Activities

What is there to do at night?

There are many restaurants for dining, the town’s movie theater on weekends, and live entertainment can be found at many locations on the weekend such as the Berkeley Springs Brewing Company, Coolfont Resort, Black Cat Music Shop, The Granary and in area lounges.   We do recommend that you check out the websites or Facebook pages of all of these places to confirm times, location and if there is a fee.

Less stressful activities include strolling in Berkeley Springs State Park, listening to tree frogs, or counting the stars.

What is there for kids to do?

There are numerous outdoor activities for the whole family including hiking, summer time swimming at the pool in Berkeley Springs State Park or in the lake at Cacapon State Park (both places have lifeguards), tennis, horseback riding, even off road biking and a playground at Cacapon State Park. There is hiking along the Tuscarora Trail (a great driving tour as well). Geocaching is a fairly new activity that resembles a modern day treasure hunt – all you need is a phone capable of Internet searching and good walking shoes. For younger children, check with the Morgan County Library for story hours.

For indoor fun we have crafting for all ages at the Fearless Painter Community Crafting Center (304-449-7028) or take the family bowling at The Berkeley Springs Bowl (304-258-1815). Take them for a visit at the Give Purrs a Chance Cat Café. Visitors can get to know the cats and kittens up for adoption as they freely mingle in one of Berkeley Springs’ most stately Victorian homes. Browse the Catique Boutique for new and vintage cat themed items, many crafted from Morgan County artists.

The Berkeley Springs Museum is open on weekends during the summer. Contact them at 800-447-8797 or www.museumoftheberkeleysprings.com.

Are there concerts in the Park bandstand?

For two days during the October Apple Butter Festival, concerts are presented free from the bandstand. The Morgan Arts Council sponsors free summer concerts in the Park and the Ice House concert series the rest of the year, including folk, reggae, Cajun, old time and blues bands. Check the Morgan Messenger or the Travel Berkeley Springs Visitor’s Center for schedule of events.

When is the movie theater open?

The historic local theater, The Star, is open year round on Friday and Saturday at 8:00 and Sunday at 7:00. Selected Sunday matinees.

When is the annual Apple Butter Festival? 

The Apple Butter Festival is always held in October on Sat & Sun of Columbus Day weekend.

What is apple butter?

Apples are peeled, cored and quartered then placed in a large copper lined kettles to boil over an open fire for up to eight hours cooking to a thick, dark spread for bread. The apple butter may be sweetened with sugar, and spiced with cinnamon and cloves. More than 1000 gallons of apple butter is made for the annual Apple Butter Festival.

What happens at the annual Apple Butter Festival?

Apple Butter Festival is two days of craft show, farmers market, old-fashioned games & Contests, mountain cooking, apple butter kettles boiling in the square and entertainment – all free. The Festival is centered around the Berkeley Springs State Park and the downtown square.

Where can you watch major sports events on TV?

Several area restaurants and lounges tune in to sporting events on television: Tari’s Premier Café, The Country Inn, Coolfont Resort and the Canary Grill.

 

Outdoor Activities & Sports

Where can you fish?

Sleepy Creek Lake in the Public Wildlife Management Area offers a variety of fishing—Largemouth Bass, Sunfish, Northern Pile, Crappie and Channel Catfish. Boat launching areas are located at the spillway and near the midpoint of the lake. There is fishing in the Potomac or Cacapon Rivers (there are public access points along each), and Cacapon State Park lake. Please note that anyone more than 15 years old must have a license to hunt or fish in WV.

Where can you hunt?

Public hunting is allowed in Sleepy Creek Public Wildlife Management Area (off Route 9 West-304-822-3551). There is a shooting range at Sleepy Creek in addition to 23,000 acres of wooded mountainous terrain and rolling basin land for the sportsperson. The hunting area is primarily managed for forest game such as white-tailed deer, wild turkey, ruffled grouse, squirrel and raccoon. Be advised NEVER to hunt on private land without asking permission of the landowner.

Do you need a license?

Hunting – Any non-resident MUST have a hunting license to hunt in WV regardless of age. A WV hunting license can be purchased online at www.wvhunt.com.

Fishing – Anyone more than 15 years old must have a license to fish in West Virginia. A WV fishing license can be purchased online at www. wvfish.com.

Hunting and fishing licenses are also available at the Cacapon State Park and Roy’s Service Center. Both licenses can also be purchased by calling the Department of Natural Resources at 304-558-2758. The DNR website for hunting and fishing information is www.wvdnr.gov.

