View Full Version : Thurmond West Virginia

Gary Weaver
07-08-2007, 06:13 PM
I have been traveling for a week. I found 2 really cool old ghost towns in West Virginia. Turn off I-19 onto highway 16 at Oak Hill WV. Drive south to Glen Jean highway 25. Drive about 15 miles to Thurmond. W.D.Thurmond bought 73 acres of land in 1873 which became the town of Thurmond. With in a year it was a booming coal mining town. The C&O railroad built a railroad yard and engine house with 60 steam locomotives and 75 work men. Train Depot & Banks were built in 1904, Kincaid building was built in 1906, 35 room 3 story motel was built in 1902, the town has 2 water towers, commissary, Mankin Drug, Coal station, engine house, town hall, Western Union telegraph, Jewelry store, apartments, club, restaurant, fire house, post office, grocery store, signal tower, dispatch office, clothing stores, 2 motels, 2 banks, several dry goods, business offices, movie theater, more. 75 thousand passangers traveled through the town of Thurmond each year by train. Most of the old town is STILL THERE. Amazing, totally awesome. In 1995 the town of Thrumond was turned into a National Park and the entire town has been preserved. The main part of town is located along the railroad tracks. There are lots of houses up on the hill. You can drive or walk the road up the hill to see the houses. I have 21 pictures and could probably have taken 30 more. I don't know how to post ALL the pics here. I will put 2 pic on my web page for the moment. I already have too much activity on my web page earthlink will either shut my web page down or want more money. Main street has 2 Banks and the Goodwin-Kincaid building. Amtrack still has trains that run through Thurmond from Chicago to Florida and New York to Florida 3 times a week. You can get on or off the train at Thrumond if you call Amtrack and schedule a stop. There is no fee to enter the park and explore the town. Not sure what the population of the town was at its peak in late 1920s. The banks failed in 1931, the mine closed and the town became a ghost town. Take your lunch, water, ice chest, spend the day. The river is so nice here, WOW be sure to bring a swim suit too the water is not deep, 1ft to 2ft in most places maybe 3ft deep at the deepest place. River is 50ft wide to 100ft wide. I am not sure how many houses are on the side of the mountain. The old train station is still there.



There is another ghost town about 10 miles down the river. The town of Kaymoor. I don't know much about this place other than the entire town is basically still there. There are no roads to the town. Pick up a map at the Canyon Rim Visitor Center on I-19 at New River Gorge. It is a 2 mile easy hike from the visitor center to Kaymoor or a 1/2 mile much harder hike from a different location. This town is original just as it was when everyone moved away. The old mine buildings, lots of other buildings and house are still there. I took several pics but don't seem to be any way to upload all these pics. Most of the pics are 750K I tried to reduce them to 50K but it screwed them up they are all weird colors, orange, blue, green, etc. I chose to take the 1/2 mile hike down the side of the mountain only because I as told there were things to see on the side of the mountain. The 2 mile hike is just easier hike and nothing to see along the way. The first part of the hike down the mountain probably less than 1/8 mile is a zig zag path that winds back and forth and ends at 2 horizonal mine entrances, a long building, coal mine car, and a very interesting house built out of rock and wood. I forgot to bring a flashlight the inside of the house is dark and there are copper head snakes and rattle snakes in WV. It is another 3/8 mile down the mountain on a 870 step wooden stairway. Lots of good stuff to see at the bottom take a back pack, food, water, spend the day at the bottom. The town is on the river bank.




07-09-2007, 05:08 AM
Gary, what an awesome trip! It looks like such a super area to explore.
To reduce pictures I do the following, right click on the photo, then choose "edit" it should then open in your Paint program, then at the top of that window, choose, "image" then "stretch/skew" you can then choose how much you want to shrink the photo, then save the changes.
There are probably better ways to shrink images, but I find this way easiest for me.

Robert Roy
07-09-2007, 05:37 AM
Very Interesting. This place is almost in my back yard,....by a couple of States!(:-). I'll have to look into this some more. Thanks for your posting this!

Robert Roy

07-09-2007, 05:37 AM
Great pics, Gary. Thanks for sharing......Speedy

Robert Roy
07-09-2007, 05:43 AM
I found these two website links on Google. Some more great pictures!

The Ghost Town of Thurmond, West Virginia (http://www.themerrycat.com/thurmondindex.shtml)Thurmond, West Virginia was once one of the major rail lines in the Eastern U.S. And in the early 1900's it handled twice as much freight as Richmond VA, ...
www.themerrycat.com/thurmondindex.shtml - 9k - Cached ( own&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=3&gl=us) - Similar pages (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=related:www.themerrycat.com/thurmondindex.shtml)

West Virginia Historical Society Quarterly (http://www.wvculture.org/HiStory/wvhs1403.html)There are many legends and myths surrounding the ghost town of Thurmond in southern West Virginia. Now used as a put-in for whitewater rafting trips, ...
www.wvculture.org/HiStory/wvhs1403.html - 14k - Cached ( - Similar pages (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=related:www.wvculture.org/HiStory/wvhs1403.html)