Pendleton County is a county located in the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 7,695, making it the fifth-least populous county in West Virginia. Its county seat is Franklin. The county was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1788 from parts of Augusta, Hardy, and Rockingham Counties and was named for Edmund Pendleton (1721–1803), a distinguished Virginia statesman and jurist. Pendleton County was strongly pro-Confederate during the American Civil War; however, there were pockets of Unionists who supported the state government in Wheeling.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 698 square miles (1,810 km), of which 696 square miles (1,800 km) is land and 2.1 square miles (5.4 km) (0.3%) is water. It is the fifth-largest county in West Virginia by area.
As of the census of 2000, there were 8,196 people, 3,350 households, and 2,355 families residing in the county. The population density was 12 people per square mile (5/km²). There were 5,102 housing units at an average density of 7 per square mile (3/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 96.34% White, 2.12% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.18% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.28% from other races, and 0.77% from two or more races. 0.89% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 3,350 households out of which 28.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.40% were married couples living together, 8.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.70% were non-families. 25.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.87.
In the county, the population was spread out with 21.80% under the age of 18, 7.30% from 18 to 24, 27.00% from 25 to 44, 26.10% from 45 to 64, and 17.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 101.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 101.50 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $30,429, and the median income for a family was $34,860. Males had a median income of $25,342 versus $16,753 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,805. About 8.00% of families and 11.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.60% of those under age 18 and 12.50% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 7,695 people, 3,285 households, and 2,179 families residing in the county. The population density was 11.1 inhabitants per square mile (4.3/km). There were 5,132 housing units at an average density of 7.4 per square mile (2.9/km). The racial makeup of the county was 96.2% white, 1.9% black or African American, 0.3% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.2% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 0.9% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 30.1% were German, 8.1% were American, 7.3% were Irish, and 6.4% were English.
Of the 3,285 households, 24.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.6% were married couples living together, 7.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.7% were non-families, and 29.0% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.80. The median age was 47.3 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $33,323 and the median income for a family was $49,613. Males had a median income of $38,190 versus $23,243 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,401. About 11.0% of families and 15.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.3% of those under age 18 and 22.2% of those age 65 or over.