Can you play tennis in Morgan County?

Public Tennis courts are found at Cacapon State Park and in Berkeley Springs on Biser Street (no reservations needed).

How about Golf?

Cacapon State Park features a beautiful, 18-hole, 72 par, Robert Trent Jones designed golf course. The course is open to the public, has a driving range, pro shop & Snack bar. Call 304-258-1022 for rate info & to reserve tee times.

Where are there hiking trails?

Cacapon State Park has miles of blazed hiking trails which feature spectacular scenery. Trail maps are available at the check in desk. For the more experienced hiker, the Big Blue Trail, a 144-mile north/south trail, passes through Morgan County and is hike at your own risk. This trail may be accessed under the Potomac River Bridge along River Road and at Spruce Pine Roadside Park on Route 9 East. Another popular path for walking and biking (it’s mostly level terrain) is the C&O Canal towpath across the Potomac in Maryland.

Where can you swim?

Public swimming is available in the summer at the beach at Cacapon State Park and at the pool in the Berkeley Springs State Park. Lifeguards are posted at both of these parks. Visitors may also swim in the indoor saltwater pool at Coolfont. There is an admission fee at all three locations.

Can you ride horses here?

Guided horseback riding in Cacapon State Park is offered by Triple C Outfitters; contact them at 304-258-1022, ext 4170 or at www.triple-c-outfitters.com.

Good Luck Stables in Hedgesville WV (Rt. 9 East) offer lessons and trail rides for ages 4 through 74. Call 570-249-0680 or www.facebook.com/pinkhouse17.

Bailey’s Walking after Midnight Farm in Cross Junction VA. (South on 522) has trail rides for parties up to 6. Call them at 540-888-3414

What areas are good for bicyclists?

Cacapon State Park or The C&O Canal Towpath. One can rent bikes at C&O Bicycles, Hancock, MD 301-678-6665. For real aggressive mountain bikers, there are mountain bike trails at Cacapon State Park and in the Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management area roads.

Where can you rent a canoe or kayak?

Canoes and kayaks can be rented from Craft Adventures at 800-814-5980. They can also plan a tube-floating trip for you down the Potomac River. It takes advance planning so reservations are recommended. Additionally, during summer months kayaks, paddle boats; rowboats and paddleboards are available for rental on the lake at Cacapon State Park.

Are there parks in the area?

In additional to the two state parks, our county offers Biser Street Park in Berkeley Springs with tennis, basketball and volleyball courts; Morgan County Recreation Area, located south of town on Route 522, with four ball fields, a pavilion and concession area; and the Paw Paw Park with picnic tables, a softball field, and playground equipment. The County also operates two roadside parks with picnic tables at Spruce Pine Hollow Park on Route 9 East and Ward Dawson Roadside Park on Route 522 south.

Where are public access points on the Cacapon and Potomac Rivers?

Access points on Cacapon River: Great Cacapon, Power Plant, Rock For Road Bridge, Route 9 Bridge and Largent. Access points on the Potomac River: Paw Paw, Cacapon River Bridge in Great Cacapon, Cherry Run and Hancock Md.

Are there health club facilities?

Coolfont Resort has a state of the art indoor heated saltwater pool and fitness center. Day passes for visitors are available for a fee, call 304-500-0500.

Valley Health Physical Rehabilitation and Fitness also offer day passes for visitors to their fitness center and classes, call 304-258-8377.

Where are the nearest downhill ski areas?

Downhill skiing is available at Whitetail Resort (near Clear Spring, drive time approx. 30 minutes), Ski Liberty (near Gettysburg, PA) and Blue Knob (Near Bedford PA) about 1-¼ hours from Berkeley Springs. The Seven Springs Ski Resort is about a two-hour drive. For more information: Whitetail 717-328-9400; Ski Liberty 717-642-8282.   Blue Knob 814-239-5111, and Seven Springs 814-352-7777.

 

Nearby Attractions

What is there to do and see in the nearby area?

C&O Canal, Hancock, MD; Sideling Hill Gap Visitor Center, geologic wonder on I-68, outlet shopping in Hagerstown MD, Harper’s Ferry National Historical Park, Charles Town Race Track, historic Shepherdstown WV. Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA; Antietam National Battlefield, Sharpsburg, MD; Fort Frederick State Park, Fort Frederick, MD. The Eagle Train through the trough in Romney WV.

Shopping?

A guide to area shops is available at the Travel Berkeley Springs Visitor Center.

