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Jackson County

May 15, 2013

Jackson County is a county rich in heritage with one of the first land owners in the region being the first president, George Washington.

The county was formed in 1831 from parts of Kanawha, Mason and Wood counties. The county was named after Andrew Jackson, seventh president and a hero of the War of 1812. The county is one of five in the state named for presidents.

Oil and gas, as well as farming interest along the county's rich bottom land are important economic elements in the county. A large aluminum plant near Ravenswood is also a major employer for the county.

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Located at the intersection of Interstate 77 and Route 33, Ripley is a quaint and attractive community that serves as the seat of Jackson County government.

Thousands of visitors are attracted to the areas annual Fourth of July celebration, which is know as the "Biggest small town Fourth of July celebration in the United States." Ripley is also home of the annual Mountain State Arts and Crafts Fair held at Cedar Lakes Conference Center.

Ripley was officially established on December 19, 1832 and named the Jackson County seat. The town was named in honor of Harry Ripley, a circuit riding Methodist minister who lost his life crossing Mill Creek about three miles south of Ripley in 1830. The establishment of Ripley immediately became appealing to many who wanted build a permanent settlement in the area.

Fact Box

Population: 28,000

Land in square miles: 466

Number of people per square mile: 60.1

The city of Ravenswood lies on land that George Washington surveyed and purchased in 1772 from King George III, of England. During the Civil War the area marked where both Union and Confederate soldiers made strategic crossings over the Ohio River.

The West Virginia Assembly passed an act on March 10, 1852 chartering the city with the name Ravenswood. Henry Fitzhugh selected the name of the city after Lord Ravenswood, the hero of Sir Walter Scott's novel, The Bride of Lammermoor.

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