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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Gate City in Scott County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

McConnell's Birthplace

 
 
McConnell's Birthplace Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 5, 2010
1. McConnell's Birthplace Marker
Inscription.  Eight and one-half miles northwest was born John Preston McConnell, noted educator. He taught in Milligan College, the University of Virginia and Emory and Henry College. He was president of the Radford State Teachers College, 1913-1937. Dr. McConnell was president of Southwestern Virginia, Inc., and was associated with many cultural agencies.
 
Erected 1938 by Southwesten Virginia, Inc. (Marker Number K-14?.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Education. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Department of Historic Resources series list.
 
Location. 36° 38.086′ N, 82° 33.3′ W. Marker is in Gate City, Virginia, in Scott County. Marker is on Main Street (U.S. 23/58), on the right when traveling west. Located at a pull off at the entrance to Gate City. One of five markers in this cluster. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gate City VA 24251, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. First Court of Scott County (here, next to this marker); Big Moccasin Gap (a few steps from this marker); Donelson's Indian Line
Five Markers at the Entrance to Gate City image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
2. Five Markers at the Entrance to Gate City
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(a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named First Court of Scott County (approx. 0.2 miles away); Carter Musical Family (approx. 0.4 miles away); John P. McConnell (approx. 0.4 miles away); Moccasin Gap (approx. 0.4 miles away); a different marker also named First Court of Scott County (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Gate City.
 
More about this marker. This marker is unnumbered and erected by Southwestern Virginia Incorporated. Dr. McConnell was president of Southwestern Virginia Incorporated. In 1938 official Virginia markers were erected by the Conservation and Development Commission. This looks like but is not an official Virginia marker.

The 1941 edition of State Historical Markers of Virginia was the first edition to show a marker with this title at approximately this location. It was numbered K-14 and it and all subsequent marker guides have shown K-14 here at this location. None have marked K-14 missing, yet the DHR website does not have a photograph of K-14 yet it has photographs of the adjacent markers. Marker K-14 begins "Four miles south was born ..." which leads to speculation that K-14 went missing sometime before 2010 and this marker was put in its place.

Marker K-14 read, "Four miles south was born John Preston McConnell, noted educator. He taught in Milligan College, the University of Virginia and Emory and Henry College. He was president of the Radford State Teacher's College, 1913-1937. Dr. McConnell was president of Southwestern Virginia, Incorporated, and was associated with many cultural agencies. He was active in every phase of educational work, writing several books and many articles." In 1941, K-14 was "two miles south of Gate city" on U.S. 58.
 
Regarding McConnell's Birthplace. Was his birthplace 8½ miles northwest or 4 miles south?
 
Five Markers at the Entrance to Gate City image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
3. Five Markers at the Entrance to Gate City
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 25, 2021. It was originally submitted on September 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 568 times since then and 21 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on September 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.

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Jul. 29, 2021