A town is a human settlement. Towns are larger than villages but smaller than cities, though the criteria to distinguish them vary between different parts of the world; the word town shares an origin with the German word Zaun, the Dutch word tuin, the Old Norse tun. The German word Zaun comes closest to the original meaning of the word: a fence of any material. An early borrowing from Celtic *dunom. In English and Dutch, the meaning of the word took on the sense of the space which these fences enclosed. In England, a town was a small community that could not afford or was not allowed to build walls or other larger fortifications, built a palisade or stockade instead. In the Netherlands, this space was a garden, more those of the wealthy, which had a high fence or a wall around them. In Old Norse tun means a place between farmhouses, the word is still used in a similar meaning in modern Norwegian. In Old English and Early and Middle Scots, the words ton, etc. could refer to diverse kinds of settlements from agricultural estates and holdings picking up the Norse sense at one end of the scale, to fortified municipalities.
If there was any distinction between toun and burgh as claimed by some, it did not last in practice as burghs and touns developed. For example, "Edina Burgh" or "Edinburgh" was built around a fort and came to have a defensive wall. In some cases, "town" is an alternative name for "city" or "village". Sometimes, the word "town" is short for "township". In general, today towns can be differentiated from townships, villages, or hamlets on the basis of their economic character, in that most of a town's population will tend to derive their living from manufacturing industry and public services rather than primary industry such as agriculture or related activities. A place's population size is not a reliable determinant of urban character. In many areas of the world, e.g. in India at least until recent times, a large village might contain several times as many people as a small town. In the United Kingdom, there are historical cities; the modern phenomenon of extensive suburban growth, satellite urban development, migration of city dwellers to villages has further complicated the definition of towns, creating communities urban in their economic and cultural characteristics but lacking other characteristics of urban localities.
Some forms of non-rural settlement, such as temporary mining locations, may be non-rural, but have at best a questionable claim to be called a town. Towns exist as distinct governmental units, with defined borders and some or all of the appurtenances of local government. In the United States these are referred to as "incorporated towns". In other cases the town lacks its own governance and is said to be "unincorporated". Note that the existence of an unincorporated town may be set out by other means, e.g. zoning districts. In the case of some planned communities, the town exists in the form of covenants on the properties within the town; the United States Census identifies many census-designated places by the names of unincorporated towns which lie within them. The distinction between a town and a city depends on the approach: a city may be an administrative entity, granted that designation by law, but in informal usage, the term is used to denote an urban locality of a particular size or importance: whereas a medieval city may have possessed as few as 10,000 inhabitants, today some consider an urban place of fewer than 100,000 as a town though there are many designated cities that are much smaller than that.
Australian geographer Thomas Griffith Taylor proposed a classification of towns based on their age and pattern of land use. He identified five types of town: Infantile towns, with no clear zoning Juvenile towns, which have developed an area of shops Adolescent towns, where factories have started to appear Early mature towns, with a separate area of high-class housing Mature towns, with defined industrial and various types of residential area In Afghanistan and cities are known as shār; as the country is an rural society with few larger settlements, with major cities never holding more than a few hundred thousand inhabitants before the 2000s, the lingual tradition of the country does not discriminate between towns and cities. In Albania "qytezë" means town, similar with the word for city. Although there is no official use of the term for any settlement. In Albanian "qytezë" means "small city" or "new city", while in ancient times "small residential center within the walls of a castle"; the center is a population group, larger than a village, smaller than a city.
