Written by Aaron-Michael Fox.
Huntington, West Virginia, has had an eventful history. Most of it has been pretty well documented, from the 1937 Flood, to the 1970 pane crash, to the ensuing movie about the rebuilding years that have so far culminated in two national championships, and all of our public struggles since. But there’s plenty of moments in Huntington’s past that have not been very well publicized. So I thought I’d take some time to look some of the more mundane, or at least less-known-about points for the Jewel City leading up to 2019. Below are 23 of my favorite timeless photos of Huntington.
1. Heritage Station
The old Baltimore &Ohio Railroad Depot (now the Shops at Heritage Station) in 1894.
2. Street Cars
Huntington’s first electric streetcar at the corner of Third Avenue and Ninth Street in 1888. Practically all the buildings in this photo are still standing across the street from Pullman Square-The Center of Attention.
3. Pullman Square
A man overlooks downtown Huntington in the early 1960s. The view is looking south down Tenth Street from what is today Pullman Square-The Center of Attention.
4. Twin Towers
The Twin Towers dorms under construction on the campus of Marshall University in 1965.
5. Billy Crystal
6. The West Virginia Building
West Virginia’s tallest residential building, The West Virginia Building, under construction in 1924.
7. Tightrope Walker
A tightrope walker over Third Avenue in 1873.
8. Camden Park
The original entrance to Camden Park from 1903.
9. Marshall University
Students standing in front of Northcott Hall with Old Main in the background circa 1913.
10. Huntington Police Department
A Huntington Police officer stops a criminal from going the wrong way on Fifth Avenue in this staged photo from the 1960s.
11. Huntington Fire Department
An early HFD fire engine in front of Central Station No. 1 on Third Avenue in the 1910s.
12. Launching the 21st Century Express
President Bill Clinton kicked off his re-election campaign, titled the “21st Century Express,” on August 25, 1996 at Huntington’s old C&O railroad depot. The tour started in Huntington and went on through Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana on its way to the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
13. Ritter Park
On November 21, 1892, 26-year-old Allan Harrison was publicly executed at what is now Ritter Park. Harrison was sentenced to hang for the murder of 16-year-old Bettie Adams of Ona. An estimated crowd of five thousand witnessed Cabell County’s first and only public execution.
14. Cam Henderson
Legendary Marshall coach Cam Henderson celebrates another victory with his Thundering Herd squad. Henderson took over as Marshall’s football and basketball coach in 1935. He turned the football reigns over in 1948 and retired from coaching altogether in 1955. Over that time he amassed a record of 161-91-13 (football) and 621-234 (basketball) and is credited with the creation of the 2-3 zone defense and the fast break in basketball. He is also credited with winning Marshall’s only national championship in basketball (1947 NAIA). The Cam Henderson Center is named in his honor.
15. Cam Henderson Center
The Cam Henderson Center under construction in 1980.
16. Old Fairfield
The last Marshall game at Fairfield Stadium in 1990.
17. Levi Holley Stone
One of Huntington’s first “selfies” from the Ohio hills overlooking the Ohio River and downtown Huntington by Levi Holley Stone, August 28, 1917.
18. Teddy Roosevelt
President Theodore Roosevelt speaking on the steps of the Cabell County Courthouse in October of 1904, campaigning in Huntington against Henry G. Davis, who was on the Democratic ticket and a native West Virginian. President Roosevelt won re-election in a landslide (including West Virginia’s 7 electoral votes) on November 8, 1904.
19. Sheep-drawn Buggy
Ely Hite, grandson of Ely Ensign, circa early 1900s. Courtesy Jan Hite King.
20. Cabell County Courthouse
Postcard of the Cabell County Courthouse from 1908.
21. Rotary Park
Tina White atop the fire tower at Rotary Park in the fall of 1984 by Bobby Lee Messer.
22. Frozen River
The Ohio River frozen solid in the winter of 1977.
23. Mail Men
Huntington letter carriers in 1905.