Category Archives: Kanawha

William B. Donnally

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Sandy Spradling
September 25, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
W.S. Laidley
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
p. 387-390

WILLIAM B. DONNALLY, a well known business man of Charleston, where he is
engaged in the transfer and freighting business, and is also a dealer in
grain and feed stuffs, was born in the Salines, on Kanawha river, this
county, in 1851, a son of Van Bibber and Mary B. (Waggoner) Donnally.
He is a great grands6n of Col. Andrew Donnally, born in the north of Ireland,
who came to this country about the middle of the eighteenth century, at which
time there was a large Scotch-Irish emigration to the Val-ley of Virginia.
This early ancestor soon became a prominent man in his locality, serving as
high sheriff and county lieutenant, or military commander of Botetourte
County. This office of county lieutenant, or military commander, was a very
important one at that day and was borrowed from the Mother Country, where it
was usually held by a person of rank. It carried with it also the title of
colonel. Col. Donnally may have been one of the officers of Bote-tourte
County at its formation in 1770. The fort called Donnally’s was built in 1771
in that county. The colonel or county lieutenant was the person to
communicate with the governor and the secretary of the colony, commanded the
militia and presided at the county courts. He was appointed by the governor
with the advice of the council and was generally the most prominent citizen.
The office was held during good be-havior. Ccl. Donnally was subsequently
made county lieutenant of Greenbrier County and continued in that office
under Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson, the two first governors of
Virginia. There is a story current in the family that he was with
Washington’s army at Valley Forge during the severe winter of 1777-78 and
par-ticipated in the awful suffering of that period, but, however this may
be, there is no further evidence of his being again with the Continental army.
About this time, however, he had his experience of Indian warfare. The murder
of the famous Chief Cornstalk by the whites, or rather, by some white men,
for it was an act denounced by the best men on the frontier, had greatly
exasperated the Indians and they retaliated viciously on the unprotected
settlers. In the spring of 1778 they
attempted to surprise and capture Fort Randolph at Point Pleasant, but
failing in that, they turned their attention to Fort Donnally. The occupants
of the fort were apprised of their danger in time by two men from Fort
Randolph, who succeeded in eluding the savages. Col. Donnally, who had been
absent, returned to the fort at night just as the enemy were investing it,
but succeeded in entering it without being noticed. The attack which followed
was disastrous to the Indians, who’ departed after suffering considerable
loss. Four white men in all were killed, two while on their way to the fort.
Among the defenders, Col. Donnally’s daughter Catherine took a conspicuous
part, though then but a young girl of twelve years. Another daughter, Katie,
helped to mould the pewter plate and’ spoons into bullets and poured hot
water through the puncheons on the heads of the savages. With perhaps one
exception, this was the last raid of the Indians to the Greenbrier. Says a
writer in the West Virginia Historical Magazine (Quarterly) for July, 1901:
“The responsibilities of Col. Donnally’s position were very great and the
work heavy. He felt personally accountable for the lives of the people in
the wilds of the Greenbrier, Meadow Creek and Kanawha’rivers and their
tributaries. The duties of his office called him constantly from home, but it
seems that he was ever at hand when emergencies arose. That he was a man of
great executive ability, history proves. Stories of his personal courage and
great physical strength are too well known to admit of a doubt and his racy
repartees became proverbial. . . . He had only 550 men in the militia at
his disposal, for the defense of this western frontier. Governor Jefferson
was now asking for some of these men to be sent to General George Rogers
Clark to aid in his expedition against his Indians of the West. The Assembly
also required of him more men for the Contin-ental army * * * The public
credit was at so low an ebb that no one would advance money. Ammunition was
scarce. The militia must depend upon the corn tax levied on the settlers. Yet
these brave men struggled on and fought for their country.”
Cot. Donnally resigned his comnaission as military commander on September 19,
1781. It was not accepted evidently, as he writes officially to Gov. Patrick
Henry in 1785. Cot. Donnalty was one of the trustees of Lewisburg at its
establishment in 1782. He did not come to reside on the Kanawha until after
the battle at Fort Donnally. He went directly to the mouth of the river and
lived just above the present town of Point Pleasant for a year or more. He
was one of those who denounced the murderers of Cornstalk, and on one
occasion meeting with a man who boasted that he had fired the fatal shot that
brought such desolation to the frontier settlements, he knocked him senseless
with a stanchion, so that when he recovered he hastened away from the
locality and was never more heard of. Colonel Donnally owned many negroes,
one of whom, Dick Pointer, distinguished himself in the fight at Donnally’s
Fort in 1778. A son of the latter was taken prisoner by the Indians in 1790
and was made a chief by them. He subse-quently aided the Americans in the war
of 1812.
Cot. Donnally lived a short time at the mouth of the Elk after leaving Point
Pleasant. Kanawha county was formed in 1789 and he was chosen the first
