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Sen. Byrd exhibit opening at WV Capitol for centennial celebration of his birth

Traveling Exhibit on Life, Career of Sen. Robert C. Byrd opening Nov. 17

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – An information-rich traveling exhibit celebrating the life and career of Senator Robert C. Byrd that opened in April 2016 at the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education in Shepherdstown and has traveled to 21 West Virginia venues and to Washington, D.C. twice during the past 19 months, concludes its tour starting Friday, Nov. 17 at the West Virginia Culture Center.  

U.S. Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va.

The opening of the Charleston exhibit marks the occasion of Senator Byrd’s 100th birthday on November 20, 1917.

Financed in part by a major grant from the West Virginia Humanities Council, the board of directors and staff of the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education created a major traveling exhibit, “Robert C. Byrd: Senator, Statesman, West Virginian” to honor the 100th Anniversary of the birth of Senator Robert C. Byrd (Nov. 20, 2017).

“We are very grateful that Commissioner Randall Reid-Smith of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History is sponsoring the traveling exhibit and hosting events that will engage the community and properly honor Senator Byrd on his 100th birthday, “ said Ray Smock, board member and director of the Byrd Center.

“We are thrilled to have an opportunity to showcase Senator Byrd’s vast body of work and important contributions in an educational and cultural setting of the state capitol that is easily accessible to people of all ages and walks of life from the Mountain State,” said Commissioner Reid-Smith

Smock said the exhibit is based on documents and photographs from Senator Byrd’s extensive archive of 60 years of public service and includes images as widely varied as Senator Byrd’s childhood drawings to photographs of him meeting with presidents. “For any West Virginian who remembers Senator Byrd, the exhibit will bring back memories of what he has done for this state and the nation,” Smock said. “Everywhere we have taken the exhibit we have heard personal stories from those who had encounters with Senator Byrd or who remember how he impacted their lives.

“One of the most popular features of the exhibit is a large map of West Virginia showing all the federal projects Senator Byrd helped to bring to the state. We are still adding up the amount of such funding but so far it exceeds 10 billion dollars for roads, highways, schools, flood control projects, coal miner benefits and federal agencies located in West Virginia.”

The Culture Center will host a corresponding youth program for local K-12 students on the morning of Friday, Nov. 17, and the exhibit will be open to the community Tuesdays through Saturdaysfrom 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Dec. 3.

The exhibit will be on display at the West Virginia State Capitol from Dec. 4 – January 13, 2018 before closing its two-year run back at the Culture Center from January 13 – 31, 2018. For more information about the traveling exhibit is available at

FirstEnergy, PiperJaffray, Comcast, other organizations and hosts of the exhibit around the state are to be recognized for their contributions.


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About the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education: The mission of the Robert C. Byrd Center is to advance representative democracy by promoting a better understanding of the United States Congress and the Constitution through programs and research that engage citizens in the history of Congress. The Center is the home of the Robert C. Byrd Archive containing the papers and records of the Senator’s long career. More can be found at


— Contact Jay Wyatt, director of Programs and Research, [email protected]  or (304) 876-5701 for more  information.

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