Area Sights In History Series

Area residents who are watching the History Channel’s new series, “The Men Who Built America,” may be seeing some familiar faces and local sights.

Part of the series, which focuses on U.S. industrialists of the 19th and early 20th centuries, was filmed in the Wheeling and Weirton areas. Sites such as the shuttered LaBelle nail factory in Wheeling and former steelmaking facilities in Weirton were used as backdrops on the location shoots. Scenes also were filmed in Oglebay Institute’s Mansion Museum.

A number of area residents also had opportunities to appear on camera for the production. For example, Leonard Rycerz of Wheeling and members of his acting family were chosen as extras for the series.

In addition, Luke Hardt, chair of Bethany College’s Visual and Performing Arts Department and director of Bethany College Theatre, was featured in the series’ second episode that aired Tuesday, Oct. 23. Hardt played Capt. Heinde, leader of the Homestead strike-breaking Pinkertons. He also was featured in the trailer for the mini-series available for viewing on the History Channel.

“I Am One of the Wounded,” a poem written by Martha Steinman of Mount Olivet, was scheduled to be read Thursday, Oct. 25h, at an ArtStart exhibit, “Impact: the Experience of Service,” in Rhinelander, Wis.

The local woman explained that the art exhibition explores the impact of military service on those who have experienced it.

Steinman’s poem was written in memory of her husband, Col. Charles A. Steinman, who served in Vietnam.

Originally published in the December 2010 issue of Decanto, “I Am One of the Wounded” also is distributed in packets given to veterans by the Order of the Silver Rose in Arizona, she said.

In case you haven’t noticed because of all the political hype filling our eyes and ears, the holiday season also is upon us. As evidenced by the November calendar of events published in today’s Life section, a plethora of holiday celebrations will begin in earnest in coming weeks.

Among those holiday traditions, the Moscow Ballet’s production of “Great Russian Nutcracker” is returning to the Capitol Theatre in downtown Wheeling after an absence of many years. The holiday ballet will be performed on stage at the Capitol at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28.

Earlier this month, the Moscow Ballet held auditions in Wheeling for young dancers to perform with the professional company for the single performance.

Prior to the Wheeling Symphony performance featuring the brilliant pianist Orli Shaham last weekend, Lea Ridenhour, president of symphony board, announced that the date of the orchestra’s November concert has been changed to avoid a conflict with the Fantasy in Lights holiday parade in downtown Wheeling.

The WSO’s Masterworks concert with guest violinist Martin Chalifour will now take place at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, at the Capitol Theatre.

The Fantasy in Lights event hits the pavement on Friday evening, Nov. 16, continuing the long-standing tradition that the Wheeling parade occurs on the weekend before Thanksgiving.

Linda Comins can be reached via email at: Comins@news–