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Belmont County Heritage Museum Reopens Tuesday

Photo by Robert A. DeFrank Cathryn Stanley, curator of the Belmont County Heritage Museum, prepares the displays and signage for the upcoming opening this Tuesday. A series of presentations and community outreach activities are planned in the coming months.

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — The Belmont County Heritage Museum is opening its doors next week, resuming its mission to showcase the hidden gems and treasures of local history.

Starting on the opening day Tuesday, the museum hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

Curator Cathryn Stanley was busy this week preparing the latest additions, furnishings from the United Presbyterian Church in Bellaire, which recently closed its doors.

“They had their last service in January. The congregation dates back to the 1800s, but their building was from 1910,” Stanley said.

The museum intends to make use of the church’s podium, and the Presbyterian Church was happy for the chance to keep its furniture together. She said much of the furniture dates from the 1950s and 1960s.

“It’s not antique, but it is lovely and the church has a history,” Stanley said.

The museum will have the opportunity to kick off outreach and attractions soon.

“We are going to have speakers. We are participating in the St. Clairsville Second Saturday event. We’re going to have a speaker each Second Saturday,” she said, referring to an upcoming series of Saturday events one day per month, May through October, put on by the St. Clairsville Area Chamber of Commerce, following its Food Truck Fridays.

Stanley said the museum has scheduled speakers including a local railroad historian who will speak about the railroad industry in the area. Other presenters will speak about Belmont County’s legendary sports figures, the museum’s Hopalong Cassidy exhibit, and in October the museum will host area ghost hunters and paranormal investigators.

“We’re trying to tie those speakers to displays we have here,” Stanley said.

The museum is holding other outreach efforts, including hosting recent livestreams of the Bellaire Great Stone Viaduct historical presentations. The other speakers will also be livestreamed over Facebook

Stanley said the museum is a treasure trove of memorabilia from Belmont County’s history.

She said COVID-19 changes last year carry over into this year’s events, with gatherings to be held outdoors and people masked. Stanley said the museum last opened in September but closed in November due to surging cases of the coronavirus.

The museum is located at 101 E. Main St., St. Clairsville, in the former sheriff’s residence. The phone number is 740-298-7020.

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