Advertising Rates

  Subscribe on Facebook or Call (304)844-80






The Indy Issue from Friday March 12, 2021



Visions of the Development of Salem

By Kevin Zorn

An oil on canvas mural is displayed in the post office in Salem, West Virginia. It was painted by an artist named Berni Glasgow and its production was funded
through the Treasury Department’s Section of Painting and Sculpture. It is titled “Visions of the Development of Salem” and depicts a group of people
receiving mail, in the background is a village and cattle.


Berni Glasgow was one of more than 800 artists commissioned to paint 1371 murals, the majority of which are featured in post offices.
Often mistaken as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) initiative, these Treasury funded murals were created with the intent of fostering i
nspiration in the American people who were still feeling the devastating economic and social effects of the Great Depression.


It is a testament to the shift in the ideological landscape today that I cannot believe the US Government, in tandem with local governments,
was capable of doing what the WPA accomplished. Yet, here are just some of the facts: from 1935 to 1943 8.5 million unemployed men and
women were hired by the government to build over 10,000 bridges, 620,000 miles of streets and roads, 40,000 new and 85,000 renovated
buildings including thousands of schools, gymnasiums, auditoriums, playgrounds, parks, libraries, college dormitories, tennis courts, and skating rinks.


The WPA employed artists, writers, historians, and musicians whose work directly affected the lives of millions of Americans during some of the
country’s most painful years. Musicians hired under the Federal Music Project taught free lessons to 132,000 children and adults every week.
Those hired in the Federal Writers’ Project, in addition to their popular state tourism guidebooks, recorded over 2,300 slave narratives -
an invaluable collection for scholars and historians. Under the Federal Theatre Project 1,000 plays were performed across the country every month.
Incalculable is the number of children and adults inspired by this work.


Through the colossal endeavors of the WPA in both its pre-war effort and its public projects America achieved full employment by 1942,
the same year “Visions” was painted in Salem.


It is clear that the America many of us grew up in, the structures that supported our lives, the parks we enjoyed, the schools we attended,
the infrastructure we relied upon for travel, even the art classes that inspired the next generation of creators was largely built under the
auspices of the WPA and the New Deal.


This is a salient reminder that capital “H” History is not simply a collection of memorized facts and figures, dates and obscure names.
No, History is alive in the communities in which we live. It not only teaches us, it haunts us as well. It haunts us with what was
possible before and what is possible tomorrow.


Perhaps that is the greatest battle waged in the spectacle of media and politics today - the question of what is possible.
Our expectations are managed lower and lower. We learn that the climate crisis is inevitable, that homelesness is natural,
that workers are essential until they ask for a living wage. All to say that change is impossible. Visions of better futures recede from view.

But history haunts us with an alternative. By the time Berni Glasgow painted the mural in the Salem post office, the American
government had provided millions of meaningful jobs improving, with concrete and paintbrushes, nearly every community across the nation.


Nick Taylor, the author of “American Made: The Enduring Legacy of the WPA”, writes this: 


“These ordinary men and women proved to be extraordinary beyond all expectation.
They were golden threads woven in the national fabric. In this, they shamed the political philosophy
that discounted their value and rewarded the one that placed its faith in them,
thus fulfilling the founding vision of a government by and for its people. All its people.” 


This weeks front page:



Composting can be a very rewarding, but intimidating process. What temperature does it need to be? How much Nitrogen do I need? Should I buy worms to put in the pile? Do I need a fancy swivel barrel contraption? Don’t you just pile up yard waste and let it sit? It can all be very daunting. However the benefits of a compost pile can greatly outweigh the initial confusion. Not only does composting provide cheap, rich, nutrient-packed fertilizer for your garden or flowerbeds and reduce unnecessary, organic waste, it also  promotes a “greener” lifestyle practice and makes you rethink the waste we humans produce.


Agricultural astrology has been around since ancient times, but what does it truly entail? If you look on your calendar, chances are you’ll see the phases of the moon marked on certain days. To many it’s ignored, but some plan their whole harvest based around the waxing and waning of the moon. Some of the first evidence confirmed instances of Astrological Farming can be seen in the remnants and artifacts of the ancient peoples of the Euphrates and Nile River valleys. It is the oldest use of Lunar Cycles for gardening known.

The cold days are still around, but some plants need to go in the ground. It’s now time for some frost and cold hardy plants to be seeded or transplanted into your beds. 

Broccoli is a wonderfully, cold hardy crop and actually thrives in cooler temperatures. Plant or seed in an area that gets full sun and has sandy, more acidic soil. Normally planted two to three weeks before the last frost and with this indecisive weather we’ve been having lately, this is the perfect crop to get you started.  Seedlings should be planted 12 to 24 inches apart, whereas seeds can be disbursed three inches apart under one to one half inch of soil and will need to be thinned out once they are more mature.  Broccoli plants have very shallow roots, so weeding and hoeing are not recommended. The best option for weed control is mulch. Mulching not only smothers unwanted plants, but also aids in temperature regulation and water retention. There are many different breeds of broccoli, and many are suitable for the Zone 6 climate we live in. The “Cruiser” variety is very tolerant of drought and dry conditions while the “Green Comet” is a more heat resistant strain, for those hot West Virginia summers.  

Blackberries can be found growing wild in our hills, but for those of you who want fresh blackberries as part of your landscape, now is a good time to get started. Before you plan or plant, find a reputable nursery that carries virus free varieties. Make sure that your area is free from any wild blackberry bushes that could infect your virus free plants. Blackberries like full sun, and sandy, but rich, acidic soil.  Upright varieties require less work, but if you grab a vining strain make sure to have at least one or two trellis’ nearby. For planting depth, cover one inch more than the nursery depth. Uprights should be three feet apart, while trailers should be separated 5 to 8 feet, with rows being around 8 feet apart.  Thick mulch should cover the area around the tree by one to two feet, to cut down on weeds. An inch of water per week should be fine for most strains, thats about a five gallon bucket’s worth.

