Huntington is a city located in the U.S. State of West Virginia along the Ohio River. Most of the city is in Cabell County, for which it is the county seat of government. A small portion of the city, mainly the neighborhood of Westmoreland, is in Wayne County. As of 2006, current data shows a city population of 49,007. Huntington is a part of the Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH, Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). As of current 2005 data, the MSA's population was 286,012. Huntington is the largest city within the MSA and the second largest city in West Virginia, behind Charleston.
As of the census2 of 2000, there are 51,475 people, 22,955 households, and 12,235 families residing in the city. The population density is 1,248.4/km² (3,234.1/mi²). There are 25,888 housing units at an average density of 627.9/km² (1,626.5/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 89.61% White, 7.49% Black or African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.82% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.30% from other races, and 1.53% from two or more races. 0.85% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 22,955 households out of which 20.6% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.9% are married couples living together, 13.1% have a female householder with no husband present, and 46.7% are non-families. 37.6% of all households are made up of individuals and 15.1% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.12 and the average family size is 2.80.
The age distribution, which is strongly influenced by Marshall's presence, is 17.7% under the age of 18, 17.5% from 18 to 24, 24.9% from 25 to 44, 21.8% from 45 to 64, and 18.0% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 37 years. For every 100 females there are 88.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 85.8 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $23,234, and the median income for a family is $34,756. Males have a median income of $30,040 versus $21,198 for females. The per capita income for the city is $16,717. 24.7% of the population and 17.5% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 29.8% of those under the age of 18 and 12.5% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
Huntington is home to several medical centers. St. Mary's Medical Center and Cabell-Huntington Hospital provide healthcare for Huntington and the surrounding metropolitan area. St. Mary's and Cabell-Huntington are jointly designated as the only trauma center in the region. St. Mary's is home to a regional heart institute, regional cancer center and regional neuroscience center. The Marshall University Medical Center is located at Cabell-Huntington. In addition, the Marshall University Medical School, now known as the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine in honor of Joan C. Edwards, a major benefactor, has a comprehensive cancer care center. It is also a distinguished leader nationwide for rural health care delivery.
The Huntington Veteran's Administration (VA) Medical Center, located on Spring Valley Drive, is an 80-bed medical and surgical care facility that offers primary inpatient and outpatient care, along with mental health services and subspeciality outpatient options. It is also the primary teaching facility for the Marshall University School of Medicine and is also affiliated with the Pikeville School of Osteopathic Medicine. In 1993, the Robert C. Byrd Clinical Addition expanded the hospital's surgery, radiology, laboratory, cardiology, nuclear medicine, and rehabilitation services and renovated inpatient care facilities. In 1998, a $10 million research facility was completed 
The city is also home to the state's largest psychiatric hospital, Mildred Mitchell-Bateman Hospital.
A banking and commerce center for the area between 1880 and the present, Huntington developed along the river's shore with its 19th century urban industry. The Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad had its western terminus in Huntington and railroad tracks bifurcate the city today. The railroad was historically the leading Huntington industry, along with coal, railcars, nickel, steel and glass.
Huntington has a central business district, located directly south of the Ohio River, east of the Robert C. Byrd Bridge, and west of 11th Avenue. It has another smaller business district, known as Central City, that is well known for its antique shops and for Heiners Bakery. There are several heavy industrial plants that line the Ohio River and the Guyandotte River, but the dominance of Marshall University's research prominence and the growing service sector, especially in the medical field, is reversing the effects of the rust belt that has plagued Huntington for two decades.
The city also has a wealth of architecture, most of it constructed at a time when Huntington was dominated by the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad and the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. The city can also lay claim to a new urban renewal stance, brought on by Heritage Village, Pullman Square, and the continued investment in numerous downtown properties. Offshoots of the Pullman Square project include the renovation of many historical structures along 3rd Avenue, a new 9th Street Plaza, and the Old Main Corridor project.
The Huntington Museum of Art is located in the hills above Ritter Park, featuring numerous collections and exhibitions; it is also home to the C. Fred Edwards Conservatory. The Museum of Radio and Technology is located near the west end of the park in a renovated elementary school. The Cabell County Courthouse and the Carnegie Library in the downtown also hold historical interests, along with Old Main at Marshall University, a structure dating to the 1840s and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Keith Albee, a former Vaudeville palace from the 1920s, is one of the architectural masterpieces of downtown Huntington, located along 4th Avenue. It is currently being renovated to become one of the state's largest performing arts centers. One block north, 5th Avenue is noted for its many historical church buildings. The city is also the site of an Adena Native American burial mound.
Traditional "drive-in" restaurants and hotdog stands are popular in the city, with locally-based favorites including Stewart's Original Hot Dogs, Frostop, Sam's Hot Dog Stand, Farley's (in Barboursville), and Hillbilly Hot Dogs making appearances throughout the region. Several drive-ins have closed in recent years, including Midway, Wiggins, and Cam's Ham. Cam's Ham still exists as a sit-down restaurant.
Huntington is home to eleven parks located in the neighborhoods of Huntington, the most visible being Harris Riverfront Park in the downtown and Ritter Park. Camden Park, an amusement park, is also adjacent to the city.
The residents of Huntington are served by the Cabell County School System, which includes Huntington High School, numerous elementary and middle schools, as well as private schools. Huntington is also the home of three colleges and universities, including Marshall University, the Robert C. Byrd Institute, and the Huntington Junior College.
The Cabell County Public Library system operates a main branch in the downtown and seven branches in neighboring towns.