Virginia state quick facts
|Largest city||Virginia Beach|
Queen Elizabeth I declared in 1584 that all the new 'British territory' (everything north of Spanish territory in Florida and south of French territories in modern day Canada) was free range for Sir Walter Raleigh to colonize. Sir Walter Raleigh named the entire region "Virginia," to honor the "Virgin Queen" Elizabeth I. Later as the population of the settlers grew, Virginia was later separated into colonies for effective governance.
How did Virginia get its name?
Facts about Virginia
Jamestown was the first permanent English settlement in the American Continent. It was also the first capital of Virginia. In 1699, Virginia’s capital was moved from Jamestown to Williamsburg. Richmond became Virginia’s state capital in 1779 and continues to serve as capital till date. Richmond also served as the capital of the Confederate States of America
Birth of a nation
Virginia has produced more U.S. presidents than any other state in the United States. Eight United States Presidents were born in Virginia: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, William Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor, and Woodrow Wilson. Seven Presidents are buried in Virginia: Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Tyler, Taft and Kennedy.
Why Virginia is nicknamed "Mother of Presidents and the Mother of Statesmen"?
Facts about Virginia state
From the birth of the nation until New York State surpassed it in population in 1805, Virginia was the most populous state in the United States. California surpassed New York State as most populous state in 1962, and it is expected to be the most populous state forever
Most populous state
Founded on February 8, 1693 by a charter issued by King William III and Queen Mary II, the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia is the second-oldest institution of higher education in the United States (Harvard University is the oldest) The first law school in America was established by the College of William and Mary in 1779.
William and Mary
Virginia is known as "the birthplace of a nation" as the American Revolution ended with the surrender of British General Cornwallis in Yorktown, Virginia
Birthplace of USA
The states of Kentucky and West Virginia were formed from sections of Virginia. In 1792, nine counties known as the Kentucky District of Virginia entered the union as the state of Kentucky, and in 1863, western counties of Virginia were approved to enter the union as the state of West Virginia.
Mother of KY
The Pentagon building in Arlington, Virginia is the largest office building in the world. It has 200 acres of lawn and 67 acres of parking lots. It has five sides, five floors above ground, two basement levels, with a total of 17.5 miles (28 km) long corridor, 131 stairways, 19 escalators, 13 elevators, 284 restrooms, and 7,754 windows.
Virginia is the only state to have the same plant for state flower and state tree, the Flowering Dogwood.
Six future first ladies (wives of US Presidents) were born in Virginia: Martha Washington, Martha Jefferson, Rachel Jackson, Letitia Tyler, Ellen Arthur, Edith Wilson.
Land of First Ladies
Arlington County was originally part of the ten-mile square parcel of land surveyed in 1791 to be part of Washington, DC. The U.S. Congress returned that portion of the land to the 'Commonwealth of Virginia' following a referendum among its citizens.
Jamestown, the first of the original 13 Colonies was founded for the purpose of silk cultivation. Silk to be traded with the Court of King James. After blight fungus destroyed the mulberry trees (silkworms' food), sericulturists planted tobacco as a cash crop.
Virginia state facts
Virginia was originally divided into “shires” as it was English tradition. The eight "shires" created in 1634 (Accomac, Charles City, Charles River, Elizabeth City, Henrico, James City, Warwick River and Warrosquyoake) were later renamed “counties”.
shires to counties
The Virginia House of Burgesses was the first legislative assembly of elected representatives in North America. ("Burgess" means an official of a municipality, or the representative of a borough in the English House of Commons) Candidates who ran for a seat in the Virginia House of Burgesses often use to dole out alcohol to influence the voters to vote for them. George Washington ran for a seat in the Virginia House of Burgesses at the age of 23 and refused to offer alcohol to voters and lost. He ran again for the same office in 1758, and provided almost half a gallon of alcohol for each voter. On the eve of the election, Washington thought "47 gallons of beer, 70 gallons of rum punch, 35 gallons of wine, 2 gallons of cider, and some brandy" may not be enough, but he ended up winning the election in a landslide.