People’s University to Explore ‘Weird Stories of Wheeling’

WHEELING — A new People’s University series, “Wild, Wonderful and Weird Stories of Wheeling,” begins Tuesday at Ohio County Public Library, 52 16th St.

The free programs are being offered in the library’s auditorium at 7 p.m. on eight consecutive Tuesdays through May 28.

Sean Duffy, adult programming coordinator, said the eight-week series will feature “weird, wild, wacky, whimsical stories from wonderful Wheeling, including Native American oddities, frontier follies, Civil War conundrums, Victorian unconventionalities, Progressive Era incongruities, political peculiarities, hotel hijinks, morbid mysteries and more.”

The schedule for the series is as follows:

∫ Tuesday — “Weird Stories from Wheeling’s Wild Frontier and Native History.” Alan Fitzpatrick will talk about an unsolved mystery of the engraved Ohio County stone to the legend surrounding the Skull, Maj. Sam McColloch’s fateful premonition, Lewis Wetzel spitting lead balls, Coon’s war party, the Pots and Pans campaign of ’77 and, the Okton evil spirit.

∫ April 16 — “Victorian Era Mayhem and Murder,” presented by David Javersak.

∫ April 23 — “Weird Stories in Early 20th-Century Wheeling.” Hal Gorby will offer “a mad dash for suffrage, odd immigrant stories, obscure strikes and Communists.”

∫ April 30 — “Weird Stories of Wheeling in the Civil War,” presented by Jon-Erik Gilot.

∫ May 7 — “Odd Stories from Wheeling’s Brewing History,” presented by Ryan Stanton,

∫ May 14 — “Wild Wheeling Politics.” Joe Laker will discuss events from the watershed 1870 election to the meeting between Nixonand Eisenhower at the Wheeling-Ohio County Airport.

∫ May 21 — “Obscure McLure.” Christina Fisanick will relate historical oddities from Wheeling’s most storied hotel.

∫ May 28 — “Weird Ways to Die in Wheeling.” Bekah Karelis, described as Wheeling’s leading cemetery enthusiast, will share snippets of bizarre death tales.

All programs are free and open to the public. Patrons may attend as many classes as they wish. There are no tests or other requirements. For more information about the People’s University, contact the library by email, call 304-232-0244 or visit the reference desk.

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