Moundsville Blog Passes 100K Views — Lady Gaga West Virginia Roots Post is Most Read All-Time

David Bernabo and I made “Moundsville” (now on PBS) to tell a new kind of story about America. But in our dozen trips to the town and all our research, we collected way more material than we had room for in a 74-minute movie. So I started throwing stuff on this blog. And, to myContinue reading “Moundsville Blog Passes 100K Views — Lady Gaga West Virginia Roots Post is Most Read All-Time”

How to Win Friends and Talk Politics in 2020 (Without Losing Your Mind)

James Fallows: Start with Schools and Children’s Future — “I Am Your Friend” Phil Remke and I talk politics– even though we usually disagree. Phil, the former mayor of Moundsville, WV, and star of the movie Moundsville, is a boisterous small-town supporter of President Trump. I’m a journalist from Brussels whose main political conviction isContinue reading “How to Win Friends and Talk Politics in 2020 (Without Losing Your Mind)”

How a Bad Dog Did Good — Jack Russell Terrier Terrorized Moundsville While Heart of Gold Kept His Human Happy — Canines Help West Virginians ‘Roll With the Punches’

When you live in a gritty Ohio River town, sometimes it takes a cranky dog to keep you happy. For 17 years, Toby, a spunky brown and white Jack Russell Terrier, was a life companion to Steve Hummel, star of Moundsville (now playing on PBS) and owner of the Archives of the Afterlife, a museumContinue reading “How a Bad Dog Did Good — Jack Russell Terrier Terrorized Moundsville While Heart of Gold Kept His Human Happy — Canines Help West Virginians ‘Roll With the Punches’”

Local Launch Angle: Moundsville Man Inspired by Moon Missions Helps Rover Get to Mars

NASA’s seven-month rover mission to Mars, the Perseverance, launched last week, included fuel systems designed by Glenn Romanoski, a 64-year-old metallurgical engineer from Moundsville, WV. The Mars rover, equipped with cameras, microphones, drills and lasers, aims to return samples of rock and dirt to Earth, so they can be analyzed for possible signs of life.Continue reading “Local Launch Angle: Moundsville Man Inspired by Moon Missions Helps Rover Get to Mars”

Moundsville Gets an MRAP (For Floods and Hostages) — America Discovers West Virginia Town of Brad Paisley, George Brett, Lady Gaga — AOC, Julian Castro Weigh In — Armored Truck Highlights U.S. Overspending on Defense

You could be forgiven if you’d never heard of Moundsville, WV, pop. 8,400, until Jaime Baker of WTOV9 in Steubenville, OH, reported that the town’s police this week picked up a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected truck, or MRAP. The machines cost up to a million dollar a piece, but Moundsville got its for free, thanks toContinue reading “Moundsville Gets an MRAP (For Floods and Hostages) — America Discovers West Virginia Town of Brad Paisley, George Brett, Lady Gaga — AOC, Julian Castro Weigh In — Armored Truck Highlights U.S. Overspending on Defense”

Are Ghosts Making a Comeback After Covid Quarantine? Check the Spirit-Filled Appalachians and Rust Belt, Say Paranormal Investigators — Haunted Relic Expo in Moundsville, WV, July 18 — Psychic: “I’ve Needed Self-Care” During Grief-Filled Lockdown

The Appalachians and the Rust Belt have a rich past, from prehistoric mound-building peoples thousands of years ago to the French-Indian and Civil wars, and, more recently, aggressive industrialization from 1880-1980, and now, de-industrialization and depopulation. That’s why the Ohio Valley is “a plethora of paranormal activity”, says Kristin Lee, a psychic medium and ownerContinue reading “Are Ghosts Making a Comeback After Covid Quarantine? Check the Spirit-Filled Appalachians and Rust Belt, Say Paranormal Investigators — Haunted Relic Expo in Moundsville, WV, July 18 — Psychic: “I’ve Needed Self-Care” During Grief-Filled Lockdown”

New Film: In ‘The Campaign of Miner Bo’, Laid-Off West Virginia Coal Miner Runs For U.S. Senate in 2018 — After His Own Political Trials, Bo Copley Empathizes With Clinton: “I Want To Help Find Common Ground”

Bo Copley got his 15 minutes of political fame as the laid-off West Virginia coal miner who challenged Hillary Clinton on a campaign stop during the 2016 presidential election, and then fought a quixotic battle for U.S. Senate in 2018. In a speech, Clinton had declared her support for miners who needed help and supportContinue reading “New Film: In ‘The Campaign of Miner Bo’, Laid-Off West Virginia Coal Miner Runs For U.S. Senate in 2018 — After His Own Political Trials, Bo Copley Empathizes With Clinton: “I Want To Help Find Common Ground””

Donut Heroes: Quality Bakery Shoppe Bakes All Night for Moundsville — 1,200 Donuts a Day — Owners Are Drum-Playing Baptist Preacher and Baker Wife — All 4 Kids Help Out — “People Are Supporting Local Businesses During Covid”

Every night at 10pm, a small team at Quality Bakery Shoppe in Moundsville gets to work rolling flour, butter and sugar into the 1,200 donuts the West Virginia town needs to eat every day, for sustenance and sweetness. One exception to the obliteration of main street businesses in America by Wal-Mart&co is the bakeries. They’reContinue reading “Donut Heroes: Quality Bakery Shoppe Bakes All Night for Moundsville — 1,200 Donuts a Day — Owners Are Drum-Playing Baptist Preacher and Baker Wife — All 4 Kids Help Out — “People Are Supporting Local Businesses During Covid””

What ‘Moundsville’ Got Wrong About Moundsville — “Sleep-Inducing” Writes 80-Year-Old Scholar in 6,400-Word Review — “Context Was Not on the Menu” — Where’s Brad Paisley?

An email arrived this week from William Sypher, an 80-year-old retired literature scholar in Barboursville, VA who grew up in Moundsville and spent his career teaching in the Middle East, including stints in Saudi Arabia and Iran. He didn’t like “Moundsville” and attached an authoritative, charming and engaging 6,400-word review explaining why. “I wish IContinue reading “What ‘Moundsville’ Got Wrong About Moundsville — “Sleep-Inducing” Writes 80-Year-Old Scholar in 6,400-Word Review — “Context Was Not on the Menu” — Where’s Brad Paisley?”

Viewers of ‘Moundsville’ to Residents of Moundsville: We Love You

Dear residents of Moundsville, I know you’ve had different reactions to the movie, ‘Moundsville’. Some have enjoyed the journey into history, while others have described the movie as “too depressing” or “bleak”. I can promise you that, as we’ve shown the film in New York, Pittsburgh, West Virginia, and now across the country on PBS,Continue reading “Viewers of ‘Moundsville’ to Residents of Moundsville: We Love You”