The West Virginia. Cyclopedia

Shepherdstown, West Virginia

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A community in Jefferson County, Shepherdstown, WV (map) is claimed to be the oldest town in West Virginia, presumably being settled between 1730 and 1734, although first settlers probably arrived here as early as 1719. Originally chartered in 1762 as Mecklenburg, the town's name was changed to Shepherd's Town in 1798 after Thomas Shepherd, the town's founder, and again in 1867 to Shepherdstown.

Shepherdstown, WV
Shepherdstown, WV Hotels

Shepherdstown, WV

Shepherdstown, WV is located about: 10 east of Martinsburg, WV; 10 miles northwest of Harpers Ferry, WV; 14 miles north of Charles Town, WV; 18 miles south of Hagerstown, MD; and 34 miles northeast of Winchester, VA.


Shepherdstown Historic District
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
Antietam National Battlefield (MD)



Shepherdstown Chronicle (weekly)

History: The first newspaper in West Virginia, "Potowmac Guardian and Berkeley Advertiser," was published is Shepherdstown in November, 1790, by Nathaniel Willis.

Radio Stations

WSHC (FM 89.7, Educational)


Shepherdstown Public Library


Colleges and Universities

Shepherdstown is the location of Shepherd University, formerly Shepherd College.

Public Schools

Jefferson County Schools



180px-Shepherdstown-WV-Map.gif Map of Shepherdstown, WV showing streets and highways, and nearby airports, parks, hospitals, buildings, churches, cemeteries, trails and more; with link to driving directions.

Topo map of Shepherdstown, WV and vicinity

Census Data

Population: 803 (2000 Census)


Elevation: 406 feet
Longitude: -77.8044
Latitude: 39.43

First Steamboat

At Shepherdstown in 1787, James Rumsey, conducted on the Potomac River the first public trial of the first successful steamboat. A monument to his memory has been erected by the State in the town.

Variant Name(s) for Shepherdstown, WV

Macklinboro, Macklinborough Town, Maclinborough, Mecklenburg, Mecklinborg, New Mecklenburg, Pack Horse Ford, Pack Horse Settlement, Potomack, Potomoke, Potowmack, Shepherd Town, Shepherd's Town, Shepherds Town, Swearingen's Ferry, and Swearingham's Ferry