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Golden Horseshoe – WV History Bowl – The Musical

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West Virginia History Bowl






WV Golden Horseshoe Test — WV History Bowl — Golden Horseshoe (the Musical)


Golden Horseshoe WV leftGolden Horseshoe WV right


“The Golden Horseshoe Test has been administered in West Virginia each year since 1931 and is the longest running program of its kind in any state. The top-scoring students in each county receive the prestigious award and are inducted as “knights” and “ladies” of the Golden Horseshoe Society.”

Explore WV Department of Education’s “About the WV Golden Horseshoe Award” Website

     Golden Horseshoe Testing Information


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Explore WV Department of Education’s Office of Middle/Secondary Learning’s “Student Programs” Website — Click on “Golden Horseshoe” —   Includes:  Upcoming Dates; Registering Students; Preparing for the Golden Horseshoe Essay and Multiple Choice Online Test; Essay Test information; Online Test information; Test Proctor/Moderator; Internet Usage Tips on Test Day; Online Test Forms; Winners; and more.    

<<Private and Home Schools should consult the page for special instructions and dates.>>

“The number of winners is determined by population but every county is given a minimum of two winners. The bigger the county, the more winners it will have. The Golden Horseshoe test is a competition within a county, NOT within the state.”

     Golden Horseshoe Study Links for Students

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Explore WV Archives and History’s “Quick Quizzes” Website“These 10-question each, multiple-choice quizzes test knowledge on West Virginia.”  There are more than 200 Quizzes.

Explore WV Archives and History’s “Daily Trivia Question” Website “Another useful tool for students studying for the Golden Horseshoe.”

Explore WV Archives and History’s On This Day in WV History” Website — “. . . presents one or more events for every day of the year, with links to additional information.”

     Golden Horseshoe Practice Tests for Students

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Explore WVDE’s Golden Horseshoe “Practice Essays” Website (pdf)

Explore WVDE’s “Essay Test Lines” Website (pdf)     {Students are given a page like this to write answers to the essay question}

Explore WVDE’s Golden Horseshoe “Practice Multiple Choice Questions” Website (pdf)     Answer Key (pdf)

Explore WVDE’s“Golden Horseshoe Practice Test 2” Website (pdf)          Answer Key (pdf)

Explore WVDE’s “Test Day Tips” Website (pdf)

Explore WV Culture and History’s “1955 WV Clubs’ Golden Horseshoe Test” Website — 4 pages – 3 1/2 hour time limit!!


Explore WVDE’s “Golden Horseshoe Practice Test” Website pdf         Answer Key – xlxs  (Excel)

Explore WVDE’s “Golden Horseshoe Practice Test Items Released from 2012 Test” Website pdf        Answer Key doc

     Important Golden Horseshoe Dates for Students

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              Explore WV Department of Education’s Office of Middle/Secondary Learning’s “Student Programs” Website — Click on “Golden Horseshoe”

     2019 Golden Horseshoe Awards Ceremony

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“One of the highlights of the eighth-grade year is the opportunity for a student to become a Knight or Lady of the Golden Horseshoe. This prestigious program takes its name from the golden horseshoes given to the early explorers of West Virginia.”

 (Because of its length, a YouTube connection required to view this video)  (1:39:56/2019/WV Department of Education)

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     2019 Golden Horseshoe Winners

The students honored, with their schools and home counties, include:

Barbour County: Mimi Ferguson, Mathew Forsyth, Rafe Riley (Belington Middle);  Berkeley County: Maya Arana (Musselman Middle); Elizabeth Cushwa, Audra Mann, Lilly Reisenweber, Rachel Wangerin (Martinsburg South Middle); Andrew Davis, Marysa Gonzalez, Ashton Klein (St. Joseph Parish); Michael Nichols (Hedgesville Middle); McPherson Stone (Spring Mills Middle);  Boone County: Emily Browning, Olivia Cook, Nicole Robinette (Madison Middle); Allison Price (Van Junior/Senior High); Braxton County: Kaylee Criner, Kayleigh Mays, Brehana Smarr (Braxton County Middle); Brooke County: Brady Mercer, Savannah Rice, Chelsea Walden (Brooke Middle);  Cabell County: Hunter Gracey (Huntington Middle); James Gwinn, Robert McClellan, Jackson Stewart (Barboursville Middle); Logan Jordan, Lucas Stanley (Milton Middle); Rowan Williams (Huntington East Middle);

