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Williamson, West Virginia

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The county seat of Mingo County, Williamson, WV was incorporated as a town in 1894, and as a city in 1905. The town was named for the founder, Wallace J. Williamson, who at one time owned most of the land upon which the city is located. Williamson is located along the Tug Fork of Big Sandy River, about midway between the Wayne and McDowell County lines.

In 1890, the town was just a tiny village, but by 1900 the town's population had grown to about 1,200. By 1910, the town's population was 3,561. By the mid-1910s the city had about 100 general stores, graded primary and high schools, numerous churches, 2 banks, 6 hotels, the headquarters of 6 coal companies, and ten miles of paved streets.

About 3/4s of a mile west of Williamson was the location of the Red Brick Company, a manufacturer of commercial building brick established during the 1910s. Most of the company's product was used in Williamson. The company's clay pit was in the flood plain along Tug Fork.

Williamson, WV, circa 1970s -- "Heart of the Billion Dollar Coal Field"
   

By the mid-1920's had grown one of the major economic and industrial centers in the Southern Coalfields of West Virginia. The town's rapid growth was triggered by the arrival of the Norfolk & Western Railway (N&W) in 1892, which fostered the development of numerous mines in the vicinity of Williamson. The N&W soon established a large switching yard in East Williamson, where large numbers of coal cars were switched and made up into trains. Williamson soon became the division terminal for the Pocahontas and Scioto Valley Division of the N&W. The railroad's division shops at Williamson employed about 500 workers in the mid-1910s.

At some point soon after the development of the Williamson Coal Field began, Williamson started billing itself as "The Heart of the Billion Dollar Coalfield."

Hotels

Williamson, WV Hotels


Weather

Williamson, WV


Hospitals

Williamson Memorial Hospital


Census Data

Population: 3,414 (2000 Census)


Geodata

Elevation: 665 feet
Longitude: -82.2775
Latitude: 37.6742

   

Map: Williamson, WV

View a larger version of this map (best viewed full-screen) with links to driving directions and additional mapping options.

   

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

Top Map of Williamson, WV and vicinity


Williamson_Yard_1.jpg
Circa 1930s photos of the N&W Railway yard in Williamson, WV


Williamson_WV_railyard.jpg
Circa 1970s photo of Williamson yard


Sources

West Virginia Geological Survey Logan and Mingo Counties

Norfolk & Western Railway Industrial and Shippers Guide