Fruit trees should be planned and planted once the ground thaws. When the soil doesn’t stick and clump off on your shovel you know the ground is ready for fruit trees. Staking is always a good idea for new trees insuring straighter trunk growth and prevents the saplings from toppling over due to wind. Every different type of tree requires special planting and care, so make sure to plan and research many varieties to get the best tree for your space. Apples are the most reliable fruit trees for Zone 6. “Gala” semi-dwarf trees are smaller and good eating; red “McIntosh” and “Liberty” are found to be tart, crunchy, and disease resistant. The “Lodi” variety are best used for sauces, apple butter, and pies. There are countless strains of Asian Pears that also work well in Zone 6. The flavorful “kosui”, sweet and reliable “shinsui”, and the juicy, sugary “atago” are all recommended for our Zone.  If you’re a cherry fan, look to the “Benton”, “Stella”, or “Sweetheart” for eating, and the “Danbe”, “Montmorency”, or “Northstar” for pies. 

Happy Planting!


Tiny little men donning pointy red hats and long white beards have been spotted napping and smoking in gardens for quite some time now. Their chubby cheeks are flushed and there little trousers have chips in the paint. Some people are really in to garden gnomes. Some people are entirely creeped out by them. One thing is certain; no one seems certain on where they came from.

From the July 12, 2013 Issue.

Sunday morning around 4am the Doddridge/Ritchie 911 Center received a call out for fire and a burn victim off Brushy Fork Road in New Milton. Responding were BANCS Fire Department and Doddridge County Ambulance Authority.  BANCS Volunteer Fire Chief Randy Trent was notified that his department needed to assist with a fire and a burn patient.  What they found en route was the situation was much worse than first conveyed.  

In what will hopefully become an interesting and enlightening series, I will be showcasing letters of correspondence written by an assortment of characters from various periods in history. The letters will be edited and context will be provided by myself in order to give you, the reader, a sense of the setting and events that surround each piece of correspondence. What is most fascinating about this method of reading history is that the people are real, not only that they physically existed but that they lived like you and I. They faced similar problems and had familiar aspirations. In writing these private letters our ancestors have provided for us a firsthand account of the events that shaped our world.

Be sure to pick up your copy today.

Show off your talents and hobbies at the Doddridge County Fair!  Community members are encouraged to exhibit items in the Home Economics Division at the fair.  You may check-in your exhibits at the County Park Main Building on Monday, August 19, 4:30-8:30 p.m. or Tuesday, 8:00 a.m. - Noon. A complete listing of categories is available at the Extension Office 873-1801.

Up to eight Best of Show awards will be made this year in the following categories:  Crafts, Canned & Dried Foods, Baked Goods & Candy, Flowers & Plants, Crochet, Knitting, Sewing & Misc. Needlework, and Quilting.
Also, one Best of Show award will be made from the total group of Youth Exhibits (under age 18), also sponsored by the DCCEOS.  Youth exhibits are encouraged, and will be judged separately.  It could be something you made at bible school, at camp, or your hobby. 
The category must, in the opinion of the judges, have an exhibit worthy of a best-of-show honor for the award to be made.  Best of Show exhibitors will receive a certificate, ribbon, and $10 which are all sponsored by the Doddridge County Community Educational Outreach Service (DCCEOS).

Do you want to be on the main stage at this year’s Doddridge County Fair? The Amateur Talent Show will be held on August 21st at 7:00pm. The pre-registration deadline has been extended to Sunday, August 18th. You do not have to be a Doddridge County resident to enter.  

It would be great for the audience to see you! This year Palmer Stephens, radio personality is our special guest emcee and will be leading the audience in a sing along at the end of the show. Entry forms are available at the Doddridge County Senior Citizens, Doddridge Family Medicine or on our website, You can also call 873-1604.  There are only 5 spots left so don't delay, enter now!

08/30/13 South Harrison - 7:30
09/06/13 @ Tyler Consolidated - 7:00pm

09/13/13 Calhoun Co. - 7:30pm

09/20/13 Wirt Co. (Homecoming) - 7:30
09/27/13 @ Ritchie Co. - 7:30pm

10/05/13 @ Parkersburg Cath. - 7:30pm

10/11/13 @ Gilmer Co. - 7:30pm

10/18/13 @Eastern OH - 7:30
10/25/13 Valley (Wetzel) - 7:30
11/01/13 OPEN

11/08/13 St. Marys - 7:30pm

Season Fair passes are now on sale for the 2013 Doddridge County Fair! This is by far the best deal for the Fair. Ride passes will sell for $30.00 each and Non-ride passes will sell for $25.00 each. There are a limited number of tickets available-so get yours while they last! Advanced ticket sales end on August 19th, 2013. Available at Fairview Shell, WV Extension Office, Michel's Pharmacy, Colonial Pharmacy (Salem), Doddridge County Senior Center, and Tease Me Hair Salon.

New galleries are posted: Galleries

Below are pictures from MCAC 2013 Production of Aladdin


Below are pictures from around the Independent office.


Photos from Memorial Day Services 2013


Center Point, WV – Just outside of the northern tip of Center Point, WV, two new bridges are under construction on WV Route 23.  Both bridges are replacing older ones that have fallen past their useful timeline. 

The WV DOH maintains and inspect bridges on a rotating schedule to ensure the public safety.  That is their prime concern, public safety.  But what happens when their concern for public safety hits a snag?

See more in this weeks paper.

Click here to view supporting documents.

On news stands now, BUY HERE.