Col. Archibald Cary was a Virginia planter, soldier and major landowner, he was a political figure from the colony of Virginia. Col. Archibald Cary was born on January 24, 1721, he was the son of Ann Edwards Cary. He was educated in Williamsburg and Ampthill, Virginia and is believed to have attended the College of William and Mary. Upon his father's death in 1742 Cary inherited over 4,000 acres, lying on both sides of the Willis River, in what would become Cumberland and Buckingham counties, his plantation, called Buckingham, was identified on the Joshua Fry-Peter Jefferson map. Cary was a member of the House of Burgesses from 1756 to 1776. In 1764, he served on the committee of Burgesses that wrote resolutions against the proposed Stamp Act, but the following year he voted against Patrick Henry's Virginia Resolves as being premature and too inflammatory; as tensions with the mother country escalated, in 1773 Cary served as a member of Virginia's committee of correspondence. When the House of Burgesses was dissolved at the outset of the American Revolution, he served as a delegate to the Virginia Conventions.
At the Fifth Virginia Convention in May 1776, he served as the chairman of the committee of the whole that adopted the celebrated resolution of independence, which instructed Virginia's delegates to the Second Continental Congress to propose a declaration of independence. After Virginia became an independent state in 1776, Cary became the first speaker of the Senate of Virginia, remained in that position until his death. During the American Revolutionary War, Cary was placed in charge of recruitment and supplies in central Virginia, he was asked by Thomas Jefferson, his colleague in the House of Burgesses and fellow graduate of the College of William & Mary, to loan the Virginia Colony the funds to underwrite the cost of the Virginia militia, on the promise by Jefferson he would be repaid though he never was repaid. He did fund the Virginia militia for the following reason: though he had always been loyal to the Crown, he had grown tired of British attempts to continue promoting the sale of slaves in America.
Although he owned some 200 slaves, he had come to the conclusion that everything about the slave trade and the owning of slaves was only going to create major problems. Cary was known among Baptists for arresting many Baptists for preaching without a license. There was one incident. To solve the problem, Cary put a wall around the prison, his nickname was "Old Iron". He operated Chesterfield Forge, which fabricated iron, starting in 1750, ending in 1781, when it was burned by Benedict Arnold, he traded with England. On May 31, 1744 Cary married Mary Randolph, the daughter of Richard Randolph of Curles, sister of William Randolph of Tuckahoe, who married Maria Page; the two had nine children together and, through his marriage, Cary's children were lineal descendants of Pocahontas. Their children included: Anne Cary, who married her first cousin. Jane Cary, married Thomas Isham Randolph, the son of Isham Randolph and an uncle of United States President Thomas Jefferson, in 1768. Henry Cary, who died young.
Sarah Cary, who married Archibald Bolling II Elizabeth Cary, who married Robert Kincaid Mary "Polly" Cary, who married Carter Page Notes SourcesBrock, Robert K. Archibald Cary of Ampthill: Wheelhorse of the Revolution. Richmond, Virginia: Garrett and Massie, 1937. Little, Lewis Peyton. Imprisoned Preachers and Religious Liberty in Virginia. Lynchburg, Virginia: J. P. Bell Co. 1938. Tyler, Lyon Gardiner, ed. Encyclopedia of Virginia Biography, volume 2. New York: Lewis Historical Publishing, 1915. Yeck, Joanne L. "At a Place Called Buckingham," Kettering, Ohio: Slate River Press, 2011. "Cary, Archibald". Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography. 1900
Richmond is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. It is the center of the Greater Richmond Region. Richmond was incorporated in 1742 and has been an independent city since 1871; as of the 2010 census, the city's population was 204,214. The Richmond Metropolitan Area has a population of 1,260,029, the third-most populous metro in the state. Richmond is located at the fall line of the James River, 44 miles west of Williamsburg, 66 miles east of Charlottesville, 100 miles east of Lynchburg and 90 miles south of Washington, D. C. Surrounded by Henrico and Chesterfield counties, the city is located at the intersections of Interstate 95 and Interstate 64, encircled by Interstate 295, Virginia State Route 150 and Virginia State Route 288. Major suburbs include Midlothian to the southwest, Chesterfield to the south, Varina to the southeast, Sandston to the east, Glen Allen to the north and west, Short Pump to the west and Mechanicsville to the northeast; the site of Richmond had been an important village of the Powhatan Confederacy, was settled by English colonists from Jamestown in 1609, in 1610–1611.
