If you do end up heading into the southern part, drop by and see the New River Gorge Bridge in Fayetteville. While you’re there you can zip into Fayetteville proper and see the late 19th Century courthouse (still in active use). During the Civil War, Fayetteville was the first place where it was documented that a commanding officer ordered his troops to use indirect fire (that is, firing without a clear target just hoping to hit an enemy soldier).
One of my favorite places to visit in that area is Thurmond - an old railroad town in the New River Gorge. In its heyday, it was a bustling railroad town, and quite a vice-filled place. It’s a ghost town now, mostly. Fewer than ten people still live there, but there’s a railroad station run by the National Park Service that serves mostly as a historic site, with interesting displays on life in railroad and coal towns. As a history buff, you’d probably love it. (The 1987 movie Matewan featuring James Earl Jones and Chris Cooper was filmed mostly in Thurmond - if you haven’t seen it, I recommend it heartily.) Stop in Fayetteville and ask for directions. It’s about 30 minutes down a nice windy road.
And if you’re feeling adventurous, plan to go Whitewater rafting down the New or Gauley River.
Oh, and back in Fayetteville, as for historic-type lodging, there’s always the White Horse Bed and Breakfast.
The capitol building in Charleston is beautiful. And the cultural center used to be worth a visit – I went there many many times through my childhood and teen years. Looking at their web site, it looks like they still might be worth a visit for a history buff.
More info than you were probably looking for, but I have some pride in my home state - and especially the southern part of it.
If you do any of these things, let me know how you liked it! No pressure.