West Virginia is a state in the eastern United States. It has a population of 1.8 million and the capital (and largest city) is Charleston. West Virginia borders Ohio and Pennsylvania to the north, Virginia and Maryland to the east and Kentucky to the south. The Ohio River separates the state from Ohio. The state was part of Virginia until 1861, when Virginia seceded from the Union but the western portion chose to remain. West Virginia is dominated by the Appalachian Mountains, where the coal industry contributes significantly to the local economy. Today, the state remains mostly rural, with agriculture and mining accounting for a large part of the economy. Other major cities include Wheeling and Huntington.