The present city of Richmond was founded in 1737. It became Dominion of Virginia in 1780, replacing Williamsburg. During the Revolutionary War period, several notable events occurred in the city, including Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in 1775 at St. John's Church, the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom written by Thomas Jefferson. During the American Civil War, Richmond served as the second and permanent capital of the Confederate States of America; the city entered the 20th century with one of the world's first successful electric streetcar systems. The Jackson Ward neighborhood is a national hub of African-American culture. Richmond's economy is driven by law and government, with federal and local governmental agencies, as well as notable legal and banking firms, located in the downtown area; the city is home to both the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, one of 13 United States courts of appeals, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, one of 12 Federal Reserve Banks.
Dominion Energy and WestRock, Fortune 500 companies, are headquartered in the city, with others in the metropolitan area. After the first permanent English-speaking settlement was established in April 1607, at Jamestown, Captain Christopher Newport led explorers northwest up the James River, to an area, inhabited by Powhatan Native Americans; the earliest European settlement in the Central Virginia area was in 1611 at Henricus, where the Falling Creek empties into the James River. In 1619, early Virginia Company settlers struggling to establish viable moneymaking industries established the Falling Creek Ironworks. After decades of territorial conflicts with native tribes, the Falls of the James became more to white settlement in the late 1600s and early 1700s. In 1737, planter William Byrd II commissioned Major William Mayo to lay out the original town grid. Byrd named the city "Richmond" after the English town of Richmond near London, because the view of the James River was strikingly similar to the view of the River Thames from Richmond Hill in England, where he had spent time during his youth.
The settlement was laid out in April 1737, was incorporated as a town in 1742. In 1775, Patrick Henry delivered his famous "Give me Liberty or Give me Death" speech in St. John's Church in Richmond, crucial for deciding Virginia's participation in the First Continental Congress and setting the course for revolution and independence. On April 18, 1780, the state capital was moved from the colonial capital of Williamsburg to Richmond, to provide a more centralized location for Virginia's increasing westerly population, as well as to isolate the capital from British attack; the latter motive proved to be in vain, in 1781, under the command of Benedict Arnold, Richmond was burned by British troops, causing Governor Thomas Jefferson to flee as the Virginia militia, led by Sampson Mathews, defended the city. Richmond recovered from the war, by 1782 was once again a thriving city. In 1786, the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was passed at the temporary capitol in Richmond, providing the basis for the separation of church and state, a key element in the development of the freedom of religion in the United States.
A permanent home for the new government, the Greek Revival style of the Virginia State Capitol building, was designed by Thomas Jefferson with the assistance of Charles-Louis Clérisseau, was completed in 1788. After the American Revolutionary War, Richmond emerged as an important industrial center. To facilitate the transfer of cargo from the flat-bottomed James River bateaux above the fall line to the ocean-faring ships below, an enterprising George Washington helped design the James River and Kanawha Canal from Westham east to Richmond, in the 18th century to bypass Richmond's rapids on the upper James River with the intent of providing a water route across the Appalachian Mountains to the Kanawha River flowing westward into the Ohio eventually to the Mississippi River; the legacy of the canal boatmen is represented by the figure in the center of the city flag. As a result of this and ample access to hydropower due to the falls, Richmond became home to some of the largest manufacturing facilities in the country, including iron works and flour mills, the largest facilities of their kind in The South.
The resistance to the s
Tuckahoe known as Tuckahoe Plantation, is located in Tuckahoe, Virginia on Route 650 near Manakin, Virginia overlapping both Goochland and Henrico counties, six miles from the town of the same name. Built in the first half of the 18th century, it is a well-preserved example of a colonial plantation house, is distinctive as a colonial prodigy house. Thomas Jefferson is recorded as having spent some of his childhood here, it was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1969. Thomas Randolph first settled at Tuckahoe around 1714 and is recorded as contributing to the construction of the local Dover Parish church in the early 1720s. William Randolph III, Thomas' son, constructed the current dwelling beginning in the mid-1730's. Dendrochronology analysis indicates the timbers in the older wing date to ca. 1733 and this is supported by archaeological evidence dating the north porch to ca. 1740. The north wing features pine and black walnut paneling with exquisite moldings. William Randolph added a center hall and south wing, creating a unique "H" shape, completed by 1740.
