Ichor Falls is a town in Mason County, West Virginia. It is a sister city of nearby Broodhollow.
Ichor Falls was founded by Edwin Cuthbert in 1804 after he and a group of settlers traveled to the Allegheny Plateau in West Virginia. Waterfalls to the north inspired the name Ichor Falls ("ichor", Greek: "blood of the gods").
Mining formed the basis of the town's economy from its beginning, earning the colloquial name of "The Iron City". However, the low-grade iron and impurities in the coal led to most of the mines closing or drastically reducing output by 1884.
Conditions surrounding the area resulted in sickly trees with brittle wood. Early buildings made with this would became compromised, including an Amish schoolhouse which collapsed in 1813. This event lead to the town holiday called "Totenkinder".
While this wood was not suitable for building material, it was able to be used in tools and furniture. Later, a chemist named Harold Marsh developed a process to improve the strength of the wood. Lumber and the related chemicals became the chief export. However, starting in 1946, illnesses began to be documented, all traced back to the wood sealant. People began moving out, and by 1958, Ichor Falls was close to becoming a ghost town.
During the next few years, looters took most items of value, but when they developed minor illnesses, the town developed a repuation for being cursed.
In 1978, the government determined the town was habitable again, but properties within the town were appraised as being mostly worthless. State Police from West Viginia and Ohio set up roadblocks to keep squatters out.
Eight years later, a coalition of land developers purchased most of Ichor Falls, with a plan to redevelop and revitalize the town. The process took nine years and was initially successful as business parks began to fill up, property values increased, and tourists came to experience the history of the town. However, by 2006, one section of the redevelopments in the Elysia district named Cedarspring was completely uninhabited. Despite the appeal of quaint country lving without having to renovate an older existing structure, the residents all eventually moved out. Few talk about why, but one former resident attributed it to a nebulous, oppressive feeling that was difficult to describe. One theory is that the development group did not attempt to merge Ichor Falls history into their new development, and instead bulldozed what they could and kept what they had to, as required by law.
Ichor Falls is located on the Allegheny Plateau in West Virginia. The town was settled in a "low, broad valley bordered by thick forest to the west and south, and jagged mountains criss-crossed by waterfalls to the north that fed a wide, churning river." The waterfalls created a permanent heavy mist in the valley.
The town's precise location is difficult to determine. Geographical coordinates place the town at 38.600237, -82.167435, less than a half mile east of the Ohio River, which serves as the border between Ohio and West Virginia. Provided that the majority of the town lays east of that point, there would be room for the aforementioned "thick forest" to the west.
However, one author gave a different position for the town, stating that the "closest he has been to Ichor Falls is Charlotte, North Carolina, which is about 150 miles south. It was close enough." Approximately 170 miles north of Charlotte is an unicorporated community named Glenwood, located in Mercer County, West Virginia, with coordinates of 37.33583333, -81.14916667 (37°20′09″N 81°08′57″W). The official coordinates are adjacent to the unincorporated community named Glenwood in Mason County (38°35′30″N 82°11′12″W).