Preserving Pocahontas

PRESERV POCA Arbovale SingingSchoolweb“Singing Schools” in America began with New England settlers who believed in the importance of training each churchgoer to sing. In the rural south they became a social event for people looking for something to do. Many young people saw singing schools as a good place for “courting.” The school was often taught by a traveling singing master and shape note singing was a popular aid in learning how to sing by sight. One common tradition was the “singing school picture” taken on the last day of school. This old photograph exists as a record of the Singing School in Arbovale, West Virginia, in the early 1900s. First row, left to right: Unknown, Unknown, Bud (C.L.C.) Burner, Elmer Burner, Fount Arbogast, Willie Ben Arbogast, Glen Arbogast. Charlie Grogg. Second row, left to right: Virgie Gillispie (Clark), Lucy Gillispie, Daisy Eskridge (married Bud Burner), Rufie Kerr (Barkley), Vesta Kerr (Nottingham), Mollie Gillispie (Burner), Unknown. Children in back: Unknown, Ganelle Nottingham, Neil Nottingham. Photo Courtesy of Pocahontas Co. Historical Society, ID: PHS000436 Access the “Preserving Pocahontas” Digital Library at or www.preserv If you have photographs or documents to be scanned for the county Historical Archive Project contact Preservation Officer B. J. Gudmundsson at 304-799-3989 or email info@pocahontaspreser Prints of photographs from the archives are available.

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