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Fairmont, West Virginia

Fairmont, West Virginia
City
Downtown Fairmont and the Monongahela River in 2006
Downtown Fairmont and the Monongahela River in 2006
Nickname(s): "Friendly City"
Motto: "Spend a Day... Spend a Lifetime"
Fairmont, West Virginia is located in West Virginia
Fairmont, West Virginia
Location of Fairmont, West Virginia
Coordinates:
Country United States
State West Virginia
County Marion
Government
 • Type Council-manager government
 • Mayor Ron Straight
 • Deputy Mayor Chuck Warner
 • City Manager Jay Rogers
Area[1]
 • Total 9.00 sq mi (23.31 km2)
 • Land 8.62 sq mi (22.33 km2)
 • Water 0.38 sq mi (0.98 km2)
Elevation 984 ft (300 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 18,704
 • Estimate (2014)[3] 18,740
 • Density 2,169.8/sq mi (837.8/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 26554-26555
Area code(s) 304
FIPS code 54-26452
GNIS feature ID 1560581[4]
Website fairmontwv.gov
Child laborers at Monougal Glass Works in Fairmont, 1908. Photo by Lewis Hine.

Fairmont is a city in Marion County, West Virginia, United States. The population was 18,704 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Marion County.[5]

Contents

  • History 1
  • Geography 2
    • Climate 2.1
  • Transportation 3
    • Highways 3.1
    • Airports 3.2
  • Demographics 4
    • 2010 census 4.1
    • 2000 census 4.2
  • Local government 5
    • Current City Council 5.1
    • Past Mayors 5.2
  • Landmarks 6
    • Fairmont Senior High School 6.1
    • Fairmont State University 6.2
    • Pricketts Fort State Park 6.3
    • Other 6.4
  • Notable people 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10

History

  • Oral history indicates that in 1808, Boaz Fleming made his annual trek to Clarksburg to pay his brother's Harrison County taxes. While in Clarksburg, he attended a social gathering that included Dolly Madison, his cousin. He complained to her about having to travel over a hundred miles each year from his home to pay his Monongalia County taxes and his brother's Harrison County taxes. Dolly Madison supposedly suggested that he create his own county to save him all that travel. Six years later, Boaz Fleming circulated a petition to do precisely that, naming the proposed county Madison County, in her and her husband's, President James Madison, honor. The petition failed to gain sufficient support to be presented to the Virginia General Assembly. He then focused on creating a town near his farm. In 1819, a road was built from Clarksburg to Morgantown. His farm was about halfway between the two, making a good resting point. He laid out the town on the west side of the Monongahela River in 1819. It was incorporated on January 19, 1820 as Middletown. It is unknown if the town was called Middletown because of its location mid-way between Clarksburg and Morgantown or because Boaz Fleming's first wife, Elizabeth Hutchinson, was originally from Middletown, Delaware. Middletown was named newly formed Marion County's first county seat on February 18, 1842. At that time, William Haymond, Jr. suggested that the town's name be changed to Fairmont because the town had a beautiful overlook of the Monongahela River, giving it a "fair mount." The Borough of Fairmont was incorporated in 1843 by the Virginia General Assembly."
  • The site of the first Father's Day on July 5, 1908, originally celebrated in honor of the more than 200 fathers lost in the Monongah Mining disaster several months earlier. However, neither Fairmont nor the state of West Virginia chartered the holiday to make it official, so several other locales have erroneously taken credit for its inception over the years.[8]
  • William S. Barnes born 1735, recognized patriot, militia man in the Revolutionary War, and progenitor of the Barnes family currently living in Fairmont and surrounding areas was the first person to live in what is currently Marion County and Fairmont, WV. He constructed a corn mill to process grain a short distance above where the Fairmont City Reservoir currently resides, and his pioneer house stood where the Fairmont Chemical Company is constructed.[9]

Geography

The Tygart Valley River and the West Fork River join in Fairmont to form the Monongahela River. Buffalo Creek, a tributary of the Monongahela River, flows through the northern part of the city.[10]

According to the US Army Corp of engineers, Fairmont, West Virginia, is the port city farthest from the ocean (2,085 miles) via an inland waterway.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.00 square miles (23.31 km2), of which, 8.62 square miles (22.33 km2) is land and 0.38 square miles (0.98 km2) is water.[1]

Climate

Climate data for Fairmont, West Virginia
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 38
(3)
42
(6)
53
(12)
64
(18)
73
(23)
80
(27)
83
(28)
82
(28)
76
(24)
65
(18)
53
(12)
42
(6)
62.6
(17.1)
Average low °F (°C) 20
(−7)
22
(−6)
30
(−1)
38
(3)
49
(9)
57
(14)
61
(16)
60
(16)
53
(12)
41
(5)
33
(1)
25
(−4)
40.8
(4.8)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.45
(87.6)
2.95
(74.9)
4.07
(103.4)
3.59
(91.2)
4.85
(123.2)
4.24
(107.7)
4.92
(125)
4.18
(106.2)
3.51
(89.2)
3.03
(77)
3.68
(93.5)
3.38
(85.9)
45.85
(1,164.8)
Source: weather.com

Transportation

Highways

Fairmont is located in the North-Central region of the state, along West Virginia's I-79 High Tech Corridor. Major highways include:

Airports

Fairmont Municipal Airport (Frankman Field) is a public use airport located two nautical miles (4 km) southwest of the central business district of Fairmont. It is owned by the Fairmont-Marion County Regional Airport Authority.[11]

Demographics

2010 census

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 18,704 people, 8,133 households, and 4,424 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,169.8 inhabitants per square mile (837.8/km2). There were 9,200 housing units at an average density of 1,067.3 per square mile (412.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 88.9% White, 7.5% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 2.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.4% of the population.

