Fayette County, West Virginia

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Fayette County, West Virginia
FayetteCtyCourthouse FayettevilleWV.jpg
Fayette County courthouse, Fayetteville
Map of West Virginia highlighting Fayette County
Location in the U.S. state of West Virginia
Map of the United States highlighting West Virginia
West Virginia's location in the U.S.
Founded February 28, 1831
Named for Marquis de la Fayette
Seat Fayetteville
Largest city Oak Hill
Area
 • Total 668 sq mi (1,730 km2)
 • Land 662 sq mi (1,715 km2)
 • Water 6.8 sq mi (18 km2), 1.0%
Population (est.)
 • (2015) 44,997
 • Density 68/sq mi (26/km²)
Congressional district 3rd
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website www.fayettecounty.wv.gov
Cathedral Falls

Fayette County is a county in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 46,039.[1] Its county seat is Fayetteville.[2]

Fayette County is part of the Beckley, WV Metropolitan Statistical Area.[3]

History[edit]

Fayette County was created by Act of the Virginia General Assembly, passed February 28, 1831,[4] from parts of Greenbrier, Kanawha, Nicholas, and Logan counties. It was named in honor of the Marquis de la Fayette, who had played a key role assisting the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War.[5] Virginia previously had a Fayette County, which was lost to form the new state of Kentucky. Accordingly, in the State records of Virginia, there will be listings for Fayette County from 1780–1792 and Fayette County from 1831-1863. Neither location is still located in Virginia and despite naming a county after him twice, Virginia no longer has a county named for the Marquis de la Fayette.

A substantial portion was subdivided from Fayette County to form Raleigh County in 1850. Fayette was one of 50 counties that broke off from the rest of Virginia and formed the new state of West Virginia during the American Civil War. In 1871, an Act of the West Virginia Legislature severed a small portion to form part of Summers County.[6]

Fayette County was home to a disastrous mine explosion at Red Ash in March 1900, in which 46 miners were killed.[7]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 668 square miles (1,730 km2), of which 662 square miles (1,710 km2) is land and 6.8 square miles (18 km2) (1.0%) is water.[8] Plum Orchard Lake, a reservoir southwest of Oak Hill, is the second largest lake in West Virginia.

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent counties[edit]

National protected areas[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1840 3,924
1850 3,955 0.8%
1860 5,997 51.6%
1870 6,647 10.8%
1880 11,560 73.9%
1890 20,542 77.7%
1900 31,987 55.7%
1910 51,903 62.3%
1920 60,377 16.3%
1930 72,050 19.3%
1940 80,628 11.9%
1950 82,443 2.3%
1960 61,731 −25.1%
1970 49,332 −20.1%
1980 57,863 17.3%
1990 47,952 −17.1%
2000 47,579 −0.8%
2010 46,039 −3.2%
Est. 2016 44,323 [9] −3.7%
U.S. Decennial Census[10]
1790–1960[11] 1900–1990[12]
1990–2000[13] 2010–2015[1]

2000 census[edit]

As of the census[14] of 2000, there were 47,579 people, 18,945 households, and 13,128 families residing in the county. The population density was 72 people per square mile (28/km²). There were 21,616 housing units at an average density of 33 per square mile (13/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 92.74% White, 5.57% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.30% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.15% from other races, and 0.93% from two or more races. 0.68% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 18,945 households out of which 29.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.10% were married couples living together, 13.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.70% were non-families. 26.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.89.

In the county, the population was spread out with 21.70% under the age of 18, 9.60% from 18 to 24, 27.10% from 25 to 44, 25.10% from 45 to 64, and 16.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 98.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $24,788, and the median income for a family was $30,243. Males had a median income of $28,554 versus $18,317 for females. The per capita income for the county was $13,809. About 18.20% of families and 21.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 31.90% of those under age 18 and 13.70% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census[edit]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 46,039 people, 18,813 households, and 12,459 families residing in the county.[15] The population density was 69.6 inhabitants per square mile (26.9/km2). There were 21,618 housing units at an average density of 32.7 per square mile (12.6/km2).[16] The racial makeup of the county was 93.5% white, 4.6% black or African American, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.2% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 0.9% of the population.[15] In terms of ancestry, 16.9% were German, 15.5% were Irish, 10.8% were English, and 9.5% were American.[17]

Of the 18,813 households, 28.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.7% were married couples living together, 12.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.8% were non-families, and 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.87. The median age was 43.0 years.[15]