Calhoun County: Joshua Hixon, Ian Persinger (Calhoun Middle/ High);  Clay County: Christina Brown, Zoey Rounsville, Paris Williams (Clay Middle);  Doddridge County: Isaiah Ash, Tyler Bunting, Allie Johnston (Doddridge County Middle);  Fayette County: Madison Campbell, Todd Perry (Midland Trail High); Jacob Lilly (Meadow Bridge High); Jacob McGuire (Collins Middle);  Gilmer County: David Brannon, Daisy Snyder (Gilmer County High);  Grant County: Kierra Dent, Jimmy Keplinger, Harmony Schell (Petersburg High);  Greenbrier County: Mackenzie Friend, Alexandria Wills (Eastern Greenbrier Middle); Harley Mooney, Meagan Poticher (Western Greenbrier Middle);  Hampshire County: Samantha Cudlipp (Capon Bridge Middle); Justin Andrew Frazer, Ryan Quick (Romney Middle);  Hancock County: Hannah Buterbaugh (St. Joseph); Skylar Megee, Cullen Sloss, Shea Wimberley (Oak Glen Middle);  Hardy County: Jarrett Carr, Loy Kesner II, Sarah Weatherholt (Moorefield Middle);  Harrison County: Jensen Clayton, Logan Dailey, Julian Orlando (Bridgeport Middle); Caden Hall, Mitchell Hawkins, Austin Peck, Ewan Smith (South Harrison Middle);

Jackson County: Blake Bibbee, Samantha Maxson (Ravenswood Middle); Kaylee Donohew, Jacquelyn Purkey (Ripley Middle);  Jefferson County: Rivka Abelow, Layla Parker (Shepherdstown Middle); Ryan Hefner, Evan Pearson (Harpers Ferry Middle); Joss Poteet, Carter Wilson (Wildwood Middle);  Kanawha County: Raymond Keith, Jordan Loew, Emma Seagle, Claire Smith, Juliana Veazey (Charleston Catholic High); Miles Krompecher, Spandana Mekala, Kathryn St. Jean, Patrick Ward (John Adams Middle); Sawyer Monk, Ryan Simpson (Sissonville Middle); Lauren Mullins, Timothy Strickland (Elkview Middle);  Lewis County: Wyatt Burns, Madison Hall, Olivia Shiflett (Robert L. Bland Middle);  Lincoln County: Keylea Elkins (Duval PK-8); Maci Lunsford (Hamlin PK-8); Caleb Romans (Guyan Valley Middle);  Logan County: Luke Dingess (Chapmanville Middle); Anna Holstein, Kinna Justice (Logan Middle); Kaleigh Tolliver (Man Middle);  Marion County: James Armstrong (West Fairmont Middle); Devin Burnell, Adrianna Floyd (Mannington Middle); Leigha Floyd, Paris Thomas (Barrackville Elementary/ Middle);  Marshall County: Roman Gray, Sybil Willis (Moundsville Middle); Katrina Perry (Sherrard Middle); Braden Whitelatch (Our Lady of Peace);  Mason County: Blake Edmonds, Drake Gerwig, Ian Wood (Point Pleasant Junior/Senior High); Amber Wolfe (Wahama High);

