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City of South Charleston
City
The Criel Mound in South Charleston.
The Criel Mound in South Charleston.
Location of South Charleston in Kanawha County, West Virginia.
Location of South Charleston in Kanawha County, West Virginia.
Coordinates: 38°21′9″N 81°42′43″W / 38.35250°N 81.71194°W / 38.35250; -81.71194Coordinates: 38°21′9″N 81°42′43″W / 38.35250°N 81.71194°W / 38.35250; -81.71194
Country United States
State  West Virginia
County Kanawha
Area
 • City 9.53 sq mi (24.69 km2)
 • Land 8.64 sq mi (22.38 km2)
 • Water 0.89 sq mi (2.31 km2)
Elevation
604 ft (183 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • City 13,450
 • Estimate 
(2019)
12,047
 • Density 1,394.01/sq mi (538.22/km2)
 • Urban
153,199 (US: 214th)
 • Metro
222,878 (US: 198th)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
25303, 25309
Area code(s) 304
FIPS code 54-75292
GNIS feature ID 1555663
Website City of South Charleston
D Street
Evening on D Street, from the Mound

South Charleston is a city in Kanawha County, West Virginia, United States. It is located to the west of Charleston. The population was 13,450 at the 2010 census. South Charleston was established in 1906, but not incorporated until 1917. The Criel Mound built circa 0 B.C. by the Adena Culture is adjacent to the downtown business district.

It is home to the Charleston Ordnance Center, a former naval munitions factory established for use in World World I.

The city is serviced by Interstate 64, U.S. Route 60, U.S. Route 119, West Virginia Route 601 and West Virginia Route 214, and is bisected by the Kanawha River. The city is serviced by the Kanawha Valley Regional Transportation Authority bus system. A general aviation airfield, Mallory Airport, is located off Chestnut Street, approximately two miles south of U.S. Route 60, with the nearest commercial aviation service being at Yeager Airport in Charleston. South Charleston serves as the headquarters to the West Virginia State Police.

Geography

South Charleston is located at 38°21′9″N 81°42′43″W / 38.35250°N 81.71194°W / 38.35250; -81.71194 (38.352455, -81.712001).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.51 square miles (22.04 km2), of which, 7.61 square miles (19.71 km2) is land and 0.90 square miles (2.33 km2) is water.

Climate

The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, South Charleston has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 3,650
1930 5,904 61.8%
1940 10,377 75.8%
1950 16,686 60.8%
1960 19,180 14.9%
1970 16,333 −14.8%
1980 15,968 −2.2%
1990 13,645 −14.5%
2000 13,390 −1.9%
2010 13,450 0.4%
2019 (est.) 12,047 −10.4%
U.S. Decennial Census

The median income for a household in the city was $37,905, and the median income for a family was $50,528. Males had a median income of $39,036 versus $25,978 for females. The per capita income for the city was $24,928. About 9.7% of families and 12.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.4% of those under age 18 and 9.8% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 13,450 people, 6,283 households, and 3,675 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,767.4 inhabitants per square mile (682.4/km2). There were 6,819 housing units at an average density of 896.1 per square mile (346.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 86.9% White, 8.4% African American, 0.3% Native American, 1.1% Asian, 0.3% from other races, and 3.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.0% of the population.

There were 6,283 households, of which 26.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.6% were married couples living together, 15.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.4% had a male householder with no wife present, and 41.5% were non-families. 36.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.14 and the average family size was 2.77.

The median age in the city was 42.3 years. 20.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.7% were from 25 to 44; 29.5% were from 45 to 64; and 17.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 45.7% male and 54.3% female.

Arts and culture

South Charleston attractions include Criel Mound (also known as the South Charleston Adena Burial Mound), and the South Charleston Museum. The South Charleston Museum is located in the historic LaBelle Theater on D Street, and features a West Virginia Film Series, Open Mic Night, exhibitions, and other events.

The city is also home to a community center, an ice arena, Little Creek Park, Little Creek Country Club and Joplin Park.

Economy

In South Charleston are the headquarters of International Industries, the parent company of a group of subsidiaries founded in 1947 by James H. "Buck" Harless, based primarily in natural resources such as coal and timber, but which also include the manufacturing, hotel and real estate industries.

Education

There are six elementary schools in South Charleston: Montrose Elementary, Ruthlawn Elementary, Richmond Elementary, Alum Creek Elementary, Bridgeview Elementary, and Weberwood Elementary. The main middle school is South Charleston Middle School (SCMS), which is located on 3rd Ave. SCMS houses grades 6–8. South Charleston High School (SCHS) is one of eight high schools in Kanawha County. SCHS is located on Eagle Way and houses grades 9–12. There are also two colleges located in the city. A South Charleston campus for BridgeValley Community and Technical College is located at the former Dow Chemical research facility and the Marshall University – South Charleston Campus is a branch of Marshall University.

Notable people

  • Former NFL player Carl Lee was also born and raised in South Charleston
  • Country singer-songwriter Kathy Mattea was born in the city's Thomas Memorial Hospital to parents who lived in nearby Cross Lanes, where she grew up
  • Thomas Memorial Hospital is named after Herbert J. Thomas, Jr., a World War II Medal of Honor recipient who was raised in South Charleston
  • Breece D'J Pancake, short-story writer, was born in South Charleston
  • Alex Hawkins, SCHS graduate, NFL player and broadcaster, "Captain Who" author
  • Larry Combs, musician, inducted into the Music Hall of Fame, Chicago symphony SCHS class of 1957
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