National Geographic : 1940 Aug
West Virginia: Treasure Chest of Industry "Pull Over," Said This State Trooper near Fairmont, "and I'll Change Your Tire" as New Orleans, in flatboats and sold-apples, boat, and all-for there was no way to get these "flats" home profitably. "In the stockyards they say that 'every part of the hog is used except the grunt,' " remarked a Martinsburg man. "Well, with apples we could use everything, if such uses should become economically feasible-apple, seeds, stem, skin, and even the wax on the peel!" "What for?" I asked. "I know apple pie, apple butter, applesauce, apple pectin for jams and jellies, apple vinegar, and, of course, apple cider. What else could you make?" "Hand lotion, furniture polish, wax paper stencils, and fertilizer, to mention a few," he replied. Festivals of Fertility Total production of apples in the State for ten years has averaged between five and six million bushels a year. About two-thirds of the large commercial orchards are located in the eastern panhandle. Each year Mar tinsburg stages an Apple Harvest Festival. These festivals are colorful, but King Apple isn't the only ruler. The list includes the Strawberry Festival at Buckhannon; the Rhododendron (State flower) Festival at Web ster Springs; the Tomato Festival at Berkeley Springs; the Forest Festival at Elkins; the Buckwheat Festival at Kingwood; and the Tobacco Festival at Huntington. Then there is the Spud and Splinter Festi val at Richwood, a unique celebration in honor of the potato and lumber industry, at which time the "Admirals of the Cherry River Navy" parade with cocked hats, crossed clotheslines, and a huge wooden clothespin in lieu of a sword. In one eastern panhandle plant we saw women's dollar-dresses being made by the thousands to be sold through chain stores, and in Martinsburg, also, is one of the large mills of the Interwoven Stocking Company, which makes men's socks. There silk from the Orient, lisle yarn from France, Mississippi Delta cotton spun in the Carolinas and processed in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, wool from Texas and Australia -all go through 108 different operations be fore a sock is complete (page 149). "We turn out 12,000 dozen pairs a day, or some 2,500,000 dozen pairs a year-enough to load a train of 150 cars. And they go to every civilized country in the world," the superintendent said. What caught my fancy most was a dyeing process wherein a sock knitted from all-white thread is thrown into a dye vat and comes out in several different colors, as a result of chemical reaction!