Wheeling’s past is brought to life during Greenwood Cemetery tour

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Tourists looked history dead in the eye Sunday

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October 31 2021 11:59 pm

WHEELING W.Va. (WTRF) Friends of Wheeling are highlighting the importance of bringing the past back to life. They held a historic cemetery tour with guest appearances from prominent figures aging all the way back to 1829.  

The great Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “We are not makers of history. We are made by history.” 

To preserve the past, Friends of Wheeling held a historic tour of Greenwood Cemetery. Those attending could learn about notable movers and shakers from the area.  

Along the way they met several leaders from different time periods and learned how each person played a part in the destiny of Wheeling. Over 41,000 people have been buried in Greenwood Cemetery.  

Jeanne Feinstein played May Hornbrook and she said history can easily be forgotten if we do not continue to tell these people’s stories. 

Quite often we discover people who are buried here in Greenwood or in other cemeteries, who’s history is quite impressive. They did a lot for the development of Wheeling, but they have been largely forgotten.

I was a suffragist back in the day and worked very hard at both the local, state, and national level to secure the right to vote for women.

Jeanne Feinstein portrayed May Hornbrook 

This interactive historic lesson allowed people of all ages to shed light on how Wheeling became what it is today.  

Dr. Jim Comerci portrayed Dr. Henry T. Ford and says he values history and that in his profession they look back on history often. 

I think first of all we learn from history many times, but history also connects us to other people and people in our community.

Dr. Jim Comerci portrayed Dr. Henry T. Ford

Vice Mayor Chad Thalman says he was thankful to be a part of recreating Wheeling’s rich history as he portrayed Mayor Andrew J. Sweeney. 

My character was the Mayor of Wheeling and he served nine terms as Mayor. He served longer as Wheeling’s Mayor then anyone in the history of the city.

Vice Mayor Chad Thalman portrayed Mayor Andrew J. Sweeney

Yesterday’s history has been known to become the building blocks of tomorrow’s future.

In addition to periodic cemetery tours, Friends of Wheeling sponsors monthly visits to historic properties in and around Wheeling to honor and preserve Wheeling’s heritage.  

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