Where can you buy antiques?

You will find antiques at: The Berkeley Springs Antique Mall, The Stop and Shop, The Vintage Kitchen, The Country Emporium, Youngblood’s and Country Traditions, all located in Morgan County.

Local Arts and Crafts?

Morgan County is home to a great variety of artists and crafters. The Ice House Gallery in Berkeley Springs has several juried exhibitions annually, and works from local artists for sale, checkout their Facebook page: macicehouse. Stop by the Visitor’s Center for a listing of shops and galleries or check out www.berkeleysprings.com for more information on local art happenings.

Local fruit and vegetables?

In season check road stands. The Farmer’s Market in downtown Berkeley Springs on Sunday mornings.

Local souvenirs?

There are several shops in Morgan County that sell local (and WV!) souvenirs. A guide to area shops is available at the Travel Berkeley Springs Visitor Center.

West Virginia Glass Products?

Several local antique stores may have WV glass items.

Are there are Flea Markets in the Area?

You can find flea markets at: ???.

Is there any outlet shopping nearby?

There is outlet shopping in Hagerstown MD, Martinsburg WV and Winchester VA.

What kind of local products are available to buy?

Arts and Crafts at the local stores or Ice House Gallery, plus quality handcrafted furniture is available at Caperton’s Furniture.

 

Food and Lodging

Where can you get breakfast?

Some of the area restaurants serving breakfast are The Country Inn, Fairfax Coffee House, Ravenwood, Charlotte’s Cafe and the Southern Belle.

What types of restaurants are available? Do you need reservations?

Area restaurants offer experiences in fine dining, family atmosphere, taverns and fast food. Reservations are generally not necessary except on weekends and holidays at fine dining establishments.

Are there Campgrounds?

There is camping along the C&O Canal National Historic Park (301-714-2233), The Sleepy Creek Campground on the Potomac (301-991-4436), Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area (304-822-3551) and Cacapon State Park (304-2581022). Call for more information and fees.

Are hotels and attractions open all winter?

Berkeley Springs is a year round destination community with accommodations and attractions open all four seasons.

Where are meeting and banquet rooms available?

Meeting or banquet rooms can be arranged at the following: Cacapon State Park, 304-258-1022, The Country Inn, 304-258-2210 and The Woods, Hedgesville WV 800-248-2222.

Why are there buzzers on the doors of some establishments serving alcohol?

Buzzers are placed on the doors of these facilities at the discretion of the owners.

 

Weather and Scenery

When:

         Are red bud in bloom? Red bud trees bloom in April.

         Are dogwood in bloom? Dogwood trees bloom in late April to May.

         Is fall at its peak? Fall colors generally peak around mid-October.

What type of wildlife can be seen?

Forest wildlife abound including white-tail deer, rabbit, raccoon, wild turkey, ruffed grouse, possum, groundhog, hawk, chipmunk, squirrel, bobcat, fox, coyote and a wide variety of birds.

Where can you find out about weather and road conditions?

Local Radio Stations such as 92.9 offer weather and traffic updates.

What types of snakes are in the area?

Area snakes include harmless black snakes, venomous copperheads and rattle snakes.

How hot does it get in the summer?

July’s average high is 88 and its low it 60. Even on the hottest days, evenings are generally cool.

How much does in snow in the winter?

Area mean snowfall is 37 in., January mean precipitation is 2.47 in. January’s average high temperature is 44 and the low is 24.

What are the names of the two mountain ranges that run north/south through Morgan County?

The mountains are Sleepy Creek to the east and Cacapon to the west.

What is the general mountain range called?

Morgan County is part of the Appalachian Ridge and Valley region.

What is the highest point in Morgan County?

Cacapon Mountain at the Hampshire County line is 2320 ft. Prospect Peak in the northern end of the county is 1545 ft.

What can you see from the Panorama Overlook?

The Panorama Overlook offers a vista of 4 states – West Virginia, Maryland and the mountains of Pennsylvania and Virginia: a horseshoe bend of the Potomac; the junction of the Cacapon & Potomac Rivers and the little town of Great Cacapon.

Where can you get topographical maps of the area?

Area topographical maps are available through the U.S. Geological Survey, Mount Chateau, Morgantown, WV 26505, or www.wvgs.wvnet.edu. One can view topographical maps of Morgan County at the County Administrators office in the courthouse.

 

Good things to Know and Local Services

Where can you get a county map?

Maps of Morgan County and the State of West Virginia are available at the Visitors Center.

