West Virginia State Facts, Symbols and History
West Virginia Fast Facts
Capital: Charleston (popularity). 50,478 (2008 est.)
Population of West Virginia: 1,855.413 ( 2012 est.) (38th)
The West Virginia Quarter: The West Virginia Quarter is the fifth and final quarter of 2005 and the 35th quarter released in the United States Mint’s 50 State Quarters® Program.West Virginia was admitted to the Union on June 20, 1863, becoming our Nation’s 35th state. Referred to as the “Mountain State”, the West Virginia quarter displays the picturesque beauty of the state with a depiction of the New River and the New River Gorge Bridge.A quarter has the inscription “New River Gorge”.
Language: English, others
Largest Cities: (by population) Charleston, Huntington, Parkersburg, Wheeling, Morgantown, Wareton
Name: West was added to this area of Virginia during the Civil War as it refused to secede from the Union. Virginia was named after Elizabeth, the “Virgin Queen” of England.
Statehood: June 20, 1863 (35th state)
Symbols of West Virginia
- Animal: black bear
- Bird: cardinal
- Fish: char
- Flag of West Virginia
- Flower: big laurel
- Gemstone: chalcedony (Mississippi fossil coral)
- Insect: honey bee
- Motto: (Climbers are always free
- Nicknames: (most used) Mountain State
- Song: “West Virginia, My Home Sweet Home”, “West Virginia Hills” and “This Is My West Virginia”
- State seal
- Wood: sugar maple
West Virginia is a state in the southeastern United States, one of the so-called South Atlantic states (the only state in this group that does not have access to the Atlantic Ocean). The population in 2013 was 1,854,304 (37th in the US). The capital and largest city is Charleston. Other major cities are Huntington, Wheeling and Morgantown. See cities and towns in West Virginia.
The official nickname is Mountain State. The motto is Montani Semper liberi (“Mountains are always free”).
The area of the state is 62.8 thousand km (41st place among the states). To the north, West Virginia is bordered by Pennsylvania, to the east by Maryland and Virginia, to the west by Kentucky and Ohio. The territory of West Virginia is located in the Appalachian system (the highest point is Mount Spruce Knob). The Appalachian Plateau occupies about 60% of the area of the state and is generally dominated by mountainous terrain.
The largest rivers are Canova, Potomac and Monongahila. About 80% of the state is covered with forests.
- AbbreviationFinder: Demonstrates how the two-letter acronym of WV stands for West Virginia and a list of frequently used abbreviations related to the state of West Virginia.
The climate is continental, moderately humid, floods are not uncommon.
In ancient times, the Indian culture of Aden was developed on the territory of West Virginia, from which ritual burial mounds remained in the north of the state. By the early 17th century, the Cherokee, Delaware, Shawnee, and Susquehanna tribes lived here.
The first European settler in the state was in 1726 British Colonel Morgan Morgan, a Welshman by origin, who founded a colony on the Mill Creek River. A year later, a group of German settlers created the settlement of New Mecklenburg (now the city of Shepherdstown) on the right bank of the Potomac. Among the Europeans who settled here in the middle of the 18th century, immigrants from Scotland, Ireland and various German principalities prevailed.
In 1769, the city of Wheeling appeared on the territory of the province, in 1774 – Point Pleasant, in 1785 – Parkersburg, in 1788 – Charleston.
Initially, West Virginia was closely associated with neighboring Virginia, of which it was for some time. But already in 1776, the settlers of western Virginia petitioned Congress to allow them to create their own governments. If the inhabitants of eastern Virginia gravitated more towards the American South, then the western Virginians felt their commonality with the northern states.
After the outbreak of the Civil War, a majority of the state convention delegates voted in Richmond to secede from the Union. However, the delegates from the northwestern districts, at a separate conference in June 1861, chose their own governor. In October 1862, West Virginians voted in a referendum to create their own state called Canova, with Wheeling as its capital. On June 20, 1863, it officially became part of the United States under its current name, becoming the 35th state in a row.
In the periods from 1862 to 1870, and also from 1875 to 1885. Wheeling was the capital of the state; in 1870 this status passed to Charleston. The rapid industrial development of the state began in the last decades of the 20th century, which was associated with the development of mineral deposits and the construction of railways. The mining industry has been and continues to be the leading sector of the economy. The most intensive periods of development of the coal industry fell on the period 1910 – 1970. (West Virginia ranked first in the country in coal production).
The state has significant reserves of coal, natural gas, oil, salt and other minerals, which determine its development. The chemical industry based on the processing of minerals is developed. Agriculture is well developed (livestock breeding, poultry farming, growing apples, peaches, corn, tobacco). However, the number of farms has recently been declining. Tourism plays a significant role in the economy.
This state is very interesting not only for tourists, but also for the inhabitants of the country. On the way to West Virginia, you can pass amazing Willing – a city with a rich history, and then move high into the mountains to the Golden Palace and the Krishna temple. After a long ascent, the golden domes of the palace will suddenly shine in the sky before your eyes. Amazing stained-glass windows, richness and splendor of the Palace-Temple and its amazing history will not leave anyone indifferent.
The most famous landmark of West Virginia – a masterpiece of world architecture – is the famous residential building of the outstanding architect Frank Lloyd Wright – the House over the Falls. You can look at postcard albums or see the house in the cinema, but you will never understand its amazing beauty – this building must be seen with your own eyes!