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In 1830 a man named Jacob Schaeffer bought land near the the Potomac River
called North Branch, the first name of the land, from John G. Brant for $150.
Later in 1839 Jacob Built the very first house
on the land, which was renamed, Schaefferville.
Later in the years the land gets a new name, Elkins, after
the vice-president of the West Virginia Central and Pittsburgh
Railroad, Stephen Benton Elkins. Once again the name of the town
has changed to the name it has today, Gormania.
Named after Senator Arthur Pue Gorman of Maryland.

The town was a very busy town. Jacob Schaeffer,
the first postmaster, and his son, Jacob Rhodes
Schaeffer owned and operated the towns first tannery.
In 1889 They sold the land to John G. Hoffmann and
Son's Co. of Wheeling, WV. They own and operated the
Biggest Tannery in the State.

Here are the names of the first settlers:
Jacob Schaeffer, Hugh McCauley, Job Sions, J. J.
Phillips, E. Stilly, Geo. Styler, Nicholas Lee,
Benjamin Harvey, J. W. Shillingburg and Jacob Aronhalt.

Here are some of the jobs in Gormania, WV. (1900's):
F. O. Winter, cashier; M. Aronhalt, merchant; J. W. Gilbert, meat market;
Austin Schwartz Jr., barber; H. A. Flanagan, Virginia Hotel;
B. F. White, Gormania House; C. W. Elrick, general merchandise;
T. G. Hanlin, restaurant; W. G. Drinkwater, physician and surgeon;
A. F. Schwartz Sr., hotel; Oates & Company, general merchandise;
John Rinker, notions; Homer B. Lynch, postmaster; William Brothers, garage.

The town had 3 churches:
The Presbyterian, the Catholic and the Methodist Church
(1899-1999), which is still holding services on Sundays.

On March 19, 1927 the Methodist church was hit by a tornado.
In the same year the church was rebuilt and was dedicated in Sept. 4, 1927.

There is a cemetery in this town with
(what looks to me) 30 people buried on top of a hill.
I was told that most of the markers was made out of wood.
There is only 15 markers are left standing and only a few of them have names..
Grant County Cemetery List

I am still doing work on the town and the 3 churches. The Catholic Church
is the only one I dont know any info about. If any one knows
any history, stories, or have pics of the town or
of towns people and would like to share the info you can write to:

Please check out ourPhoto Album.


Gorman, MD. / Gormania, WV

Click to Enlargetakes a while to load

The Other Half of Town

 Gormania, WV/ tannery

click to enlarge big picture please wait till it loads

L@@K at these LINKS

Aronhalt Family Tree(some of the Towns People)

Mt.Storm History

RootsWeb Find Your Family

Garrett Co. Home Pagefind your Garrett Co. family

The Republican Newspaper

non - genealogy link

Bustin Loose Motor Sports My Nephews Site

I would like to thank everyone who has sent me information and pictures, and to the one who "cleaned" up one of my pictures. THANK YOU!!

If you have information, pictures, corrections, questions or comments send/write to:


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