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West Virginia Counties

There are fifty-five counties in the state of West Virginia. Fifty of them existed at the time of the Wheeling Convention in 1861, before which West Virginia was part of the state of Virginia. The remaining five (Grant, Mineral, Lincoln, Summers and Mingo) were formed within the state after its admission to the United States on June 20, 1863. At that time, Berkeley County and Jefferson County, the two easternmost counties of West Virginia, refused to recognize their inclusion in the state. In March 1866, the US Congress passed a joint mandate assenting to their inclusion.

Logan County, West Virginia

Logan County Education, Geography, and History

Logan County, West Virginia Courthouse

Logan County is a county located in the state of West Virginia. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 36,743. Its county seat is Logan. The county was formed in 1824 from parts of Giles, Tazewell, Cabell, and Kanawha counties.It is named for Chief Logan, famous Native American chief of the Mingo tribe.

Logan County comprises the Logan, WV Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Charleston-Huntington-Ashland, WV-OH-KY Combined Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Logan County Name

For Logan, famous Indian chief of the Mingo tribe


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Early History of Logan County, West Virginia

Logan County was created by an act of the Virginia Assembly on January 12, 1824, from parts of Cabell, Giles, Kanawha and Tazewell counties. The county was named in honor of the famous Mingo Indian Chief Logan, who was named by his father after his friend James Logan, secretary of the province of Pennsylvania, who was partially responsible for Logan's education.

Logan was considered friendly and cooperative by most settlers, until ten Indians, including two women, were killed and scalped by Englishmen on April 30, 1774 on Yellow Creek, in the Northern Panhandle. Among the victims were members of Logan's family. Several versions of the massacre circulated on the frontier. Lord Dunmore blamed a settler named Daniel Greathouse while Logan, called Tah-gah-jute by his people, blamed Michael Cresap, a Maryland soldier and land speculator who was building cabins along the Ohio River as a means of securing land. Although the evidence suggests that Cresap was in the vicinity at the time of the massacre, most historians believe that he was not involved in the murders. In any case, following the massacre, Logan allied his tribe with the British and went on the warpath, leading four deadly raids on the Virginia and Pennsylvania frontiers and instigating what would later be called Lord Dunmore's War of 1774.

Logan gained national fame for his eloquent speech that was delivered during the peace negotiations following the Indians' defeat at the Battle of Point Pleasant in 1774:

"I appeal to any white man to say if he ever entered Logan's cabin hungry and I gave him not meat; if ever he came cold and naked and I gave him not clothing. ... There runs not a drop of my blood in the veins of any human creature. ...Yet, do not harbor the thought that mine is the joy of fear. Logan never felt fear. He will not turn his heel to save his life. Who is there to mourn for Logan? Not one."

Logan was not at the decisive Battle of Point Pleasant, but returned to the main Indian camp during the peace negotiations. His famous speech was not delivered in council, but was given to Colonel John Gibson who wrote it down and delivered it on Logan's behalf during the negotiations. The speech was later published in many newspapers across the nation. After Lord Dunmore's War concluded, Logan moved from place to place and, in 1789, joined an Indian raiding party that attacked settlements in southwestern Virginia. He was killed by one of his own relatives in 1780, near present day Detroit. He said before his death that he had two souls, one good and the other bad, as he put it "...when the good soul had the ascendant, he [referring to himself] was kind and humane, and when the bas soul ruled, he was perfectly savage, and delighted in nothing but blood and carnage."

William Dingess was the first, permanent English settler in the county. He purchased 300 acres of land in the vicinity of the present city of Logan from John Breckenridge and built a cabin on the property in 1799. He was accompanied by John Dempsey, who built a cabin nearby. The following year, William's brothers, Peter and John, joined him. Soon afterwards, Captain Henry Farley moved into the county with his five daughters. The daughters soon married and their families all settled in the county, helping it to grow.

When the county was formed in 1824 six commissioners, William Buffington, William Thompson, Jr., Charles Hale, Samuel Shrewsbury, Conrad Peters and John Taylor, were named to locate the county seat. The initial meeting of the county court was held at the home of William Dingess, in the vicinity of the present city of Logan. The commissioners decided to keep the county seat there. At that time, the area was called Lawnsville, and was later known as Logan Court House. When the town was chartered by the Virginia General Assembly in 1852, the town was renamed Aracoma, in honor of the eldest daughter of Chief Cornstalk, the most famous chieftain of the era who lead the allied Indian nations at the Battle of Point Pleasant. Aracoma had moved to the town with her white husband, Bolling Baker, and was buried there. The town's name was changed to Logan in 1907 to conform with the name of the local post office.

Jack Demsey, world heavyweight boxing champion from 1919 to 1926 spent his boyhood in Logan. Anderson "Devil" Anse Hatfield, one of the family leaders in the famous family feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys, is buried just south of Logan.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 456 square miles (1,180 km2), of which 454 square miles (1,180 km2) is land and 1.9 square miles (4.9 km2) (0.4%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Northeast: Boone County
  • Northwest: Lincoln County
  • Southeast: Wyoming County
  • Southwest: Mingo County


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