Howard has published 2 books at this point, “Adonvdo Yona (Bear Spirit) Mountain, an Ancestral Awakening” and “As I Rest, Let My Face Touch Heaven,” and his 3rd book, which is still in the planning stage, is going to be titled, “American Indians of Eastern West Virginia.”
Howard plans to focus on revealing the history behind the predecessors of modern-day West Virginians.
“Present-day Eastern Panhandle mountaineers are a very tough and resilient people,” he said. “The American Indians that lived here before them were every bit as tough and resilient…I want to give them a voice, too.”
Howard explained that when it comes to historical information about the people who lived here centuries and centuries ago, the stories are thin and rare.
“Many of us were taught in high school that over the last 600 years that American Indians did not even live here,” he explained. “We were told they only hunted here.”
Howard said he has located over 9 sites throughout the Eastern Panhandle, and at each site he has found ceremonial spots, burial places, village sites and more, as well as ancient carved rock art.
“Over the last 6 years, I have located hundreds of petroglyphs (rock carvings) and pictographs (rock paintings) of American Indian rock art,” Howard said. “These rock images tell the story of what the people were seeing and living with on a daily basis over many thousands of years. It’s a time capsule of their lives.”
Howard remarked that because he had found so many of these sites in the Eastern Panhandle, he felt like it would be great for folks to see how talented his ancestors were in leaving their daily life impressions on the rocks for all to see.
Howard is now looking for help in his literary pursuits.
“I am asking the people throughout Hampshire, Hardy, Morgan, Grant and Mineral counties that if they know of information or are aware of any additional sites, or even potential sites, to contact me,” Howard explained. “The more information I can gather, the more complete the book will be about American Indians living in Eastern West Virginia.”