The median income for a household in the county was $31,912 and the median income for a family was $42,077. Males had a median income of $39,301 versus $24,874 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,082. About 16.4% of families and 21.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.9% of those under age 18 and 12.5% of those age 65 or over.[18]

Politics[edit]

Fayette County’s political history is typical of West Virginia as a whole. The county leaned Democratic during the Third Party System before the power of industrial and mining political systems turned it strongly towards the Republican Party between 1880 and 1930. Between the 1884 and 1928 elections, the county did not vote Democratic except when the Republican Party was divided in 1912.[19] Unionization of its predominant coal mining workforce during the New Deal made the county powerfully Democratic between 1935 and 2005: no Republican in this period except Richard Nixon against the strongly leftist George McGovern won forty percent of the county’s vote, and Lyndon Johnson in 1964 exceeded eighty percent against the free-market Barry Goldwater. However, the decline of mining unions and the out-migration of historical black mining families,[20] has produced a rapid swing to the Republican Party – so that over the past three presidential elections swings to the Republican Party have averaged thirty percentage points and Democratic vote percentages plummeted to levels historically more typical of Unionist, traditionally Republican counties like Morgan or Upshur.

Presidential Elections Results[21]
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2016 66.9% 10,357 27.7% 4,290 5.4% 831
2012 59.4% 8,350 38.5% 5,419 2.1% 301
2008 50.4% 7,658 47.7% 7,242 1.9% 294
2004 46.5% 7,881 52.9% 8,971 0.7% 115
2000 40.3% 5,897 57.3% 8,371 2.4% 351
1996 24.9% 3,669 64.2% 9,471 11.0% 1,618
1992 25.6% 3,991 61.3% 9,574 13.1% 2,043
1988 31.7% 5,143 67.9% 11,009 0.3% 53
1984 38.6% 7,360 61.0% 11,650 0.4% 76
1980 29.3% 5,784 66.6% 13,175 4.1% 815
1976 26.1% 5,459 74.0% 15,496
1972 54.4% 11,876 45.6% 9,966
1968 24.2% 5,246 67.0% 14,546 8.9% 1,931
1964 16.9% 4,051 83.2% 19,990
1960 29.4% 7,537 70.6% 18,109
1956 38.6% 10,218 61.5% 16,286
1952 29.2% 9,190 70.8% 22,307
1948 25.5% 7,451 74.1% 21,707 0.4% 120
1944 31.2% 7,932 68.9% 17,529
1940 31.7% 10,307 68.4% 22,256
1936 27.2% 8,942 72.6% 23,864 0.2% 80
1932 41.2% 12,170 58.0% 17,127 0.7% 212
1928 51.0% 12,961 48.6% 12,351 0.4% 104
1924 46.8% 10,555 42.4% 9,563 10.8% 2,440
1920 53.0% 10,561 45.2% 9,003 1.9% 370
1916 49.0% 5,511 47.8% 5,377 3.2% 361
1912 24.5% 2,697 34.1% 3,757 41.5% 4,568[22]

Economy[edit]

The county has a tradition of coal mining, which still serves as a primary source of employment in the area. A Georgia Pacific lumber mill has its home to the west of Mt. Hope, adjacent to U.S. Route 19. There exists a large metal alloy plant in Alloy. The Mount Olive Correctional Complex, West Virginia's only maximum security state prison, is also located in Fayette County.[citation needed]

Notable people[edit]

Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Towns[edit]

Census-designated places[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on July 10, 2011. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 10, 2015. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ http://www.register-herald.com/local/x503822301/Fayette-Raleigh-MPO-expands-to-include-entirety-of-both-counties
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-01-23. Retrieved 2013-01-29. 
  5. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 124. 
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-05-24. Retrieved 2008-09-21. 
  7. ^ http://www.wvencyclopedia.org/articles/29
  8. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved July 24, 2015. 
  9. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017. 
  10. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  14. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  15. ^ a b c "DP-1 Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  16. ^ "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  17. ^ "DP02 SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  18. ^ "DP03 SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  19. ^ Menendez, Albert J.; The Geography of Presidential elections in the United States, 1868-2004, pp. 334-337 ISBN 0786422173
  20. ^ Schwartzman, Gabe; ‘How Central Appalachia Went Right’; Daily Yonder, January 13, 2015
  21. ^ http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS
  22. ^ The leading "other" candidate, Progressive Theodore Roosevelt, received 3,140 votes, while Socialist candidate Eugene Debs received 1,428 votes.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°02′N 81°05′W / 38.03°N 81.09°W / 38.03; -81.09