Are there all-night groceries and gas stations?

All-night groceries and gas is available at Sheetz, ROCs and the Seven-Eleven; the Food Lion is open 7:00 am – 11:00pm .

Where can you buy hunting and fishing gear?

Limited fishing and hunting gear can be purchased at Hunter’s and Dawson’s Ace Hardware.

Where can you buy notions – sunglasses, needle & thread, aspirin, etc?

Sundry items are available at Food Lion, Rite Aid, Dollar General and the Dollar Store.

Where can you get ice?

Ice is available at many stores in the area including: Foodlion, Roy’s, Seven Eleven, Cacapon Market, Stoney Creek Market, Rite Aid, ROCS and Sheetz.

Where can you get firewood?

Firewood can be purchased at Roy’s in Berkeley Springs.

Where can I exchange my empty Propane tank?

Propane tanks can be exchanged at Blue Flame, Food Lion, Dawson’s Hardware, Roy’s and the Stoney Creek Market.

A jug for water?

Plastic jugs are available at the Berkeley Springs State Park spa building for a nominal fee.

Out of town newspapers

Out of town newspapers are sold at Seven Eleven, Cacapon Market, Sheetz, Roy’s, ROCS, Rite Aid and Food Lion.

Where can you cash a check?

Area banking facilities have wire services and most will give advances on credit cards; they will not cash personal checks. Many area businesses accept personal checks as payment. CNB, BB & T and City National Bank all have ATMs, as does Foodlion, Roy’s, Seven-Eleven and Sheetz.

When are the banks open?

Most of the area banks are open Monday – Friday, 9:00-4:00 and some have Saturday hours 9:00 – 12:00.

Where are there public restrooms in Berkeley Springs?

The State Park offers public restrooms.

Where is the nearest Laundromat?

A Laundromat is located in the Morgan Square shopping center.

Where can you find out about church services?

Check the church-listing page in the Morgan Messenger for service times and information.

Is Berkeley Springs pet friendly?

Many stores and local accommodations allow dogs. All dogs should be in compliance with local leash laws. When in doubt about dog policy, ask before you enter.

Are there local Veterinary Services?

The Berkeley Springs Animal Clinic at 304-258-4123 or Animalia Veterinary Service at 304-258-5819.

Is there a kennel in the area? How about groomer?

Buhrman Kennels boards dogs, cats and small animals; 304-258-6761, www.buhrmankennel.com. They also provide grooming services. Call for rates and more information.

Where can you get a massage?

Berkeley Springs is known for their spas. Full service spa treatments, acupuncture, and alternative therapies are available at several local spas including but not limited to the Berkeley Springs State Park Bath House 304-258-2711; Renaissance Spa at the Country Inn 304-258-2210; Atasia Spa 304-258-7888; and RnR. Spa 304-258-8992. Go to Berkeleysprings.com for a full listing.

Where is the library? When is it open?

The Morgan County Public Library is located at 105 Congress Street in Berkeley Springs. It is open 9-6 Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday, 9-1 on Saturday and closed Wednesday and Sunday. They have computers that are open to the public to use and free WiFi. They also have fax, scan and copy services.

Is there a local liquor store? When is it open?

Alcoholic beverages are sold at Top Shelf Liquors in Berkmore Plaza on between 9:00am and 9:00pm. Also Seven-Eleven store on Union Street in town. Both sell a variety of beer, wines and liquors. Beer and wine may be purchased between 8:00am and 2:00 am while liquor may be purchased between 8:00am and midnight. No checks accepted.

Wines (including WV wines) can be purchased at the Food Lion and Roy’s Service Center.

Where can you buy beer?

Beer only is available at most convenience stores including: Roy’s Service Center; Rite Aid, Food Lion, Sheetz and the Cacapon Country Store; all of these stores are located along Rt. 522.

A little information about our local attractions and where they are

How do you get to Sleepy Creek Public Wildlife Management Grounds?

Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area is located southeast of Berkeley Springs. Reach the area in Morgan County be taking Route 13 approximately 15 miles to the Greenwood access, Country Road 13/5, or in Berkeley County from Route 9 East take Jones Springs Road (Rt. 7) to where there is a right turn with a large sign “Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area.” Turn here and follow the well-marked road to the lake. The roads within the area are just barely passable by car.

What time is the Berkeley Springs State Park open?

The grounds of the Berkeley Springs State Park open at 10:00 am and close at 6:00pm unless there is a function in the park.

