Clintwood, Virginia

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Clintwood, Virginia
Official seal of Clintwood, Virginia
Motto: "The county seat of Virginia's baby"[1]
Location of Clintwood, Virginia
Location of Clintwood, Virginia
Coordinates: 37°9′0″N 82°27′24″W / 37.15000°N 82.45667°W / 37.15000; -82.45667Coordinates: 37°9′0″N 82°27′24″W / 37.15000°N 82.45667°W / 37.15000; -82.45667
Country United States
State Virginia
County Dickenson
 • Total 1.9 sq mi (4.9 km2)
 • Land 1.9 sq mi (4.9 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 1,755 ft (535 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 1,414
 • Density 745/sq mi (287.6/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 24228
Area code(s) 276
FIPS code 51-17552[2]
GNIS feature ID 1498468[3]

Clintwood is a town in Dickenson County, Virginia, United States. The population was 1,414 at the 2010 census,[4] with an estimated population of 1,343 in 2014.[5] It is the county seat of Dickenson County.[6]

Although originally called "Holly Creek" after a small stream that runs through the town, it was later named "Clintwood" after Major Henry Clinton Wood, a Confederate officer in the 37th Virginia Infantry Regiment.[7]


Clintwood is located in northwestern Dickenson County at 37°9′0″N 82°27′24″W / 37.15000°N 82.45667°W / 37.15000; -82.45667 (37.150054, −82.456698).[8] Virginia State Route 83 passes through the town, leading east 11 miles (18 km) to Clinchco and west 9 miles (14 km) to Pound.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Clintwood has a total area of 1.9 square miles (4.9 km2), all of it land.[4]

Area attractions[edit]

  • Jettie Baker Center
  • Ralph Stanley Museum
  • John W. Flanagan Dam and Reservoir (11 miles (18 km) northeast)
  • Bear Pen Recreation area
  • Historical Society
  • Cranes Nest River and camping/recreation area
  • Birch Knob Tower (10 miles (16 km) north)
  • Jefferson National Forest
  • Dickenson County Courthouse
  • Dickenson County Art Center & Gallery
  • Lower Twin Campground
  • Pound River Campground (5 miles (8 km) northeast)
  • Mountain Music Festival
  • Dickenson County Chamber of Commerce
  • Dickenson County Visitor's Center & Dr. Phipps Museum
  • Phipp's Family Memorial Park


Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 255
1910 342 34.1%
1920 400 17.0%
1930 729 82.3%
1940 1,106 51.7%
1950 1,366 23.5%
1960 1,400 2.5%
1970 1,320 −5.7%
1980 1,369 3.7%
1990 1,542 12.6%
2000 1,549 0.5%
2010 1,414 −8.7%
Est. 2015 1,325 [9] −6.3%
U.S. Decennial Census[10]

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 1,549 people, 672 households, and 426 families residing in the town. The population density was 812.0 people per square mile (313.1/km²). There were 756 housing units at an average density of 396.3 per square mile (152.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.52% White, 0.19% African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.13% Asian,and 0.97% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.52% of the population.

There were 672 households out of which 21.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.8% were married couples living together, 15.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.5% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.10 and the average family size was 2.65.

In the town, the population was spread out with 16.5% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 23.2% from 25 to 44, 27.8% from 45 to 64, and 24.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 46 years. For every 100 females there were 84.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 81.5 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $22,663, and the median income for a family was $30,833. Males had a median income of $29,844 versus $21,250 for females. The per capita income for the town was $16,323. About 16.0% of families and 21.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.5% of those under age 18 and 16.7% of those age 65 or over.

Notable persons[edit]

In June 1948, the town of Clintwood was featured in headlines and broadcasts around the world for the election of an all-female town council. The women, Minnie "Sis" Miller, Buena Smith, Marian Shortt, Kate Friend, Ida Cunningham and Ferne Skeen, were elected to serve the town of Clintwood from 1948–50. The "Petticoat Government", as it was nicknamed, implemented change in many areas, including cleanup of the town in several campaigns, eliminating parking problems, organizing a systematic garbage disposal system and eliminating several traffic hazards as well as organizing the town's fire department and purchasing a fire truck. The town was featured prominently in publicity nationally and internationally. The "Petticoat Government" also received the attention of Lady Astor, a member of the British Parliament who expressed a desire to visit Clintwood and to see how the experiment was going. The town was also featured in broadcasts by Voice of America and the reports beamed into Soviet bloc countries.[11]

Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Mark Linkous (Sparklehorse) has family ties to Clintwood, and for a short time called Clintwood home. Although Linkous was born near Arlington, Virginia, his mother and father were originally from Clintwood before moving to northern Virginia in the mid-1960s. The family moved back to Dickenson County, in particular Clintwood, during the early 1970s. Linkous, his brother and mother returned north to live near Front Royal, Virginia, for many years. Linkous was known for his musical collaborations with such artists as Tom Waits, PJ Harvey, Daniel Johnston, Radiohead, Black Francis, Julian Casablancas, Nina Persson, David Lynch, Danger Mouse, and Sage Francis. Linkous died in Knoxville, Tennessee, on March 6, 2010, at the age of 47.

Justin Hamilton was a former star at Clintwood High School, defensive back for the Virginia Tech Hokies and former member of the National Football League's Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins football organizations. He was born in Norton and raised in Clintwood. Hamilton is currently the defensive coordinator for the University of Virginia at Wise football team.

Bluegrass musician Ralph Stanley is from Dickenson County and lives on Sandy Ridge in the mountains that surround Clintwood. A museum honoring his musical legacy is located in the historic district of downtown.

Americana/Indie/Appalachian band Foddershock call Clintwood home, and their studio is located in the Blowing Rock section of Dickenson County, at the base of Birch Knob. Foddershock has self-produced and released eight albums and have had songs in movies and on the compilation CD Music of Coal: Mining Songs from the Appalachian Coalfields, which was nominated for a Grammy in 2007.

Stuart Mullins, Referee in the Atlantic Coast Conference, was born and raised in Clintwood, and still resides there today. He can be seen officiating games on television throughout football season. He has received several post season assignments, including the 2016 Army-Navy game.



  • Serco North America
  • Kids Central & Dickenson County Child Care Center
  • Range Resources
  • Dickenson Research and Education Center (many businesses also have offices here)
  • Appalachian Power
  • Marty Materials
  • Dickenson County Behavioral Health Services
  • DCWIN (Dickenson County Wireless Integrated Network)


  • Kids Korner Park
  • Walking track
  • Bear Pen Recreation Area (includes pool, park, picnic shelters, walking track, field for activities, and Pound River)
  • Cranes Nest River and Recreation/Camping Area (includes fishing spots, multiple playgrounds, campground with RV sites, and walking/biking/horseback riding trails)
  • Birch Knob Tower
  • Breaks Interstate Park
  • Lower Twin Campground
  • Pound River Campground
  • John W. Flanagan Dam and Reservoir


  1. ^ Town of Clintwood official website
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Clintwood town, Virginia". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved January 13, 2016. 
  5. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  6. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on 2011-05-31. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  7. ^ Tennis, Joe (2004). Southwest Virginia Crossroads: An Almanac of Place Names and Places to See. The Overmountain Press. p. 6. ISBN 978-1-57072-256-1. 
  8. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  9. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  10. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  11. ^ Short, Martha. "Petticoat Government". 

External links[edit]