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Situated in the center of Giles County, the town of Pearisburg is located on a plateau above the New River at the intersection of U.S. Route 460 and State Route 100. It is bounded by Angels Rest and Pearis Mountain on the West; the New River on the North and East. Pearisburg is the County seat for Giles County.

The original name of this town was Giles Court House. Pearisburg was established when Capt. George Pearis donated 53 acres in 1806. This was surveyed and platted into a public square surrounded by 36 lots. By 1810, a two story stone courthouse sat at the intersection of Main St. and Wenonah Ave. and homes and stores were located on the lots. In 1811, the Giles Court House Post Office was approved.
By 1832 the town contained thirty stone and timber homes, taverns, churches, public and private schools, general mercantiles, tanyards, a shoe factory, shops of hatters, cabinet and chair makers, and professional offices for two attorneys and a doctor. In 1836, the stately brick courthouse still in use replaced the stone courthouse today. In 1854, the name of the town was changed from Giles Court House to Pearisburg in honor of George Pearis. By 1880 the population was 285 residents.

Progress came to Appalachia in the form of highway construction. However, the unintended consequence of increased mobility was the decimation of the business districts of small towns. Pearisburg was no exception. Downtown struggled to stay alive and many storefronts sat empty in the last half of the 20th century.

In 1992, the seventeen building historic district in Pearisburg was listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register. Nearby stands the 1829 Andrew Johnston House, a Federal- style brick house that is owned and operated as a museum by the Giles Historical Society.

Historical structures and sites around town include the King House, Densmore House, Hale House, King Johnston School-not the Community Center, Eastern Cemetery, Bunker Hill Civil War Cemetery, Pearis Cemetery and Fort Branch Neighborhood.

The historical designation of these buildings began the revitalization for Pearisburg . Building facades have been returned to their original design. Fresh paint, awnings and attractive doors have been incorporated as well as new sidewalks and streetlights. Business is returning and the town is on its way to recapturing the vitality it once knew.

Giles County contains 50 miles of the Appalachian Trail and the Town of Pearisburg is an official Appalachian Trail Community. The town is a hiker-friendly destination where many stop to rest, re-stock, and enjoy the many attractions. Pearisburg offers hikers a friendly post office, a variety of dining opportunities, a hostel, a public library with Internet access and many stores.

Other recreational opportunities abound. For example, just nearby is Cascade Falls; said to be one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Virginia. The 69 ft. falls cascades into a large pool surrounded by two hundred foot high cliff walls. The scene is breathtaking and peaceful; displaying both power and beauty.

Giles County has 37 miles of the New River. Besides canoeing, rafting, tubing and kayaking, the New River is considered to be a rival of the James and the Rappahannock as one of the best fishing rivers in Virginia. Freshwater game fish thrive in the New River. These game fish include smallmouth bass, spotted bass, largemouth bass, rock bass, striped bass, white bass, hybrid striped bass, muskellunge, walleye, black crappie, channel catfish, flathead catfish, yellow perch, redbreast sunfish, and bluegill. Other areas to fish are the creeks, streams and ponds.

Hunting is another favorite pastime in Pearisburg as Giles County contains 92.4 square miles of Jefferson National Forest. With an abundance of whitetail deer, wild turkey, grouse, rabbit, raccoon, coyote, black bear and bobcat, fall is one Giles County's busiest seasons.

For those who enjoy watching wildlife, the area offers spectacular views of wildlife including muskrat, mink, raccoon, fox, ducks, geese, heron, osprey, deer and black bear.
The Jefferson National Forest offers viewing areas, camping areas and hiking trails. Deer are often seen feeding at dusk in front of the National Forest signs as if posing for passersby to take their picture.

Birding areas include the Cascades National Recreation Area, Castle Rock Recreation Area and the New River at Eggleston. A variety of birds migrate through Giles County and can been seen from these locations

There are numerous boat landings in Giles County. If you camp, there are at least 7 campgrounds listed on the Giles County website. This site also includes a list of canoe liveries and outfitters.

For those people who enjoy country cooking, crafts and more, visit Pearisburg during one of its special annual events. For example, during Memorial Day weekend, the Giles County Historical Society sponsors their annual Living History Weekend where costumed Revolutionary War and Civil War re-enactors share their stories with visitors.

Pearisburg is home to the Art on the Wall exhibit behind the Courthouse. The Wall contains over eight hundred imaginative, colorful scenes on the shiny tiles. It is a lasting symbol of the great heart of the community and its 4th-7th graders who came together to create it. In addition, Pearisburg has multiple hand painted murals on local business exterior walls that have been painted by local artists.

Exhibited at the Courthouse is the Giles County Bicentennial Quilt, which consists of 36 hand appliquéd squares, representing County history.

If you enjoy taking a walk, bike ride or drive around the countryside, there is no better way than to take a self-guided tour. Brochures are available at The Giles County Chamber of Commerce and the Historical Society Museum for all four sections of the county: Southwest, Southeast, Northwest and Northeast.

One great way to learn about the culture of Pearisburg is to attend the many fairs and festivals. These include the Lords Acre Sale, Pearisburg Festival in the Park, , Relay for Life, Homecoming Parade and Christmas Parade. These events represent the traditions of the county, just as they have become a tradition of its people.

Our small-town charm and genuine hometown atmosphere prevails year round. It’s a relaxed community where local merchants often call customers by their first names and a friendly wave from a passing motorist is an everyday thing. Many people, after visiting Pearisburg, have said, "Small town, good people... this is just the place we were looking for!"