Dedicated to Economic Development of
— Beckley and Southern West Virginia —General Alfred Beckley, founder of the city of Beckley, shows this corner location as land lot 29 on his 1838 map. Reverend Matthew Ellison, founder of the First Baptist Church of Beckley, built his home here in 1850, and his heirs held title to the land until 1902. The lot was then divided. The lower section below the alley and fronting on South Fayette formed the site of Beckley's first theater, the (Boyd E.) Carter Opera House built in 1906. The upper lot opening on Main Street was successively owned after 1902 by the Raleigh County Bank, Beckley Hardware and Supplies, Gus Farris and Nicholas Rahall, and Beckley National Bank.
Beckley National Bank constructed this neo-classical style building and opened it on April 19, 1924. The bank president was Joseph Luther Smith, father of the future governor of this state, Hulett C. Smith. In 1928, Joseph Smith was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. This bank building was sold to Beckley Federal Savings and Loan Association (later Beckley Federal Savings Bank) in 1962. That institution operated here until it merged into the Bank of Raleigh (now City National Bank) in 1997. Following the merger the building was occupied.
Marz Attar, local businessman and philanthropist, purchased the building in 2000 and donated it to Forward Southern West Virginia for use as an economic development center. This historic structure of white glazed terra-cotta as a stained-glass dome rising 75 feet above the interior floor. The lobby floor and wainscot are of imported marble. The restoration required in elevator and balcony that modified the architectural view inside the building. The renovations were completed January, 2003, with a grant secured by United States Senator Robert C. Byrd.
|Marker Condition||No reports yet|
|Date Added||Saturday, October 18th, 2014 at 11:52am PDT -07:00|
|UTM (WGS84 Datum)||17S E 483325 N 4181149|
|Decimal Degrees||37.77753333, -81.18935000|
|Degrees and Decimal Minutes||N 37° 46.652', W 81° 11.361'|
|Degrees, Minutes and Seconds||37° 46' 39.12" N, 81° 11' 21.66" W|
|Driving Directions||Google Maps|
|Closest Postal Address||At or near 215 Main St, Beckley WV 25801, US|
|Alternative Maps||Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap|
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