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Minerva is a village in Carroll, Columbiana, and Stark counties in the U.S. state of Ohio. The population was 3,720 at the 2010 census.
The Carroll and Stark County portions of Minerva are part of the Canton-Massillon, OH Metropolitan Statistical Area, while the Columbiana County portion is part of the Salem, OH Micropolitan Statistical Area.
The village of Minerva began when a surveyor named John Whitacre purchased 123 acres of land from Isaac Craig in 1818 for the construction of a log mill. The town, named for his niece, Minerva Ann Taylor born April 19, 1833, grew up around the mill. Minerva's first schoolhouse was built in 1846. In its early years the Sandy and Beaver Canal helped drive Minerva's economy, to be replaced in importance by the Pennsylvania Railroad in the 1840s. Minerva manufacturers Willard and Isaac Pennock patented the United States' first steel railroad car in the nineteenth century.
In 1915, the town's weekly newspaper, The Minerva News, charged one dollar for an annual subscription.
Legend of the Lost French Gold
According to local legend, in the 1760s the French held possession of Fort Duquesne, which later became Fort Pitt in Pittsburgh. George Washington was leading a company of 2000 British troops from the east to attack the fort. The British held up at Turtle Creek for the night. Indian scouts reported to the French that an attack was coming. The French loaded one ton of gold which was to be the French payroll onto 10 pack horses and sent them west along the Great Trail. They were to head to present-day Bolivar, Ohio where there was a blockhouse for shelter and provisions. That location later became the location of Fort Laurens. The British were successful in overthrowing the fort and learned of the escape with the gold. Four days out of Pittsburgh, the British were catching up to the French, so the French buried the gold to avoid it getting into British hands. It was reportedly buried at the fork of three springs. One mile to the west of that location a rock was placed in the fork of a tree. Over the years, many have tried to locate the legendary buried treasure, but to this day it has not been found.
Minerva is located at 40°43′44″N 81°6′7″W (40.728830, -81.102073), along Sandy Creek.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 2.23 square miles (5.78 km2), all of it land.
As of the census of 2010, there were 3,720 people, 1,580 households, and 1,009 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,668.2 inhabitants per square mile (644.1 /km2). There were 1,762 housing units at an average density of 790.1 per square mile (305.1 /km2). The racial makeup of the village was 97.7% White, 0.3% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.3% Asian, 0.3% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.7% of the population.
There were 1,580 households of which 29.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.4% were married couples living together, 13.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 36.1% were non-families. 32.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.93.
The median age in the village was 41.2 years. 23.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 22.8% were from 25 to 44; 25.9% were from 45 to 64; and 19.9% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the village was 47.4% male and 52.6% female.