Though the village is bigger than a hamlet In Australia, towns or "urban centre localities" are understood to be those centers of population not formally declared to be cities and having a population in excess of about 200 people. Centers too small to be called towns are understood to be a township. In addition, some local government entities are styled as towns in Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory, before the statewide amalgamations of th
Big Four, West Virginia
Big Four is an unincorporated community located in McDowell County, West Virginia, United States. Their post office has been closed. Known as Cirrus, Big Four is reported to have been renamed for the four men who operated the coal mines in the area
Welch, West Virginia
Welch is a city located in McDowell County in the State of West Virginia. The population was 2,406 at the 2010 census. Incorporated as a city in 1893, it is the county seat of McDowell County. Welch was incorporated in 1893 and named after Isaiah A. Welch, a former captain in the Confederate States Army who came to the region as a surveyor, helped establish the plan for the beginning of a new town at the confluence of Tug Fork and Elkhorn Creek. Welch was made the county seat of McDowell County in an election by county citizens in 1892 before Welch was incorporated as a city; the previous county seat was in Perryville on present day West Virginia Route 83 along the Dry Fork. Results of the election were contested so to avoid violence county records were secretly moved from Perryville to Welch at night in two wagons by James A. Strother and Trigg Tabor. On March 2, 1921, the Welch City Council met to discuss impeachment of Mayor J. H. Whitt. Whitt disrupted the proceedings; the Welch City Council asked the McDowell Co.
Sheriff's Dept. to investigate Whitt. That same day, Mayor Whitt shot and killed McDowell County Deputy Sheriff William Johnson Tabor, investigating the matter. Mayor Whitt won acquittal at his trial. Whitt left the area for parts unknown on September 27, 1921. On August 1, 1921, detectives from the Baldwin–Felts Detective Agency assassinated Matewan Police Chief Sid Hatfield as well as Ed Chambers at the McDowell County Courthouse located in Welch. In the first half of the 20th century during the opening of railroads and coal mines throughout the region, Welch became a prosperous city: the hub of retail business for a county approaching 100,000 in population, the location for three hospitals. After the production boom of World War II, oil began to supplant coal in many areas of domestic fuel supply. Mechanization of coal mining reduced the number of laborers needed in coal production. McDowell County's population peaked in 1950, began a decline over decades to follow. In 1960, however, McDowell County still ranked number one in the United States in total coal production.
The City of Welch proudly proclaimed itself "The Heart of the Nation's Coal Bin." When presidential candidate John F. Kennedy visited Welch by automobile caravan in 1960, he saw a city whose businesses were struggling due to a growing poverty rate throughout the county. What Kennedy learned here during his campaign for the 1960 West Virginia primary was believed to be the basis of the aid brought to the Appalachian region by the Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson administrations. During a speech in Canton, Ohio on September 27, 1960, he stated "McDowell County mines more coal than it has in its history more coal than any county in the United States and yet there are more people getting surplus food packages in McDowell County than any county in the United States; the reason is that machines are doing the jobs of men, we have not been able to find jobs for those men."The first recipients of modern era food stamps were the Chloe and Alderson Muncy family of Paynesville, McDowell County. Their household included fifteen persons.
On May 29, 1961, in the City of Welch, as a crowd of reporters witnessed the proceedings, Secretary of Agriculture Orville Freeman delivered $95 of federal food stamps to Mr. and Mrs. Muncy; this was the first issuance of federal food stamps under the Kennedy Administration, it was the beginning of a expanding program of federal assistance that would be legislated in the "War on Poverty." In the 1960s and 1970s, McDowell County coal continued to be a major source of fuel for the steel and electric power generation industries. As United States steel production declined, however, McDowell County suffered further losses. In 1986, the closure of the US Steel mines in nearby Gary, led to an immediate loss of more than 1,200 jobs. In the following year alone, personal income in McDowell County decreased by two-thirds. Real estate values plummeted. Miners were forced to abandon their homes in search for new beginnings in other regions of the country. In 2006, the city received national attention when it, along with Police Chief Robert K. Bowman were the defendants in a lawsuit brought by the ACLU after Bowman prevented rescuers from providing CPR to a gay man suffering cardiac arrest.
After the wrongful death claim was allowed to proceed, the lawsuit was settled for an undetermined amount. In recent years, Welch has attracted the construction of new state and federal prisons which are creating some sources of economic renewal; the city has begun restoration of its historic downtown area. Welch has been the celebrated location of an annual Veteran's Day Parade which over the decades has attracted a distinguished list of speakers, including Presidents Harry S. Truman and Lyndon B. Johnson; the McDowell County Courthouse and Welch Commercial Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The first public children's playground in West Virginia was built in Welch in 1913, it was constructed using private donations and after 1918 was maintained by the Young Women's Missionary Society of the Methodist Church. The playground sat across the street from the McDowell County Courthouse until 1930 when it became the site for the United States Post Office. Welch was the location of the first memorial building in the United States dedicated to the memory of Americans who gave their lives for their country in World War I, to honor the veterans of that war.
