Fairmont occupies the steep hills surrounding the Monongahela River, which divides the town into east and west sections in Marion County (Northern Region).
Originally two towns, Palatine and Middletown, Fairmont was incorporated in 1843. Ferries shuttled people and supplies across the river until 1852 when a suspension bridge unified the town. During the 1850s, railroad access encouraged the development of coal mines in the area.
While coal continues to be a source of employment, today the town is on a hi-tech corridor with a NASA software facility and a software consortium.
Fairmont is the northern end of the scenic section of US 250, which runs 73 miles to Huttonsville and continues as US 219 to Lewisburg