The West Virginia. Cyclopedia

Van Bibbers Rock

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On the south side of the Kanawha River, opposite Glen Ferris, WV in Fayette County, is Van Bibbers Rock, from which Reuben Van Bibbers is said to have leaped into the waters of the river to escape from a band of Indians pursuing him.

According to some accounts, the rock was called War-kun-gee-tah by local Native Americans, meaning "the far away look out." The huge boulder juts out about 100 feet over a seething whirlpool at the foot of the Kanawha Falls. Following his leap, Van Bibbers was rescued from the swirling waters of the Kanawha by his wife, who managed to secure a canoe after witnessing her husband's plight.

Van Bibbers' leap apparently occuried sometime during the early years of the American Revolution. Van Bibber is said to be the first white settler to establish a cabin in this area of the Kanawha Valley, in the "latter part of the 18th Century," and is said to have kept a pet brown bear, called "Brownie", that he had raised from a cub.