West Virginia Governor A. B. Fleming was born in Fairmont on October 15, 1839. In the 1860s, he started a legal practice in his hometown and married Carrie Watson, the daughter of Fairmont’s richest man.
In the 1870s, he served in the legislature and was appointed as a circuit court judge. Fleming’s basic interest in politics came from his primary interest in life: the world of business. He invested in railroads, land, timber, oil, and coal.