William and his wife, Maria Judith Page, had three children but his wife died in 1744. William Randolph's cousin Jane married Peter Jefferson, they were close friends. Before William Randolph died in 1745, he added a codicil to his will asking that Peter Jefferson come to Tuckahoe Plantation and care for his three orphaned children; the Jeffersons moved from Shadwell in Charlottesville to Tuckahoe Plantation with their three daughters and two-year-old son Thomas. While at Tuckahoe, Jane Randolph Jefferson gave birth to three more children of whom the two sons died in infancy; the Jeffersons and Randolph orphans lived together in the "H"-shaped home until 1752. Peter Jefferson directed the activities of the plantation and its seven overseers, "retaining a connection to the estate" during his famous expeditions to map the western part of the state and after he returned to his own plantation of Shadwell.. Thomas Mann Randolph Sr. and his wife Anne Cary had thirteen children and she died in 1789.
Shortly afterward, Thomas Mann Randolph, Sr. remarried to Gabriella Harvie, the seventeen-year-old daughter of a Richmond attorney. Gabriella made significant changes to Tuckahoe, including painting the wooden paneling in the so-called "White Parlor", insisted on naming her son Thomas Mann Randolph, Jr. despite the fact that the eldest son of Thomas Mann Randolph and Anne Cary was named Thomas Mann Randolph, Jr. Thomas Mann Randolph Jr./II moved to Edgehill, Albemarle County and went on to be a prominent statesman and governor of Virginia from 1819-1822. Thomas Mann Randolph, Jr./III inherited Tuckahoe, but sold it for debts in 1830. The house passed through several families in the mid-19th century, but returned to the Randolphs in 1898 when it was sold to Harold Jefferson Coolidge and a consortium of Randolph and Jefferson descendants. In the 20th century, Tuckahoe featured prominently in an early test of the National Historic Preservation Act when the owners challenged Virginia's plan to route Route 288 through the property.
The house is occupied by owner/manager Addison B. Thompson and his wife Susan; the grounds are open for self-guided tours. The house is open for private tours by appointment and may be rented for private events; the two-story wood structure sits in its original spot. The structure forms an "H," with wings mirroring each connected by a central corridor; the entrances to the house are reached by flights of two porches. The stoop is covered by a projected pediment supported by simple wooden posts and is framed by a wooden railing. To either side of the entrance is a pair of windows as well as a central window over the entrance, each with dark shutters; each two-sashed window contains 9 panes of glass. The gabled roof rests on a simple cornice line with dentil moldings. A large brick chimney rises from either side of the home; the grounds around the house include outbuildings: the schoolhouse where Thomas Jefferson was educated, a kitchen house, three slave quarters, storehouse and the cemeteries of the Randolph and current Ball/Thompson families.
Masson and Brooke, Steven. VA-712, "Tuckahoe Plantation, River Road, Richmond vicinity, Manakin vicinity, Goochland County, VA", 8 measured drawings
Library of Virginia
The Library of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia, is the library agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia, its archival agency, the reference library at the seat of government. The Library moved into a new building in 1997 and is located at 800 East Broad Street, two blocks from the Virginia State Capitol building, it was known as the Virginia State Library and as the Virginia State Library and Archives. Formally founded by the Virginia General Assembly in 1823, the Library of Virginia organizes, cares for, manages the state's collection of books and official records, many of which date back to the early colonial period, it houses what is believed to be the most comprehensive collection of materials on Virginia government and culture available anywhere. Its research collections contain more than 808,500 bound volumes. Although the Library of Virginia was established in 1823, its history goes back to the collection of materials acquired for official use by the colonial Council and subsequent colonial and state authorities.
