By 1993, most of the downtown stores were empty and in deplorable condition. The quarry, which had become a swimming hole in the late '60s, was now closed. The antique dealer had left as well. The declining population had leveled off to about 290. All that remained was a post office, feed and hardware store, auto body shop, band and elemtary school.
Fortunately, several residents came together and started a movement (the Blackwater Preservation Society or BPS) to bring the town back to life. Several wrote grants and were successful in gaining money to rennovate several systems, including the sewers, broken sidewalks, streets and water lines. Old-time street lamps were donated and volunteer labor helped lay new brick sidewalks. As fast as the buildings were rennovated, shops moved in. A building was donated for a Telephone Museum showcasing a lifetime of telephone memorabilia. Numerous prizes were awarded the community rewarding their efforts to revive the town's commerce. An old hotel, The Iron Horse, is currently being rennovated with 11 rooms and a restaurant. Blackwater is a work in progress and we hope you'll visit soon!
The West End Theatre is housed in a 1903 church located at 301 Doddridge Avenue. It features the original church pews and stained glass windows. Jay Turley, a local playwright, has written numerous plays and produced them in this theater.The proceeds go to the community Projects such as the flower pots on Main Street and the white lights outlining the downtown buildings during the holiday season.
It is in this theater that Bob has performed. Scenes of Blackwater. (Rotating slide show of five pictures).
It is in this theater that Bob has performed.
Scenes of Blackwater. (Rotating slide show of five pictures).