These Are The 10 West Virginia Cities With The Largest Black Population For 2018


We used science and data to determine which cities in West Virginia have the largest African American population.

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The Black community is one of the fastest growing communities in America this decade.

There are now 42 million people who identify as Black or African American living in America, making up 12% of the total population. According to the most recent American Community Survey, the Black population in West Virginia is 62,385 – at 3.4% of the total population of West Virginia.

The percentage growth of Blacks in America is the third largest percentage change for any race according to the Census’s race and ethnicity definition. As most scholars and historians agree, an increase in the diversity in America is a good thing.

We agree.

But how has the increase impacted West Virginia? Which cities and towns in West Virginia have seen the greatest increase in its Black population?

We broke down the most recent census data to determine the cities in West Virginia with the largest African American population in 2018:

  1. Bluefield (Photos)
  2. Beckley (Photos)
  3. Martinsburg (Photos)
  4. Charles Town
  5. Charleston (Photos)
  6. Keyser (Photos)
  7. Huntington (Photos)
  8. Fairmont (Photos)
  9. Dunbar
  10. Oak Hill (Photos)

Bluefield took the number one over all spot for the largest Black population in West Virginia for 2018.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked.

To see where West Virginia ranked as a state on diversity, we have a ranking of the most diverse states in America.

And if you already knew these places were Black, check out the best places to live in West Virginia or the most diverse places in West Virginia.

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How We Determined The Cities In West Virginia With The Largest Black Population For 2018

We still believe in the accuracy of data — especially from the census. So that’s where we went to get the breakdown of race across West Virginia.

That lead us to the Census’s most recently available data, the 2012-2016 American Community Survey data from the US Census.

Specifically, we looked at table B03002: Hispanic OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE. Here are the category names as defined by the Census:

  • Hispanic or Latino
  • White alone*
  • Black or African American alone*
  • American Indian and Alaska Native alone*
  • Asian alone*
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone*
  • Some other race alone*
  • Two or more races*
* Not Hispanic or latino

Our particular column of interest here was the number of people who identified as Black or African American.

We limited our analysis to non-CDPs with a population greater than 5,000 people. That left us with 27 cities.

We then calculated the percent of residents that are Black or African American. The percentages ranked from 24.0% to 0.0%.

Finally, we ranked each city based on the percent of Black population with a higher score being more Black than a lower score. Bluefield took the distinction of being the most Black, while New Martinsville was the least African American city.

Read on for more information on how the cities in West Virginia ranked by population of African American residents or, for a more general take on diversity in America, head over to our ranking of the most diverse cities in America.

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1. Bluefield

Bluefield, West Virginia

Population: 10,366
% African American: 24.02%
# Of African American Residents: 2,490
Percent Change Since 2010: 2.3%

2. Beckley

Beckley, West Virginia

Population: 17,348
% African American: 23.9%
# Of African American Residents: 4,147
Percent Change Since 2010: 11.93%

3. Martinsburg

Martinsburg, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 17,613
% African American: 14.32%
# Of African American Residents: 2,523
Percent Change Since 2010: 30.46%

4. Charles Town

Charles Town, West Virginia

Population: 5,682
% African American: 13.6%
# Of African American Residents: 773
Percent Change Since 2010: -12.46%

5. Charleston

Charleston, West Virginia

Population: 50,210
% African American: 11.25%
# Of African American Residents: 5,650
Percent Change Since 2010: 9.84%

6. Keyser

Keyser, West Virginia

Population: 5,261
% African American: 10.91%
# Of African American Residents: 574
Percent Change Since 2010: -14.07%

7. Huntington

Huntington, West Virginia

Population: 48,735
% African American: 8.31%
# Of African American Residents: 4,050
Percent Change Since 2010: 0.45%

8. Fairmont

Fairmont, West Virginia

Population: 18,699
% African American: 8.19%
# Of African American Residents: 1,531
Percent Change Since 2010: 5.59%

9. Dunbar


Population: 7,714
% African American: 7.6%
# Of African American Residents: 586
Percent Change Since 2010: -10.4%

10. Oak Hill

Oak Hill, West Virginia

Population: 8,722
% African American: 6.67%
# Of African American Residents: 582
Percent Change Since 2010: 18.29%

There You Have It – Black Populations Across West Virginia

If you’re looking for a breakdown of African American populations across West Virginia according to the most recent data, this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious enough, here are the least African American places in West Virginia:

  1. New Martinsville
  2. Vienna
  3. Grafton

For more West Virginia reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Most African American Cities In West Virginia

City Rank Population % African American
Bluefield 1 10,366 24.02%
Beckley 2 17,348 23.9%
Martinsburg 3 17,613 14.32%
Charles Town 4 5,682 13.6%
Charleston 5 50,210 11.25%
Keyser 6 5,261 10.91%
Huntington 7 48,735 8.31%
Fairmont 8 18,699 8.19%
Dunbar 9 7,714 7.6%
Oak Hill 10 8,722 6.67%
Princeton 11 6,056 6.51%
Morgantown 12 30,364 6.21%
Wheeling 13 27,758 6.07%
Buckhannon 14 5,645 5.33%
South Charleston 15 13,182 4.76%
Nitro 16 6,505 3.43%
Clarksburg 17 16,226 3.08%
Weirton 18 19,307 3.0%
Elkins 19 7,232 2.74%
St. Albans 20 10,788 2.73%
Bridgeport 21 8,364 2.53%
Parkersburg 22 30,962 2.1%
Hurricane 23 6,460 1.49%
Moundsville 24 8,858 1.16%
Grafton 25 5,156 0.97%
Vienna 26 10,566 0.83%
New Martinsville 27 5,255 0.0%

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