Institute, WV, is a small but historic town in Kanawha County, West Virginia. It is located just outside of Charleston, the state's capital city. Institute has been home to many significant events throughout history, making it a must-visit destination for anyone who loves history. Here are seven historical happenings that took place in Institute, West Virginia.
1. Institute started as a school: At the turn of the 20th century, the West Virginia Colored Institute was established in Institute, WV. The school was intended to provide higher education opportunities for African American students in the state. Over the years, the institute expanded to become a comprehensive university known as West Virginia State University.
2. The Great Depression: Institute, like many other cities in the US, was greatly affected by the stock market crash of 1929. Unemployment skyrocketed, and many families were struggling to make ends meet.
3. The Civil Rights Movement: Institute, WV, was an essential location in the Civil Rights movement. In 1960, the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) launched a sit-in at the lunch counter of Charleston's Capitol F.W. Woolworth store. Institute's students were instrumental in helping to organize and support the sit-in.
4. Chemical leak in 2014: In 2014, a chemical leak from a nearby plant contaminated the water supply in Institute and other areas of West Virginia. The chemical was later identified as MCHM, which is used in the coal industry. The leak resulted in a public health emergency that impacted hundreds of thousands of people.
5. The Blair Mountain Battle: In 1921, miners working in West Virginia's coal mines launched a massive strike to demand better working conditions and pay. The situation escalated, leading to a violent clash between miners and the National Guard. The battle, known as the Blair Mountain War, took place near Institute.
6. WWII: During World War II, Institute remained an important center of education and research, with many of its students supporting the US war effort. The town also benefited from the influx of workers who moved to the area to work in defense industries.
7. Black Lives Matter: Following the murder of George Floyd, protests broke out across the US, including in Institute, WV. Local Black Lives Matter activists held a protest in June 2020, calling for an end to police brutality and systemic racism against Black people.
In conclusion, Institute, WV, is a small town with a rich and fascinating history. From World War II to the Civil Rights movement and everything in between, the town has played a significant role in our nation's past. Whether you are a history buff or just looking to learn more about the past, Institute is a place worth exploring.
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