The first permanent home of the Library was a small room on the top floor of the State Capitol. The state's books and records outgrew this space, overflow books and documents were stored in several rented locations across Richmond. In an 1851 survey by the Smithsonian, the library was listed as having 14,000 volumes. In 1892, the General Assembly provided for a new Virginia State Library on Capitol Square in what is today known as the Oliver Hill Building. Over the ensuing forty years, the Library again outgrew that building, in 1940 it moved to its third location at the edge of Capitol Square between 11th and Governor Streets, it shared this space with the State Law Library, the Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals, the Virginia Department of Law, the Office of the Attorney General. The Library moved to its current location at 800 East Broad Street in 1997; the old library buildings were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2008 and 2005, respectively. The state library houses one of the most comprehensive collections on Virginia.
The collection covers Virginia government and culture. The collection focuses on the varied past of the commonwealth, documenting the lives of important and ordinary Virginians and their deeds; the collections include printed material and photographic collections. The Library supplies research and reference assistance to state officials. Since 1998, the Library of Virginia and the Library of Virginia Foundation have sponsored the annual Library of Virginia Literary Awards honoring outstanding Virginia authors and books about Virginia in the areas of fiction and poetry, they present annually a lifetime achievement award, whose past recipients are Ellen Glasgow, Edgar Allan Poe, Anne Spencer, Booker T. Washington, Mary Lee Settle, Louis D. Rubin, Jr. George Garrett, Merrill D. Peterson, William Styron, Tom Wolfe, Rita Dove, John Grisham, Lee Smith, Earl Hamner, Jr. Tim Robbins, Charles Wright, Barbara Kingsolver; the Library of Virginia sponsors the annual Virginia Women in History project to honor eight Virginia women and dead, who have made extraordinary contributions to the state or to their professions and the annual African American Trailblazers in Virginia project.
Library of Virginia hosts the Virginia Literary Festival. This event attracts authors and residents of Virginia. Attendees get the chance to meet new authors as well as well known authors; the library awards seven different literary awards at their annual event. Archives Month focuses on institutions and individuals that have made significant impact on the preservation and accessibility of historical records. In conjunction with the Archive Month the Library of Virginia produces posters commemorating archival and special collections repositories throughout the state. Many archives contribute to the celebration by hosting events. Library of Virginia hosts an ongoing series of Book Talk Series; these book talks feature books on the state of Virginia. These are hosted nearly every week and the cover a wide range of topics: from Virginia's role in the founding of the United States to the legacy of the Civil War to the many facets of the civil rights struggle in Virginia; the audience is given the opportunity to listen and interact with a variety of scholars and literary authors.
The Library's Virginia Heritage Resource Center offers a series of lectures by researchers and subject specialists showcasing the contents of the library's collection and its potential as a resource for researchers. Library of Virginia offers a variety of workshops each year for anyone who works in library services; these workshops and conferences are designed to develop new approaches. These workshops cover topics such as serving special needs patrons, cataloging databases, reference services. In 2007 and 2008 work began on the Virginia Memory project, which serves as an extension of the Library of Virginia's online presence; the project launched in 2009 and has four components, the Li
Pocahontas was a Native American woman notable for her association with the colonial settlement at Jamestown, Virginia. She was the daughter of Powhatan, the paramount chief of a network of tributary tribes in the Tsenacommacah, encompassing the Tidewater region of Virginia, she saved the life of Colonist John Smith in 1607, being held captive by her tribe, by placing her head upon Smith's when her father raised his war club to execute him. Pocahontas was captured and held for ransom by the Colonists during hostilities in 1613. During her captivity, she took the name Rebecca; when the opportunity arose for her to return to her people, she chose to remain with the Colonists. She married tobacco planter John Rolfe in April 1614 at age 17, she bore their son Thomas Rolfe in January 1615. In 1616, the Rolfes travelled to London where Pocahontas was presented to English society as an example of the "civilized savage" in hopes of stimulating investment in the Jamestown settlement, she became something of a celebrity, was elegantly fêted, attended a masque at Whitehall Palace.
