The Tygart Valley Homestead Association in Randolph County is celebrating the opening of a new community center inside their historic school building that first opened in 1939. The school was originally part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal Homestead projects.
After high winds damaged part of the roof at the Tygart Valley Homestead in 2017, the Randolph County School Board closed the school.
But one year later, the local community association bought the building from the federal government for a nominal fee of $1.
The community raised more than $30,000 to repair the roof, and they plan to make more improvements to preserve the historic structure.
Roseann Rosier, secretary for the Tygart Valley Homestead Association, said part of the value of the school building is in its history.
“So when the county closed the school, we decided to try, and fail, rather than not try at all," she said.
The Tygart Valley Homestead was once visited by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Roosevelt was devoted to resettlement communities that were built across the country, including Arthurdale in Preston County and Eleanor in Putnam County.
The Homestead Association is hosting a celebration all day on Saturday, August 31 to honor the 80th anniversary of the opening of the school. It’s also the grand opening of the new community center, featuring a new walking trail and a small museum. Rosier said they will be serving a pulled pork lunch and are screening a new documentary about the Tygart Valley Homestead community.