West Virginia landmark “Sinks of Gandy” up for sale

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Gandy Creek enters the legendary Sinks-of-Gandy Cave on a frigid morning. Photo courtesy Rick Burgess.
Gandy Creek enters the legendary Sinks-of-Gandy Cave on a frigid morning. Photo courtesy Rick Burgess.

Every eighth-grader enrolled in West Virginia History learns of the —a legendary cave through which Gandy Creek travels and amateur spelunkers often test their mettle.

Now part of the sinks is up for sale, along with 800 acres of pasture and woodlands that surround it, listed at $28,000,000, according to agent Scott Summers of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services in Morgantown, West Virginia.

Gandy Creek (Photo: Rick Burgess)

“The Sinks of Gandy are a true West Virginia wonder,” Summers says of the cave, which owners have traditionally let tourists visit freely for generations.

A wonder, too, are the highland pastures that surround it, long a grazing land for cattle in summer, part of an island of meadows some 12 miles long in the woodlands of the northern Monongahela National Forest.

The region has long been a destination for adventurers, and in addition to the Sinks boasts proximity to Spruce Knob, seven air-miles away, the highest point in West Virginia at 4,862 feet above sea level, and Spruce Knob Lake and its campgrounds, only two miles away.

The Sinks of Gandy and Gandy Creek were named for Uriah Gandy, also spelled Gandee, who settled in the area around 1781, but were made famous by David Hunter Strother, who published articles regarding them in Harper’s Magazine in 1872 and 1873, in which he referred to the site as the “tunnel of Gandy”.

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In the 1950s, the W.Va. Department of Highways began considered replacing the name of the community, “Osceola,” with the  “The Sinks” on its official roadmaps to encourage tourism.

The National Speleological Society has determined that the sinks include 8,114 feet of passage, though the principal passage is some 3,000 feet.

The passage may be traversed with reasonable care by amateur cavers with only a household flashlight, though extreme care should be taken in any such expedition. The cave exit is actually through a dry channel and not the stream.

For more information on the sale, visit the Howard Hanna


Distinctive building in West Virginia may not stand much longer

The Tyler County Poor Farm is listed among West Virginia’s most endangered historic properties.

In the midst of a scenic valley on the edge of a county fairground, it waits empty. Some say it’s eerie. Some, breath-taking. It’s the defining image for many travelers who visit rural Tyler County for the first time. State officials say it belongs on the National Register of Historic Places, and heritage-tourism experts consider it one of the most iconic structures in the state. But members of the county commission aren’t convinced.

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