There were 8,133 households of which 24.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.7% were married couples living together, 12.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 45.6% were non-families. 36.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.16 and the average family size was 2.83.

The median age in the city was 36.8 years. 18% of residents were under the age of 18; 16.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25% were from 25 to 44; 24.4% were from 45 to 64; and 16.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.2% male and 51.8% female.

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 19,097 people, 8,447 households, and 4,671 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,438.5 people per square mile (941.7/km2). There were 9,755 housing units at an average density of 1,245.6 per square mile (481.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 90.16% White, 7.26% African American, 0.26% Native American, 0.61% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.20% from other races, and 1.49% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.82% of the population.

There were 8,447 households out of which 21.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.2% were married couples living together, 11.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.7% were non-families. 36.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.16 and the average family size was 2.83.

In the city the population was spread out with 18.4% under the age of 18, 14.9% from 18 to 24, 24.1% from 25 to 44, 22.2% from 45 to 64, and 20.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 87.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.3 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $25,628, and the median income for a family was $37,126. Males had a median income of $27,944 versus $20,401 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,062. About 12.6% of families and 20.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.0% of those under age 18 and 9.7% of those age 65 or over.

Local government

Fairmont has a Council-manager government, whereby the mayor serves as chairman of the city council and the city manager takes care of the day-to-day operations. The current mayor, Ronald J. (Ron) Straight was elected to a two-year term as Mayor in January 2013.[14]

Current City Council

[14]

  • 1st District- Marianne Moran
  • 2nd District- Frank Yann
  • 3rd District- Rob Linger
  • 4th District- William "Bill" Burdick
  • 5th District- Fran Warner
  • 6th District- Dan Weber
  • 7th District- Philip Mason
  • 8th District- Tom Mainella (Deputy Mayor)
  • 9th District- Ronald J. "Ron" Straight (Mayor)

[15]

Past Mayors

  • William Elza Arnett, 1906-1908
  • Matthew M. Neely, 1908–1910
  • William Conaway
  • A.C. West
  • Fred T. Wilson, 1935–1940
  • Fred T. Wilson, 1944–1945
  • Albert F. Robertson, 1947–1950
  • James H. Hanway, 1951–1955
  • Wiliam G. Meyer, 1959
  • Forrest L. Springer
  • Albert F. Robinson
  • J. Richard Davis
  • William M. Hawkins
  • Gregory T. Hinton
  • Charles G. Manly II, 1994-1996
  • Nick L. Fantasia, 1996-2006
  • S. Scott Sears, 2007–2009
  • Matt Delligatti, 2009-2010
  • Bill Burdick, 2011-2012

Landmarks

Fairmont Senior High School

Fairmont Senior High School (FSHS) is an historic secondary school, listed on the National Register of Historic Places on March 22, 2002.[16] Architect William B. Ittner, who is responsible for over three dozen entries in the National Register, designed the school in the late 1920s. The school's architectural classification is Colonial Revival, with a stone foundation, brick walls, and asphalt shingle roofing.

Fairmont State University

Fairmont State University is a public university with an approximate enrollment of 7,700 students. The institution offers master's degrees in business, education, teaching, criminal justice, and nursing, in addition to 90 baccalaureate and 50 associate degrees. Originally named Fairmont Normal School, the college was located on the corner of Fairmont Avenue and Second Street and moved to its present location in 1917.[17]

Pricketts Fort State Park

Pricketts Fort is a 22-acre (8.9 ha) West Virginia state park and site of an historic fort built to defend early European settlers from raids by hostile Native Americans. The feuds were generally over territory the settlers appropriated following the Treaty of Fort Stanwix (1768).

Other

  • Fairmont's National White Collar Crime Center provides nationwide support to law enforcement agencies involved in prevention, investigation, and prosecution of economic and high-tech crime.
  • The Aerial Port Gymnastic Center is were the 1984 Olympic Medalist Mary Lou Retton was trained, now relocated to the former site of ABC Printing.

Notable people

Mary Lou Retton, the first female gymnast from outside Eastern Europe to win the Olympic all-around title
Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide college football team and winner of four national championships

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010".  
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder".  
  3. ^ a b "Population Estimates".  
  4. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  5. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  6. ^ Pepperoni Roll History
  7. ^ Floyd Abrams, Speaking Freely, published by Viking Press (2005), Page 153-58
  8. ^ [3]
  9. ^ [4]
  10. ^ West Virginia Atlas & Gazetteer. Yarmouth, Me.:  
  11. ^ FAA Airport Master Record for 4G7 (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective May 31, 2012.
  12. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  13. ^  
  14. ^ a b "The City of Fairmont - City Council". http://www.fairmontwv.gov. 
  15. ^ http://www.fairmontwv.gov
  16. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  17. ^ Images of America: Marion County by Thomas J. Koon
  18. ^ NASA IV&V Facility
  19. ^ "Former Philly Councilwoman Augusta Clark Dies at 81".  
  20. ^ Biography of Mary Lou Retton

External links

  • City of Fairmont website
  • Fairmont Community Development Partnership
  • Fairmont/Morgantown Housing Authority
  • Pepperoni Roll History
  • Marion County Historical Society
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