A. Michael Perry
( 1936 - 2015 )



Lawyer, banker, university president, museum founder. These are just some of the roles Huntington native Mike Perry (1936-2015) filled during his life. What's more, Perry played a pivotal role in nearly every progressive stride Huntington made over the past 30 yearss. After beginning his career as a lawyer, he was recruited by businessman Marshall Reynolds to run First Huntington National Bank in 1981. Perry and Reynolds then formed Key Centurion Bancshares and began acquiring banks across West Virginia. Eventually the holding company was sold to Bank One which made millions of dollars for numerous investors in Huntington. In 1999, Perry was tapped to serve as interim president of Marshall University. In his spare time, he and his wife Henriella began fulfilling their dream of building a history museum on their Wayne County farm. Over the course of several years they acquired old cabins, barns and other structures which morphed into what is now Heritage Farm Museum & Village. Today, there are 30 buildings at the village including museums of  progress, transportation, industry and heritage. There a country store, blacksmith shop, sawmill, pottery kiln, one room schoolhouse, chapel and more. The goal of the museum is to teach future generations about their ancestors who settled in West Virginia. As Perry  said, "If we apply the same lessons that our ancestors taught us ---- being willing to embrace change, foster change, adapt to change---- then we can also make the world a better place."


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