Nicholas County was formed in 1818 from Greenbrier, Kanawha, and Randolph. It was named for Wilson Cary Nicholas,
Governor of Virginia 1814-1816.
County seat is Summersville which was established in 1824 and named for Judge Lewis Summers who help create the county. Summersville was a major crossroads in the old historic Pocohontas Trail.
In July, 1861, a Confederate spy named Nancy Hart led an attack on Summersville which captured the Union forces and their leader, Captain Starr. Most of the town was burned.