Grundy, Buchanan County's only incorporated town, was named for Virginia-born Tennessee statesman Felix Grundy and has served as the county seat since 1858. The town experienced a wave of prosperity at the turn of the twentieth century when a number of large lumber companies located in the area after the Big Sandy and Cumberland logging railroad was completed in 1901. Grundy was built along the narrow banks of the Levisa River, and like many towns in this mountainous region, it was hit by devastating floods for decades, most notably in 1977. To protect the town from floodwaters, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers designed a flood control project that resulted in the demolition of most of the town's buildings and may some day result in its rebuilding. Only about half of a square block of the town's former commercial center remains, which includes the Buchanan County Courthouse (BC1), and it is surrounded by a stone flood wall. This demolition of nearly an entire town appears to be a first for Virginia communities.
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