What time is the Cacapon State Park open?

The grounds of the Cacapon State Park open at 6:00am and close at 10:00pm.

Where are the mineral baths?

The mineral baths are located in the Berkeley Springs State Park in the center of town.

How can I take the Baths?

The Main bathhouse is open year-round, seven days a week except Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and Easter). Hours of operation vary with the season. Reservations are accepted no more than two weeks in advance; a deposit is required. Reservations are almost always necessary on weekends and, it you desire a particular time and selection of treatments, recommended for weekdays. Facilities and treatments include Roman baths, steam cabinets, infrared heat, conventional bathtubs and a professional staff of masseurs and masseuses. Visa, Master Card and American Express are accepted. For reservations and more information call the Bath House at 304-258-2711.

Do you need a bathing suit? Towel?

Bathing suits are not required. The Park provides towels.

What is the Castle?

The Castle was built by Colonel Samuel Taylor Suit of Suitland, Maryland in 1885 for his young bride Rosa Pelham as a summer cottage. Suit died before the castle was completed but his widow lived and entertained there for years. Currently, the castle is privately owned and not open to the public.

How can you get to the Castle?

The Castle is situated on Warm Springs Ridge overlooking the Park and the town of Berkeley Springs. Take Rt. 9 West for a quarter mile and you will pass its gates on the right. It is not currently open for tours.

How do you say “Cacapon”?

Ca – cay – pon with the emphasis on the second syllable. It is a Native American Word meaning “healing waters”. It is today the name of the State Park south on Rt. 522, the mountain that runs along the west side of the Town of Bath and a wild and beautiful river running north through the county to empty into the Potomac. It is also an area town — Great Cacapon – located at the intersection of the Cacapon and Potomac Rivers, west of Rt. 9.

Where is the Fish hatchery? What happens there?

The Ridge Fish Hatchery is ten miles south of town on Rt. 522. West Virginia streams are stocked with fish hatched at the facility. Some of the variety of fish at the hatchery include: brook, rainbow and golden trout, and muskies. Visitors are welcome from 8am – 4pm.

Can you drive through the Paw Paw tunnel?

The Paw Paw Tunnel is part of the C&O Canal National Park Service and is open year round for walking and biking only. For more information about both the Paw Paw Tunnel and the C&O Canal, call 301-722-8226 or on the web at www.nps.gov/choh.

 

General Information about Morgan County and Berkeley Springs

How do you get to Berkeley Springs?

From Washington, DC or Baltimore area – I-70 west to the second Hancock exit which says Berkeley Springs. Take Rt. 522 south approximately six miles. From the west, take Rt. 68 to Hancock, then Rt. 522 south, approximately six miles. From the south, take Rt. 522 north from Winchester, VA. Approximately 36 miles.

Can you take a bus or a train to Berkeley Springs?

MARC train offers passenger rail service to Martinsburg WV, for schedules and rate information call 1-866-743-3682, www.mtamaryland.com/services/marc, or contact the Eastern Panhandle Transit Authority at 304-263-0876. Greyhound Line offers bus service to Hagerstown MD or Winchester VA. For rate and schedule info check out www.greyhound.com or call Greyhound at 1-800-231-2222.

What is the average price of a house in Morgan County?

Real estate is a big subject – all houses and land are so different it’s hard to speak of averages but, a 1,000 square foot house on an acre of land in Morgan County will usually run in the average of $80,0000 – $100,0000. Land prices average around $2,000 per acre, more for waterfront or commercial acreage.

Getting around Morgan County without a car? Transportation on Demand (TOD) 304-702-9090, services a limited area around Berkeley Springs. Smalley Transport (304-288-1800) offers transportation services through Uber and Lyft. Limousine services are available through Wild Things Adventures, 304-258-1312.

Must you put money in the parking meters? When?

The Town of Bath patrols the parking meters 9am – 5pm Mon-Sat. One does not have to feed the meters on Sundays or legal holidays.

What is the Town of Bath?

The Town of Bath is the official municipality known to the world by its Post Office name of Berkeley Springs. Established as the Town of Bath by the Virginia Legislature in 1776, the area was designated Berkeley Springs in 1803 by the Post Office in Virginia to avoid confusion with another Bath Virginia. Officially however, it remains the Town of Bath.

What are the building plaques around town?

Each plaque that you find on or by buildings in Berkeley Springs represents a stop in a walking tour of the Town of Bath. Each plaque designates one of the 134 original lots chartered with the town in 1776. Plaques give the original owner’s name and a sentence or two about the person.

