A Railroad Town
New River Gorge National River
— National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
The Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) Railway mainline was Thurmond's main street, the core of this town's identity. As one of the busiest centers of activity in this region of coal commerce, Thurmond was the only place in a 73-mile stretch where locomotives could refuel with coal and refill water. Thurmond also served as a major center for steam engine service and repair.
The Thurmond of today hints at the once-bustling days of this railroad community in the early 1900s. The tall buildings downtown, along with the railroad commissary, water tank footers, coaling station, multiple lines of track, and remaining structural walls and homes are evidence of those prosperous times when everything had a connection to the railroad. This place was constantly buzzing with activities that supported all that the railroad brought to town.
Chesapeake & Ohio
Railway and the Nation
The C&O was the lifeblood of this gorge and the eastern US with 10,000 miles of track. The extraordinary growth of the nation at the turn of the last century drove the need for coal and its byproduct coke, the fuel for steel production. The high- quality
"The railroad was life, our
means of bread and butter."
Thurmond resident, 1919-1935
Over 40 percent of Thurmond's workers worked for the C&O, like these shop and yard laborers. (1923)
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Railroads & Streetcars.
Location. 37° 57.45′ N, 81° 4.733′ W. Marker is in Thurmond, West Virginia, in Fayette County. Marker is at the intersection of Thurmond Road (County Road 25/2) and Beury Mountain Road (County Road 25/2), on the right when traveling north on Thurmond Road. The marker is near the Thurmond Depot Visitor Center. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 254 River Crest Rd, 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. Thurmond, West Virginia (within shouting distance of this marker); New River Gorge National River (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Thurmond, West Virginia (within shouting distance of this marker); Thurmond Depot (within shouting distance of this marker); Where It All Started (within
Credits. This page was last revised on January 21, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 21, 2021, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 29 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 21, 2021, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.