Warren County, Virginia
|Named for||Joseph Warren|
|Largest town||Front Royal|
|• Total||217 sq mi (560 km2)|
|• Land||213 sq mi (550 km2)|
|• Water||3.3 sq mi (9 km2) 1.5%|
|• Density||190/sq mi (72/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (EDT)|
Warren County is a U.S. county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The 2020 census places Warren County within the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area with a population of 40,727. The county seat is Front Royal.
By 1672 the entire Shenandoah Valley was claimed for hunting by the Iroquois Confederation following the Beaver Wars. Some bands of the Shawnee settled in the area as client groups to the Iroquois and alternately to the Cherokee after 1721. The Iroquois formally sold their entire claim east of the Alleghenies to the Virginia Colony at the Treaty of Lancaster in 1744. Warren County was established in 1836 from Frederick and Shenandoah counties.: 33 At that time the county had a population of 7,000 people, a quarter of which were enslaved.: 289 Wedding records show marriages of people born in the 1770s marrying in the 1800s who head households of four to eight "free colored" so the early demographics of the population are unclear.: 823–824 Joist Hite lead the Sixteen Families into the Lower Shenandoah Valley. Some consider that group the first European settlers of the area, others believe different claims.: ix Either way, Presbyterians of Scotch-Irish lineage and Quakers followed.
Rail service was established in 1854 with the construction of the Alexandria, Orange and Manassas Gap Railroad between Manassas and Riverton. This line was soon extended to Strasburg in time to become a factor in the Battle of Front Royal on May 23, 1862, and throughout the Civil War. Lumber, agriculture, manufacturing and grain mills provided employment in the region for decades after the Civil War. The county is named for Joseph Warren. During the Civil War the Battle of Front Royal took place in the county on May 23, 1862.: 368 On September 23, 1864, William Thomas Overby and five others of then Lt. Col. John S. Mosby's 43rd Virginia Battalion of Partisan Rangers were captured by cavalry troops under the command of then Brig. Gen. George A. Custer in Front Royal out of uniform and were executed as spies.
2019 Warren County Economic Development Authority Executive Director Jennifer McDonald Scandal
In 2017, questions were raised about the validity of an alleged $40 million economic development deal that had been brought to the community by Curt Tran, the owner of a company called IT Federal, over the redevelopment of the Avtex Superfund site.
In 2018, Warren County Economic Development Authority executive director Jennifer McDonald was charged with filing false police reports about an alleged rock-throwing incident that she claimed had occurred at her home.
In 2019, McDonald and other parties were embroiled in a massive financial scandal that some observers have characterized as the largest embezzlement scheme in the history of the state of Virginia. The fraud scheme, which involved the alleged embezzlement of $21 million in county funds through fictitious development schemes and insider deals, was uncovered by the Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation's Culpeper field office.
Sheriff McEathron, who had been indicted after it was revealed he was McDonald's business partner, committed suicide.
Jennifer McDonald was charged with 32 felony counts for her role in the scheme. 14 current and former municipal officials were indicted and faced criminal charges, including the entire Warren County board of supervisors as well as the former Warren County Attorney and the head of the Warren County schools division. These charges were later dropped as the judge ruled there was no basis for the allegations.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 217 square miles (560 km2), of which 213 square miles (550 km2) is land and 3.3 square miles (8.5 km2) (1.5%) is water. The highest point is Hogback Mountain in Shenandoah National Park, along the border with Rappahannock County.
