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West Virginia

Lyric Poetry Mural, Lyric Poetry (detail), by Henry O. Walker, in the South Corridor, Jefferson Building, Library of Congress.
Photographic print.

Prints and Photographs Online Catalog.
Library of Congress.

Current Laureate:
Marc Harshman

Start of Term:
May 17, 2012

Position History:
Position established 1927 (Code, Sec. 29-7-1). The text of the law follows:

§29-7-1. Appointment; qualifications; salary.

There shall be a poet laureate of West Virginia, who shall be appointed by, and serve during the will and pleasure of the governor. No person shall be eligible to such appointment who is not a resident of this state, and who has not written and published poems of recognized merit. The poet laureate shall receive an annual salary of two thousand dollars, payable in equal quarterly installments.
The first West Virginia state poet laureate was Karl Myers. The poet laureate is appointed by the governor and, previously, served "during the will and pleasure of the governor." Currently, laureates serve a term of two years with no restrictions on reappointment.

Previous Laureates:
Karl Myers (1927-1937)
Roy Lee Harmon (March 12, 1937-1943)
James Lowell McPherson (1943-1946)
Roy Lee Harmon (October 11, 1946-1960)
Vera Andrews Harvey (1960-1961)
Roy Lee Harmon (March 7, 1961-1979)
Louise McNeill (Pease) (1979-1993)
Irene McKinney (1994-February 4, 2012)

Further Resources:

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  December 1, 2016
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