SHINNSTON ? Jack Sandy Anderson, noted historian, author and educator, died unexpectedly at the age of 83 on Sunday, July 26, 2015, at his home in Lumberport.
Jack Sandy Anderson was born April 28, 1932, in the home of his grandmother, Cora Martin Sandy, at Pine Bluff. It was from her and other relatives that he came to his love of history.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Russell Lowell Anderson and Pearle Sandy Anderson; three stepbrothers, Burton Russell, William Lowell and Robert Johnson Anderson; and one stepsister, Kathryn Jane Anderson.
He grew up in Harrison County and attended Pine Bluff and Wyatt schools, finishing high school at Shinnston, where he graduated as the class Secretary and Salutatorian. After graduating from Fairmont State, he received government grants to study the advanced sciences at Bethany College, Jackson State University and Northeastern University. Marion County Schools benefited as he spent 31 years teaching, beginning in 1955.
He always had a special love for local history, engendered by his grandmother and other relatives, particularly the area of his birth and family roots. In his lifetime, he was well-acquainted with past West Fork Valley historians Nettie Bartlett Cooper, Harvey W. Harmer, W. Guy Tetrick, Glenn Lough, John Findlayson and Harvey Fortney. At the age of 15 he was attending meetings of the Marion County Historical Society and became president of that organization in 1967.
In 1970, the society sponsored the formation of the Prickett?s Fort Memorial Foundation. David H. Jones was president and he served as vice president. Together, they and William J. Wilcox traveled to Charleston to petition Gov. Arch Moore for state funds needed to complete the fort?s construction. Marion County continues to benefit from their efforts.
Jack was also an original board member of the Harrison County West Virginia Historical Society. In 1967, he worked to raise funds for the purchase of the Amy Roberts Vance House, which serves as the society?s headquarters and museum to this day. Through his efforts, the society was able to acquire many objects, manuscripts and historic photos in its collection.
All was not study, however, and he got great enjoyment collecting antiques. His interest was captured by stamps, coins, historical and military memorabilia and glassware. He enjoyed cooking and compiled seven cookbooks to help fundraising efforts in his community and church, where he also played piano for 30 years.
Jack Sandy Anderson has been a leading historian in Harrison and Marion counties and has authored many historical articles published in newspapers, magazines and books. Beginning in 1960, he wrote and published ?Ramblings,? a book devoted to Shinnston area history, followed by ?Other Days.?
In 2014, he worked with the Harrison County West Virginia Historical Society to republish Granville Davisson Hall?s ?Old Gold,? and a collection of his articles on Harrison County titled ?Out of the Past, Harrison County History Vignettes.?
On Tuesday, July 21, Jack worked to finish the final edits of his collection of Marion County history articles titled, ?Glimpses of the Past, Marion County History Vignettes.? It was his wish to live to see it to its completion and be able to present copies to his friends. Additionally, Jack made provisions through the Harrison County Historical Society to keep his works in print for future generations, such was his love of our heritage.
To those who knew him, Jack was a friend and mentor. He was young in spirit, always ready to lend a helping hand, whether it was to speak or offer a seasoned word of advice and wit. His encyclopedic knowledge and perspective made him a master storyteller. He was a one of-a-kind treasure whose absence is sorely felt.
He was active in a number of historical and ancestral-patriotic organizations: past president of the Marion County Historical Society, past president of the Harrison County Historical Society, organizing president of the Shinnston Historical Association, past state president of the Sons of the Revolution, past state president of the Huguenot Society and co-founder and first vice president of the Pricketts Fort Memorial Foundation. He was a member of the George Rogers Clark Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution, and the West Virginia Historical Society. He was founder and past commander of the Military Order of Foreign Wars in West Virginia. His biography can be found in The Hereditary Register of the United States of America, Personalities of the South, Outstanding West Virginians and The West Virginia Heritage Encyclopedia.
Jack is survived by his sister, Patricia (Patty) Sampson and her husband Roy, his niece, Janie Hardesty and her husband Butch; six nephews, Roy Lee Sampson, Jamie and his wife Liz Sampson, Jeffrey Sampson and companion Wendy, Tracie Sampson and fiancÚ Tracey, all of Lumberport, Arthur Anderson and his wife Leena of South Portland, Maine, and William Anderson, also of South Portland, Maine; 18 nieces and nephews; 24 great-nieces and nephews; and one great-great-great-niece, Jordan Hanna; and one special niece, ?Maddie,? who shared the love of the Chinese restaurant in Fairmont with Jack.
Friends will be received at the Harmer Funeral Home, 300 Pike St., Shinnston, on Thursday, July 30, 2015, from 4-6 p.m. A celebration of Jack?s life will be conducted at 6 p.m. with Pastor Harry Holbert officiating.
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for memorial contributions to be made to the Harrison County Humane Society, at P.O. Box 4397 Clarksburg, WV 26302.
A service of the Harmer Funeral Home, Shinnston.