Hey folks, it’s Becka from New River Gorge National River!
Thought I’d take a moment to share the history of Thurmond, WV the heart of the New River Gorge National River located across the river from my home! Thurmond was once a booming rail town during the first two decades of the 1900s, with coal being the main source of income in surrounding towns and the rail being the fastest transportation the area became very prosperous, in fact, it had the largest revenue on the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway. Thurmond’s banks were the richest in the state. Fifteen passenger trains a day came through town, with the depot serving as many as 95,000 passengers a year. The town’s stores and saloons did a remarkable business, and its hotels and boarding houses were constantly overflowing.
The mid 1930s marks the decline of booming business in Thurmond! With cars becoming more popular and roads accessible the once sprawling railway town started to decline. It is now home to one of four visitor centers in the New River Gorge National River, historic buildings, as well as a handful of residents.
It was around this time that the once grand, and scandalous, Dun Glen hotel located across the bridge from Thurmond mysteriously burned down. Dun Glen was known as the red light district because of the gambling, alcohol, and ladies. Dun Glen has few remaining walls today!
With all of the outdoor enthusiasts hiking local trails and rafting on the New River the town of Thurmond is still a highly visited area! Today the railway is still in use, the Amtrak runs through Thurmond and stops at the Thurmond Depot to pick up and drop off passengers!