Martinsburg is the Berkeley County seat. Berkeley includes the towns of Hedgesville, Berkeley, Georgetown and Jones Springs, among more than 25 other distinct communities. Thanks to its ideal location in the Washington-Baltimore Metropolitan area, Berkeley has seen much residential growth in the past two decades. Since there is a wealth of shopping and entertainment easily accessible in nearby areas, commercial growth is not as abundant and the neighborhoods of Berkeley get to maintain their picture postcard "Mayberry" appeal, which is closely guarded by area chambers of commerce and historical societies.
The second oldest county in West Virginia, Berkeley got its start back in 1772 and was named after Norbone Berkeley, the Baron of Botentourt and Colonial Governor of Virginia from the years 1768 to 1770. Visitors come to Berkeley and the surrounding areas for scenic autumn drives, a wealth of outdoor recreation opportunities and historical landmarks such as Sheperdstown, where James Rumsey performed his first steamboat experiments, the Antietam Battle Field in Sharpsburg, MD, and the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. Numerous local airports and an Amtrak station serve this area. It is easily accessible from all sides by smooth-running local interstates and public transportation systems.
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