In 1617, the Rolfes set sail for Virginia, but Pocahontas died at Gravesend of unknown causes, aged 20 or 21. She was buried in St George's Church, Gravesend in England, but her grave's exact location is unknown, as the church has been rebuilt. Numerous places and products in the United States have been named after Pocahontas, her story has been romanticized over the years, she is a subject of art and film. Many famous people have claimed to be among her descendants through her son, including members of the First Families of Virginia, First Lady Edith Wilson, American Western actor Glenn Strange, Las Vegas performer Wayne Newton, astronomer Percival Lowell. Pocahontas's birth year is unknown, but some historians estimate it to have been around 1596. In A True Relation of Virginia, Smith described meeting Pocahontas in the spring of 1608 when she was "a child of ten years old". In a 1616 letter, he again described her as she was in 1608, but this time as "a child of twelve or thirteen years of age".
Pocahontas was the daughter of Chief Powhatan, paramount chief of Tsenacommacah, an alliance of about 30 Algonquian-speaking groups and petty chiefdoms in Tidewater, Virginia. Her mother's name and origin are unknown, but she was of lowly status. Henry Spelman of Jamestown had lived among the Powhatan as an interpreter, he noted that, when one of the paramount chief's many wives gave birth, she was returned to her place of origin and supported there by the paramount chief until she found another husband. According to Powhatan traditions, Pocahontas's mother died in childbirth; the Mattaponi Reservation people are descendants of the Powhatans, their oral tradition claims that Pocahontas's mother was the first wife of Powhatan, that Pocahontas was named after her. According to colonist William Strachey, "Pocahontas" was a childhood nickname meaning "little wanton". Strachey's 1610 account describes her as a child visiting the fort at Jamestown and playing with the young boys. According to anthropologist Helen C.
Rountree, Pocahontas revealed her secret name to the colonists "only after she had taken another religious—baptismal—name" of Rebecca. Pocahontas is viewed as a princess in popular culture. In 1841, William Watson Waldron of Trinity College, Dublin published Pocahontas, American Princess: and Other Poems, calling her "the beloved and only surviving daughter of the king", she was her father's "delight and darling", according to colonist Captain Ralph Hamor but she was not in line to inherit a position as a weroance, sub-chief, or mamanatowick. Instead, Powhatan's brothers and sisters and his sisters' children all stood in line to succeed him. In his A Map of Virginia, John Smith explained how matrilineal inheritance worked among the Powhatans: His kingdom descendeth not to his sonnes nor children: but first to his brethren, whereof he hath three namely Opitchapan and Catataugh. First to the eldest sister to the rest: and after them to the heires male and female of the eldest sister. Pocahontas is most famously linked to colonist Captain John Smith who arrived in Virginia with 100 other settlers in April 1607 where they built a fort on a marshy peninsula on the James River.
The colonists had numerous encounters over the next several months with the people of Tsenacommacah—some of them friendly, some hostile. A hunting party led by Powhatan's close relative Opechancanough captured Smith in December 1607 while he was exploring on the Chickahominy River and brought him to Powhatan's capital at Werowocomoco. In his 1608 account, Smith describes a great feast followed by a long talk with Powhatan, he does not mention Pocahontas in relation to his capture, claims that they first met some months later. Margaret Huber suggests that Powhatan was attempting to bring Smith and the other colonists under his own authority, he offered Smith rule of the town of Capahosic, close to his capital at Werowocomoco, as he hoped to keep Smith and his men "nearby and better under control". In 16
Mary Anna Custis Lee
Mary Anna Randolph Custis Lee was the great-granddaughter of Martha Custis Washington and wife of Robert E. Lee, the prominent career military officer who commanded the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia during the American Civil War, they married at her parents' home, Arlington House, in Virginia in 1831, had seven children together. Mrs. Lee was descended from several colonial and Southern families, including the Parke Custises, Dandriges, Randolphs and Gerards. Through her paternal grandmother, Eleanor Calvert, she descended from Charles Calvert, 5th Baron Baltimore, making her a descendant of Charles II of England and Scotland. Through her mother, Mary Lee Fitzhugh Custis, she was a descendant of William Fitzhugh, it is said her paternal great-great-grandfather, 5th Baron Calvert, fathered an illegitimate son, Benedict Swingate Calvert by Melusina von der Schulenburg, Countess of Walsingham, mistress of George I. Mary Anna Custis Lee was the only surviving child of George Washington Parke Custis, George Washington's step-grandson and adopted son and founder of Arlington House, Mary Lee Fitzhugh Custis, daughter of William Fitzhugh and Ann Bolling Randolph Fitzhugh.