representative. The population at this time however, was so sparse that but
thirteen votes were cast, at-thought the polls were open for three days. He
again served his county as representative in 1803. From the mouth of the Elk
he moved to his permanent home, about five mites above Charleston, on the
south side of the Kanawha, where he lived in comfort and prosperity for many
years. He died about 1825. He had one brother, whose descendants reside in
New Jersey and Ohio
Of his own immediate family he had several daughters, who are represented by
the Slaughters, Hendersons and Wilsons, now living here and elsewhere, and
are prominently married and represented in the different professions and
trades. There has scarcely been a period in the last century that this
state, county or town was not represented by one of Cot. Donnally’s
descendants, either directly or indirectly through marriage. The renowned
Daniel Boone was neighbor for years to Colonel Donnally, re-siding on his
place up to the time that he left for Spanish Missouri in 1799. Daniel’s son,
Jesse Boone, who was Colonel Don-natty’s brother-in-law, resided in his
father’s home until i8i6, when he also went West.
Colonel Donnalty was one of the early salt manufacturers of the county, this
industry being an important one at that time on the frontier, as salt, while
one of the most necessary articles for the pioneer, was also one of the most
difficult ones to obtain, except in the immediate vicinity of salt springs,
where the salt was manufactured by the tedious process of boiling and
evaporation. The Colonel and his wife were Presbyterians in religious faith.
They died when between 60 and 70 years of age and were buried in what is now
the old family plat, where many of their descendants have found a last
resting-place. They had a family of four or five children.
Andrew Donnally (2d), son of the fore-going and grandfather of the subject of
this sketch, was born in Fort Donnally, ten miles west of Lewisburg and, like
his father, in turn became a prominent man in his com-munity, owning about
100,000 acres of land together with 150 slaves. Together with a Mr. Ruffner,
as the firm of Ruffner and Donnally, he owned and controlled the entire salt
output of the county, this being the first commercial monopoly known in the
his-tory of the tounty. At one time he lived in Charleston, where he owned
valuable prop~ erty, though he and his wife resided for nearly half a century
on the old homestead, which they improved and greatly enlarged in area. A
Whig in politics, he was twice high sheriff, was clerk of the courts, and
magistrate and a representative in the Virginia legislature. His death toQk
place in 1849 when he was about 70 years of age. In 1802 he had married
Marjory, daughter of Captain John Van Bibber, and they had six sons that
arrived at maturity, besides two daughters. The sons married into prominent
old families of the valley, and all were engaged conspicuously in business
interests. The two daughters married respectively, Henry Fry, great grandson
of Col. Joshua Fry, who commanded the Colonial army in 1754, and who had been
prominent in Virginia history for thirty years or more, and Col. John Lewis,
grandson of Gen. Andrew Lewis, the Indian fighter, and Colonial and also
Revolutionary officer of renown. The members of this family, which numbered
nine children in all, are all now deceased.
Van Bibber Donnally, father of the subject of this sketch, was the eldest
child of his parents. He was born in Charleston, W. Va., in 1809 and grew to
manhood in Kanawha county. His literary education was obtained in a college
at Athens, Ohio. Like his father, he engaged in the salt business and
continued in it most of the time until the breaking out of the Civil War. He
was an active member of the Democratic party and in religion a Presbytenan.’
His death took place in Buffalo, W. Va., when he had attained the age of 72
years. He had married in Mason county, W. Va., Mary B. Wag-goner, a native of
that county. She was born a little later than her husband and died later, at
the age of 75 years. Like him she was a Presbyterian in religion. Their
family num-bered ten children, of whom there are five still living, one
daughter being a widow and two of the children being yet unmarried.
William B. Donnally, the date and place of whose nativity has been already
given, was educated in the public schools, but endowed with a good brain and
an energetic nature he has since largely increased his mental equipment in
the domain of practical knowledge. Coming to Charleston in 1885 he
established here the freighting and transfer business, of which he is now the
head, and which has since grown to large proportions, giving employment to 25
people. A Democratic in politics, he was nominated for the office of sheriff
and twice for county clerk, but this being a strong Republican district, he
was defeated.
Mr. Donnally was married in this county to Sallie Ashton Cotton, who was born
in Charleston in i858, daughter of Dr. John T. and Sarah (Fitzhugh) Cotton,
one time resi-dents in Ohio, but who were for many years prominent in the
business and social life of Charleston, Va. Of this union there have been
ten children, of whom two died young. The living are as follows: Sarah is the
wife of L. L. Sheets and has one son, Donnally. John C., who was educated at
Phillips-Exeter Academy, graduating also from the law department of the
University of Virginia in the class of 1903. Frank Woodman died at the age of
9 years. William B. Jr., who is a well educated young man, is associated with
his father in business. The other children, Henry Fitzhugh, Van Bibber,
Dorothy, Fitzhugh and Robert, are attending the high school. Mr. Donnally
adheres to the religious faith of his ancestors, being a Presbyterian, while
Mrs. Donnally is an Episcopalian.