McDowell County: Brett Bailey (Mount View High); Faith Johnson, Tracy Thomas (Sandy River Middle);  Mercer County: Madeline Bailey, Ryan Mitchell (Bluefield Middle); Owen Bailey (Glenwood); Kaleb Meadows, Sara Reedy (Pikeview Middle);  Mineral County: Nathan Armentrout, Nathan Lange (Frankfort Middle); Madelyn Fisher, Victoria Smith (Keyser Middle);  Mingo County: Madison Deskins (Lenore K-8); Emma Hurley (Matewan PK-8); Garic Roberts, Jordan Sloan (Gilbert Middle);  Monongalia County: Aiden Arnett, David Clark (Mountaineer Middle); Samantha Carver, Carter Herron, Megan Sheets, Natalie Turner (South Middle); Thomas Giggenbach (Suncrest Middle);  Monroe County: Caleb Broyles (Peterstown Middle); Luke Fraley, Luke Jackson (Mountain View Elementary & Middle);  Morgan County: Trent Ao, Emma Christie, Matthew Leasure (Warm Springs Middle);  Nicholas County: Lydia Hamrick, Jolee Hanshaw, Clayton Lee, Brian Strickler (Summersville Middle);  Ohio County: Mariana Alkhouri (St. Vincent de Paul); Landin Blakely (Warwood); Derrick Fortner (Triadelphia Middle); Nadia Szymialis (Bridge Street Middle);

Pendelton County: Emma Daughtry, Evan Teter (Pendleton County Middle/High);  Pleasants County: Kyle Jones, Tyler Wilson (Pleasants County Middle);  Pocahontas County: Robert Pritt (Marlinton Middle); Mason Solliday (Green Bank Elementary-Middle);  Preston County: Addison Bolyard (Rowlesburg); Lexi Jennings (South Preston); Dalaynie Myers (Central Preston Middle); Brianna Volkman (Terra Alta/East Preston);  Putnam County: Isaac Arthur, Avery Carter, William Chen (Winfield Middle); Ian Linville, Ethan Markins, Payton Ocheltree (Hurricane Middle);  Raleigh County: William Adkins, Maverick Gillespie, Nathaniel Lewis, Sydney Vaught (Park Middle); Blayne Cook (Trap Hill Middle); Preston Mathew (Shady Spring Middle); Sophia Raines (Independence Middle);  Randolph County: Thomas Nixon, Clare Talbott, Emily Wanless, Lexus Workman (Elkins Middle);  Ritchie County: Macy Hilvers, Heath Knight, Abigail Nichols (Ritchie County Middle);  Roane County: Grady Fountaine, Kenzie Litton (Spencer Middle); Karli Greathouse (Geary Elementary/Middle);  Summers County: Sarah Angell, Emeli Cline, Emily Richmond (Summers Middle);

Taylor County: Chase Bucklew, Isabel McCloy, Cole Mooney (Taylor County Middle);  Tucker County: William Jacob DeVilder, Corrinia Lipscomb (Tucker Valley Elementary Middle);  Tyler County: Leah Cathers, Havannah Lemasters, Donald Shields Jr. (Tyler Consolidated Middle);  Upshur County: Bryce Cayton, Nathan Cornett, Ian Donnen, Lakoda Lantz (Buckhannon-Upshur Middle);  Wayne County: Jadyn Adkins (Ceredo-Kenova Middle); Alissa Davis, Mason Ross (Buffalo Middle); Chace Thompson (Wayne Middle);  Webster County: Emma Mustoe, Isaac Pyle (Webster County High);  Wetzel County: Virgil Doiron (Short Line); Lucas Heddleson, Cameron Riggenbach (New Martinsville);  Wirt County: Meredith Cottrell, Colin Debrick (Wirt County Middle);  Wood County: Evan Cowan, Lillith Crichton, Blake Lewis, Carter McMinn (Parkersburg Catholic High); Lillian Floyd, Rohan Malik-Hamirani, Logan Schartiger (Jackson Middle);  West Virginia School for the Blind: Noah Buckley,  West Virginia School for the Deaf: Robert Wolford;  Wyoming County: John Ellis, Lilly Hill, Alyssa Tilley (Pineville Middle); Drake Jude (Oceana Middle).


     Golden Horseshoe Database

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“Since 1931, more than 15,000 West Virginia students have received the Golden Horseshoe Award in recognition of their knowledge of West Virginia history. Each year, thousands of eighth graders across the state take the Golden Horseshoe examination, and more than two hundred are inducted into the prestigious Golden Horseshoe Society.”