- Frederick County, Virginia – north
- Clarke County, Virginia – northeast
- Fauquier County, Virginia – east
- Rappahannock County, Virginia – southeast
- Page County, Virginia – southwest
- Shenandoah County, Virginia – west
National protected areas
- Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park (part)
- George Washington National Forest (part)
- Shenandoah National Park (part)
|U.S. Decennial Census|
1990–2000 2010 2020
|Race / Ethnicity||Pop 2010||Pop 2020||% 2010||% 2020|
|White alone (NH)||33,345||33,831||88.74%||83.07%|
|Black or African American alone (NH)||1,709||1,722||4.55%||4.23%|
|Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH)||103||130||0.27%||0.32%|
|Asian alone (NH)||350||462||0.93%||1.13%|
|Pacific Islander alone (NH)||7||13||0.02%||0.03%|
|Some Other Race alone (NH)||35||255||0.09%||0.63%|
|Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH)||708||1,901||1.88%||4.67%|
|Hispanic or Latino (any race)||1,318||2,413||3.51%||5.92%|
Note: the US Census treats Hispanic/Latino as an ethnic category. This table excludes Latinos from the racial categories and assigns them to a separate category. Hispanics/Latinos can be of any race.
As of the census of 2000, there were 31,584 people, 12,087 households, and 8,521 families residing in the county. The population density was 148 people per square mile (57/km2). There were 13,299 housing units at an average density of 62 per square mile (24/km2). The demographics of the county is (2000) 92.71% White, 4.83% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.43% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.46% from other races, and 1.29% from two or more races. 1.56% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 12,087 households, out of which 32.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.60% were married couples living together, 10.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.50% were non-families. 24.00% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.04.
In the county, the population was spread out, with 25.60% under the age of 18, 7.60% from 18 to 24, 30.60% from 25 to 44, 23.90% from 45 to 64, and 12.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.90 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $42,422, and the median income for a family was $50,487. Males had a median income of $37,182 versus $25,506 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,841. About 6.00% of families and 8.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.70% of those under age 18 and 10.40% of those age 65 or over.
For many years, Avtex Fibers (formerly known as the American Viscose Corporation from 1910 to 1976), was the county's largest employer and taxpayer. At its height, it employed over 800 residents throughout Front Royal and Warren County.
Towards the late 1980s, however, the company's main plant in Front Royal was forced to close as a result of numerous environmental violations, which eventually resulted in the site being declared a Superfund site. The county, reeling from the sudden loss of jobs and tax revenue, established the Warren County Economic Development Authority (WCEDA) to stimulate and diversify its economy as well as the economy of Town of Front Royal, its county seat. The purpose of the WCEDA is to foster and stimulate industry and economic development within Warren County and the town of Front Royal.
According to the county's comprehensive annual financial reports, the top employers by number of employees in the county are the following.
|Warren County School Board||750–1,000|
|Family Dollar Services||250–499|
|Valley Health System–WMH||250–499|
|Axalta Coating Systems (DuPont)||250–499|
|Warren County Government||250–499|
|Sysco Northeast Redistribution||250–499|
|UPS Customer Center||250–499|
- Front Royal Area Transit (FRAT) provides weekday transit for the town of Front Royal.
- Page County Transit - the People Movers provides weekday transit for the town of Luray and weekday service between Luray and Front Royal.
- Skyline High School (9–12)
- Warren County High School (9–12)
- Warren County Middle School (6–8)
- Skyline Middle School (6–8)
- A.S. Rhodes Elementary School (K–5)
- E. Wilson Morrison Elementary School (K–5)
- Hilda J. Barbour Elementary School (PreK–5)
- Leslie Fox Keyser Elementary School (K–5)
- Ressie Jefferies Elementary School (K–5)
- Randolph-Macon Academy (6–12)
- Front Royal (county seat)
- Apple Mountain Lake
- Chester Gap (mostly in Rappahannock County)
- Shenandoah Farms
- Shenandoah Shores
- Skyland Estates
Other unincorporated communities
- Thomas Ashby, born in Warren County, physician and Maryland state legislator
- Thomas M. Allen, born in Warren County, clergyman and university official in Missouri
- Tareq Salahi, Real Housewives of DC star and infamous White House Gate Crasher
- "Warren County, Virginia". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 30, 2022.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
- Hofstra, Warren (2005). The Planting of New Virginia: Settlement and Landscape in the Shenandoah Valley. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 10–12. ISBN 0801882710.
- Wayland, John Walter (1969). A History of Shenandoah County, Virginia. Genealogical. p. 894.
- Heinegg, Paul (2005). Free African Americans of North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina from the Colonial Period to about 1820, Volume 2. Genealogical.