Sandy Spradling
State Contact for WV GenExchange

William B. Calderwood

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 21, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
W.S. Laidley
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
p. 363-364

WILLIAM B. CALDERWOOD, postmaster at Cedar Grove, Kanawba County, W. Va.,
and a member of the general mercantile firm of Calderwood Brothers, was born
May 6, 1878, at Dana, Kanawha County, and is a son of William B. and Anna
(Wilkinson) Calderwood.
William B. Calderwood, Sr., who was born in Scotland and was brought to
America by his parents, who located at Middleport, Ohio, where he grew to
manhood and engaged in coal mining. Shortly after his marriage he came to
Kanawha County, W. Va., as foreman for the Campbell Creek Coal Company and
resided at Dana, continuing with that company many years and resigning but a
short time prior to his death, May 24, 1906, at the age of sixty-two years.
He was married in Ohio to Anna Wil-kinson, who was born in England and is at
present a resident of Malden, W. Va. The fol-lowing children were born to
them: Elizabeth, who is the wife of John F. White, of Mont-gomery, W. Va.;
Henry, who lives at Leon, W. Va.; Agnes, who lives in West Charleston; Anna,
who is in partnership with her brother William B., in the store enterprise at
Cedar Grove; William B.; Andrew, who lives at Putney; W. Va.; Robert and
Edward, both of whom are residents of Charleston.
William B. Calderwood attended the public schools of Dana through boyhood and
then became his father’s assistant for two years at the Campbell Creek mines,
after which he came to Cedar Grove as a clerk for his brother, Henry
Calderwood, who, in partnership with I. F. and C. F. White, started the
present mercantile business. On February 1, 1906, Mr. Calderwood with his
sister Anna, and his brother Andrew, bought Henry Calderwood’s interest, who
had succeeded the original firm of White & Calderwood. A good general stock
is carried and the firm is prospering. Mr. Calderwood is a Republican and in
April, 1906, was appointed postmaster at Cedar Grove.

William Carroll

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 19, 1999

History of Kanawha County
George W. Atkinson
p. 122-123


The Carrolls came to Kanawba shortly after the Morrises, and settled in the
same neighborhood. William Carroll located four miles below the mouth of
Kelly’s creek, cleared several acres of bottom land, and built a small
round-log cabin on the bank of the river.
In the spring of 1789, Mr. Carroll, while on his way to the village of
Charleston, or Clendennin’s settlement, as it was called at that time, was
surprised by a body of Indians, who were concealed in the paw-paw bushes near
the roadside. He discovered their presence before they had an opportunity to
fire, and leaped from his horse. As he was dismounting two of the Indians
fired upon him, and the balls from both rifles took effect in the horse,
killing it instantly. Carroll ran, with all possible speed towards the
river, which was fully three hundred yards distant, and the Indians were in
close pursuit. The bottom was covered with large trees, which prevented the
Indians from shooting him as they ran. He reached the river, perhaps a
hundred yards in advance of his pursuers, and being a good swimmer, leaped
into the stream, and struck out for the opposite shore. He evaded the shots
from the rifles of the savages by diving every few moments, until he reached
the other side. After getting on land he ran along the bank of the river to
the Paint creek settlement, a distance ef about ten miles, and thus made his

The Indians went to his house, plundered it, set it on fire, killed his milch
cow, and left the settlement. Fortunately Mr. Carroll had taken the
precaution to send his family to the Kelly’s creek fort the morning he left
for Charleston, so that none of them were harmed by the savages.