Explore WV Archives and History’s “GH Database” Website — includes:  How To Use The Database; Search the Golden Horseshoe Database; Honorary Golden Horseshoe Recipients; 1955 Golden Horseshoe Test

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West Virginia History Bowl

“In 2010, the West Virginia Division of Culture and History (WVDCH) began an exciting new challenge for eighth graders to test their West Virginia history – the West Virginia History Bowl Tournament. Teams of students from around the state face off in an academic bowl competition that focuses on West Virginia history, literature, arts, architecture, geography and culture.

“Eighth grade students in public, private and home school education programs are eligible to compete on the four-person teams in double-elimination tournament play. The regional tournament winners and the runner-up team move forward to the state tournament held in late April at the Culture Center, State Capitol Complex, in Charleston.”

Explore WV Culture and History’s “WV History Bowl” Website  — (includes schedule for current year and results from previous years)

      2020 WV History Bowl Regional Competitions

Region I
Pineville Middle School, Saturday, February 15, 2020

Region II
Milton Middle School, Saturday, February 22, 2020

Region III
The Culture Center, Friday, February 14, 2020

Region IV
Midland Trail High School, Saturday, February 8, 2020

Region V
Blennerhassett Middle School, Saturday, March 7, 2020

Region VI
West Virginia Independence Hall, Friday, February 21, 2020

Region VII
Robert L. Bland Middle School, Saturday, February 29, 2020

Region VIII
Spring Mills High School, Friday, February 28, 2020

Buckhannon-Upshur High School, Saturday, March 14, 2020

      2020 West Virginia History Bowl Championship

The Culture Center Charleston, Tuesday, April 28, 2020


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“The questions are largely drawn from questions found in the Archives and History ‘Quick Quizzes’ and ‘Daily Trivia’.”

Explore WV Archives and History’s “Quick Quizzes” Website“These 10-question each, multiple-choice quizzes test knowledge on West Virginia.”  There are more than 200 Quizzes

Explore WV Archives and History’s “Daily Trivia Question” Website “Another useful tool for students studying for the. . .” History Bowl.

Explore WV Archives and History’s On This Day in WV History” Website — “. . . presents one or more events for every day of the year, with links to additional information.”

West Virginia History Bowl 2      2019 WV History Bowl Regional Competitions – Teams and Results

Explore WV Culture and History’s “2019 History Bowl Regional Competitions Results” Website

      2019 West Virginia History Bowl Championship

Explore WV Culture and History’s “2019 History Bowl State Tournament Results” Website

West Virginia History Bowl 2


“GOLDEN HORSESHOE — the Musical”


Golden Horseshoe is a musical that celebrates West Virginia. It’s about a father helping his son study for the Golden Horseshoe test while coping with the recent death of his own father. The story unfolds in historical (and musical!) scenes in his son’s imagination, as we meet John Brown, Stonewall Jackson, and many more. The show is educational and historical, funny and touching, entertaining and uplifting.”

“Wes, an eighth grader, is struggling with the test prep, and his Dad steps in to help him study. At first they fight—they’ve been distant the past two months while Dad has mourned the loss of his own father. But soon, Dad sparks Wes’s imagination, using Wes’s crush on his classmate Rosie to motivate him. Dad, Wes, and Rosie, along with an ensemble of one man and one woman, visit and reenact several important moments in West Virginia’s history, meeting John Brown, Stonewall Jackson, and even Abraham Lincoln along the way. They learn about the Civil War, the Hatfields and McCoys, and the labor strife between mine owners and coal miners.

Golden Horseshoe is about West Virginia’s history, but more than that, it’s about fathers and sons—and mothers and daughters—and how we pass down West Virginia’s heritage from one generation to the next. It celebrates West Virginia’s first 150 years, and it looks forward to even more wild and wonderful years to come.”

Explore “Golden Horseshoe — the Musical” Website


WV Golden Horseshoe the Musical Logo

“Golden Horseshoe” Trailer #1 – “Thus He Swears”

WV Golden Horseshoe the Musical Logo

West Virginia History Practice Quizzes and Tests    WV Golden Horseshoe Practice Tests

WV History Practice Test and Quiz

West Virginia History Bowl   WV History Bowl

Eighth grade    Golden Horseshoe

WV Golden Horseshoe

Ladies of the Golden Horseshoe     Knights of the Golden Horseshoe