An act of the West Virginia legislature 152 years ago is still active and in the process of being carried out. Lawmakers in 1866 authorized creation of a medal to be given to all West Virginia soldiers who fought in the Civil War.

The medals were meant to be a token of appreciation from a grateful state. But handing them out proved to be a challenge.

There are still 3,392 medals waiting to be distributed, tucked away in a cabinet in the state archives in Charleston.

Randy Marcum, a historian at the West Virginia Archives, said many soldiers left the state after the war and as time wore on many died without receiving their medal. State officials did what they could with the technology of the day.

SEARCH THE LIST:   West Virginia Civil War Medals

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