The Heart of Town
New River Gorge National River
— National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
You are now in the heart of downtown Thurmond. In 1913 the Fayette Journal called Thurmond the “Biggest Little Town.” Today it is difficult to imagine why. Just three buildings survive from Thurmond’s once-thriving commercial district.
Thurmond once boasted a telegraph and express office, district telephone offices and a telephone exchange, two general stores, offices of two coal companies, a restaurant, drug store, law office, shoemaker, jeweler, photographer, meat processing plant, offices of the Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency, and the Thurmond Hotel.
But despite a thriving commercial district, even in its prime in the 1920s Thurmond’s resident population never exceeded 500.
“One of the finest little hostelries in the state is the new Thurmond Hotel…There are 35 rooms with seven bathrooms. The building is heated by steam and lighted with 400 electric lights…Nearly every room is filled every night.” Fayette Journal January 23, 1902.
The Thurmond Hotel (below, circa 1909) stood where you now stand. Beyond the hotel were more businesses,
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Railroads & Streetcars.
Location. 37° 57.534′ N, 81° 4.824′ W. Marker is in Thurmond, West Virginia, in Fayette County. Marker is on Thurmond Road. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Thurmond WV 25936, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Railroad Was the Town (here, next to this marker); Thurmond’s Decline (here, next to this marker); Changing Town (within shouting distance of this marker); A Town Built on Top of Itself (within shouting distance of this marker); Fueling Up Trains (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); A Railroad Town (about 700 feet away); Thurmond, West Virginia (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named Thurmond, West Virginia (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Thurmond.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 14, 2021. It was originally submitted on November 27, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 171 times since then and 14 times this year. Last updated on January 14, 2021, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 27, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.