It was dedicated on May 30, 1923. The building was destroyed by fire; the historic site is now an empty lot near the county courthouse. In 1928, Welch resident Minnie Buckingham Harper became the first black wo
West Virginia is a state located in the Appalachian region in the Southern United States, considered to be a part of the Middle Atlantic States. It is bordered by Pennsylvania to the north, Maryland to the east and northeast, Virginia to the southeast, Kentucky to the southwest, Ohio to the northwest. West Virginia is the 41st largest state by area, is ranked 38th in population; the capital and largest city is Charleston. West Virginia became a state following the Wheeling Conventions of 1861, after the American Civil War had begun. Delegates from some Unionist counties of northwestern Virginia decided to break away from Virginia, although they included many secessionist counties in the new state. West Virginia was admitted to the Union on June 20, 1863, was a key border state during the war. West Virginia was the only state to form by separating from a Confederate state, the first to separate from any state since Maine separated from Massachusetts, was one of two states admitted to the Union during the American Civil War.
While a portion of its residents held slaves, most of the residents were yeomen farmers, the delegates provided for gradual abolition of slavery in the new state Constitution. The Census Bureau and the Association of American Geographers classify West Virginia as part of the Southern United States; however the Bureau of Labor Statistics classifies West Virginia as a part of the Mid-Atlantic. The northern panhandle extends adjacent to Pennsylvania and Ohio, with the West Virginia cities of Wheeling and Weirton just across the border from the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, while Bluefield is less than 70 miles from North Carolina. Huntington in the southwest is close to the states of Ohio and Kentucky, while Martinsburg and Harpers Ferry in the Eastern Panhandle region are considered part of the Washington metropolitan area, in between the states of Maryland and Virginia; the unique position of West Virginia means that it is included in several geographical regions, including the Mid-Atlantic, the Upland South, the Southeastern United States.
It is the only state, within the area served by the Appalachian Regional Commission. The state is noted for its mountains and rolling hills, its significant logging and coal mining industries, its political and labor history, it is known for a wide range of outdoor recreational opportunities, including skiing, whitewater rafting, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, hunting. Many ancient man-made earthen mounds from various prehistoric mound builder cultures survive in the areas of present-day Moundsville, South Charleston, Romney; the artifacts uncovered in these give evidence of village societies. They had a tribal trade system culture. In the 1670s during the Beaver Wars, the powerful Iroquois, five allied nations based in present-day New York and Pennsylvania, drove out other American Indian tribes from the region in order to reserve the upper Ohio Valley as a hunting ground. Siouan language tribes, such as the Moneton, had been recorded in the area. A century the area now identified as West Virginia was contested territory among Anglo-Americans as well, with the colonies of Pennsylvania and Virginia claiming territorial rights under their colonial charters to this area before the American Revolutionary War.
Some speculative land companies, such as the Vandalia Company, the Ohio Company and Indiana Company, tried to legitimize their claims to land in parts of West Virginia and present day Kentucky, but failed. This rivalry resulted in some settlers petitioning the Continental Congress to create a new territory called Westsylvania. With the federal settlement of the Pennsylvania and Virginia border dispute, creating Kentucky County, Kentuckians "were satisfied, the inhabitants of a large part of West Virginia were grateful."The Crown considered the area of West Virginia to be part of the British Virginia Colony from 1607 to 1776. The United States considered this area to be the western part of the state of Virginia from 1776 to 1863, before the formation of West Virginia, its residents were discontented for years with their position in Virginia, as the government was dominated by the planter elite of the Tidewater and Piedmont areas. The legislature had electoral malapportionment, based on the counting of slaves toward regional populations, the western white residents were underrepresented in the state legislature.
