Ravensburg is a town in Upper Swabia in Southern Germany, capital of the district of Ravensburg, Baden-Württemberg. Ravensburg was first mentioned in 1088. In the Middle Ages, it was an important trading centre; the "Great Ravensburg Trading Society" owned shops and trading companies all over Europe. The historic town centre is still much intact, including three town gates and over 10 towers of the medieval fortification. "The all-white Mehlsack is a tower marking the Altstadt’s southern edge. A steep staircase leads up to the Veitsburg, a quaint baroque castle."The town's most popular festival is the annual "Rutenfest", which takes place mid year. Ravensburg was first mentioned in writing in 1088, it was founded by the Welfs, a Frankish dynasty in Swabia who became Dukes of Bavaria and Saxony and who made the castle of Ravensburg their ancestral seat. By a contract of inheritance, in 1191 the Hohenstaufen Frederick Barbarossa acquired the ownership of Ravensburg from Welf VI, Duke of Spoleto and uncle of both Frederick Barbarossa and Henry the Lion.

With the death of Conradin 1268 in Naples the Hohenstaufen line became extinct. Their former estates became imperial property of the Holy Roman Empire. Like many other cities in Swabia, at the end of the 13th century Ravensburg became an Imperial Free City in 1276; the "Great Ravensburg Trading Society" was founded at Ravensburg and Konstanz around 1380 by the merchant families of Humpis, Mötteli and Muntprat. At first, the society dealt in the production of linen and fustian. With the opening of one of the first paper mills north of the Alps in 1402 in Ravensburg, paper became another commodity; the Ravensburg stores sold oriental spices, Mediterranean wines and Bohemian ores. After the liquidation of the Great Ravensburg Trading Society in 1530, Ravensburg stagnated economically; the Thirty Years' War caused a grave decline of the population. Swedish troops destroyed the old castle, now named "Veitsburg" after the St. Veit chapel at the castle grounds. Following the Reformation a "paritetic" government emerged, meaning an equal distribution of public offices between the Catholic and Protestant confession.

The city council was one half each Catholic. For some time there was a Catholic and a Protestant mayor at the same time, the both confessions celebrated the village fair, the "Rutenfest", apart from each other; this system was approved at the end of the Thirty Years' War in the Peace of Westphalia which named four "Paritetic Imperial Cities": Augsburg, Dinkelsbühl and Ravensburg. In 1803 the Immerwährende Reichstag passed the Reichsdeputationshauptschluss, a bill which included the secularisation and mediatisation of many German states — the first meaning the confiscation of the estates belonging to the church, the second the incorporation of the imperial estates and Imperial Free Cities into larger regional states; as a result, Ravensburg first became a Bavarian exclave within Württemberg. After a swap of estates between Bavaria and Württemberg it was incorporated in the Kingdom of Württemberg in 1810. Since Ravensburg was impoverished and depopulated after the Thirty Years' War, only a few new buildings were raised during the 18th and the early 19th century.

The benefit of this economic stagnation was the conservation of a intact medieval city with nearly all towers and gates of the historic fortification. During World War II Ravensburg was strategically of no relevance. Ravensburg did not harbor any noteworthy arms industry, but was home to a major aid supplies center belonging to the Swiss Red Cross; the historic city center was not damaged by air raids. By 1945, the city came into the French occupation zone and thus came in 1947 to the newly founded state of Württemberg-Hohenzollern, which in 1952 merged to the state of Baden-Württemberg. In the 1970s, Ravensburg increased in population and territory by the incorporation of smaller communities like Eschach and Taldorf. Ravensburg University of Cooperative Education was established in the town in 1978. In the 1980s, the Old Town was renovated and all transit traffic was banned from the city center. Ravensburg is a thriving shopping town in the wealthy region of Upper Swabia. Unemployment is low; the nearest large cities are Munich and Zurich a two-hour drive away each.

