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West Virginia is a state in the Appalachian, Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern regions of the United States. It is bordered by Pennsylvania to the northeast, Maryland to the east and northeast, Virginia to the southeast, Kentucky to the southwest, and Ohio to the northwest. West Virginia is the 41st-largest state by area and ranks 40th in population, with a population of 1,793,716 residents. The capital and largest city is Charleston.
West Virginia became a state after the Wheeling Conventions of 1861, at the start of the American Civil War. Delegates from northwestern Virginia's Unionist counties decided to break away from Virginia, which also included secessionist counties in the new state. West Virginia was admitted to the Union on June 20, 1863, and was a key border state during the war. It was the only state to form by separating from a Confederate state, the second to separate from a state after Maine separated from Massachusetts, and one of two states (along with Nevada) admitted to the Union during the Civil War. Some of its residents held slaves, but most were yeoman farmers, and the delegates provided for the gradual abolition of slavery in the new state constitution. The state legislature abolished slavery in the state, and at the same time ratified the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery nationally on February 3, 1865.
West Virginia's Northern Panhandle extends adjacent to Pennsylvania and Ohio to form a tristate area, with Wheeling and Weirton just across the border from the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. Huntington in the southwest is close to Ohio and Kentucky, while Martinsburg and Harpers Ferry in the Eastern Panhandle region are considered part of the Washington metropolitan area, between Maryland and Virginia. West Virginia is often included in several U.S. geographical regions, including the Mid-Atlantic, the Upland South, and the Southeastern United States. It is the only state entirely within the area served by the Appalachian Regional Commission; the area is commonly defined as "Appalachia".
The state is noted for its mountains and rolling hills, its historically significant coal mining and logging industries, and its political and labor history. It is also known for a wide range of outdoor recreational opportunities, including skiing, whitewater rafting, fishing, hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and hunting.
Other nominated names for the state included Vandalia, Kanawha, Appalachia, and Western Virginia. The capital was originally Wheeling, before switching to Charleston, moving back to Wheeling, and finally back to Charleston. While it is now a solidly Republican state, it was Democratic from the Franklin D. Roosevelt era to the 1990s. The first governor was Arthur Boreman.
State of West Virginia Articles
Stonewall Jackson High School was a high school in Kanawha County, West Virginia. It opened in 1940 and closed in 1989. It was located on the West Side in Charleston, West Virginia. In 1989, Stonewall Jackson High School and Charleston High School consolidated to become Capital High School. The building is now a middle school. It was named after the Civil War general Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson who was from Clarksburg, in what is now West Virginia. In August 2020, following the Black Lives Matter movement, Stonewall's name was removed from the school, which is now called West Side Middle School.
Braxton County is a county in the central part of the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 14,523. The county seat is Sutton. The county was formed in 1836 from parts of Lewis, Kanawha, and Nicholas counties and named for Carter Braxton, a Virginia statesman and signer of the Declaration of Independence. In 2010, the center of population of West Virginia was in northern Braxton County.Important salt works were located at Bulltown and here, in 1772, Captain Bull and his family and friendly Delaware Indians were massacred by frontiersmen. Jesse Hughes helped Jeremiah Carpenter and track and kill the Indians responsible for the Carpenter massacre. Jeremiah was a notable fiddle player who wrote a song Shelvin’ Rock about the experience of escaping to rock shelter.
Upshur County is a county in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 24,254. Its county seat is Buckhannon. The county was formed in 1851 from Randolph, Barbour, and Lewis counties and named for Abel Parker Upshur, a distinguished statesman and jurist of Virginia. Upshur served as United States Secretary of State and Secretary of the Navy under President John Tyler.
Randolph County is a county located in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 29,405. Its county seat is Elkins. The county was founded in 1787 and is named for Edmund Jennings Randolph.Randolph County comprises the Elkins, West Virginia, Micropolitan Statistical Area.