More subsistence and yeoman farmers lived in the west and they were less supportive of slavery, although many counties were divided on their support. The residents of this area became more divided after the planter elite of eastern Virginia voted to secede from the Union during the Civil War. Residents of the western and northern counties set up a separate government under Francis Pierpont in 1861, which they called the Restored Government. Most voted to separate from Virginia, the new state was admitted to the Union in 1863. In 1864 a state constitutional convention drafted a constitution, ratified by the legislature without putting it to popular vote. West Virginia abolished slavery by a gradual process and temporarily disenfranchised men who had held Confederate office or fought for the Confederacy. West Virginia's history has been profoundly affected by its mountainous terrain and vast river valleys, rich natural resources; these were all factors driving its economy and the lifestyles of its residents, who tended to live in many small isolated communities in the mountain valleys.
A 2010 analysis of
Northfork, West Virginia
Northfork is a town in McDowell County, West Virginia, USA, located on US Route 52 between Welch and Bluefield. The population was 429 at the 2010 census. Northfork was incorporated in 1901, so named because of its location on the north fork of the Elkhorn Creek at its junction with the south fork, it was consolidated with the town of Clark on March 26, 1948. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.96 square miles, all of it land. The town is on the Norfolk Southern Railway network; as of the census of 2010, there were 429 people, 173 households, 108 families residing in the town. The population density was 446.9 inhabitants per square mile. There were 242 housing units at an average density of 252.1 per square mile. The racial makeup of the town was 42.2% White, 57.1% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.2% of the population. There were 173 households of which 26.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 33.5% were married couples living together, 21.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 7.5% had a male householder with no wife present, 37.6% were non-families.
36.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.8% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 3.24. The median age in the town was 46.3 years. 23.1% of residents were under the age of 18. The gender makeup of the town was 47.6% male and 52.4% female. As of the census of 2000, there were 519 people, 229 households, 130 families residing in the town; the population density was 535.8 inhabitants per square mile. There were 298 housing units at an average density of 307.7 per square mile. The racial makeup of the town was 44.12% White, 53.95% African American, 0.19% Native American, 1.73% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.39% of the population. There were 229 households out of which 21.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 29.3% were married couples living together, 24.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 42.8% were non-families. 38.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.1% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older.
The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 3.03. In the town, the population was spread out with 22.5% under the age of 18, 8.1% from 18 to 24, 22.0% from 25 to 44, 23.3% from 45 to 64, 24.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females, there were 79.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 69.6 males. The median income for a household in the town was $16,544, the median income for a family was $19,236. Males had a median income of $27,917 versus $20,781 for females; the per capita income for the town was $10,001. About 31.3% of families and 34.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 52.6% of those under age 18 and 20.9% of those age 65 or over. Charlie Manuel, MLB baseball manager Tom Beasley - Washington Redskins
McDowell County, West Virginia
McDowell County is a county in the U. S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 22,113, its county seat is Welch. McDowell county is the southernmost county in the state, it was created in 1858 by the Virginia General Assembly and named for Virginia Governor James McDowell. It became a part of West Virginia in 1863, when several counties seceded from the state of Virginia during the American Civil War. McDowell County was home of the famous Rocket Boys, who were from Coalwood. McDowell County was formed by an act of the Virginia Legislature on February 20, 1858, from what was included in Tazewell County, Virginia. Five years the Legislature decided to allow county residents to determine where the county seat should be, they chose Perryville, the most populated town. "The "Restored Government" commissioners, in October 1866, located the county seat on a farm near the mouth of Mill Creek, where it remained until it moved to Perryville in 1874." The debate over the location of the county seat continued until 1892.