Her godmother, Mary Randolph, the first person recorded buried at Arlington, wrote an early book on housekeeping and cooking. Lee's birth year is given as 1808, but it appears in the Custis family Bible and in records kept by her mother as 1807, is referred to in a letter her mother wrote in the autumn of 1807, she was born at Annefield in Clarke County, Virginia when her mother's coach stopped there during a journey. She was well educated, having learned both Greek, she enjoyed discussing politics with her father, with her husband. She kept current with the new literature. After her father's death, she edited and published his writings as Recollections and Private Memoirs of Washington, by his Adopted Son George Washington Parke Custis, with a Memoir of this Author by his Daughter in 1859. Mrs Lee was vivacious, she had known Robert E. Lee, from childhood. Among Mary Anna's other suitors was Sam Houston. Mrs. Lee inherited Arlington House from her father after he died in 1857; the estate had long been the couple's home whenever they were in the area during her husband's military career.
She enjoyed frequent visitors. She was a painter, like her father, painted many landscapes, some of which are still on view at the house, she grew many varieties of trees and flowers in the gardens there. Religious, Lee attended Episcopal services when there was one near the army post. From Arlington, the Lees attended Christ Church in Alexandria, which she and Robert had both attended in childhood. Lee was an advocate of eventual emancipation, she could have under state law of the time. She suffered from rheumatoid arthritis, which became debilitating with advancing age. By 1861, she was using a wheelchair. With the advent of the American Civil War and their sons were called to service in Virginia. Mary Custis Lee delayed evacuating Arlington House until May 15, 1861. Early that month, Robert wrote to his wife saying: War is inevitable, there is no telling when it will burst around you... You have to make arrangements to go to some point of safety which you must select; the Mount Vernon plate and pictures ought to be secured.
Keep quiet while you remain, in your preparations... May God have mercy on all our people. Lee and her daughters moved among the several family plantations. In May 1862, she was caught at her son Rooney's White House Plantation in New Kent County behind the Federal lines, as Union forces moved up the York and the Pamunkey rivers toward Richmond; the Union commander, George B. McClellan, allowed her passage through the lines in order to take up residence in Richmond—the city, McClellan's campaign goal. Lee and her daughters settled at 707 East Franklin Street in Richmond for a time; the family next moved to the plantation estate of the Cocke family at Bremo Bluff, where they sought refuge until after the end of the war in November 1865. After the war, the Lees lived in Powhatan County for a short time before moving to Lexington. Robert E. Lee became president of the Washington College renamed Washington and Lee University. Mary Anna Custis Lee visited her beloved Arlington House one last time in 1873, a few months before her death.
She was unable to leave her horse carriage due to her debilitating rheumatoid arthritis, hardly recognizing the estate except for a few old oaks and some of the trees that she and Robert had planted. Mary Anna Custis Lee died at the age of 66, she is buried next to him in the Lee family crypt at Lee Chapel on the campus of Washington and Lee University. Mary and Robert were married at her parents' home, Arlington House, on June 30, 1831, they had three sons and four daughters together: George Washington Custis "Custis", William H. Fitzhugh "Rooney", Robert Edward Jr. Mary, Eleanor Agnes and Mildred Lee. None of their daughters married. Harnett Kane's 1953 novel, The Lady of Arlington, is based on Mrs. Lee's life. Mary Custis Lee is a major supporting character in The Guns of the South, a 1992 science fiction novel by Harry Turtledove. Dorothy Love's 2016 novel, Mrs. Lee and Mrs. Gray, is based on Mrs. Lee's dependence upon and friendship with Selin
Colonial Williamsburg is a living-history museum and private foundation presenting part of an historic district in the city of Williamsburg, United States. Colonial Williamsburg's 301-acre historic area includes buildings from the 18th century, as well as 17th-century, 19th-century, Colonial Revival structures, as well as more recent reconstructions; the hiistoric area is an interpretation of a colonial American city, with exhibits of dozens of restored or re-created buildings related to its colonial and American Revolutionary War history. Colonial Williamsburg's historic area's combination of restoration and re-creation of parts of the colonial town's three main thoroughfares and their connecting side streets attempts to suggest the atmosphere and the circumstances of 18th-century Americans. Colonial Williamsburg's motto has been: "that the future may learn from the past". In the late 1920s, the restoration and re-creation of colonial Williamsburg was championed by the Reverend Dr. W. A. R. Goodwin, other community leaders, such organizations as the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, the Colonial Dames, the Daughters of the Confederacy, the Chamber of Commerce, as well as the scion of the Rockefeller family, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. and his wife, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, to celebrate rebel patriots and the early history of the United States.
