Calling All History Buffs

If you are a history buff (and many of our readers are), this month and the following two months are going to provide a bounty of historical riches, with events to mark National Historic Preservation Month and observances related to the sesquicentennial of West Virginia statehood and the Civil War.

A full week of activities planned for the June celebration of West Virginia’s sesquicentennial will be announced by the Wheeling Civil War 150 Committee later this week, to coincide with the 150th anniversary of the signing of the statehood bill (which took effect 60 days later on June 20, 1863).

To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the issuance of the proclamation establishing the nation’s 35th state, actor Fritz Klein of Springfield, Ill., is visiting West Virginia Independence Hall, 1526 Market St., Wheeling, to portray President Abraham Lincoln at 2 p.m Saturday, April 20. The program, “A New Star in the Union: Abraham Lincoln and West Virginia Statehood,” is free and open to the public.

During his presentation, Klein will ceremonially issue the West Virginia statehood proclamation, which Lincoln did exactly 150 years ago on April 20, 1863.

On another statehood-related note, Dr. David T. Javersak of Wheeling will speak on “Species of Legal Fiction: The Wheeling Conventions” at Trinity Lutheran Church, 3536 Eoff St., Wheeling, at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, April 23. The talk also is free and open to the public.

Javersak’s presentation, hosted by the South Wheeling Preservation Alliance, is being offered under the auspices of the West Virginia Humanities Council’s Sesquicentennial Speakers Bureau program.

Sean Duffy, programming coordinator at the Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling, has organized a timely course for the popular People’s University program.

The new series will focus on the Civil War and West Virginia statehood.

The free classes will meet in the library’s auditorium at 7 p.m. on consecutive Tuesdays from May 7 through June 25.

We will share more details at a later date.

Meanwhile, Friends of Wheeling officials have engaged a speaker on another timely topic for the organization’s annual awards dinner to be held Wednesday, May 1.

Ed McMahon, senior fellow for sustainable development at the Urban Land Institute in Washington, D.C., will serve as the guest speaker at the dinner. McMahon leads the Urban Land Institute’s worldwide efforts related to “environmentally sensitive development.”

In honor of National Historic Preservation Month, the West Virginia Humanities Council is bringing Sir Neil Cossons, a top preservationist in Great Britain, to the Mountain State.

The distinguished guest will speak at West Virginia Independence Hall in Wheeling Thursday, May 9. We will share more details at a later date.

Cossons is the former chairman of English Heritage, the group responsible for hundreds of historical and archeological sites in England from Stonehenge to the Battle of Hastings.

He was knighted in 1994 for his work in museums and heritage.

Ripped from the headlines? That would appear to be the case with the plot of an episode of the CBS drama, “The Good Wife,” that is scheduled to air at 9 p.m. today, April 14.

I happened to read in TV Guide this brief plot summary for tonight’s new episode: “A rape case draws interest from the hacker group Anonymous.”

Linda Comins can be reached via email at: lcomins@theintelligencer. net.