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Library’s Bill Burke Photo Exhibit Highlights 1970s Wheeling

WHEELING — The Ohio County Public Library will host an exhibit of 25 photographs taken by Bill Burke in Wheeling during the 1970s.

The exhibit will open on Thursday, May 19, in the library’s auditorium with a reception and light refreshments starting at 6 p.m. A talk by Burke will start at 7 p.m., and the official exhibit opening will follow immediately.

The exhibit will remain in place in the library’s auditorium through August 2022. It will be accessible during regular library hours, unless the room is in use by the library or by the public. Call 304-232-0244, send an email to lunchwithbooks@yahoo.com or stop at the Reference Desk for information and assistance accessing the exhibit or planning a visit.

A Maryland native, Burke graduated from Wheeling College in 1971. He became focused on photography during his senior year. During that time, the Miners For Democracy, a union reform group, held a meeting at the college. Burke got involved with the group’s struggle. After graduation, he moved to Wheeling and photographed for the United Mine Workers of America at mine sites in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Between assignments, he photographed in downtown Wheeling and in the Woodsdale neighborhood where he lived. It is the photographs from these days that comprise the exhibit.

Burke moved to the Washington, D.C. area in 1975 and photographed primarily for international labor unions. Upon his retirement in 2016, his archive was acquired by the University Of Maryland. He lives in Silver Spring, Maryland, with his wife, Jonni.

The Ohio County Public Library is located at at 52-16th St. in downtown Wheeling. Call 304-232-0244, email or visit the website at www.ohiocountylibrary.org for more information.

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