CHARLESTON, W.Va. — U.S. Senator Joe Manchin relived his six years as governor in a ceremony at the state capitol Friday. The Division of Culture and History unveiled the archives of the 34th governor of the State of West Virginia.
“It’s just a flood of memories! It was a job of joy. Now I know why I was so eager to work everyday,” said Manchin.
There were thousands of documents to sort through and organize and more than 420,000 photographic images to catalog. What’s special about the collection is it’s all going online.
“This is going to help me as much as it is people who want to find out what we did do and in what time period,” explained the senator.
Director of Archives and History Joe Geiger went through the website with Manchin showing him how everything was organized. There will also be hard copies of many of the documents and photos kept in the state achieves.
Manchin reminisced about his time in office while watching a slide presentation of some of the highlights of his administration. From his first inauguration in 2004 to his last day on the job in 2010, just about every major event was caught on film.
There were images of Manchin taking the oath of office, the governor signing bills into law and him comforting the families during the Sago Mine disaster.
“You look at some of the challenges we had but boy we had a lot of ups too. Really it was just the people,” said Manchin who could name just about everyone in the photos that popped up on the screen.
Manchin said the archives are his legacy to the state.
“You always want to leave a little history and I think that was this does for people to look and take it to the next level. So everybody that comes after, the next generation and the generation after that should always want to rise to a different level.”
Manchin’s archives aren’t up on the website just yet. That will happen in the next few weeks. You can access it by logging on to the Division of Culture and History’s website at wvculture.org.