Webster, the last county Virginia created before West Virginia became a state, dates from 1860 and honors Daniel Webster. According to the census taken that year, the county had a population of 1,555. The 2000 census counted 9,719, a significant decline from the 1940 peak of 18,080. Webster's terrain is almost entirely mountainous, and its first major industry was lumbering, followed by coal production. Lumbering is still an important industry, and Webster Springs, the county seat, hosts an annual wood chopping contest.
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