William Mercer Owens Dawson

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Sandy Spradling
September 26, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
W.S. Laidley
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
p. 428-432

HON. WILLIAM MERCER OWENS DAWSON, exgovernor of West Virginia, was born at
Bloomington, Md., within a few hundred yards of the Virginia (West Virginia)
line, May 21, 1853, son of Francis Ravenscroft (sometimes written Ravenscra
ft) and Leah (Kight) Dawson. He is descended on the paternal side from
martial an-cestors who accompanied Oliver Cromwell to Ireland and fought
to subdue the insurrectionary forces in that unhappy island. One of them
came to this ceuntry quite early in the history of the colonies. At a later
day we find a branch of the family residing in Allegheny county, Maryland,
where John Dawson, our subject’s grandfather, was born. The latter was a
blacksmith by occupation and locally a well known and respected citizen. He
married a Miss Ravenscroft. who was born and lived and died in Maryland, in
or near Dawson. John Dawson and wife had seven children, most of whom grew to
maturity, married, and reared families of their own. The members of the
family generally were Methodists in their religious affiliations. The
youngest son of John Dawson, the Rev. Samuel R. Dawson, was for many years a
well known and popular preacher in the M. E. church, North, and died in 1892
at an advanced age, at Ellenboro, Ritchie county, W. Va. Another son of
John, Hanson B. Dawson, was clerk of the Circuit Court of Romney, Hampshire
county, W. Va.; he died September 6, 1876. He married a Mrs. Shabe, widow of
Daniel Shabe and daughter of James Parsons, whose wife was a sister of
General Fairfax. They had no issue.
Francis Ravenscroft Dawson, father of our subject, was the eldest child of
his parents, and was born near Dawson, Md., in 1809. He learned his father’s
trade of blacksmith, and later became clerk for Samuel Brady, a wealthy man
who owned a large plantation and a number of slaves. Later Francis R. Dawson
took up the mercantile business at Piedmont, W. Va., and at Bloomington, Md.
He died in July, j88i, at the age of almost eighty years. He was a class
leader in the M. F. church, and a very hospitable man. During the Civil War
peribd, his sympathies were with the Union cause. One of his sons, Frank M.,
was a soldier in the 17th W. Va. Volunteers, enlisting as a private and
serving from 1863 mitil the close of the war.
Francis R. Dawson married, in 1832, Leab Kight, who was born in Virginia in
1811. Her father, John Kight, and her mother, whose maiden name also was
Kight, were both Vir-ginians. They were active members of the Methodist
church and both attained an advanced age. The children of Francis R. and
Leah Dawson were Penelope, John H., Nancy C., Mariam, David Shoaf, Frank M.,
and William Mercer Owens. Of those other than our subject, the record in
brief is as follows: Penelope, who is the widow of E. Clark Jones, but has no
children, resides in Terra Alta, W. Va. John H., who was a well known
steamboat cap tam on the Ohio river, died at Parkersburg, W. Va., in 1879.
He married Miss Jennie Shaffer, who resides at Parkersburg, W. Va. Her only
son, Harry H. Dawson, of Norfolk, Va., died in the fall of 1910. Nancy C.,
widow of George E. Gtithrie, resides with her son, the Rev. Charles E.
Guthrie, pastor of the First M. E. church at Wilkesbarre, Pa. Other children
of hers are D. S. Guthrie, of Chicago; Wade H., state printer at Charleston,
W. Va., and William V., publisher of “The Methodist,” of Baltimore, Md.
Mariam, the fourth child of Francis R. and Leah Dawson, married Joseph
Goodrich, and died leaving several. children. David Shoaf, the fifth child,
if now living, is probably in South America. No news has been received from
him for a considerable time. Frank M., whose military history has been
already referred to, is a machinist, and resides in Toledo, Ohio. He married
Miss Cole of Grafton, W. Va., and they have sev-eral children.
William M. 0. Dawson, with whose history we are more directly concerned, had
the misfor-tune to lose his mother when he was a child of less than four
years, and he resided successively with his father at Cranberry (now Terra
Alta), Bruceton Mills, and Ice’s Ferry. In 1863 he began to learn the
cooper’s trade at Cranberry, where also for a time he attended public school,
subsequently continuing his education in a pri-vate school at Terra Alta.
During this period he also worked for some time as a clerk and taught school.
In 1873 he became a resident of King,vood, the county seat of Preston
coun-ty, and became editor of “The Preston County Journal,” a Republican
newspaper, for which he had previously been a correspondent, as well as for
the “Wheeling Intelligencer.” Two years later he became the owner of the
“Jour-nal” which under his management became a po-tent factor in state
politics. In 1874, though nor seeking the position, he was elected chairman
of the county Republican committee, and was twice re-elected, serving for
thirteen years, at the end-of which time he retired. In 1880 he was
unanimously nominated as the Republican canidate for state senator from Tenth
district, composed of Monongalia and Preston coun-ties, and was elected. He
