Virginia the Commonwealth of Virginia, is a state in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States located between the Atlantic Coast and the Appalachian Mountains. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" due to its status as the first English colonial possession established in mainland North America and "Mother of Presidents" because eight U. S. presidents were born there, more than any other state. The geography and climate of the Commonwealth are shaped by the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Chesapeake Bay, which provide habitat for much of its flora and fauna; the capital of the Commonwealth is Richmond. The Commonwealth's estimated population as of 2018 is over 8.5 million. The area's history begins with several indigenous groups, including the Powhatan. In 1607 the London Company established the Colony of Virginia as the first permanent New World English colony. Slave labor and the land acquired from displaced Native American tribes each played a significant role in the colony's early politics and plantation economy.
Virginia was one of the 13 Colonies in the American Revolution. In the American Civil War, Virginia's Secession Convention resolved to join the Confederacy, Virginia's First Wheeling Convention resolved to remain in the Union. Although the Commonwealth was under one-party rule for nearly a century following Reconstruction, both major national parties are competitive in modern Virginia; the Virginia General Assembly is the oldest continuous law-making body in the New World. The state government was ranked most effective by the Pew Center on the States in both 2005 and 2008, it is unique in how it treats cities and counties manages local roads, prohibits its governors from serving consecutive terms. Virginia's economy has many sectors: agriculture in the Shenandoah Valley. S. Department of Defense and Central Intelligence Agency. Virginia has a total area of 42,774.2 square miles, including 3,180.13 square miles of water, making it the 35th-largest state by area. Virginia is bordered by Maryland and Washington, D.
C. to the north and east. Virginia's boundary with Maryland and Washington, D. C. extends to the low-water mark of the south shore of the Potomac River. The southern border is defined as the 36° 30′ parallel north, though surveyor error led to deviations of as much as three arcminutes; the border with Tennessee was not settled until 1893, when their dispute was brought to the U. S. Supreme Court; the Chesapeake Bay separates the contiguous portion of the Commonwealth from the two-county peninsula of Virginia's Eastern Shore. The bay was formed from the drowned river valleys of the James River. Many of Virginia's rivers flow into the Chesapeake Bay, including the Potomac, Rappahannock and James, which create three peninsulas in the bay; the Tidewater is a coastal plain between the fall line. It includes major estuaries of Chesapeake Bay; the Piedmont is a series of sedimentary and igneous rock-based foothills east of the mountains which were formed in the Mesozoic era. The region, known for its heavy clay soil, includes the Southwest Mountains around Charlottesville.
The Blue Ridge Mountains are a physiographic province of the Appalachian Mountains with the highest points in the state, the tallest being Mount Rogers at 5,729 feet. The Ridge and Valley region includes the Great Appalachian Valley; the region includes Massanutten Mountain. The Cumberland Plateau and the Cumberland Mountains are in the southwest corner of Virginia, south of the Allegheny Plateau. In this region, rivers flow northwest, into the Ohio River basin; the Virginia Seismic Zone has not had a history of regular earthquake activity. Earthquakes are above 4.5 in magnitude, because Virginia is located away from the edges of the North American Plate. The largest earthquake, at an estimated 5.9 magnitude, was in 1897 near Blacksburg. A 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck central Virginia on August 2011, near Mineral. The earthquake was felt as far away as Toronto and Florida. 35 million years ago, a bolide impacted. The resulting Chesapeake Bay impact crater may explain what earthquakes and subsidence the region does experience.
Coal mining takes place in the three mountainous regions at 45 distinct coal beds near Mesozoic basins. Over 64 million tons of other non-fuel resources, such as slate, sand, or gravel, were mined in Virginia in 2018; the state's carbonate rock is filled with more than 4,000 caves, ten of which are open for tourism, including the popular Luray Caverns and Skyline Caverns. The climate of Virginia is humid subtropical and becomes warmer and more humid farther south and east. Seasonal extremes vary from average lows of 26 °F in January to average highs of 86 °F in July; the Atlantic Ocean has a strong effect on southeastern coastal areas of the state. Influenced by the Gulf Stream, coastal weather is subject to hurricanes, most pronouncedly near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay. In spite of its position adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean the coastal areas have a significant continental influence with quite large temperature differences between summ
Isle of Wight County, Virginia
Isle of Wight County is a county located in the Hampton Roads region of the U. S. state of Virginia. It was named after the Isle of Wight, in the English Channel, from where many of its early colonists had come; as of the 2010 census, the population was 35,270. Its county seat is Isle of Wight. Isle of Wight County is located in the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC Metropolitan Statistical Area, its northeastern boundary is on the coast of Hampton Roads waterway. Isle of Wight County features two incorporated towns and Windsor; the first courthouse for the county was built in Smithfield in 1750. The original courthouse and its associated tavern are still standing; as the county population developed, leaders thought they needed a county seat near the center of the area. They built a new courthouse near the center of the county in 1800; the 1800 brick courthouse and its associated tavern are still standing, as are the 1822 clerk's offices nearby. Some additions have been made; the 1800 courthouse is used daily, serving as the government chambers for the Board of Supervisors, as well as the meeting hall for the School Board.
