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  • Writer's pictureCathryn Stanley

Watt Center program features “Barnesville History in Review”



BARNESVILLE – The Watt Center for History and the Arts in Barnesville is pleased to welcome local historian Bruce Yarnall for a trip through 215 years of Barnesville history on Tuesday evening, October 24, at 7 p.m. This illustrated PowerPoint program is an expanded version of Yarnall’s keynote at the April Barnesville Chamber Banquet.


“From 1808 when Quaker James Barnes selected the hilltop meadow on the high ground between the Ohio and Muskingum rivers watersheds for his new town, through the mid-20th century when the popular slogan was “Barnesville, the HI in OHIO”, a nod to the community as the highest incorporated town in the state, I will touch upon what makes Barnesville special and unique,” Yarnall said.


From the excitement of the long-running Barnesville Pumpkin Festival to the planned return of the State Theater to the downtown streetscape, this event is a must for anyone interested in local history.

Come and discover the answers to these questions and much more:

  • What special relationship does a Maryland community have in common with Barnesville?

  • What connection did Barnesville have with the Kennedy White House?

  • What connection did Barnesville once have with the famed New York City Waldorf Astoria Hotel?

  • What developments in 1818, again in the 1840s, and 1915 would have dramatically changed Barnesville?

  • In the late 1800s, Barnesville was known as “this” Capital of the World?

  • What Barnesville business was once the largest of its kind in the entire world?

  • During the Civil War local “Departmental Corps” made Barnesville unique in all of Ohio?

  • What event on the Central Ohio Railroad through Barnesville in 1863 helped turn the tide for Northern forces in the Civil War?

  • Barnesville once sported the largest of this type of retail store in all of Belmont County?


Yarnall will present the one-hour program at the Watt Center, 511 Watt Avenue (near the historic B & O Depot). Doors will open at 6 p.m. to welcome visitors to explore the displays of local history located in the historic office building. Donations of $5 at the door will be appreciated. The center is handicapped accessible.


For more information call Mary Sidwell (740) 926-1547 or Beverly Hannahs (740) 425-1537.

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