Berkeley County, West Virginia Biography of Wilbur H. THOMAS


         Wilbur H. THOMAS was born near Tomahawk Springs, Berkeley County, West Virginia, on August 8, 1876, the son of the Rev. P.H. and Martha (Hedges) Thomas. He was educated in the public schools — Dayton, Virginia; Shenandoah Valley Academy; and West Virginia University, graduating in the Law Department in 1903. He was a public school teacher for four years in the schools of the county.

         Wilbur Thomas was admitted to the Bar in 1903. In 1920, he was a candidate for Judge of the 23rd Judicial District, comprising the counties of Berkeley, Morgan and Jefferson and, since that area was overwhelmingly Democratic, he was defeated by a few votes over 100. He was appointed U.S. Commissioner by the late Judge Alston G. Dayton, which office he held from 1905 to 1913. He resigned that position to take up the position of Referee in Bankruptcy for the Northern District of West Virginia (1913), which position he held until at least 1928.

         He had a large orchard interest in the county; he was a director in the Peoples Trust Company of Martinsburg for 10 years, which office he resigned to organize the Shenandoah Valley Bank and Trust Company in the summer of 1920 when it opened for business with Wilbur Thomas as president and a member of the Board of Directors; and was a deacon in the Presbyterian Church in Martinsburg.

         In 1906, Wilbur H. Thomas and Millicene R. Coots of Dayton, Virginia, were married. They had one son, Douglas Graham Thomas, who was a student at Washington and Lee University at Lexington, Virginia (in 1928).


    Submitted by Marilyn Gouge and extracted from History of Berkeley County, West Virginia, 1928.

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