Matthias W. Powers, Sr. Memorial Scholarship Fund
Established by his daughters and sons-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. J.W. (Bud) Walters and Mr. and Mrs. J.W. (Jim) Word, Jr., this fund serves as a memorial to a wise and successful businessman who devoted his life to his family and community. Matthias W. Powers, Sr. started in this area down in Thurman making small loans to local miners. He found this to be a prudent business and moved his operations to Beckley, along with his wife Hilda, and three children Matthias Jr., Hilda, and Sarah “Sallie” Powers. He started the Beckley Loan Company in 1926. Sallie’s husband Jim later took over the company and his grandson Jay Word now carries on the family legacy with his two sons Matt and Stephen. In a letter to his grandson Matthias Sr. wrote, “I have found that the two chief ingredients for success in any line, are diligence and persistence…Given these two qualities, a man does not have to be smart or educated…although I will admit that such attainments would be helpful.” He was a man who valued philanthropy and as such, this fund which originally benefited MSU, is now designated for scholarships at UC-Beckley.