In Patrick County the hills of the Piedmont meet the Blue Ridge Mountains. Except in the steep, forested mountain areas, dairying, cattle, peach and apple orchards, and tobacco are the basis of the economy, and forests provide lumber. Most of the population is scattered throughout the county on small, rural holdings. Ties with Henry County are long-standing, not least because Patrick was formed from Henry in 1790 and, like Henry, was named for Patrick Henry, making him the only person to have two Virginia counties named for him. With its lovely scenery, Patrick County has more than its share of recreational facilities. Fairy Stone State Park (PT9), Philpott Reservoir, and, along its northwestern border, the Blue Ridge Parkway are the star attractions. Newcomers, with their resort homes near the parkway and the reservoir, are bringing some diversity to a county that previously retained a high degree of cultural homogeneity. The county has two of Virginia's handful of remaining covered bridges (PT6, PT7). Between c. 1820 and c. 1930, Virginians built hundreds of these bridges across creeks and rivers, but fire and flood, design obsolescence, and the passage of time have taken a heavy toll on them.
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