Did you know…
1. Ohio County is as old as The United States of America. It was formed in 1776, the same year the Declaration of Independence was signed.
2. The county is named for the Ohio River–which is an Iroquois word meaning “great river” or “large creek.”
3. It’s one of three Ohio Counties in the U.S. There is an Ohio County in Kentucky and one in Indiana.
4. Ohio County, West Virginia, is one of only four counties in the country that boarder the state they share a name with. The others are Nevada County, California; Texas County, Oklahoma; and Delaware County, Pennsylvania.
5. Wheeling Island is the most populated island on the Ohio River.
6. From 1849 to 1851, the Wheeling Suspension Bridge was the largest suspension bridge in the world.
7. The Wheeling Suspension Bridge was also the first bridge to span the Ohio River.
8. At its peak in 1940, some 73,000 people lived in Ohio County. Today, some 43,000 people live there.
9. Founded in 1837, West Liberty University is the oldest institution of higher education in the state.
10. Wheeling Park High School was opened in 1976, consolidating Wheeling, Triadelphia, and Warwood high schools. It’s the only public high school in the county.
11. Wheeling Island has also been known as Zanes Island and Madison Island.
12. Tridelphia comes from the Greek word for “three brothers,” probably named for the three sons of the man who laid out the town.
13. Oglebay Park was once the estate of business man Earl W. Oglebay, whose company operated ships on the Great Lakes. The flagship of the Oglebay Norton Corporation was the Edmund Fitzgerald.
14. The Oglebay Festival of Lights is one of the largest light shows in the country.
15. Ohio County has six golf courses.
16. The Capitol Theatre is the largest theater in West Virginia. A short list of people who have performed there include Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, B.B. King and Jerry Seinfeld.
17. Betty Zane is named after a Revolution War hero who helped save Fort Henry.
18. Wheeling’s Victoria Theater is the oldest operating theater in West Virginia. It was opened in 1904.
19. Jamboree U.S.A., originally the WWVA Jamboree, was the longest running country radio show after The Grand Ole Opry.
20. Wheeling’s WWVA radio station was the first in West Virginia. It’s also the state’s only clear channel am station and can be heard in most of the eastern U.S. at night.
21. It cost $7 million to build the Wheeling Convention Center (now Wesbanco Arena) in 1977.