Cairo & Kanawha

Cairo & Kanawha (HM1JV8)

Location: Elizabeth, WV 26143 Ritchie County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 4.68', W 81° 11.893'

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— Staunton-Parkersburg Turnpike —

Frederick Lemon discovered a vein of natural asphalt near Macfarlan Creek in 1852. Shortly after the Civil War, the narrow-guage Calico Railroad was completed from Cairo to facilitate mining at the newly created boomtown of Ritchie Mines.

After an 1873 explosion, the mines closed. Two decades later, the track was rebuilt as the Cairo and Kanawha Railroad, the asphalt mines reopened, and the rails were extended to Macfarlan. Railroad operations were discontinued in 1929.

Ritchie County was named for Thomas Ritchie, a Virginia journalist. Ritchie was a great supporter of the western counties of Old Virginia and a promoter of public schools.

Did you know? The first railroad to Ritchie Mines became known as the Calico Railroad when a local merchant observed that the tracks were no wider than a bolt of calico.
HM NumberHM1JV8
Placed ByAmerica’s Byways
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, April 1st, 2015 at 5:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 482854 N 4325451
Decimal Degrees39.07800000, -81.19821667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 4.68', W 81° 11.893'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 4' 40.8" N, 81° 11' 53.58" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)304
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling East
Closest Postal AddressAt or near WV-47, Elizabeth WV 26143, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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