DescriptionFounded in 1889 as the regional headquarters of the Norfolk & Western Railway, remnants of the natural-gravity switching yards remain in Bluefield. Named for the many chicory flowers growing wild along the hillsides, the town attracted many industries, including coal mining.
South of town, the border between the two Virginias is on the crest of East River Mountain. A sister city, Bluefield, Va., lies to the southwest. The West Virginia city's original municipal building, built in 1924, now houses The Bluefield Performing Arts Center, an active center for visual and performing arts that hosts regular concerts at Bluefield High School, Bluefield College and Harman Chapel; phone (304) 325-9117.
Bluefield is the southern anchor of the 187-mile Coal Heritage Trail which winds its way past company stores, miners' houses, railroad yards, coal tipples and 500 small company towns on its way north to Beckley; phone (304) 465-3720 or (855) 982-2625. Follow US 52 northwest to SR 16, which meanders north and east to Beckley; mile markers along the way indicate points of interest.
Baseball comes to Bluefield in mid-June when the minor league Bluefield Blue Jays, part of the Appalachian League, play ball at Bowen Field in City Park; phone (304) 324-1326.
Visitor InfoMercer County Convention and Visitors Bureau 621 Commerce St. BLUEFIELD, WV 24701. Phone:(304)325-8438 or (800)221-3206
ShoppingMercer Mall, 261 Mercer Mall Rd. at US 460 and SR 25, has more than 70 stores, including Belk, JCPenney and Sears. There are a number of antiques shops and art galleries on Bluefield Avenue and Mercer Street.
Self-guiding toursExamples of historic Victorian architecture can be seen on a walking tour of downtown Bluefield. Brochures are available at the convention and visitors bureau and chamber of commerce offices on Bland Street.
Things to SeeEastern Regional Coal Archives