Ulm and Bregenz are each less than a one-hour drive away. Ravensburg is part of an urban agglomeration that comprises Weingarten and several suburbs. Ravensburg and Friedrichshafen share the functionality of a Oberzentrum. Ravensburg is located at a crossing of the federal roads B30, B31 and B32. A by-pass highway around Ravensburg and Weingarten was completed recently; the regional airport is situated at Friedrichshafen, about 15 km south of Ravensburg. The nearest national motor-ways are the A7 and A8 and the A96. In 1847, the railway station of Ravensbug was put in operation, part of the so-called "Swabian Railroad" from Stuttgart to Friedrichshafen, the oldest railroad of Württemberg and well known in all of Germany by the folk-style song Auf de Schwäb’sche Eisenbahne. Mechanical engineering has traditionally been the main type of industry in the region. Based on the demand of the paper and textile industries and a long tra

Matabeleland South Province

Matabeleland South is a province in southwestern Zimbabwe. With a population of 683,893 as of the 2012 census, it is the country's least populous province. After Matabeleland North, it is Zimbabwe's second-least densely populated province. Matabeleland South was established in 1974, when the original Matabeleland Province was divided into two provinces, the other being Matabeleland North; the province is divided into six districts. Gwanda is the capital, the Beitbridge is the province's largest town; the name "Matabeleland" is derived from the province's largest ethnic group. Matabeleland South is bordered by Bulawayo and Matabeleland North to the north, Midlands to the northeast, Masvingo to the southeast, South Africa to the south, Botswana to the west, it has an area of 54,172 square kilometres, equal to 13.86% of the total area of Zimbabwe. It is the fourth-largest in area of the country's ten provinces. Matabeleland South sits on the edge of the Kalahari Desert, giving it an arid climate not hospitable to agriculture.

Its economy is centered around subsistence farming and livestock farming. Droughts and a lack of economic opportunities have resulted in widespread poverty and migration out of the province; the province sits on the edge of the Kalahari desert, hence it is arid and dry. The province shares borders with South Botswana; as a result, there are Tswana, Sotho/Pedi, Venda and the Khoisan speaking people in the province. The other languages that are native in the province are Khalanga. Towns and villages in Matabeleland South include Antelope Mine, Brunapeg, Colleen Bawn, Filabusi, Gwanda, Kezi, Makhado, Masendu, Plumtree, Stanmore, West Nicholson, Zezani. Matabeleland South is overseen by the Minister of State for Matabeleland South Province, a de facto governor who oversees provincial affairs and sits in the House of Assembly of the Parliament of Zimbabwe; the governor is not appointed to a set term. The governor held the title Governor of Matabeleland South, but the office has since been renamed to align with the 2013 Constitution of Zimbabwe, which does not allow for provincial governors.

The current Minister of State for Matabeleland South Province is Abednico Ncube, a ZANU–PF member, appointed by President Emmerson Mnangagwa in December 2017. Matabeleland South Province is divided into six districts: Beitbridge, Gwanda, Mangwe and Umzingwane. Like each of Zimbabwe's ten provinces, Matabeleland South Province is represented in the Senate by six senators, three of whom must be women. Senators are not directly elected by voters, but are instead selected by party lists via a proportional representation system; the province's current senators since the 2018 elections are Themba Mathuthu, Alma Mkwebu, Tambudzani Mohadi, Simon Khaya-Moyo, Bekithemba Mpofu, Meliwe Phuthi. Matabeleland South is represented by 13 Members of Parliament in the House of Assembly, Zimbabwe's lower house of Parliament; the province's current MPs since the 2018 elections are Patrick Dube, Ruth Mavhungu Maboyi, Levi Mayihlome, Obedingwa Mguni, Edgar Moyo, Abednico Ncube, Soul Ncube, Nqobizitha Ndlovu, Albert Nguluvhe, Dingumuzi Phuti, Madodana Sibanda, Spare Sithole, Farai Taruvinga.

