Lynchburg, a city of Campbell co., Virginia, on the S. bank of James river, and on the James River and Kanawha canal, at the junction of the "Washington City, Virginia Midland, and Great Southern railroad with the Atlantic, Mississippi, and Ohio line, 90 m. W. by S. of Richmond; pop. in 1850, 8,067; in 1860, 6,853; in 1870, 6,825, of whom 3,353 were colored; in 1874. about 13,500. It occupies a steep acclivity rising gradually from the river bank, and breaking away into numerous hills, whose terraced walks and ornamented dwellings give a picturesque and romantic appearance to the town. About 20 m. in the background rises the Blue Ridge, together with the celebrated peaks of Otter, which are in full view. Lynchburg is supplied with water by a reservoir constructed in 1828, at an expense of 850,000. This reservoir is situated at a point 253 ft. above the level of the James river, and is capable of containing 400,000 gallons of water, which is forced a distance of 2,000 ft. by a double force pump, worked by a large breast wheel. The city is favorably situated for a large inland commerce, and for manufactures.
It has tributary to it a great extent of magnificent country, enjoys almost inexhaustible water power, which is yet however undeveloped, and is in the neighborhood of vast fields of coal and iron ore. The celebrated Botetourt iron works are not far distant. Tobacco manufacturing, which is the chief industry, employs about 40 establishments, and there are two iron founderies, besides the extensive machine shops of the Atlantic, Mississippi, and Ohio railroad company. There are two national banks with a capital of $400,000, an insurance and banking company with $350,000, three savings banks, a court house, jail, smallpox hospital, female orphan asylum, four large public school buildings, with a system of graded schools, including two high schools, several private schools, three daily and three triweekly newspapers, and one weekly, a monthly periodical, ten churches, and three chapels. - Lynchburg was laid out in 1780. It was strongly held by the confederates during the civil war, and was an important source of supplies till February, 1805, when Gen. Sheridan destroyed the canal and railroads for a considerable distance around it.
Lee was endeavoring to reach it when he surrendered.