Brooke County is a county located in the state of West Virginia, United States. The county is part of the Weirton-Steubenville Metropolitan Area and has a rich history dating back to the early days of the state. Here are 7 interesting facts about Brooke County in West Virginia history:
1. Brooke County was formed in 1797 from Ohio County. The county was named after Robert Brooke, a former Governor of Virginia.
2. The first oil well in West Virginia was drilled in Brooke County in 1860. The well was located near the town of Wellsburg and produced a small amount of oil. The discovery of oil in the region would later lead to the development of the oil and gas industry in West Virginia.
3. During the Civil War, Brooke County was home to several battles and skirmishes. The county was strategically located on the Ohio River and was a major transportation hub for both Union and Confederate forces. The Battle of Buffington Island was fought near Brooke County in 1863, which was considered one of the most important battles in the Ohio River Valley.
4. The Brooke County Courthouse was built in 1870 and is still in use today. The courthouse is located in the town of Wellsburg and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
5. The first African American physician in West Virginia, Dr. Blanche C. Shelby, practiced medicine in Brooke County in the early 1900s. Dr. Shelby opened her practice in the town of Follansbee and was known for her dedication to her patients and her community.
6. Brooke County was home to one of the largest glass factories in the country in the early 1900s. The Fostoria Glass Company operated in the town of Moundsville and employed over 1,000 people at its peak. The company was known for its high-quality glassware and is still sought after by collectors today.
7. The Brooke County Veterans Memorial Park was established in 2002 to honor the men and women who have served in the United States Armed Forces. The park is located in Wellsburg and features memorials for each branch of the military, as well as a memorial for prisoners of war and those missing in action.
In conclusion, Brooke County has a rich history that spans over two centuries. From its role in the Civil War to its contributions to the oil and gas industry, Brooke County has played an important part in the development of West Virginia. Today, the county remains a vibrant and thriving community that continues to honor its past while looking towards the future.
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