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The Cockayne Farmstead

1105 - 1111 Wheeling Ave
Glen Dale, WV 26038
(304) 845-1411
(304) 845-9750 

Open weekdays 10:00A - 4:00P

Other Times by Appointment 

No Facilities

The Cockayne House was built ca. 1850 by Bennett Cockayne. It remained in Cockayne family ownership through four generations, into the 21st Century.  Bequeathed to the City of Glen Dale by its last owner, reclusive World War II combat veteran Sam Cockayne, its 

interior is virtually unchanged from its 19th Century appearance. Sam Cockayne lived in two rooms of at the back of house, using its 19th Century electrical, plumbing and heating resources. In contrast, the

 Cockaynes of the late 19th Century were social, political and agricultural leaders of the community. The women who grew up at this house at that time were artists, musicians, and photographers of note, while their brother was active in local politics. At the height of the family’s wealth, the Cockayne Farm of 300 acres encompassed all of southern Glen Dale, and the grand house reflected the family’s social standing.


During the last quarter of the 19th Century, the Cockayne family found commercial and financial success producing Merino wool and selling Merino breeding stock both in the U.S. and for export.  Samuel A.J. Cockayne’s work in this industry was recognized with a bronze medal at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition of 1876 and again in 1880.  A year after gaining acclimation at the Centennial Exhibition, the oldest image of the Cockayne Farm was “sketched from life” by S. B. Smith, and reproduced in the 1877 Illustrated Atlas of the Upper Ohio River Valley from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati

Sam Cockayne, the house’s last resident, simply closed off most rest of the house.  Since 2001, volunteers and staff have worked to catalogue and process over 2000 objects and more than 14,000 documents from the unused.  Much of this collection is now on display.


Exhibits at the Cockayne House provide a unique view of 19th Century life during the Gilded Age in rural West Virginia. While conservation and restoration efforts continue at the historic house, tours are available daily, 

Monday through Friday, from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm where the last tour will begin at 4:00 pm.  Weekend tours are available by appointment.  

Admission is $5.00 for adults.  Children under 12 years of age and seniors are admitted for $3.00. 

Adjacent to the farmhouse, at its northwest corner, is a Native American Mound that was reunited to the Farmstead in 2005. This Mound was long protected by the Cockayne family and is one of the few unexcavated burial mounds remaining in the area. Concretion stones, nutting stones and arrowheads were found in the house, likely taken from the farmland as it was worked by the Cockaynes.

The smaller 19th Century Cockayne frame house immediately north of the farmhouse serves as the Farmstead’s office, conservation lab, and welcome center.  Parking is available behind the welcome center, and is accessed from Wheeling Avenue at the traffic light that also serves John Marshall High School.  The Farmstead’s green farm wagon marks the entrance to the property for motorists.


The smaller 19th Century Family home that serves the Visitor’s Center and the house as it appeared on the 1877 print.


The house at the turn of the 20th Century                            and as it looks today!

To Learn More, Visit...
The Cockayne House Website
Hosted By Linda Fluharty