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Lost River State Park
|Hardy County was created from Hampshire County
in 1786 and named for Samuel Hardy, a distinguished Virginian.
Through this county flows the South Branch of the Potomac River with its surrounding magnificent valley. In all
West Virginia, one cannot find a more beautiful or interesting section than the South Branch Valley. Several miles
wide, "the Valley," as it is commonly called, contains lands whose fertility lends itself to successful
|Agriculture and stock raising have always been the main source of employment in this
area, with corn, wheat, apples, peaches, melons, cattle and poultry having important interests. Truck-farming has
a vital role, each household possessing its own small garden.
On either side of the Valley are high mountains with rough terrain and heavy timber. Throughout the area wild-life
is plentiful, and hunting has always been a major diversion and source of meat supply. In the winter snows are
whipped by winds of gale force, and snowdrifts are usually numerous.
The South Branch is a clear stream, quite wide, and of considerable depth in many places. Watering the Valley,
the river abounds in fish and creates many picturesque settings. At times the usually calm waters surge from low
banks and spread over the Valley, enveloping and ravishing the rich surrounding lands. The river has a peculiar
feature in the field of geology as it flows through the Valley. At one point the river, thousands of years ago,
did not cut across the mountains from one side to the other, but made a passage through them from end to end. This
geological exception is now in the form of a narrow, trough-like gap, about seven miles long, and appropriately
called "The Trough." At the present day, the gorge is several hundred feet deep, and the South Branch
flows in a narrow channel at the bottom, with almost perpendicular walls of rock on either side.
Hardy County Courthouse
|In the very center of the South Branch Valley, surrounded by high mountains, and located
on the east side of the junction of the Moorefield River and the South Branch of the Potomac, is Moorefield, West
Virgina, the county seat of Hardy County, West Virginia. A quiet farming center in 1860, the population of the
Moorefield area at that time was about 1,500. At this period there were no bridges at Moorefield, and the South
Branch had to be forded some three miles up the Valley, or the ferryboat, which was usually busy, had to be used.
The main towns that communicated with Moorefield were Petersburg, West Virginia, Romney, West Virginia, and New
Creek, West Virginia the latter having a stage line between the two points. --
* Moorefield * Wardensville
* Arkansas * Baker * Basore * Bass * Baughman Settlement * Bean Settlement
* Brake * Cunningham * Durgon * Fisher * Flats * Fort Run
* Inkerman * Kessel * Lost City * Lost River
* Mathias * McCauley * McNeill * Milam * Needmore * Old Fields
* Perry * Peru * Rig * Rock Oak * Rockland * Tannery
* Taylor * Walnut Bottom
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