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Taylor County, West Virginia facts for kids

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Taylor County
Clelland House, built in 1800.
Clelland House, built in 1800.
Map of West Virginia highlighting Taylor County
Location within the U.S. state of West Virginia
Map of the United States highlighting West Virginia
West Virginia's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  West Virginia
Founded January 19, 1844
Named for John Taylor of Caroline
Seat Grafton
Largest city Grafton
Area
 • Total 176 sq mi (460 km2)
 • Land 173 sq mi (450 km2)
 • Water 2.9 sq mi (8 km2)  1.7%%
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 16,895
 • Estimate 
(2019)
16,695
 • Density 95.99/sq mi (37.06/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 1st

Taylor County is a county in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 16,895. Its county seat is Grafton. The county was formed in 1844. and named for Senator John Taylor of Caroline.

Taylor County is part of the Clarksburg, WV Micropolitan Statistical Area.

History

This area was populated by the Adena culture in the Pre-Columbian Woodland period of the Native Americans in the United States.

Some of the first Europeans to visit the area are thought to have been British Army deserters from Fort Pitt, who reportedly fled their post in 1761 during the French and Indian War and roamed northwestern Virginia for several years thereafter. A European trader with the Hudson's Bay Company reportedly set foot in these lands as early as 1764.

Pruntytown is the oldest known white settlement in what is now Taylor County. Initially known as Cross Roads, on January 1, 1801 it was renamed Williamsport in honor of Abraham Williams, a longtime resident. The name was changed again on January 23, 1845 to honor pioneer resident John Prunty. This town served as the county seat of government from the county's founding in 1844 until a county election in 1878 moved that honor to Grafton, West Virginia.

The county was established by the Virginia General Assembly on January 19, 1844. It was formed out of parts of Barbour, Harrison, and Marion counties in Virginia. Most historians think the county was named after John Taylor of Caroline, while a minority believe it was named after Zachary Taylor.

The county became part of West Virginia in 1863. The county is home of Anna Jarvis, founder of the Mother's Day holiday, as well as the International Mother's Day Shrine.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 176 square miles (460 km2), of which 173 square miles (450 km2) is land and 2.9 square miles (7.5 km2) (1.7%) is water. It is the fifth-smallest county in West Virginia by area.

Major highways

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 5,367
1860 7,463 39.1%
1870 9,367 25.5%
1880 11,455 22.3%
1890 12,147 6.0%
1900 14,978 23.3%
1910 16,554 10.5%
1920 18,742 13.2%
1930 19,114 2.0%
1940 19,919 4.2%
1950 18,422 −7.5%
1960 15,010 −18.5%
1970 13,878 −7.5%
1980 16,584 19.5%
1990 15,144 −8.7%
2000 16,089 6.2%
2010 16,895 5.0%
2019 (est.) 16,695 −1.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790–1960 1900–1990
1990–2000 2010–2019

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 16,895 people, 6,778 households, and 4,703 families living in the county. The population density was 97.8 inhabitants per square mile (37.8/km2). There were 7,541 housing units at an average density of 43.6 per square mile (16.8/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 97.5% white, 0.7% black or African American, 0.4% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.1% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 0.8% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 26.1% were German, 22.9% were Irish, 11.3% were American, 10.3% were English, 7.2% were Italian, and 5.1% were Dutch.

Of the 6,778 households, 29.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.6% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 30.6% were non-families, and 26.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.89. The median age was 42.3 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $36,956 and the median income for a family was $45,620. Males had a median income of $38,085 versus $26,292 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,562. About 11.3% of families and 15.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.6% of those under age 18 and 16.0% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

City

Town

Unincorporated communities

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