All are members of ZANU -- PF except for Dube. Matabele people Bulawayo Provinces of Zimbabwe Districts of Zimbabwe

Lucy Virginia French

Lucy Virginia French was a 19th-century American author from Virginia. Her blank verse was considered strong, her themes were well chosen in their measure. French belonged to a wealthy family. Educated at Washington, she moved to Memphis, Tennessee where she lived until her marriage in 1853, to John Hopkins French, living after this at "Forest Home," near McMinnville, Tennessee, her first volume of poems, "Wind Whispers," appeared in 1856. She wrote "Tecumseh's Foot," "The Great River," "The Lyre of Time," "The Palmetto and the Pine," "The Years," "Mammy," "Liberty Bells," and other poems, besides several novels and dramas, she wrote about them. Her first novel, "My Roses," appeared in 1872, her last one, "Darlingtonia," in 1879. Between the years 1856 and 1879, she was engaged as literary editor of a number of magazines and newspapers, she wrote under the name L'Inconnue. Among her friends were James Russell Lowell, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. John Greenleaf Whittier, William Cullen Bryant.

Lucy Virginia Smith was born March 1825 in Accomack County, Virginia. Her parents were Elizabeth Parker, she was named for the state. Her parents belonged to wealthy families, her mother a Virginian, a relative of Gov. Henry A. Wise, was Miss Elizabeth Parker, her grandfather, Col. Thomas Parker, was a wealthy merchant in the East Indian and the South American trade, but was better known as "Fighting Tom" Parker, having served as a cavalry officer of the American Revolutionary War, her father, Mease W. Smith, was at one time president of Virginia, he had held the chair of Greek and Latin in that institution. He filled the office of chancellor of Virginia, was prominent as an educator and as a lawyer. By the early death of her mother, the child was left to the care of her grandparents, she and her younger sister were sent to Washington, for their education, after their graduation from Mrs. Hannah's School, they returned to their father's home on the eastern shore of Virginia, but their father had married again, a new influence had entered into the old home.

Virginia soon decided. It was not long afterwards that her young sister Lide moved to Tennessee. French and her sister became teacher in the 1840s. In 1849, under the name of L'Inconnuehe, French wrote for the Louisville Journal, of which George D. Prentice was editor, many of her poems and legends first appeared in its columns, her friends at that time were Lowell, Emerson, Realf and Whittier. In 1852, she became the editor of Southern Ladies Book. French was a versatile writer. Besides many poems, she was dramas of literary merit, she had an interest in the political questions of her day. During the American Civil War, she favored preserving the Union, pleaded earnestly for restoration. Throughout the remaining years of her life, she wrote and prayed for reconciliation. Though the North was the home of her early childhood, the South was her birthplace and the home of her maturer years. Two poems which illustrate French's freedom from political and sectional prejudice are "Shermanized," and "The Palmetto and the Pine."

The first was written just after Sherman's march to the sea. "Shermanized" is well remembered throughout the South. "The Palmetto and the Pine" was reproduced with illustrations in the July 1899 number of The American Illustrated Methodist Magazine, while another poem, "Mammy," a home picture of the South before the war, appeared in the February 1900 issue. "Liberty Bells," written in 1876, was characteristic of the spirit of unity, the theme of many of French's poems. French's first volume of poems, "Wind Whispers," appeared in 1856, followed the same year by a tragedy in five acts, "Istalilxo, the Lady of Tula," the scene of, laid in Mexico before its conquest by Cortez. Between the years 1856 and 1879, French was engaged as literary editor of a number of magazines and newspapers. In 1872, her first novel, "My Roses," was published, in 1879 her last novel, "Darlingtonia," appeared serially in the Detroit Free Press. A poem entitled "The Lost Louisiana," which appeared in one of the New Orleans dailies, proved to be the precursor of French's marriage.

John Hopkins French, standing in front of the St. Charles Hotel, New Orleans, was approached by a newsboy selling the morning papers: "All about the lost'Louisiana'!" the boy shouted. Mr. French's interest was aroused by the words "lost Louisiana." Some years before, he had been a passenger on the steamboat, "Belle of Clarksville," and had nearly died in a collision between that steamer and the "Louisiana." Besides the detailed account of the accident, the paper contained the story of the accident in verse. The poem was signed "L'Inconnue." The beauty of the verses and the name "L'Inconnue,", well known throughout the South, added to Mr. French's personal interest in the theme, that he clipped the poem from the paper and placed it in his wallet. Not long after, Mr. French wa