was the youngest member of the body, and- the only Republican member except
his colleague. At the end of this four-year term, he was again nominated
without opposition, and re-elected to the state senate. In 1888, at the end
of his second term, he declined to be again considered as a candidate though
he could have been nominated for the third time without opposition. When he
re-tired in i888 the Senate was nearly equally di-vided between the two
political parties. During his career as senator Mr. Dawson rendered valuable
service as a member of the committee on banks and corporations, on finance,
on the joint committee on finance, on the joint subcommittee on finance to
prepare the appropria-tion bills; on counties and municipal corporations, on
the penitentiary, on mines and mining, on public printing, and was the only
Republican member of a special committee to investi-gate the public printing,
his report being adopted by the Democratic senate. The decided stand he took
for the protection of the school fund is still well remembered and is a
matter of public record. He also advocated the regulation of railroad
charges on the lines afterwards adopted by the Federal government in the
creation of the interstate commerce commission. He is also the father of the
first mine inspection law of the state, and he initiated and carried through
much other beneficent legisla-tion. His name has been since associated with
the “Dawson Corporation Law,” enacted by the legislature in 1901, while he
was secretary of state, and which made much needed and benefi-cent
alterations in the corporation laws of the state, adding over a quarter of a
million dollars to its revenues from the tax in corporation charters.
In 1891 Mr. Dawson was unanimously elect-ed chairman of the Republican State
Committee, a position to which he was twice re-elected. When he took charge
West Virginia was Democratic by a majority of 5,000 to 6,000, and had be’en
in complete control of the Democratic party since 1871. His conduct of the
campaign of 1892 wrought a great change in the political situation and was a
surprise to all the party leaders of the state, and particularly so to the
enemy. Under his management the Republican party won the great victories in
West Virginia of 1894, 1896, 1898 and 1900. Since 1896 the state has been
Republican in all branches of the government, having a majority in both
houses of the Legislature. Mr. Dawson resigned the office of chairman in
In 1897 he was appointed secretary of state by Governor Atkinson, and was
reappointed to that office in 1901 by Governor White, being the only man who
has served two terms in that important office. His administration of its
affairs was marked hy personal integrity, efficiency, and devotion to the
public welfare that won for him universal commendation and compelled the
respect even of his political enemies. having the legislature pass the
“Dawson Cor-poration Law,” referred to above.
Every one remembers the great political campaign of 1904 in West Virginia.
The all-absorbing issue was “tax reform.” It was hased on the
recommendations of the tax commission of 1901, which made its report to the
legisla-ture of 1903. The body refused to consider the bills to amend the
tax laws proposed by that commission. On the question of their
con-sideration Mr. Dawson became a candidate for the Republican nomination
for Governor. It was a fierce, hot campaign. Mr. Dawson was nominated; and
the campaign that ensued, resulting in his election, was probably the most
hotly contested in the history of the state. Mr. Dawson served as Governor of
West Virginia from March 4, 1905, to March 4, 1909, and during his
administration he succeeded in hav-ing “tax reform” enacted into laws, now
often referred to as the “Dawson Tax Laws.”
As the incumbent of this high office, he again justified his party’s choice
and his record as governor is one that will hear close comparison with that
of the ablest of his predecessors. It is sufficiently well known to the
people of the state to need no detailed recapitulation here. Among minor
offices that have been held by Mr. Dawson are those of clerk of the House of
Delegates, in 1895, and mayor of Kingwood. He is a member of the Masonic
order belonging to Preston lodge, No.90, A. F. & A. M. of Kingwood, and is
past chancellor of Brown lodge, No.32, also of Kingwood. He is a member of
the Presbyterian church and has been active in Y. M. C. A. work.
Mr. Dawson was married in 1879 to Luda, daughter of John T. Neff, of
Kingwood, W. Va. She died in 1894, leaving a son, Daniel; and in 1899 Mr.
Dawson married Maude, daughter of Jane Brown, of Kingwood, of which union
there is a daughter, Leah Jane, born April 4, 1901, and now attending the
pub-lic schools. The son Daniel, who was born January 13, 1881, was educated
in the Charleston schools, including the high school, and subsequently
entered the University of West Virginia at Morgantown, where he was graduated
in 1904. He then took a one year course at Harvard University, and later
graduated from the law school of West Virginia University. He is now engaged
in the practice of law at Huntington, W. Va. Ex-Governor Dawson is a printer
by trade and a lawyer by profession. He is now engaged in the practice of
law at Charleston, the capitol of West Virginia.

