PARKERSBURG, W.Va. -- Police in Parkersburg said a thief broke into the site of West Virginia's first free high school and stole about $17,000 worth of copper pipe and fittings.Police Chief Joseph Martin said the break-in occurred at the Sumnerite African-American History Museum and Multipurpose Center sometime between Thursday night and around 9:45 a.m. Friday. The museum is at 1016 Avery St., Parkersburg.
Martin said the suspect also took about $1,600 worth of tools and other equipment.Anyone with information about the theft is asked to the contact the Parkersburg Police Department at 304-424-8444.
Five businessmen opened Sumner High School free to students in 1862, two years before the state instituted a system of public education. The school was the first in the South to accept students of all races, according to the museum's website.