Eleanor Roosevelt's Little Village, Arthurdale, WV

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The Homestead Project of Arthurdale

EleanorWelcome to Arthurdale, the nation’s first New Deal homestead subsistence project championed by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. The first homesteaders arrived in 1934 and each property was 2 – 5 acres in size to allow the families to raise food and livestock. Modern amenities not commonly available around the country at that time – electricity, indoor plumbing, and a refrigerator – were provided to all 165 homes constructed by the federal government as a way to help families during the Great Depression. This ground-breaking project’s public buildings have been restored by residents who appreciated this second chance at life and knew the value of preserving it. A five-building museum is now open to the public year-round to tell the special story of the First Lady’s legacy.

Help Give a Newborn a Good Start in Life!

Arthurdale Heritage is helping to collect donations for a Baby Shower to be held October 15 at the Kingwood Extension Office. Each year Starting Points Family Resource Center helps growing families by giving them a basket of needed baby items plus resource materials.

During the shower, family members go to mini-workshops on issues that deal with family health, baby safety, abuse prevention, childcare, and other topics that may improve the children’s chances of growing up in a safe and happy environment.

Through funds from UniCare, a Medicare medical insurance program, Starting Points buys big-ticket items like pack-n-play beds, strollers, and car seats for door prizes.

Drop off donations at Arthurdale Heritage during office hours or call Martha White at Starting Points (329-1965) to leave them at their office.

Needed Items

  • baby bottles (not with liners)
  • teethers
  • small stuffed animals (safe for babies)
  • pacifiers
  • rattles
  • baby socks
  • baby hats
  • small baby powder, lotion, wash, diaper rash ointment
  • thermometers
  • nail clippers
  • baby washcloths
  • bibs
  • baby spoons
  • receiving blankets
  • burp cloths
  • small packages of baby wipes
  • cloth diapers
  • diaper pins
  • baby clothes (up to 9 months)

Celebrate Preston County History Day, October 21

See the fall foliage in the mountains and enjoy Preston County History Day on October 21 at four historical sites around the county. The county map can help you plan your trip.

View this county map (.pdf) for the locations.

Times and locations are:

  • Arthurdale Heritage, a five-building complex representing the New Deal’s first subsistence homestead project, (noon – 4:00) on Rt. 92
  • Bruceton Mills, Old Hemlock, country home of outdoors author George Bird Evans. Seven-room stone/log house constructed in 1782, (2:00 – 5:00), 17098 Brandonville Pike
  • Kingwood’s James McGrew House, 1841 home built by the prominent businessman involved in the formation of West Virginia, (1:00 – 3:00) on Rt. 7
  • Szilagyi Center in Rowlesburg featuring the World War II Museum, Preston County Sports Museum, and B&O bridges exhibit, café and shops, (1:00 – 5:00) on Rt. 72
  • Terra Alta History House, with 3 floors of Preston County history exhibits, photos and genealogy records, 109 East Washington Street (1:30 – 4:30)

Admission is charged at some sites.

Free Admission to New Deal Homestead Museum

Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. is participating in Smithsonian Magazine’s National Museum Day Live! on Saturday, September 29. Tours of Arthurdale Heritage’s homestead community museum along Rt. 92 in Preston County will be free from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. This multi-building museum illustrates the story of Arthurdale as a New Deal Homestead. There is a forge filled with original tools, an old fashioned service station, historic Center Hall, the original federal government administration building, and a fully restored Arthurdale homestead. Tour tickets are available at www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday/and must be presented for the free admission. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address.