- Kemp Cartmell, Thomas (1909). Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants: A History of Frederick County, Virginia (illustrated) from Its Formation in 1738 to 1908. Eddy. p. 587.
- Presbyterians: Kemp Cartmell, Thomas (1909). Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants: A History of Frederick County, Virginia (illustrated) from Its Formation in 1738 to 1908. Eddy. p. 587.: ixQuakers:Kretzschmar, William A. (September 15, 1993). Handbook of the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States. University of Chicago Press. p. 454.: 334
- Forman, Sam (November 21, 2011). Dr. Joseph Warren: The Boston Tea Party, Bunker Hill, and the Birth of American Liberty. Pelican. p. 400.
- Executions: Simson, Jay W. (November 11, 2008). Custer and the Front Royal Executions of 1864. McFarland. p. 211.: 1Boyle, William E. (Spring 1994). "Under the Black Flag: Execution and Retaliation in Mosby's Confederacy". Military Law Review. 144.: 155
- Casey, Dan. "CASEY: Scandals rock northern Shenandoah Valley town", The Roanoke Times, Virginia, 27 April 2019.
- Gully, Josh. "EDA Director Charged With Filing False Police Reports"
- McCaslin, John (September 24, 2019). "Warren County's top officials indicted in Front Royal embezzlement scam". The Rappahannock News. online. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
- Bria Llyod. ", Local DVM, 28 May 2019.
- Gully, Josh. ", Northern Virginia Daily, Virginia, 28 October 2019.
- Olivo, Antonio (September 24, 2019). "Millions of dollars are missing. The sheriff is dead. A small Virginia town wants answers". The Washington Post. Internet. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
- Carey, Julie.NBC4 Washington, Virginia, 28 October 2019.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
- "Census of Population and Housing from 1790-2000". US Census Bureau. Retrieved January 24, 2022.
- "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 5, 2014.
- "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 5, 2014.
- "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Archived (PDF) from the original on March 27, 2010. Retrieved January 5, 2014.
- "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Warren County, Virginia". United States Census Bureau.
- "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Warren County, Virginia". United States Census Bureau.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
- "Board Of Supervisors Reacts To EDA Allegations". County of Warren website. Warren County Board of Supervisors. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
- Ayres, B. Drummond Jr. (November 21, 1989). "Jobs Are Lost in Plant Shutdown, but So Is Foul-Smelling Air". The New York Times. Retrieved January 14, 2017.
- "Bylaws of the Industrial Development Authority of the Town of Front Royal and the County of Warren, Virginia" (PDF). WCEDA.com. Warren County Economic Development Agency. December 20, 1994. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
- "County of Warren, Virginia, Annual Comprehensive Financial Report, for the Year Ended June 30, 2021" (PDF). Government of Warren County, Virginia. April 22, 2022. p. Table 15. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 23, 2022.
- "Front Royal Area Transit". Archived from the original on October 9, 2007. Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- Page County Transit Archived January 13, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
- "Welcome to Warren County Middle School". Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- "Home - Skyline Middle School".
- "Welcome to A.S. Rhodes Elementary". Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- "Welcome to E. Wilson Morrison Elementary". Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- "Welcome to Hilda J. Barbour Elementary". Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- "Welcome to Leslie Fox Keyser Elementary". Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- "Welcome to Ressie Jeffries Elementary". Archived from the original on October 9, 2006. Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved December 8, 2020.
- Genealogical and Memorial Encyclopedia of the State of Maryland: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Founding of a Nation, Volume 2. American Historical Society, Inc. 1919. pp. 439–442.
- Richardson, Robert (1870). Memoirs of Alexander Campbell: Embracing a View of the Origin, Progress and Principles of the Religious Reformation which He Advocated. J.B. Lippincott & Company. p. 376. Retrieved May 14, 2018.
- Mullins, Luke. "Strange Crazy Afterlife of Real Housewives of DC White House Gate Crasher Tareq Salahi", Washingtonian, Virginia, 27 April 2019.