One of the largest history projects in the nation and a tourist attraction, it is part of the Historic Triangle of Virginia, which includes Jamestown and Yorktown, linked by the Colonial Parkway. The site was once used for conferences by world leaders and heads of state, including U. S. presidents. It was designated a National Historic Landmark District in 1960. Costumed employees work and dress as people did in the era, sometimes using colonial grammar and diction. Prominent buildings include the Raleigh Tavern, the Capitol, the Governor's Palace, as well as the Courthouse, the George Wythe House, the Peyton Randolph House, the Magazine, independently owned and functioning Bruton Parish Church. Colonial Williamsburg's portion of the historic area begins east of the College of William & Mary's College Yard. Colonial Williamsburg is a living history museum, its core runs along Duke of Gloucester Street and the Palace Green that extends north and south perpendicular to it. This area is flat, with ravines and streams branching off on the periphery.
At the City of Williamsburg's discretion, Duke of Gloucester Street and other historic area thoroughfares are closed to motorized vehicles during the day, in favor of pedestrians, joggers, dog walkers, animal-drawn vehicles. Surviving colonial structures have been restored as close as possible to their 18th-century appearance, with traces of buildings and improvements removed. Many of the missing colonial structures were reconstructed on their original sites beginning in the 1930s. Animals and dependencies add to the environment; some buildings and most gardens are open to tourists, the exceptions being buildings serving as residences for Colonial Williamsburg employees, large donors, the occasional city official, sometimes College of William & Mary associates. Four taverns have been reconstructed for use as two for inns. There are craftsmen's workshops for period trades, including a printing shop, a shoemaker's, blacksmith's, a cooperage, a cabinetmaker, a gunsmith's, a wigmaker's, a silversmith's.
There are merchants selling tourist souvenirs, reproduction toys, pottery, scented soap, tchotchkes. Some houses, including the Peyton Randolph House, the Geddy House, the Wythe House and the Everard House are open to tourists, as are such public buildings as the Courthouse, the Capitol, the Magazine, the Public Hospital, the Gaol; the Public Gaol served as a jail for the colonists. Former notorious inmates include the pirate Blackbeard's crew who were kept in the 1704 jail while they awaited trial. Colonial Williamsburg operations extend to Merchants Square, a Colonial Revival commercial area designated a historic district in its own right. Nearby are the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, operated by Colonial Williamsburg as part of its curatorial efforts; the Jamestown statehouse, housing Virginia's government at the time, burned down on October 20, 1698. The legislators moved their meetings to the College of William & Mary in Virginia at Middle Plantation, putting an end to Jamestown's 92-year run as Virginia's colonial capital.
In 1699, in a graduation exercise, a group of College of William & Mary students delivered addresses endorsing proposals to move the capital to Middle Plantation, ostensibly to escape the malaria – and the mosquitoes which transmit them – of the Jamestown Island site. Interested Middle Plantation landowners donated some of their holdings to advance the plan, to reap its rewards. Middle Plantation was renamed Williamsburg by Governor Francis Nicholson, first among the proponents of the change, in honor of the Dutch Royal Willem III van Oranje, he was Stadtholder of Holland, Utrecht and Overijssel in the Dutch Republic from 1672 and King of England and Scotland from 1689 until his death in 1702 where he was known as king William III of England. Nicholson said that at Williamsburg "clear and crystal springs burst from the champagne soil". By "champagne," he meant fertile. Nicholson had the city surveyed and a grid laid out by Theodorick Bland taking into consideration the br