distance:-  church 5.
church 3.
church 1That last church had an amusing message – a charity drive I assume…  church sign
It’s a place of incredibly cheap parking – at least by Washington DC standards:- 2014_11_03Marshall University is in Huntington.  The movie ‘We are Marshall” is based on  a 1970 plane crash when 75 people died including Marshall’s football team, coaches and staff and the flight crew. The film premiered in the Keith Albee Theater in December 2006 and special screenings were also held at Pullman Square.  Keith Albee.
In the Great Flood of 1937  the river reached a depth of 69.45 feet, more than 19 feet above flood stage.  Five lives were lost and damage ran into the millions of dollars and after the waters receded work began on the city flood wall – building commenced August 1st 1938 and was completed in 1940.   Wall.
River 1.
There’s a lovely riverside park where we watched the light fade out of the day
river 2.
river 3

Then it was back over the border to sleep.  I have no photos of South Point but I do have a hotel receipt to prove we actually stayed there.   We would not have spent time in Huntington if we’d been able to buy alcohol in South Point and that would’ve been a shame as it’s a very pretty place.



18 responses

    • I’m going to have to check out my Safeway (grocery) store then – I think they only sell beer and wine.

      Yeah the seafood decision could’ve been a bad one LOL. I had skewered grilled shrimp which I thought was the healthiest sounding option from their menu – it was really nice but it came with lashings of melted butter/oil over the top.

  1. It’s a Thing now to market commercial booze as moonshine.

    It is not moonshine but I’m and original hillbilly. City slickers and suburbanites apparently feel closer to the people by buying canning jars.

  2. So … the next generation of GPS is going to have to allow one to not only choose between direct routes & scenic routes, options to avoid toll roads, AND information on the “dryness” of areas passed through …

  3. What a lovely detour! (Except for the lack of booze: that in itself would have made me move on.) I love old churches and historical places, especially with fall colors as a backdrop. I’ll sometimes sneak in during a service just to get a look at the interior and stained glass windows in a church, though I was once embarrassed to find out I had come in during a funeral. There were very few people sitting in the pews, so the family was extremely happy to see me there, even though I was dressed in jeans and a denim jacket, hardly fit to be a mourner.

    I admit I’m with LT: I would not eat seafood so far away from the shore, though we had to make do when we were living in the Midwest. (Think Red Lobster, lol.)

    • Growing up we didn’t have seafood unless we were on vacation in Sydney. My father (who grew up on an island 9 miles x 3 miles) never ate, or allowed us to eat, seafood very far from the ocean. I do tend to still stick with that – this place was the cleanest looking place in a strange little town and the manservant was starving and not keen on driving on to another town, and I thought I’d find a salad on the menu. I don’t think there was a salad…. their coleslaw was really good though.

      LOL @ your mourner story! I love church interiors – so many gorgeous windows and beautiful ceilings. On this trip we only went into 2 churches – one in Knoxville and one in Asheville.

  4. I know the feeling of being in a ‘dry’ place. I visited my mum in Adelaide one Easter, and couldn’t buy booze anywhere for a few days. The city was shut right down, it seemed! Yesterday, I come across mason jar novelities in an online store – all sorts of odd drinking themes! Lovely set of photos, thanks for sharing, Emjay!

  5. It doesn’t seem bizarre to me at all that you went looking for booze! 😉 But what a nice set of experiences you had on the booze-inspired detour. I think this kind of trip, with no big agenda, just getting the feel for unsung places, is the greatest!

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