The town of Welch became the county seat. The county is popularly referred to as the "Free State of McDowell," a name coined by a local newspaper editor to refer to the unusual politics and demographics of the area. Increasing rates of poverty in McDowell County led U. S. President John F. Kennedy to remark in a speech in the city of Welch in May 1963:I don't think any American can be satisfied to find in McDowell County, in West Virginia, 20 or 25 percent of the people of that county out of work, not for 6 weeks or 12 weeks, but for a year, 2, 3, or 4 years. McDowell County, the southernmost county in West Virginia, is located at 37.37°N 81.65°W / 37.37. It is bordered by Virginia, to the south; the Appalachian Mountains determine most of the borders of the county. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 535 square miles, of which 533 square miles is land and 1.4 square miles is water. The county is in the shape of a semi circle, with the border following the mountains around the county.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 22,113 people, 9,176 households, 6,196 families residing in the county. The population density was 41.5 inhabitants per square mile. There were 11,322 housing units at an average density of 21.2 per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 89.1% white, 9.5% black or African American, 0.2% American Indian, 0.1% Asian, 0.0% from other races, 1.1% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 0.4% of the population. The largest ancestry groups were:13.7% Irish, 12.0% German, 11.5% English, 8.0% American, 2.8% Sub-Saharan African, 2.7% Italian, 2.0% Dutch, 1.1% Scotch-Irish Of the 9,176 households, 28.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.1% were married couples living together, 13.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 32.5% were non-families, 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.36 and the average family size was 2.86. The median age was 43.8 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $22,154 and the median income for a family was $28,413. Males had a median income of $31,229 versus $26,776 for females; the per capita income for the county was $12,955. About 27.5% of families and 32.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 44.3% of those under age 18 and 20.1% of those age 65 or over. Of 3,142 counties in the United States in 2013, McDowell County ranked 3,142 in the life expectancy of both male and female residents. Males in McDowell County lived an average of 63.5 years and females lived an average of 71.5 years compared to the national average for life expectancy of 76.5 for males and 81.2 for females. Moreover, the average life expectancy in McDowell County declined by 3.2 years for males and 4.1 years for females between 1985 and 2013 compared to a national average for the same period of an increased life span of 5.5 years for men and 3.1 years for women. High rates of smoking and obesity and a low level of physical activity appear to be contributing factors to the declining life expectancy for both sexes.
In 2015, McDowell County had the highest rate of drug-induced deaths of any county in the United States, with 141 deaths per 100,000 people. Neighboring Wyoming County had the second highest rate; the power of industrial and mining political systems turned it towards the Republican Party between 1890 and 1932 – being Republican enough to support William Howard Taft during the divided 1912 presidential election. McDowell County Schools operates the county's public K-12 education system of 7 elementary schools, 2 middle schools, 2 public high schools in McDowell County including Mount View High School, River View High School; the county has a private school, Twinbranch Pentecostal Christian Academy, located in Twinbranch. The current superintendent of schools is Nelson Spencer. McDowell County Schools were under state control as a'take-over' county from 2001 to 2013. U. S. Route 52 West Virginia Route 16 West Virginia Route 80 West Virginia Route 83 West Virginia Route 103 West Virginia Route 161 West Virginia Route 635The West Virginia Division of Highways is trying to construct new highways, such as U.
S. Route 121, known as the Coalfields Expressway; the county had one airport, Welch Municipal Airport, now closed indefinitely. Gary Keystone War Welch Anawalt Bradshaw Davy Iaeger Kimball
Bartley, West Virginia
Bartley is a census-designated place located in McDowell County, West Virginia, United States. It lies along the Western Railroad on the Dry Fork; as of the 2010 census, its population was 224. According to the Geographic Names Information System, Bartley has been known as Bartlett and Peeryville; the community derives its name from an original owner of the town site. Bartley was the site of one of the deadliest mine disasters in American history when the Pond Creek #1 mine, owned by the Pocahontas Coal Corporation, exploded on January 10, 1940 at 2:30 PM. 91 miners lost their lives that fateful day. The west side of the mine was not affected and 37 men escaped injury and another 10 men at the bottom of the shaft, used to drop the men into the mine, were not affected. A rescue effort was mounted and seven hours after the first explosion, while men were working to save their fellow miners, a second explosion occurred thus sealing the fate and ending the rescue effort for the 91 lost men. Upon investigation the cause of the explosion was found to be a gas pocket that had built up during the shift, touched off by a spark of unknown origin.
The mine had having dangerous gas conditions throughout its history. The memorial marker to the 91 men can be found at the local United Methodist Church located at Bartley; the explosion left 51 widowed women along with 169 orphaned children