Last original Arthurdale homesteader turns 100 - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Last original Arthurdale homesteader turns 100

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ARTHURDALE -

By Krista Baker, WBOY-TV General Assignment Reporter 

Arthurdale celebrated its oldest homesteader's 100th birthday Saturday.

Hazel Marie Jenkins Bonnette turned 100 on  January 11, 2013 but the family had an open house at the Arthurdale Heritage Center Hall Saturday to celebrate.

Hazel Bonnette was born in Morgantown but moved to Arthurdale in 1936.  She moved into one of the first homes ever built in Arthurdale. She celebrated the big 100 with friends and family.

"How she got to be 100 years old... I have no idea!" said Jean Bonnette McLaughlin, one of Hazel's daughters. "Must have been the vegetables in the garden because like I said she loved to can and raise gardens."

Hazel Bonnette's mother lived to be 103.  Hazel has four children, 11 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren.

The Preston County community was the nation's first homestead community. It grew from President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and was designed and built for the rural poor.