West Virginia Day


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West Virginia Day

June 20
West Virginia Day is a state holiday in West Virginia to celebrate its joining the Union in 1863 as the 35th state. The creation of the state was a result of the Civil War. The settlers of western Virginia defied the state's vote to secede from the Union, and President Lincoln justified the "secession" of West Virginia from Virginia as a war act. He proclaimed its statehood in April of 1863 and on June 20 West Virginia formally entered the Union as an anti-slave state. The western Virginians' movement for independence from Virginia had actually started long before the Civil War; as early as 1776, western Virginians had the idea of establishing a separate colony called Vandalia, named for Queen Charlotte, wife of British King George III, who believed herself to be a descendant of the Vandals of early Europe.
The day is marked with ceremonies at the state capitol in Charleston and at the West Virginia Independence Hall in Wheeling. It was there that the conventions were held to declare West Virginia's independence from Virginia.
CONTACTS:
The Cultural Center
1900 Kanawha Blvd., E.
Charleston, WV 25305
304-558-0220; fax: 304-588-2779
www.wvculture.org
West Virginia Division of Tourism
90 MacCorkle Ave. S.W.
South Charleston, WV 25303
800-225-5982 or 304-558-2200; fax: 304-558-2459
www.wvtourism.com
SOURCES:
AmerBkDays-2000, p. 460
AnnivHol-2000, p. 103
DictDays-1988, p. 130
References in periodicals archive ?
8220;Celebrating West Virginia day is a tradition for many local attractions, including special guided tours, costume days, art festivals, Civil War reenactments, and enough food to satisfy the even biggest appetite

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