Thomas in Tucker County, West Virginia — The American South (Appalachia)
A Window to the Past
Thomas, West Virginia
Thomas's National Register Significance
The Thomas Commercial Historic District was listed as a National Register Historic District in 1997. In order to qualify for the National Register of Historic Place, a property must be at least 50 years old and meet at least one of the following criteria for historic significance:
A: Historical Events: Properties that are associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our history.
B: Important People: Properties that are associated with significant people in our past.
C: Architecture and Design:
Properties that embody distinctive characteristics of a type, period, or method construction, or that represent the work of a matter, or that possess high artistic value. This includes historic districts in which the individual buildings may not have distinction, but as a group they are special.
D: Archaeology: Properties that have yielded, or may be likely to yield, information important in prehistory or history. This criterion usually applies to archaeological sites.
The city is a fine example of a turn-of-the-century coal and railroad boom town. The arrival of the coal and railroad industries made Thomas a hub of commerce and culture for the surrounding region. It is also significant for its sizeable immigrant population, ethnic diversity and embodiment of the American "melting pot."
The architecture of Thomas reflects a variety of styles, including Renaissance Revival, Greek Revival, Italianate, Gothic, and Craftsman. These buildings contained both businesses and residences, and unique features such as glass storefronts, balconies and rear yards.
What is Integrity?
To qualify for the National Register of Historic Places, a building, property or district must have historic integrity, which means that people can still see and experience the important aspects of the property and that they haven't changed too much. There are seven aspects of integrity: location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association.
Determining if a place retains integrity depends upon the reasons it is historically significant. Though the buildings in Thomas have undergone some alterations, over the years, the commercial district retains most of its original buildings. It is still easy to imagine how Thomas appeared at its peak.
Erected by The City of Thomas, West Virginia.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Architecture • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the West Virginia, The City of Thomas series list.
Location. 39° 9.074′ N, 79° 29.822′ W. Marker is in Thomas, West Virginia, in Tucker County. Marker is on Appalachian Highway (West Virginia Route 32) north of 3rd Street, in the median. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 300 Appalachian Highway, Thomas WV 26292, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A "Howling Wilderness" (within shouting distance of this marker); The Blackwater (within shouting distance of this marker); Out On The Town (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Melting Pot of Thomas (about 500 feet away); Connecting Thomas to the World (about 500 feet away); A Lesson in Resourcefulness (about 500 feet away); Dwellings and Design (about 600 feet away); Thomas, West Virginia Mine Disaster Memorial (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Thomas.
Credits. This page was last revised on July 18, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 18, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 31 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on July 18, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.