Updated on Wednesday*:
Bulltown Historic District
With a few friends and an afternoon free, I found myself walking back
into West Virginia’s Civil War heritage. On the same stretch of highway
as Falls Mill, right outside of Flatwoods, is Bulltown Historic
District. Off of I-79 at exit 67, 13 miles north on U.S. Rt. 19,
Bulltown is not difficult to locate. I enjoy history a great deal and my
goal was to experience some authentic steps into West Virginia’s past.
Bulltown Historic District is not only the site of the Civil War
Battle of Bulltown, it also features the restored Cunningham Farm, seven
graves of Confederate soldiers, and sections of the Weston-Gauley Bridge
Turnpike. It is a place from the past worth visiting in the present.
Many structures still stand on the old Cunningham Farm. The Fleming
House, built prior to 1900, is open for tours and reflects the
double-pen style log dwelling common in central West Virginia. Other
buildings open for tours include the Cunningham House, built in early
1800’s, the Spring House, McCauley Barn, St. Michael’s Church, the
Johnson House, and more. Tours are free and available Wednesday-Sunday,
10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Also on the site is an Interpretive Center with
artifacts and stories from the area.
There are paths to hike, as well as tour. One trail is called the
Memorial Trail. It leads to the hilly site of the 12-hour skirmish
between the Union and Confederacy. The year was 1863 and William L. “Mudwall”
Jackson, cousin of “Stonewall” Jackson, attempted to overtake the Union
fortifications on a knoll overlooking a bridge that crossed the Little
Kanawha River. The attack began at 4 a.m. Union forces led by Captain
Mattingly repelled the attack until the end of the battle at 4:30 p.m.
Today, the site of the Union fortification, the lower trenches, and
graves of fallen soldiers are featured.
Bulltown Historical Area has reenactments and costumed staff
periodically. The historic region allows a great deal of fun for all. If
you’re in the mood for some history and a piece of your state’s past,
head out to Bulltown Historic District.
If you decide to make your way into the district, watch out for Union
bullets and listen for the sound of Moses Cunningham shouting from his
farmhouse, “Hurrah for Jeff Davis!” Cunningham was a supporter of the
Confederacy and it has been said, “. . . although he was a noncombatant,
he was wounded at the Battle of Bulltown.” One account states that he
was shot in the backside after running into the line of fire and
shouting cheers for the South. Some may call Moses brave, some may call
him foolish; either way, his story is as unique and interesting as
Bulltown Historic District, which has many other tales to tell.
Aug. 1-2, Ritchie County Fair and Exposition, Harrisville.
Aug. 2, Fishing with a Friend, North Bend State Park.
Aug. 2, Ritchie County Primary Care 5K Health Run/Walk, 8 a.m.
Aug. 6-9, Wirt County Fair, Camp Barbe.
Aug. 8, Avian Program/Birds of Prey, North Bend, 7 p.m.
Aug. 13, Bucky Covington, Mountain Lake Amphitheater, 7 p.m.
This Week's Editorial:By Helen Morris:
Calhoun County Map