With a great selection of numerous regional attractions, the fun never ends in the City of Norton! Centrally located in the historic coal region of Southwest Virginia, the City of Norton is the perfect place to relax and immerse yourself in our cultural mountain music and outdoor recreation offerings.

Flag Rock, ©Tim & Angel Cox

Established as a town in 1894, and later as an independent city in 1954, Norton is a community proud of its heritage. Early settlement occurred in Norton in the late 18th century. William Prince settled in the area in 1787, and his name was associated with that location for a century in the reference to it as Prince’s Flats. As a rural frontier area, Prince’s Flats prospered through development of agriculture and lumber-related industries. Amazingly, Norton’s first export was not coal but rhododendron roots to be used as piping.

The first U.S. post office was established in 1883 and named Eolia. This was changed in 1890 to Norton to honor Mr. Eckstein Norton, president of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad.

It was during this boom period that Norton was connected to the industrialized east coast by steel ties of the Norfolk and Western Railroad. In 1889, the Norfolk and Western Railway Company dispatched five men to lay out a town. Freight and passenger trains arrived on the scene in 1891, and Norton found itself heir to a new prosperity. Expansion of population, commerce and industry followed in the wake of the railroad and related mining and industrial development. An urban settlement emerged and began to expand.

Leap forward 100 years and the City of Norton remains a regional transportation, commercial, professional, and medical center for parts of Southwest Virginia and Eastern Kentucky. For a business traveler or for a visitor wanting to see what the area has to offer, Norton’s convenient location and amenities (hotels, motels, restaurants, and shopping) provide a perfect hub to enjoy all that our region has to offer.

Within a short drive of the City’s hotels, are numerous natural attractions and some of the region’s “must see” destinations such as the Flag Rock Recreation Area, Norton’s mountainous masterpiece. Flag Rock affords visitors an overlook of the city from more than 1,000 feet above downtown. Picnic tables are scattered around unusual rock outcroppings. Two large picnic shelters may be reserved by groups. Camping sites, with electrical hookups, are available for a small nightly fee and RVs can be accommodated. Norton’s upper reservoir is stocked seasonally with trout for angling enthusiasts. Adjacent Jefferson National Forest is an outdoor person’s paradise with hunting, fishing and hiking opportunities.

If you enjoy traditional mountain music no visit is complete without a visit to The Country Cabin. The Country Cabin is one of the eight major venues on The Crooked Road, Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail. The Country Cabin offers traditional mountain music shows every Saturday nights and is also home to the annual Dock Boggs Festival.

Whether you are visiting for business or pleasure, consider the City of Norton as your base to enjoy all that the region has to offer. To learn more about the City, please visit our website at