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A Story of Echo Point, 1938


Newspaper Article

-from "The Wheeling News-Register," July 10, 1938 

"A Story of Echo Point"

Beautiful Echo Point! To ever have known Wheeling one must have known something of the charm which is everywhere abounding there. Nature has dealt with a lavish hand all of this section, and there in the forest which surrounds the homes the birds trill and squirrels and rabbits are at home. A steep woodsy terrace encircles the broad level top of the small hill and skirting the horizon are hills seen from every side. Many handsome suburban sections belong to greater Wheeling, and Echo Point might challenge other sections for supremacy along many lines.

The houses are located on the northeastern side of the knoll which slopes toward Birch Lynn, Kenwood and Edgedale. The National Road and Heiskell Avenue encompass the beautiful enclosure known as Echo Point.

The Entrance

The entrance faces Heiskell Avenue and the National Highway toward the west. A handsome stone gateway is an architectural setting for handsome cedars and shrubbery. All Wheeling has noticed and enjoyed the large group of rhododendrons [planted?] years and years ago on the slope near the National Road which early give hundreds of gorgeous blooms. The maples, elms and beeches are now in the fresh green of the springtime and these are contrasted with the bronze English maples and red-leafed shrubbery. The entire slope of the hill is a woodsy one and on the north side a charming stream borders the foot of the elevation.

The First Owner

Echo Point was first owned by Major John Good, who owned so many hundreds of acres in the out-the-pike section. Romance has echoed through the years in this particular section and perhaps began when the National Highway was being pushed past Echo Point to meet the flowing Ohio at Wheeling. When Major Good proportioned his lands to his children the part now known as Echo Point was part of the acres which he wanted his daughter Hester to own. This daughter became the wife of Daniel Edgington and they built the first house in Echo Point. They put it in the center of the park and it was surrounded by native forest trees While they lived there two daughters came to bless them. One they named Hester and the other Jessie. Hester became the bride of Mr. George H. Parks and they were the parents of Mrs. Jessie Parks Whitaker. Mrs. Whitaker was also born in this attractive spot and it was also the inheritance of her mother as well as the acres which now are known as Birch Lynn.

Mr. Dewey

Mr. Orville Dewey became the owner of Echo Point when the Edgington heirs disposed of it and then it was that the lovely old house was moved from the center of the tract to the northwestern section. Mr. Dewey made great improvements to the house and it was inherited by his son and is now the attractive home of Mr. Henry Russell. It has a distinctive charm unlike any of the other houses of the section. Mr. Dewey was a patron of the arts and this home in Echo Point was filled with rare collections of pictures, ornaments and handsome table service. Mr. Dewey was the type who was gallantry personified and elegant in all of his habits and tastes. He was one of the first presidents of the Fort Henry Club and one of the organizers. He loved music and did much to encourage the best.

It was Mr. Dewey who planned Echo Point as it is today. He planned that seven homes might be built there and that is what one finds. The second house (No. 3) was built by Mr. J.D. Culbertson in 1890. This house is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hazlett. In the same year, Mr. and Mrs. Jacob W. Grubb built a handsome house (No. 4) next to that of Mr. Culbertson. This house is owned today by Mr. and Mrs. George Blackford and four generations reside under the roof. The mother of Mrs. Blackford, Mrs. Brady; Mr. and Mrs. Blackford, Mr. and Mrs. Gilleland and their two sons. Mrs. Gilleland is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Blackford. Mr. Blackford declares he is the owner of the finest tree on the point. It is a very large elm.

Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Speidel built the third house (No. 5) in 1893 and this house is now owned by Mrs. John Dickey. The fourth (No. 1) was built by Mr. Morgan Ott and Mr. C.B. Hart and this is the house now owned by Mr. D. Allen Burt and is the first one inside the entrance.

Mrs. Mary Franzheim built the next house (No. 2) and that today is owned by Mrs. Garth Hearne, who purchased it in 1908. The last house (No. 7) to be built on the point was that of Mr. Samuel Harper. This lot was first sold to Mr. D. Carter List, who sold it to Mr. F. J. Park and he erected the very handsome home where the Harpers now live.

The Name

When the mother of Mrs. Jessie Park Whitaker, Hester Edgington, was a young girl she enjoyed hearing the echo from a certain part of the Point, and it was she who proposed the name of Echo Point, which her father adopted. When Mr. Dewey became the owner he named it The Elms because of the many elms which grow there but later this name was forgotten and Echo Point again became the name.

There are many places of residence in that vicinity which also give their address as Echo Point, but the houses on the Point are the ones with which this description deals.

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