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Town honored in capital

By Staff | Feb 24, 2012

Speaker of the House Rick Thompson welcomes visitors from Jefferson County in honor of Jefferson County Day 2012. Delegate Tiffany Lawrence stands alongside Nathan and Joseph Donnelly, as well as others from the Eastern Panhandle.

Shepherdstown’s 250th anniversary celebration was recognized in the state capitol on Monday as more than four dozen individuals from Jefferson County traveled to Charleston in recognition of the second annual Jefferson County Day.

While both the Senate and the House offered resolutions once again establishing Jefferson County Day, the groups also took time to congratulate Shepherdstown on the anniversary of the town’s charter. Text of the resolution, read in the Capitol by Delegate Tiffany Lawrence included:

“Whereas the lands just to the north of the Pack Horse Ford on the southern banks of the Cohongoroota (Potowmac) River at the northern end of the Shenandoah Valley were among the first areas settled by European Colonists in what is now known as West Virginia during the earliest years of the 18th Century,

“Whereas these lands lie in and around the town now known as Shepherdstown,

“Whereas Col. Thomas Shepherd was granted 222 acres of these lands in 1734, built a mill at this place, and proceeded to lay out a town encompassing some 50 acres,

“Whereas this town was formally incorporated in 1762 as the town of Mecklenburg, later changed to Shepherdstown,

“Whereas this town has had a long, rich history that includes many notable occurrences, such as the famous Beeline March of volunteer riflemen in 1775, the first successful trial of James Rumsey’s steamboat in 1787, and the publication of the first book and newspaper in what is now West Virginia in the 1790s,

“And whereas the town of Shepherdstown this year is formally honoring that history by celebrating the 250th anniversary of its incorporation,

“Now let it be resolved that rest of the State of West Virginia, by this act of the elected members of this legislative body, congratulates the town of Shepherdstown on the occasion of its 250th anniversary.”

Accepting the resolution on behalf of the town was 250th event promoter Tara Sanders Lowe. Lowe also manned a booth during the morning hours within the Capitol that outlined the history of Shepherdsown as well as promoted the events planned for the year-long celebration.

Several other organizations and businesses traveled from Jefferson County to promote themselves while in Charleston. Included among them were Jefferson County Day organizing group WV Communication Outreach’s leader Cheryl Keyrouze who planned the trip; representatives from the EPOHOA, the Charles Town HPBA, Jefferson County Parks and Recreation, the town of Harpers Ferry and members of the Leadership Jefferson group sponsored by the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce.

Individuals took the opportunity to meet with legislators on a variety of issues relevant to the county. EPOHOA representative Nance Briscoe found the trip “very useful” for her group and members of the Parks and Recreation, along with County Commissioner Dale Manuel, were able to work toward Department of Highway assistance on a roadway to the proposed Hite Road park property.

The group was treated to a tour of the governor’s mansion during the trip as well.