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Introduced Version Senate Concurrent Resolution 64 History

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SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 64

(By Senators Chafin, Cole, Stollings, Unger and D. Hall)

 

 

 

Requesting the Division of Highways to name County Route 15, Mercer County, between mileposts 0.00 and 5.1 from Bramwell, West Virginia, to Montcalm, West Virginia, the “River Road Music Heritage Trail”.

    Whereas, The Bluestone River, originating with a trickle out of a spring at East River Mountain, flows its course to the mighty Bluestone Dam in Summers County, West Virginia; and

    Whereas, Rock cliffs, small waterfalls, springs and gorges all make up the beauty of the Bluestone River’s seventy-seven miles; and

    Whereas, The Bluestone River grows wider and deeper as it collects these mountain streams and creeks; and

    Whereas, The Bluestone River collects Simmons Creek at Bramwell and Lorton Lick at Montcalm, the beginning of the River Road; and

    Whereas, River Road flows along the Bluestone River and the original Norfolk & Western Railroad line; and

    Whereas, The Bluestone River is a geographic divider of coal to its northwest. It was this rich seam of Pocahontas coal that created a coal boom in the 1880s. It was the new industry of coal-mining that brought families to southern West Virginia for jobs in mining, railroading and related industries; and

    Whereas, These pioneer families brought not only hard-working ethics but also their talents and gifts; and

    Whereas, From Simmons Creek to Lorton Lick six families gave the world the enduring gift of their musical heritage; and

    Whereas, Working hard for a living from sunrise, relaxation was spent on front porches at dusk, listening to the lonesome whistle of coal and passenger trains chugging up the river, and playing music and singing songs handed down to younger generations. Neighbors up and down the River Road were serenaded at twilight by these families; and

    Whereas, The Goins brothers, the Dillon family, the Kirby family, the Duncan family and West Virginia’s own Hazel Dickens are well known for their contributions to bluegrass, gospel, traditional mountain music and even rock and roll; and

    Whereas, These families made unquantifiable contributions to music during almost a century in the early days of coal; and

    Whereas, As Lorton Lick empties into the Bluestone River, the community of Montcalm sprang up, where Hazel Dickens grew up on a mountainside there, overlooking the river; and

    Whereas, Hazel Dickens spent a lifetime making others feel good with her songs; and

    Whereas, Hazel Dickens’ final resting place is in Mercer County; and

    Whereas, It is fitting and proper that in this, the 150th year of the State of West Virginia and the 125th year of Bramwell, West Virginia, that the Legislature of West Virginia recognizes the legendary families of bluegrass, gospel and traditional mountain music who were born and grew up along the Bluestone River with the gift of music in their hearts and a desire to share that gift with the world; therefore, be it

    Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:

    That the Division of Highways is hereby requested to name County Route 15, Mercer County, between mileposts 0.00 and 5.1 from Bramwell, West Virginia ,to Montcalm, West Virginia, the “River Road Music Heritage Trail”; and, be it

    Further Resolved, That the Legislature is hereby requested to name each one-mile stretch of the “River Road Music Heritage Trail” “The Goins Brothers Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Dillon Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Kirby Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Raines Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail” and “The Hazel Dickens Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, respectively, with “The Hazel Dickens Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail” concluding in Montcalm, West Virginia; and, be it

    Further Resolved, That the Division of Highways is hereby requested to have made and be placed signs identifying the “River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Goins Brothers Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Dillon Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Kirby Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”, “The Raines Family Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail” and “The Hazel Dickens Mile of the River Road Music Heritage Trail”; and, be it

    Further Resolved, That the Clerk of the Senate is hereby directed to forward a copy of this resolution to the Secretary of the Department of Transportation and to the Mayor of Bramwell, West Virginia.

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