The Coveted Golden Horseshoe

by | Oct 8, 2021 | Golden Horseshoe Series, News

and WV Homeschoolers

West Virginia native Homer Hickam, author of “October Sky,” has one regret. He did not win a Golden Horseshoe as a student! 

Every year 221 students are awarded the coveted Golden Horseshoe and knighted as Ladies and Knights of the Golden Horseshoe in a ceremony at the Capitol in Charleston, WV, in June. The Golden Horseshoe is a scholastic opportunity open to all 8th grade students in West Virginia. Each county has a minimum of two winners, but counties with larger populations have more winners. The test is a competition within a county, not within the state.

The test measures a student’s understanding of West Virginia history, geography, civics, geology, culture, economy, and tourism. There are two parts to the test; one is a written essay and the second is an online multiple-choice test containing 50 questions. The essay portion is not required, but is used only if there is a tie within the county on the multiple-choice testing portion. Both parts are administered at the public school the student would normally attend.

A registration form must be completed by a teacher, counselor, or school/county administrator where the student would have normally attended public school. Registration opens December 1, 2021. About a week after the student is registered, they will be e-mailed additional instructions and links for weekly practice tests to help familiarize the student with the testing format.


  • December 1,2021 – registration opens
  • January 5,2022 – Deadline for requesting a braille test
  • Tuesday, February 8,2022 – Written Essay test administered state-wide
  • February 15-24 – Multiple choice test administered. Each county is assigned a specific date.
    • February 15, Tuesday: Brooke, Hancock, Ohio, Wetzel, Putnam
    • February 16, Wednesday: Barbour, Boone, Cabell, Doddridge, Hardy, Harrison, Monongalia, Nicholas, Pendleton, Ritchie, Tucker
    • February 17, Thursday: Berkeley, Braxton, Gilmer, Grant, Marshall, Morgan, Taylor, Tyler, Wayne
    • February 18, Friday: Clay, Hampshire, McDowell, Mineral, WVSD/B, Wyoming
    • February 22, Tuesday: Greenbrier, Lewis, Mason, Mercer, Mingo, Preston, Summers, Webster, Wirt, Wood
    • February 23, Wednesday: Jefferson, Kanawha, Monroe, Roane, Fayette, Lincoln
    • February 24, Thursday: Calhoun, Logan, Marion, Pleasants, Pocahontas, Raleigh, Randolph, Upshur, Jackson

CHEWV no longer has Golden Horseshoe textbooks available. However, used books may be found online or purchased through the The James and Law Company in Clarksburg at this link. You may also request to borrow a copy from your local school. CHEWV has the answers to the text questions, quizzes, and tests available to members. 

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