How warm is the spring water?

The warm spring water comes from the ground at the uniform & invariable temperature of 74.3 Fahrenheit.

Does the spring water flow all the time?

The spring water flows all the time at a rate of about 2,000 gallons of clear sparkling water per minute.

Where can you get spring water?

Spring water is available free of charge from a pump or spigot at the base of Warm Springs Ridge on the west side of Berkeley Springs State Park. Bring your own container or buy one for $1 at the Berkeley Springs State Park office.

What is the drinking age in WV?

The drinking age in WV is 21.

What is a pawpaw?

A pawpaw is a small tree, which grows in the southern United States. The tree has umbrella-like leaves similar to a magnolia and produces a fruit, also called a pawpaw, which looks somewhat like a thick, short banana. The pawpaw is the northernmost fruit of the custard apple (annonaccae) family. The fruits are 2 to 6 inches long with a greenish-brown skin. Inside, the yellow pulp is soft and sweet with a flavor that is a cross between a banana and a pear. You’ll see pawpaw trees in Morgan County in front of the post office in Paw Paw, the other town in Morgan County located in the western part of the county, along the Potomac River.

What type of work do people do who live here?

Almost 60% of the population works in Morgan County; the rest work in nearby counties, primarily Berkeley County, WV, Washington County, MD & Frederick County, VA. People work in the county in services, tourism, manufacturing and retail trade in that order

What comes from the US Silica mine north of town?

US Silica surface mines and processes a rare, snow-white, crumbly, Oriskany sandstone especially adapted to use as glass sand.

What fraternal organizations are located in Berkeley Springs?

Local fraternal organizations include: The American Legion, 304-258-1168; Moose Lodge 304-258-1618; VFW 304-258-9826. Other fraternal organizations: Junior Order of American Mechanics; Deford Masonic Lodge; DAV; Rotary International; Lions Club; Jaycees.

Where can you locate genealogical information?

Sources of genealogical info in Morgan County include records at the Morgan County Court House and the Morgan County Public Library.

 

A Little History

Did George Washington really take a bath in the Park?

George Washington visited the springs several times during the 1760’s, 70’s and 80s to take the mineral water. At that time baths were taken in natural rock pools along the base of the ridge. The pool identified as Washington’s bathtub in Berkeley Springs State Park is a modern creation.

Who was James Rumsey?

James Rumsey invented and successfully tested the first steamboat in nearby Shepherdstown, WV in 1787. He did much of his early work in developing the boiler while living in Berkeley Springs from 1782-1785. He also did significant work in the development of mill machines, turbines and hydraulic equipment accumulating more than two dozen patents before his death in England in 1792.

What is the oldest public building in town?

The Roman Bath House, still in use in Berkeley Springs State Park, was constructed in 1815.

Are there any historical sites houses, or museums? There are several private homes listed on the National Historical Register: The Manor – 415 Fairfax Street, The Dawson Home – 300 S. Green Street. Berkeley Springs State Park, one of the oldest spas in the nation, is listed on the Historic Register as is the Castle The Museum of Berkeley Springs is housed on the second floor of the Roman Bath House in the Berkeley Springs State Park.

Who was Porte Crayon? Porte Crayon is the pen name of David Hunter Strother, hotel owner in Berkeley Springs during the 1860’s and 70s. Strother wrote numerous stories for Harpers Weekly for more than 40 years illustrating them richly. Virginia Illustrated was published in 1842 as a collection of his stories and sketches of this area. He was the only reporter to cover the trial and hanging of John Brown and published a series of remarkably detailed sketches of the event. His extensive papers and drawings are housed in the West Virginia Collection at West Virginia University in Morgantown.

Did George Washington have his summer White House here while he was president? In 1784 George Washington commissioned James Rumsey to build him a summerhouse on land he owned at the springs. The job was never completed. Only a rough kitchen and stables were constructed during Washington’s lifetime. Washington visited Berkeley Springs only once while he was President, staying overnight while traveling with Alexander Hamilton on his way west to handle the Whiskey Rebellion. There is no basis for designating Berkeley Springs as the first summer White House.

 

Finally – Where can you get information about what is happening here?

You can visit the Travel Berkeley Springs Visitor center at 127 Fairfax Street, call Travel Berkeley Springs at 800-447-8797, check out www.BerkeleySprings.com, pick up a copy of the Morgan Messenger, read the flyers in local shop windows or ask the friendliest face you see.