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Gary, West Virginia

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Gary, West Virginia

Gary, West Virginia
Town
Gary, West Virginia is located in West Virginia
Gary, West Virginia
Coordinates:
Country United States
State West Virginia
County McDowell
Founded 1902
Incorporated July 1, 1971
Named for Elbert H. Gary
Government[1]
 • Type Mayor–council
 • Mayor Larry Heizer
Area[2]
 • Total 0.87 sq mi (2.3 km2)
 • Land 0.84 sq mi (2.2 km2)
 • Water 0.03 sq mi (0.08 km2)
Elevation 1,411 ft (430 m)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 968
 • Estimate (2014)[4] 908
 • Density 1,152.4/sq mi (444.9/km2)
Time zone EST (UTC−05:00)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-04:00)
ZIP code 24836
Area codes 304, 681
FIPS code 54-30196
GNIS feature ID 1554536[5]

Gary is a town located along the Tug Fork River in McDowell County, West Virginia, United States. According to the 2010 census, the city had a population of 968. It was named for Elbert Henry Gary, one of the founders of U.S. Steel. The former coal towns of Elbert, Filbert, Thorpe, and Wilcoe became part of Gary at the time of its incorporation in 1971.[6]

Contents

  • History 1
  • Geography 2
    • Climate 2.1
  • Demographics 3
    • 2010 census 3.1
    • 2000 census 3.2
  • Notable People 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

History

Child coal miners in Gary, 1908. Photo by Lewis Hine.

In 1902, U.S. Steel began housing people in Gary Hollow for employment at one of the coal town's fourteen mines that produced metallurgical coal.[7] During the early 1940s, Gary Hollow, named for Elbert Henry Gary,[8] produced around a quarter of the amount of coal mined from McDowell County, as well as a quarter of the coal used by U.S. Steel during World War II.[7] At the time, the town boasted a large number of African American miners, and began integrate the school system in the 1950s.[7] However, Gary Hollow's education system was not completely integrated until 1964.[7]

On July 1, 1971, the city of Gary was incorporated after the city held an election on March 16, 1970.[9] Beginning in the 1970s, Gary's unemployment rate began to increase after most of the high-quality metallurgical coal had already been mined.[7] In March 1982 alone, around 550 miners employed by U.S. Steel in the town were laid off.[7] By the end of 1982, all U.S. Steel mines located in Gary were closed.[7] Former mayor, Charles Hodge claimed that U.S. Steel failed to make an effort help the city.[7]

In March 1983, the unemployment rate rose to 90%, the highest of any town in the United States.[7] Four years later, Gary Enterprise reopened one of the mines after purchasing it from U.S. Steel, and other companies arranged sub-leases to mine the remaining coal that was accessible.[7] In 1990, Gary only had 180 mining jobs.[7] Two years later, the now demolished U.S. Coal and Coke Company Store at Ream was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[10] In July 2003, U.S. Steel announced that they sold their remaining assets to PinnOak Resources.[7]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, Gary has a total area of 0.87 square miles (2.25 km2), of which, 0.84 square miles (2.18 km2) is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.[2][11]

Climate

Demographics

2010 census

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 968 people, 391 households, and 244 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,152.4 inhabitants per square mile (444.9/km2). There were 536 housing units at an average density of 638.1 per square mile (246.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 70.8% White, 27.7% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.6% of the population.

There were 391 households of which 26.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.4% were married couples living together, 19.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 37.6% were non-families. 34.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.20 and the average family size was 2.77.

The median age in the city was 52.4 years. 16.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 18% were from 25 to 44; 28.2% were from 45 to 64; and 30.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 46.2% male and 53.8% female.

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 917 people, 420 households, and 260 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,024.0 people per square mile (393.4/km²). There were 542 housing units at an average density of 605.2 per square mile (232.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 61.40% White, 35.55% African American, 0.11% Native American, and 2.94% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.55% of the population.

There were 420 households out of which 17.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.8% were married couples living together, 14.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.9% were non-families. 36.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 23.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.18 and the average family size was 2.77.

In the city the population was spread out with 19.0% under the age of 18, 5.7% from 18 to 24, 18.4% from 25 to 44, 25.0% from 45 to 64, and 32.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 50 years. For every 100 females there were 86.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $22,857, and the median income for a family was $30,938. Males had a median income of $28,750 versus $17,019 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,233. About 24.2% of families and 30.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 58.2% of those under age 18 and 18.5% of those age 65 or over.

Notable People

References

  1. ^ "McDowell County Mayors" (PDF). Region I Planning & Development Council. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  2. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010".  
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder".  
  4. ^ a b "Population Estimates".  
  5. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  6. ^ Garay, Ronald (2011). U.S. Steel and Gary, West Virginia: Corporate Paternalism in Appalachia. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press. p. 103.  
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Nyden, Paul J. (2013-02-09). "Book review: The rise and fall of Gary, W.Va.". The Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  8. ^ "Gary, West Virginia". Abandoned. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  9. ^ "Charter of City of Gary" (PDF). West Virginia Secretary of State Office. 1999-01-05. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  10. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  11. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  12. ^ "MONTHLY AVERAGES for Gary, WV".  
  13. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  14. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved June 11, 2013. 
  15. ^ "John Bero". Baseball Reference. Retrieved March 2014. 

External links

  • Coalfields of the Appalachian Mountains – Gary, WV
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