Place:Bluefield, Tazewell, Virginia, United States

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NameBluefield
TypeTown
Coordinates37.244°N 81.275°W
Located inTazewell, Virginia, United States
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Bluefield is a town in Tazewell County, Virginia, along the Bluestone River. The population was 5,444 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Bluefield WV-VA micropolitan area which has a population of 107,342. The micropolitan area is the 350th largest statistical population area in the United States.

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Bluefield has not always borne the name Bluefield. The town originated around a small post office named "Pin Hook" in the 1860s. The town was renamed Bluefield in 1924 during a marriage ceremony, which was held in the city park to celebrate the renaming of the community to match its sister city across the West Virginia state line. The original name for the post office in the town was Pin Hook, and as the railroad was being built by Norfolk and Western, a blueprint for a town was laid out around the post office, and the town of Harman was born. Harman was a community whose borders are now roughly the same as the downtown area alongside the railroad. Bluefield, West Virginia beat Harman, Virginia out as the preferred community for the Norfolk and Western railroad to build its regional headquarters and main docking yards for the Pocahontas region. As a result, Bluefield, West Virginia grew at a much faster rate than its neighbor to the west.

Harman still held out hope to become a major city in the region - billing itself the "Pittsburgh of the South" by its mayor in an effort to attract a steel refining industry alongside the railyards. It is possible that the city may have had a chance to boom, had it not been for the Great Depression, which essentially killed any chance of Harman to grow. Even after the name change in the 1920s, the city did not start to expand outside of the downtown area until the 1950s, when the city annexed the small town of Graham to the west, and then began to expand to the more open rural foothills to the south of the city. Harman and Graham were separate towns until Harman changed its name to Bluefield, and then annexed the town of Graham.

As the largest town in Tazewell County, Virginia, Bluefield underwent a new wave of growth throughout the 1990s and the first decade of the new millennium. After a series of devastating floods in the past five years, the city is in the process of moving its entire downtown area (the area originally encompassing Harman, which lies in a flood plain) to the southernmost point in the city at the foot of East River Mountain. The area is already booming there - with a Super Wal-Mart and numerous strip malls and a medical center already operating along U.S. Route 460. The new downtown area will be located on the southern side of Route 460.

Bluefield, Virginia's most prominent residents are Bill Dudley, an NFL Hall of Famer; New York Giants RB Ahmad Bradshaw; and the widow of actor Lorne Greene, who previously lived in a mansion atop a hill overlooking the town's most historic home, the Sanders house. It now houses the Tazewell County Visitors Center.

The town was chosen by Hollywood film producers for the 1990s remake of the classic movie, Lassie, and has been mentioned by musicians in numerous songs, including Blessid Union of Souls' "Oh Virginia".

The Walter McDonald Sanders House and Alexander St. Clair House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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