Meldahl House

National Historic Landmark — Washington, West VirginiaWood County

A remnant of the Wood County wine industry, the Meldahl House and wine cellar sit on two acres that was once surrounded by vineyards. A pre-Civil War stone wine cellar with a vaulted roof, built by contractor Charlie Behrens, is all that remains of the winery. A family of German immigrants named Munchmeyer had established a winery in Wood County. In about 1850, Christian Emil Meldahl, a Danish immigrant with ties to the Danish Royal Court, married a Munchmeyer daughter and established his own vineyards and winery nearby. Although the home he built had burned in the mid-1890s, a large American Foursquare was built on its foundation in 1920 by contractor Lewis Eankhauser. The house and wine cellar were connected by a subterrainian tunnel. In 1941, a law against making and selling intoxicating liquors was passed by the State of West Virginia, ruining the state wine industry, though the law has since been repealed and West Virginia wineries have become profitable endeavors.

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