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Wise County History
Wise County was fromed from Lee, Russell and Scott Counties in 1856. Named after Henry A. Wise, the Governor of Virginia at the time.
The first white explorers to have reached present-day Wise county are said to have been Thomas Walker and Christopher Gist, both in 1750. Several forts were built all along the Clinch from 1774 onward, but only after Chickamauga Cherokee leader Bob Benge was slain in 1794 was present-day Wise considered safe for white settlers even to hunt in. Among the earliest settlers within the county was William Wells in around 1792 [source: wikipedia]
Wise County is located in the Appalachian Mountains area.
Wise is the county seat.
In the 1880s, Big Stone Gap (once known as Mineral City) included but three farms, two small country stores, and a handful of mills. But the laying of several railroad lines into the Gap in the early 1890s--for the transport of coal and timber between Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee--transformed the isolated hamlet into a bustling gateway of industrial activity. As the region grew, eastern speculators promoted movement to and investment in the area. [Source: Library of Virginia]
CITIES, TOWNS and COMMUNITIES
Coeburn (formerly known as Guests Station)
Big Stone Gap (once known as Mineral City)
Appalachia - Esserville - Pound - Roda - St. Paul - Wise
NOTE: Norton, independent city, is located inside the boundaries of Wise County, but is NOT a part of the County, [though we will be putting the data for Norton (once known as Prince's Flat) on this site.]
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