Sandy Spradling
State Contact for WV GenExchange

William Dickinson

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 19, 1999

History of Kanawha County
George W. Atkinson
p. 320


Colonel Dickinson is the only son of William Dickinson, Sr., who was one of
the leading salt makers of the Kanawha Valley for over fifty years. He was
born in Bedford county, Virginia, but has spent the greater portion of his
life in Kanawha. He is now upwards of eighty years of age, and is resid~ng
upon his magnificent farm on the Kanawha river, fifteen miles above
Charleston. He has a princely estate, and seenis to enjoy himself in his
retired farm life. He never would accept any office never owed anybody
anything, always lived up to his promises, and has the respect of all persons
who ever had any dealings with Dim. Kanawba has no better citizen than
Colonel William Dickinson, and no kinder hearted gentleman ever lived in the
Valley of the Great Kanawha. He always looked at the sunny side of
everything, and therefore necessarily enjoys life.

William Sr. Dickinson

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 19, 1999

History of Kanawha County
George W. Atkinson
p. 323


Colonel Dickinson was born in Bedford county, Virginia, and came to Kanawha
with Joel Shrewsbury, Sr., in 1813. He and Mr. Shrewsbury had been engaged
in the manufacture of tobacco in Bedford county from 1804, and after their
arrival in Kanawha, they formed a partnership in the manufacture of salt,
which business they continued until 1856. Colonel Dickinson died in 1862, at
the advanced age of about ninety-three. his son William is still living, and
quite a number of his grandchildren are also residing in the county.

William Gustavus Conley

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Sandy Spradling
September 25, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
W.S. Laidley
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
p. 418-419

HON. WILLIAM GUSTAVUS CONLEY, attorney general of West Virginia, and a
citizen of that state who has been prominent both in professional and public
life for many years, was born in Preston County, W. Va.. January 8, 1866, and
is a son of Major Will-iam and Mary (Freeburn) Conley.
Major William Conley, who was an officer in the state militia, was born also
in Preston County, but the mother was a native of Scotland. She came to
America with her parents at the age of eight years, resided with them in
Philadelphia, and later accompanied them to West Virginia, where her death
occurred in 1896, her husband having passed away when their son, William G.,
was quite young. Maior William Conley was a man of local prominence, and at
one time was deputy sheriff. He was a school teacher and was also engaged in
business as a contractor.
William Gustavus Conley was educated in the public schools of Preston County,
and the West Virginia University at Morgantown, and was graduated there from
the department of law, in 1803, and in the same year was admitted to the bar.
On April 2, 1903, Mr. Conley had conferred on him the honorary degree of
Doctor of Laws, by the Nashville College of Law, at Nashville, Teun. From
1893 until 1903, he was engaged in the practice of law at Parsons, W. Va.,
during the closing six months of this period being in partnership with
Charles D. Smith, under the firm name of Conley & Smith. He was in active and
citizen there, serving in the city council and also as mayor. From Parsons
he came to Kingwood, W. Va., where he is a member of the law firm of Hughes &
Conley, and where he has his residence. Mr. Conley has filled many important
political positions. In 1896 he was chosen assistant secretary of the
Republican National Convention that nominated the late President McKinley.
Subsequently he was twice sent to the convention of the National Republican
League Club; for six years was chairman of the Republican Executive
Committee, and for several years was a member as well as assistant secretary
of the Republican Congressional Committee. On May 9, 1908, Mr. Conley was
appointed attorney general, by Gov. William M. 0. Dawson, to serve until his
successor was elected and qualified, and was elected for both short and long
term, expiration being March 4, 1913. This position is one befitting one of
his talents, connections and achievements. Attorney Ceneral Conley maintains
his office on the first floor of the Capitol Building, Charleston.
Mr. Conley was married in 1892, to Miss Bertie I. Martin, who was born in
1873, near Kingwood, W. Va., and they have three children living. Mrs.
Conley is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, while he was reared a
Presbyterian. He is identified with the Masons, the Odd Fellows and the
Knights of Pythias.

