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Old 09-05-2011, 04:59 AM   #1355
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Location: Morgantown, WVa
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UPDATE FROM POST #1178 (Page 79)

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File Photo - Posted 20 April 2010)

UPDATE: I received an email with some interesting information on this marker. She also sent 2 photos/scans (including an old hand-drawn map), which are posted below. Thanks, Alisa!

Hi, I saw your post on the Adventure Rider website ( about the Three Springs Church historical marker in Weirton, WV. You mentioned historic notes.

My husband is a descendant of James Campbell, who donated the land for the church in 1790, and we have an old map (drawn in 1959) of the church land and cemetery. I attached a scan for you.

By all accounts, nothing remains of the church or cemetery, and I can't tell by looking at modern maps how exactly the 1959 map lines up with modern streets. The only clear road is Pennsylvania Avenue, with a note that in 1959 the church and cemetery were "- Now - Weirton (Heights) W.VA. rear of firehouse + Weirton HGH'S Pharmacy." I don't think the firehouse and pharmacy are there anymore.

I have attached a Google image of the corner of Pennsylvania Ave. and S. 17th Street in Weirton. You can just make out the historical marker you photographed on the left-hand side of the photo. I think the two-story building on the corner of 17th Street & Pennsylvania Ave. looks like it could have been a firehouse in 1959. It has a wide opening (now two windows and a door) right next to a regular door. It's also south of the maker, which is where the marker says the church was located.

The Three Springs Church was part of an early 19th century movement called "The Great Awakening," characterized by spirited "revivals" held in churches, and sometimes around campfires. The movement was influenced by a Pennsylvania minister named Alexander Campbell. He was no relation to James Campbell, but James and the other members of the Three Springs Church may have been what other churches called "Campbellites." Many people were baptized at night in the Ohio River - even in Winter! (I've got some other family letters that mention Campbellite meetings in the area in the 1850s.) The followers didn't like the name "Campbellite;" they called themselves "Disciples of Christ." Anyway, in 1920 one of James' great-grandsons wrote a letter describing the Three Springs Church. I have not corrected his creative spelling.

The old Three Springs
Presbyterian Church was on this land and the unmarked grave of Great
Grandfather is near the site of this church of which he was a member. And all
other graves of the cemetery once in the woods have been plowed over and the
land cultivated. This church was the scene of what was called “The Great
Falling Down.” After a large protracted meeting, people became so excited as to
fall down in a kind of epileptic fit and had the jerks so that their hair was
said to crack like whips, but it died out and it never had a recurrence and the
church moved to a new location and two churches now originated in this old
pioneer church, one in Hollidays Cove, the other in Paris, Pennsylvania. This
old church building was in ruins when I first passed it, when not more than
four or five years old, which I did with quick step lest some of the ghosts
that some of my superstitious ancesters told me lurked about old deserted
churches should attack me. When last I visited the graves of my grandparents
and saw the desolation, it seemed to me as if all the solemn voices of nature
were singing a sad requiem over the fallen dead. The man that cannot be
impressed by such scenes bring up memories of the past must have a flinty

- written by John P. Campbell (1831-1930)

Can you send me a citation for your marker photos? I'm not planning on publishing them, but I am making prints for my husband's family, and I like to be sure they know where everything comes from.


(Note: Marker is visible to the left, behind the stop sign - Mike Elyard - pnoman)

(Note: I believe the marker is situated at the top of this map, above the drawing of the church, looking south toward the white oak tree - Mike Elyard - pnoman)
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pnoman screwed with this post 09-05-2011 at 05:15 AM
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