POMEROY — Attics in old houses many times hold historic treasures which take years for someone to discover and even more years for someone to come to an appreciation of the importance of preservation.
Such was the case of a Pomeroy Village ledger where happenings at Council meetings from 1887 to 1905 were recorded.
The ledger had been safely stored in a room in the attic of the spacious Rawlings home on Lincoln Hill for many years only to be found in 1964 by Todd Rawlings, an inquisitive four-year old who ventured into a room just off a play area and found the book.
The son of Betty Rawlings of Mason, W.Va. and the late Dick Rawlings, was about to put some color on the pages of that ledger with his crayons when his mother interceded. Since that time, the book had been safely stored by the Rawlings family. Recognizing that it needed a new home, Betty Rawlings and her son, Todd, who now lives in Thailand, decided it was time to pass it on.
The logical recipients they felt were Susan Wright Dingess and her husband, Toney, who several years ago built a spacious brick home on the site of the old Rawlings family home which burned down in April 1976. The only thing remaining after that fire was the carriage house which still stands today on the lot.
To the Rawlings family, it was also important that the book go to Susan, daughter of George and Nellie Wright, of Pomeroy, because George’s grandfather had helped build a stone bridge at the rear of the new home of Richard and Fae Rawlings on Union Avenue in Pomeroy.
The house on Lincoln Hill was built just after the Civil War by the Ebersbach family. It was originally heated by four fireplaces, had outside facilities and a carriage house. In the late 1940s, the house was purchased by the Rawlings family, remodeled and doubled in size. It remained in the Rawlings family until it burned down and the property was sold.
The first entry in the ledger made in 1887 by City Clerk Will H. Huntley and signed by Council President Alban Davies was the Water Works Ordinance which authorized E. R. Davinport of Charleston, Kanawha Co., W.Va. his associates, heirs or assigns to construct, operate and maintain water works in the city of Pomeroy. It was to be known as the Meigs County Water Co. Rates were set at 100 gallons per day at five cents a gallon.
Two years later, according to the ledger, an ordinance granted E. S. Trussell the right to erect, maintain and operate poles, lines, electric light wires, mains for distribution of electricity for light, heat and power in the village. That same year, a resolution relating to the construction of a railway within the limits of the village was made, and the Pomeroy Belt Railway name was approved. The question of building the railway went to the voters who approved it 754 in favor with 4 against.
The years of accomplishments and set-backs are detailed in the book as are the changes in administrative personnel. The last entry was made in 1905 and speaks of the indebtedness of the village to the Pomeroy and Middleport Electric Co. and notes that a suit is threatened.