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During the Great Depression, the ‘‘star house’’ in Hinton was known as a place where hungry transients could find nourishment. It is said that hobos riding trains through the busy railroad center of Hinton passed along the word that a free meal was available at the star house at any time of day or night. The house was acquired by W. B. and Ida Skaggs in 1913, and they owned it through the Depression. It remained in the Skaggs family for many years.

Distinguished by a prominent five-point star in the gingerbread trim of the gable-end facing the street, the star house is now part of the Hinton National Historic District. Most residential development in Hinton occurred during the Victorian and Craftsman periods of American architecture. There is an abundant use of gingerbread, or pieced and patterned decorative wood trim. Built in the late 19th century on a narrow lot at 114 James Street, the star house is a Victorian vernacular two-story frame structure with clapboard siding and front porches on both tiers, a common feature in Hinton residential architecture. The star house faces Hinton’s town square in which are located the War Memorial Park, Memorial Building, post office, and the red brick county courthouse.

This Article was written by Stephen D. Trail

Last Revised on October 29, 2010


Cite This Article

Trail, Stephen D. "Star House." e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 29 October 2010. Web. 14 December 2017.

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