Sunday, September 10, 2017 is the date of the next Friends of Wheeling historic tour of Wheeling’s Greenwood Cemetery. Costumed characters will portray the lives of some of Wheeling’s most notable … and notorious … citizens in continuous tours between 1:00 and 5:00 pm. The last tour will begin at 4:30.
This year’s tour will include: John Frew, newspaperman who was a partner with Archibald Campbell on the Wheeling Intelligencer Portrayed by Greg Smith]; (Margaret) Anna Parker Hall, Civil War nurse, later National President of the Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic and suffragette [Portrayed by Gael Fincham]; Benjamin Exley, Sr., member of Carlin’s Battery during the Civil War, and member of a successful drug company founded by his son and namesake [Portrayed by Great Grandson Ben Exley, IV]; Laura Farnsworth Schenk, accused poisoner of her husband, wealthy meat packer John Schenk [Portrayed by Judi Hendrickson]; Robert Ritz, Wheeling High football star who was murdered two days after he led his team to a victory over arch rival Bellaire [Portrayed by Alex DeLorenzo]; and Harry Seybold, banker who was accused of taking money from the bank where he worked and using it to build a mansion in South Wheeling [Portrayed by Kim McCluskey].
Also featured during the tour will be: Orville Dewey, iron/steel entrepreneur who retired to a life of travel and served as the first president of the Ft. Henry Club [Portrayed by Chris Bowie]; Sallie Howell Oglebay, socialite descendant of the Howell and Paull families and wife of Earl Oglebay [Portrayed by Jeanne Finstein]; Johnson Camden McKinley, coal entrepreneur who built Willow Glen mansion and grandfather of Congressman David McKinley [Portrayed by Great Grandson Bennett McKinley]; Bill Lias, Wheeling underworld leader who operated bootlegging and gambling establishments while also helping poor members of the community [Portrayed by Dave Clutter]; Charles Ahrens, prohibition agent who was in charge of destroying barrels of confiscated beer when he met his untimely death [Portrayed by Shawn Schwertfeger]; and Walter Sneddon, immigrant miner who was killed in the Benwood mine disaster, along with his son and 117 other men [Portrayed by Dave Barnett].
The tour is free and open to all ages. Parking is available at Wheeling Park, with shuttle service to and from the cemetery.