Clarksville, Virginia

Clarksville, Virginia

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Clarksville is a town founded in Mecklenburg
Mecklenburg County, Virginia
As of the census of 2010, there were 32,727 people, 12,951 households, and 8,962 families residing in the county. The population density was 52 people per square mile . There were 17,403 housing units at an average density of 28 per square mile...

 County and overlapping across Halifax County in the U.S. state
U.S. state
A U.S. state is any one of the 50 federated states of the United States of America that share sovereignty with the federal government. Because of this shared sovereignty, an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and of his or her state of domicile. Four states use the official title of...

 of Virginia
Virginia
The Commonwealth of Virginia , is a U.S. state on the Atlantic Coast of the Southern United States. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" and sometimes the "Mother of Presidents" after the eight U.S. presidents born there...

, near the southern border of the state. The population was 1,139 at the 2010 census. Since the town has numerous buildings of the 18th, 19th, and early 20th century architecture, the downtown area of Clarksville has been designated an Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

 and Virginia's Historic Register. Clarksville claims the title of Virginia's only Lakeside town. Nearby the town of Clarksville is Occoneechee State Park
Occoneechee State Park
Occoneechee State Park is a state park near Clarksville, Virginia, located along Buggs Island Lake. Occoneechee State Park is 2,698 acres in size. It is named for the Occaneechi Indians, who lived in the area. "Bacon's Rebellion abruptly ended their prominence in 1676. This armed rebellion is...

.

The town is located on Kerr Lake
Kerr Lake
Kerr Lake is a reservoir along the border of the U.S. states of North Carolina and Virginia created by the John H. Kerr Dam...

, which is also known as Buggs Island Lake. The 50000 acres (202 km²) lake is popular for boating and fishing; especially for catfish
Catfish
Catfishes are a diverse group of ray-finned fish. Named for their prominent barbels, which resemble a cat's whiskers, catfish range in size and behavior from the heaviest and longest, the Mekong giant catfish from Southeast Asia and the second longest, the wels catfish of Eurasia, to detritivores...

 and many varieties of freshwater bass including largemouth bass
Largemouth bass
The largemouth bass is a species of black bass in the sunfish family native to North America . It is also known as widemouth bass, bigmouth, black bass, bucketmouth, Potter's fish, Florida bass, Florida largemouth, green bass, green trout, linesides, Oswego bass, southern largemouth...

, striped bass
Striped bass
The striped bass is the state fish of Maryland, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and the state saltwater fish of New York, Virginia, and New Hampshire...

 and crappie
Crappie
Crappie is a genus of freshwater fish in the sunfish family of order Perciformes. The type species is P. annularis, the white crappie...

.

The Virginia Lake Festival is held annually at Clarksville during the third weekend of July. The town often attracts approximately 80,000 visitors during this three-day event, formerly and colloquially known as "Lakefest". It culminates with a fireworks show on the lake.

The festival has been named among the "Top Twenty Festivals In The Southeast" by the Southeast Tourism Society for many years.

Geography


Clarksville is located at 36°37′20"N 78°33′44"W (36.622171, -78.562230).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the town has a total area of 2.0 square miles (5.2 km²), of which, 2.0 square miles (5.1 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (1.49%) is water.

History


Located along the Roanoke River, these lands were for centuries the home to the Occaneechi
Occaneechi
The Occaneechi are Native Americans who lived primarily on a large, long Occoneechee Island and east of the confluence of the Dan and Roanoke Rivers, near current day Clarksville, Virginia in the 17th century...

 Native Americans
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

. They controlled the junction of several trading paths in the area. The Eno-Occoneechee tribe are directly descendants of the original Occoneechees and currently reside nearby Vance County, North Carolina
Vance County, North Carolina
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 42,954 people, 16,199 households, and 11,647 families residing in the county. The population density was 169 people per square mile . There were 18,196 housing units at an average density of 72 per square mile...

.

Clarksville was the first incorporated town in the county of Mecklenburg. In 1818, the town was named after its founder, Clarke Royster. Settlers populated the area quickly because of the temperate climate and the fine tobacco soil.

By 1832, Clarksville was recognized as one of the fastest growing towns in Virginia. The Clarksville Tobacco Market was so large and important that the Roanoke Navigation Company was formed to transport the crop by way of the Roanoke River to Petersburg
Petersburg, Virginia
Petersburg is an independent city in Virginia, United States located on the Appomattox River and south of the state capital city of Richmond. The city's population was 32,420 as of 2010, predominantly of African-American ethnicity...

, a major export town, and other areas. A plank road was built from Clarksville to Petersburg (distance of 80 miles (128.7 km) for overland transport. In years to follow, the Roanoke Valley Railroad was built from Clarksville to Manson, North Carolina.

By 1848, Clarksville was known as a major market for leaf tobacco and a tobacco-manufacturing center. Large shipments of tobacco were exported to Europe. In 1860, R. H. Moss and Brothers Factory in Clarksville was producing more manufactured tobacco than any other establishment in Virginia or the Carolinas. To date, Clarksville proudly claims the title of the oldest continuous tobacco market in the world.

Demographics


As of the census
Census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2010, there were 1,139 people, 641 households, and 380 families residing in the town. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 671.5 people per square mile (259.2/km²). There were 753 housing units at an average density of 380.5 per square mile (146.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 71.18% White, 26.79% African American, 0.38% Native American, 0.38% Asian, 0.08% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 1.20% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.53% of the population.

There were 641 households out of which 21.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples
Marriage
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 11.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.7% were non-families. 37.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.07 and the average family size was 2.71.

In the town the population was spread out with 20.2% under the age of 18, 5.6% from 18 to 24, 23.9% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 25.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females there were 77.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 75.2 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $33,063, and the median income for a family was $39,625. Males had a median income of $30,556 versus $17,375 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the town was $20,546. About 6.4% of families and 9.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.8% of those under age 18 and 10.0% of those age 65 or over.

Notable residents

  • J. Hartwell Harrison, M.D.
    J. Hartwell Harrison, M.D.
    John Hartwell Harrison was a key member of the pioneer medical team that received the 1961 Amory Prize of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences for bringing kidney transplantation to the world....

    , was instrumental in the world's first kidney transplant
  • Jerome Kersey
    Jerome Kersey
    Jerome Kersey is a retired American professional basketball player in the National Basketball Association for a number of teams, but most notably for the Portland Trail Blazers. He also has served in various coaching roles in the NBA. Kersey is currently a resident of Happy Valley, Oregon in...

    , pro basketball player

External links