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Wayne County, West Virginia
Map of West Virginia highlighting Wayne County
Location in the state of West Virginia
Map of the U.S. highlighting West Virginia
West Virginia's location in the U.S.
Founded January 18, 1842
Named for Anthony Wayne
Seat Wayne
Largest town Wayne
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

512 sq mi (1,326 km²)
506 sq mi (1,311 km²)
6 sq mi (16 km²), 1.2%
 - (2012)
 - Density

85/sq mi (33/km²)
Congressional district 3rd
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Wayne County is the westernmost county in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 42,481.[1] Its county seat is Wayne.[2] The county was founded in 1842 and named for General "Mad" Anthony Wayne.[3]

Wayne County is part of the Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Charleston-Huntington-Ashland, WV-OH-KY Combined Statistical Area.


Wayne County, West Virginia was originally Wayne County, Virginia, which was created from part of Cabell County in 1842. The county was named for General "Mad" Anthony Wayne.


There was no white settlement in the area that became Wayne County until after 1794 due to the constant threat of Indian attack, who were already present. The area was made safe for white settlement in 1794 through the defeat of the Shawnee at the Battle of Fallen Timbers by General "Mad" Anthony Wayne.

When the first permanent European settlers came to Wayne County around the year 1800, the area was part of Kanawha County. Most of the original pioneer settlers were self-sufficient farmers. They raised their own food, sheep for wool clothing, and made their buildings, furnishings and tools out of the surrounding forest. A few trading posts provided the manufactured goods the pioneers could not make for themselves. Later, grist mills at Wayne, Dickson, south of East Lynn and at Lavalette ground their corn into meal and their wheat into flour.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 512 square miles (1,330 km2), of which 506 square miles (1,310 km2) is land and 6 square miles (16 km2) (1.2%) is water.[4]

Rivers and Lakes[]

  • Ohio River
  • Big Sandy River
  • Twelvepole Creek
  • Beech Fork Lake
  • East Lynn Lake
  • Tug Fork

Major highways[]

  • I-64.svg Interstate 64
  • US 52.svg U.S. Highway 52
  • US 60.svg U.S. Highway 60
  • WV-37.svg West Virginia Route 37
  • WV-152.svg West Virginia Route 152
  • WV-75.svg West Virginia Route 75

Adjacent counties[]

Wayne County is one of two US counties (The other being Apache County, Arizona) to border two counties of the same name, neither of which is in the same state as the county itself (Lawrence County, Ohio and Lawrence County, Kentucky).


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 4,760
1860 6,747 41.7%
1870 7,852 16.4%
1880 14,739 87.7%
1890 18,652 26.5%
1900 23,619 26.6%
1910 24,081 2.0%
1920 26,012 8.0%
1930 31,206 20.0%
1940 35,566 14.0%
1950 38,696 8.8%
1960 38,977 0.7%
1970 37,581 −3.6%
1980 46,021 22.5%
1990 41,636 −9.5%
2000 42,903 3.0%
2010 42,481 −1.0%
Est. 2012 41,649 −2.9%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
1790-1960[6] 1900-1990[7]
1990-2000[8] 2010-2012[1]

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 42,903 people, 17,239 households, and 12,653 families residing in the county. The population density was 85 people per square mile (33/km²). There were 19,107 housing units at an average density of 38 per square mile (15/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 98.79% White, 0.13% Black or African American, 0.23% Native Americans, 0.20% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.08% from other races, and 0.56% from two or more races. 0.47% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 17,239 households out of which 31.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.20% were married couples living together, 10.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.60% were non-families. 24.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.40% under the age of 18, 8.70% from 18 to 24, 27.70% from 25 to 44, 25.30% from 45 to 64, and 14.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 95.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $27,352, and the median income for a family was $32,458. Males had a median income of $31,554 versus $20,720 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,906. About 16.20% of families and 19.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.50% of those under age 18 and 15.20% of those age 65 or over.

Wayne County Railroads[]

  • Norfolk Southern Railway's former N&W Kenova District
  • CSX Transportation's former C&O Kanawha Sub
  • Kanawha River Terminal Railroad

In popular culture[]

The following books take place in Wayne County:

  • Last Train to Dunlow by Kay and Jack Dickinson. OCLC 66901525.
  • On the Trail of the Powhatan Arrow by Kay and Jack Dickinson. ISBN 978-0-9774116-1-0.
  • Discovering Lavalette by Gina Simmons. ISBN 978-1-4389-8707-1.
  • Pioneers, Rebels and Wolves by Robert Thompson.
  • Climbing Trout's Hill by Robert Thompson.
  • East Lynn Booming by Robert Thompson. OCLC 363205071.
  • Images Of East Lynn by Robert Thompson.
  • Fear No Man by Robert Thompson.
  • Aging Wonders by Robert Thompson.
  • Few Among The Mountains by Robert Thompson.


Cities and towns[]

Unincorporated communities[]

  • Ardel
  • Armilda
  • Bethesda
  • Booton
  • Bowen
  • Brabant
  • Buffalo Creek
  • Centerville
  • Coleman
  • Cove Gap
  • Crockett
  • Crum
  • Cyrus
  • Dickson
  • Doane
  • Dunlow
  • East Lynn
  • Echo
  • Effie
  • Elmwood
  • Ferguson
  • Fleming
  • Genoa
  • Gilkerson
  • Girard
  • Glenhayes
  • Grandview Gardens
  • Hidden Valley
  • Hubbardstown
  • Lavalette
  • Mineral Springs
  • Missouri Branch
  • Neal
  • Nestlow
  • Oakview Heights
  • Prichard
  • Quaker
  • Radnor
  • Saltpetre
  • Shoals
  • Sidney
  • Stepptown
  • Stiltner (defunct)
  • Stonecoal
  • Sweet Run
  • Tripp
  • Webb
  • Westmoreland
  • Wilsondale
  • Winslow

See also[]

  • Beech Fork State Park
  • East Lynn Lake
  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Wayne County, West Virginia


Coordinates: 38°09′N 82°26′W / 38.15, -82.43

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Wayne County, West Virginia. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.