1108 Third Avenue | Suite 300 | Huntington, WV | 25701 | p 304.525.5131 | info@huntingtonchamber.org

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Huntington’s History

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Huntington’s History

The city of Huntington was founded in 1871 by railroad magnate Collis P. Huntington who was looking to build a western terminus for his fledgling Chesapeake and Ohio Railway. By February 1871, he had found the perfect location in a cornfield on the banks of the Ohio River.

For more than a century, the C&O was the region’s largest employer. The next century and a quarter witnessed many changes to the city that extends for some 15 miles along the river’s flood plain. Three bridges now span the beautiful Ohio and a major interstate runs south of town.

Between the river and the highway stands the Huntington region, home to more than 315,000 residents, a beautiful park system, factories, businesses, hotels, theaters, an art museum and, of course, Marshall University. Over the last 137 years, the city has seen many exciting changes and dramatic events.

Electric lights first shone on Huntington streets on November 12, 1886. This led city fathers to decide to add the new technological marvel called the electric street car to city transportation.