Sandy Spradling
State Contact for WV GenExchange

William Hubbard Goodwin

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Sandy Spradling
September 25, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia and Representative
W.S. Laidley
Richmond Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago, ILL.
p. 406-407

WILLIAM HUBBARD GOODWIN, general merchant and representative citizen of
Malden, W. Va., was born in this place, April i6, 1872, and is a son of
George A. and Sarah E. (High) Goodwin, both of whom are living and are highly
respected people of Malden. The father was born in Rockbridge County, Va.,
and came to Kanawha County in 1871, with the C. & 0. Railroad, where he
shortly afterward was married to Miss Sarah E. High. They have four
chil-dren: William Hubbard; Cammie, who is the wife of H. 0. Ruffner; Hall
G.; and Anna, who is the wife of H. J. Harbey, of Charleston.
William H. Goodwin learned the carpenter’s trade with his father after he had
attended the public schools and his first business position was a clerkship
in the Pioneer Coal Company’s store at Dana Sta-tion. He then took a
business course at Staunton, Va., after which he returned to Malden as clerk
for E. L. Rooke and later, in partnership with this employer, opened up a
general store at Cedar Grove, Kanawha County, subsequently selling his
interest and coming back to his birthplace. In May, 1910, he bought his
present store building from Wallace Averill, put in a first class stock and
has been quite prosperous, being numbered with the successful business men.
In September, 1894, Mr. Goodwin was married to Miss Lottie L. Scott, a
daughter of James and A. E. Scott, and they have one child, Gladys R. Mr.
Goodwin is an active citizen and is particularly interested in the public
schools. He served four years on the Board of Education and was reelected and
served as president of that body for four years more. He is prominent in
several fraternal orders, belonging to Lodge No.87, Knights of Pythias at
Mallden, and has been deputy grand chancellor; and has been collector of
wampum, in Lodge No.26, Red Men, also at Maiden. In politics he is a

Sandy Spradling
State Contact for WV GenExchange

William D. Lewis

Submitted by
Valerie Crook
September 12, 1999

The History of West Virginia, Old and New
Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc.,
Chicago and New York, Volume III,
pg. 223
Kanawha County

WILLIAM D. LEWIS, wholesale merchant and banker of
Charleston, is a successful business man who has pursued
a well balanced purpose in his achievements. Mr. Lewis in
later years has given generously and has been in fact pri-
marily responsible for the success of Charleston’s unique
institution, the Union Mission. The Union Mission stands
out as perhaps the most original organization of its kind
in the country. It is a centralized agency, both religious
and philanthrophic, wherein are concentrated the means and
the influences for the alleviation of hardship and suffer-
ing in the community. It performs the work performed in
many other cities by the Associated Charities, but is even
broader in scope than those worthy organizations, and it
has been conducted so efficiently as to win the confidence
of men like Mr. Lewis, who alone, it is said, has contributed
many thousands of dollars to the Mission, and it consti-
tutes his largest interest and pride outside his business and
personal affairs.

