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City (pop., 2000: 53,421), capital of West Virginia, U.S. Situated in the Allegheny Mountains at the confluence of the Elk and Kanawha rivers, it was settled around Fort Lee shortly after the American Revolution. It was the home for a time of Daniel Boone. Divided in allegiance during the American Civil War, it was occupied by Union troops in 1862. It was named the state capital in 1870; the capital was briefly transferred to Wheeling but returned to Charleston in 1885. It is a distribution centre for coal, oil, and gas, and its manufactures include chemicals. Its capitol building (completed 1932) was designed by Cass Gilbert.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Charleston, visit Britannica.com.