The New River Gorge in Fayette County, West Virginia, is full of excitement, adventure, and history! When you are enjoying your weekend rafting adventure, be sure to visit Oak Hill, Beckley, Fayetteville and other small towns for a taste of times past blended perfectly with all of the necessities of daily life. These towns have something for everyone, so be sure to plan some time to visit them!
One such town is Oak Hill has the charm of small town America that only comes from a long, rich heritage and culture. Settlement in the region began as early as 1820, with incorporation in 1905. The fertile soil made Oak Hill a great destination for farmers, resulting in a rapid growth of population in the 19th and 20th centuries. The history of Oak Hill is also closely tied to the railroad system, especially the with the development of the Chesapeake & Ohio railway and the Virginian railway. The mining boom in the surrounding towns also helped to improve and increase the regional industry.
Today, visitors can experience the history of Fayette County through the Exhibition Coal mine, where guests can be taken on a tour of the Beckley Mine. These tours are led by former miners who take the time to relay their stories and experiences to guests. Guests to the mine learn about life in the 20th century and about the importance of the coal industry on historical West Virginia. Tours are available April 1st through November 2nd.
If you are hungry, visit the small town Fayetteville for a great selection of food and drinks, all with the charm and hospitality of a small town. One great stop is Dirty Ernie’s Rib Pit, where they are known for big portions, served with all the flavor of West Virginia. Another place is Pints and Pies, where gourmet pizza and craft beer are the name of the game. Wherever you go in southern West Virginia, you are guaranteed to find good food!
In addition to the New River Gorge, beautiful views, and good food, the small town of Oak Hill in Fayette County has an interesting claim to fame. Country singer Hank Williams is considered to have died in Oak Hill in 1953. He was found in the car of which he was a passenger in while it was stopped for other reasons. Fayette County is full of history and adventure beyond the gorge and the water. When you plan your rafting vacation, be sure to include some time to explore to history and culture of southern West Virginia.
For more information:
Beckley Coal Mine: http://www.beckley.org/exhibition_coal_mine/index.html
Dirty Ernies: www.dirtyernies.com
Pies and Pints: www.piesandpints.net