William D. Lewis was born near Maiden in Kanawha
County, June 21, 1850, son of John D. and Betty (Darneal)
Lewis. He is of Scotch-Irish ancestry. His great-grand-
father, Charles Lewis, was a native of the Shenandoah
Valley, served as a colonel in the Indian wars, and was
killed at the battle of Point Pleasant, in what is now West
Virginia. His son, Charles Lewis, Jr., subsequently settled
in the vicinity of Point Pleasant, on the Ohio Biver, and
was a farmer there. John D. Lewis, father of the Charles-
ton business man, was born in 1800, and was reared in
Mason County and later settled on the Kanawha River,
where he was a pioneer in the salt industry, and at one time
owned 70,000 acres of land covered with timber and under-
laid with coal. He was a man of wealth, a large slave
owner, served in the Legislature, and was widely known for
his blameless character and philanthropic impulse. He was
a whig and later a democrat, was a member of the Episcopal
Church, and died at the age of eighty-two, in December,
1882. Betty Darneal, his third wife, was born in Kentucky
and died in 1851, leaving two children, Julia D. and
William D.

William D. Lewis, though his boyhood was spent in the
Civil war period, acquired a liberal education, graduating
from Washington and Lee University at Lexington, Vir-
ginia. He has kept in close touch with his alma mater, arid
in 1907 was elected a trustee of that institution. After
leaving university Mr. Lewis entered the lumber industry,
managing his father’s timber lands and manufacturing
lumber for a number of years. Since retiring from the
lumber industry he has been active in business organizations
at Charleston, where he is president of the Hubbard Gro-
cery Company and a director of the Kanawha National
Bank. Mr. Lewis is an elder in the First Presbyterian
Church of Charleston, and politically has always been
aligned with the democratic party.

He married Miss Jennie G. Stanley, who is a native of
Kanawha County, daughter of Joel Stanley. Mr. and Mrs.
Lewis have five children: William D., Jr., Mrs. Lynn Hol-
derness, John D., Captain Brown and Julia V. Red.


William R. Morris

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
September 19, 1999

History of Charleston and Kanawha County, West Virginia
W.S. Laidley
p. 831

WILLIAM R. MORRIS, superintendent of mines for the Queen Shoal Coal Company
and general manager of their mercantile store at Queen Shoals, Clay county,
W. Va., was born July 18, 1872, at Clifton, W. Va., and is a son of James
Dickinson and Agnes L. (Haymaker) Morris.

James Dickinson Morris was horn sixty-nine years ago at Hanley, W. Va., and
now lives at Pratt. He was sixteen years old when he enlisted for service in
the Civil War. He served four years in Co. I, 8th Va. Vol. Cavalry, and after
being mustered out of the army, became a blacksmith, and still does
considerable work of that kind. He moved to Clifton ahout 1870 and has
resided there continuously since then. He has been a lifelong Democrat. He
married Agnes L.’ Haymaker, who was born in Botetourt county, Va., and who is
a daughter of Michael Haymaker, who was a shoemaker by trade. The Morris
family came originally from Kentucky. Of the surviving children of James D.
Morris and wife, William R. is the eldest, the others being: Oscar L., who is
connected with the railroad at Thurmond, W. Va.; Eugene H., who is bookkeeper
for a coal com-pany in Kanawba county; and Henry E., who is a clerk with
Armour & Co., at Louisville, Ky. The father of the ahove family has been a
member of the Methodist Episcopal church at Clifton, for the past twenty-five
William R. Morris attended school at Clifton and afterward was a clerk for
his uncle, W. S. Haymaker, for five years. He then followed the carpenter’s
trade for two years. In 1891 he went with the Coal Valley Mining Company in
the capacity of clerk and book-keeper and remained for six years. For the
following five years he was with the Beury Coal and Coke Company; for one and
one-half years was buyer for the firm of Carver Bros, Montgomery, W. Va.; for
three years was with the Wacomab Coal Company; and for two years was with the
Paint Creek Colliery Com-pany, after which he came to the Queen Shoals Coal
Company, and occupies a responsible p~ Sition with this corporation. In
politics he is an active Prohibitionist. For two years he was also postmaster
at Queen Shoals.
Mr. Morris married Miss Edna Hughes, who was born in Fayette county, W. Va.,
a daughter of Ellis Hughes, who was horn in Wales, and emigrated to America
prior to his marriage. Mr. and Mrs. Morris have two chil-dren: James, aged
ten years, and Agnes, aged six years. The family attends the First
Presby-terian church at Charleston. Mr. Morris belongs to the Khights of
Pythias, Uniform Rank, at Montgomery, W. Va.