One Tank Trip: Seneca Center

MORGANTOWN, WV (WOAY) – Located in Morgantown is the Seneca Center, a building filled with shops and boutiques. But it’s more than just your average mall, it’s a piece of history listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

The Seneca Center was built in 1898 for the Seneca Glass Company. They were originally from Seneca, Ohio, and moved to Morgantown, which at the time and for many decades later was known especially for its distinguished glassmaking industry.

The Seneca Glass Company remained in the area for almost 100 years, until 1983, when the company went bankrupt. But their iconic building remained to be repurposed.

“A local family bought the property to develop it into a retail shopping strip, which it is today. It’s been operating since 1984,” said Barton Loar, the Secretary of Seneca Center, Inc.

Shoppers can get a glimpse at the glassmaking that once happened in the building with various murals and pieces of art scattered throughout the property. And the many shop owners that operate here see a distinct value in the building’s history.

One local favorite is the Country Roads Quilt Shop, which came to the Seneca Center 11 years ago.

“When we moved here to open up a shop, I looked everywhere in Morgantown,” said shop owner Peggy Ellwood. “And all of a sudden this realtor brought us here, and I knew this was the place. It had high ceilings, rustic charm, it was historic. It was perfect for my shop.”

Also in the Seneca Center are tons of other shopping experiences, and also some dining. There is the Tea Shoppe, as well as Wamsley Cycles which is on the lower floor of the building and connects directly to Morgantown’s Rail Trail.

Here, they’re able to serve tourists who stop by for the riding experience, as well as locals who are looking to fix up their bicycles.

The Seneca Center is open Monday through Saturday and provides a great spot for a quick shopping trip while you’re in Morgantown. And it’s just a few hours away via the interstate, and you can get there quickly in just one tank of gas. 

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