Monument to a well-known goat in West Virginia
MUDDELTY, W.Va. — Anonymous benefactors have raised a monument to a goat that once captured national attention as it grazed the top of Powell Mountain along the US-19 highway.
At some point over the past few days, a white silhouette of the goat was set up on the cliffs along the highway, according to Anne Johnson, an educator and photographer who came to admire the goat on regular trips across the mountain. .
During the 16 years it grazed the high cliffs along the highway where its white form was conspicuous, Johnson and other admirers photographed the animal and publicized its existence.
Johnson said Monday that a monument was raised to the goat by as-yet-unknown admirers, though she did not determine who might be involved.
“I tried to find out but never did. I think they want to remain anonymous,” she said. “I have my suspicions about who might be, but they won’t admit it.”
In 2019, rumors swirled that the goat was captured and taken to a farm or killed in a collision with a vehicle. Still, Department of Highways officials would have been aware of such an event, and no leads have ever confirmed his capture.
Johnson combed the hills above the cliffs but found no sign of the goat. Ultimately, she says, a solitary goat’s lifespan is usually no more than a decade, and the goat has lived well beyond that while weathering winters in one of the region’s highest peaks. .
The monument is the second to appear on the mountain. A first was installed and disappeared the year following the disappearance of the goat.
“I think we all need to remember what she gave us, what she taught us: to be strong and to be persistent, to love and care for each other,” Johnson said.
“Everyone is thrilled. A part of her is back. It helped us all come to terms with her loss; everyone was saddened when the cut went away.”
Powell Mountain is located north of Summersville, West Virginia and the New River Gorge National and Preserve in central West Virginia.
The origin of the name “Polemic Run” can undoubtedly remain a mystery
Every day, more than 10,000 motorists pass the turnoff to Polemic Run Road in central West Virginia, but few leave the US-19 freeway and wander into the wooded hills to the west. If your car handles the back roads well, the one-hour off-road drive through southern Braxton County is well worth the trip, whatever the season. Read the full story here.
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