West Troy. See Troy, U.S.

West Virginia is the most irregular in form of all the states of the American Union; nearly all the boundary lines follow the courses of rivers or the crests of mountain-ranges. It borders on Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Area, 24,780 sq. m. In the NE. a small portion of the state belongs to the Shenandoah valley. The ' mountain region' is formed by the western ridges of the Appalachian system. In the north the streams are tributary to the Potomac; but toward the south they frequently cut through the mountain-ridges in deep gorges, flowing W. or NW. to the Ohio River. The ' hilly region' is a portion of the Appalachian or Cumberland plateau. Much of the state is well wooded. The climate is equable, the rainfall abundant. The soil is mostly fertile. In the mountain region there is an abundance of fine pasturage, and the annual product of butter and cheese is very large. The great Appalachian coalfield covers almost the entire state. West Virginia ranks fourth among the states in its coal output, and second in the production of coke; the pig-iron and steel products are increasing. Salt and petroleum-oil are also products. Of the mineral springs the White Sulphur Springs are the most widely known. The chief cities are Wheeling, Charleston (the capital), Huntington, and Parkersburg. At Morgantown is the state university. Until the Secession, this state was included in Virginia; but the inhabitants of the northern and western counties remained loyal to the federal government, and in 1863 West Virginia was admitted to the Union as a separate state. Pop. (1870) 442,014; (1900) 958,800.