The chambers are sometimes used as a court for civil trials if the new courthouse is in use. The new courthouse opened in 2010. During the 17th century, shortly after establishment of the settlement at Jamestown in 1607, English settlers explored and began settling the areas adjacent to the large Hampton Roads waterway. Captain John Smith in 1608 crossed the James River and obtained fourteen bushels of corn from the Native American inhabitants, the Warrosquyoack or Warraskoyak, they were a tribe of the Powhatan Confederacy. English colonists drove the Warraskoyak from their villages in 1622 and 1627, as part of their reprisals for the Great Massacre of 1622, in which the Native Americans had decimated English settlements, hoping to drive them out of their territory; the first English plantations along the south shore within present-day Isle of Wight were established by Puritan colonists, beginning with that of Christopher Lawne in May 1618. Several members of the Puritan Bennett family settled there, including Richard Bennett.
He led the Puritans to neighboring Nansemond in 1635, was appointed as governor of the Virginia Colony. By 1634, the entire Colony consisted of eight shires or counties with a total population of 5,000 inhabitants. Warrosquyoake Shire was renamed in 1637 as Isle of Wight County, after the island off the south coast of England; the original name had come derived from the Native Americans of the area. St. Luke's Church, built in the 17th century, is Virginia's oldest church building. In the late 20th century, it was designated as a National Historic Landmark in recognition of its significance. Many landmark and contributing structures on the National Register are located in Smithfield including the Wentworth-Grinnan House. In 1732 a considerable portion of the northwestern part of the original shire was added to Brunswick County, in 1748 the entire county of Southampton was carved out of it. During the American Civil War, Company F of the 61st Virginia Infantry Regiment of the Confederate Army was called the "Isle of Wight Avengers."
According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 363 square miles, of which 316 square miles is land and 47 square miles is water; the county is bounded by the James River on the Blackwater River to the south. The land is low-lying, with many swamps and pocosins. Newport News, Virginia — northeast Suffolk, Virginia — southeast Southampton County — west Franklin, Virginia — southwest Surry County — northwest US 17 US 258 US 460 SR 10 SR 32 As of the census of 2010, there were 35,270 people, 11,319 households, 8,670 families residing in the county; the population density was 94 people per square mile. There were 12,066 housing units at an average density of 38 per square mile; the racial makeup of the county was 71.8% White, 24.7% Black or African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.8% Asian, 0.0% Pacific Islander, 0.5% from other races, 1.8% from two or more races. 1.9% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 11,319 households out of which 34.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.40% were married couples living together, 12.20% had a female householder with no husband present, 23.40% were non-families.
20.00% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.60% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 2.99. In the county, the population was spread out with 25.40% under the age of 18, 6.60% from 18 to 24, 29.60% from 25 to 44, 26.20% from 45 to 64, 12.20% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 95.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males. The median income for a household in the county was $45,387, the median income for a family was $52,597. Males had a median income of $37,853 versus $22,990 for females; the per capita income for the county was $20,235. About 6.60% of families and 8.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.80% of those under age 18 and 11.90% of those age 65 or over. Carrsville District: Don Rosie Hardy District: Rudolph Jefferson Newport District: William McCarty Smithfield District: Dick Grice Windsor District: Joel Acree Clerk of the Circuit Court: Sharon Nelms Jones Commissione
Lynchburg is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 75,568; the 2017 census estimates an increase to 81,000. Located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains along the banks of the James River, Lynchburg is known as the "City of Seven Hills" or the "Hill City". In the 1860s, Lynchburg was the only major city in Virginia, not recaptured by the Union before the end of the American Civil War. Lynchburg lies at the center of a wider metropolitan area close to the geographic center of Virginia, it is the fifth-largest MSA in Virginia, with a population of 260,320. It is the site of several institutions of higher education, including the University of Lynchburg, Randolph College, Liberty University. Nearby cities include Roanoke and Danville. Monacan people and other Siouan Tutelo-speaking tribes had lived in the area since at least 1270, driving the Virginia Algonquians eastward to the coastal areas. Explorer John Lederer visited one of the Siouan villages in 1670, on the Staunton River at Otter Creek, southwest of the present-day city, as did the Thomas Batts and Robert Fallam expedition in 1671.
Siouan peoples occupied this area until about 1702. The Seneca people, who were part of the Haudenosaunee, or Iroquois Confederacy based in New York, defeated them; the Seneca had ranged south while seeking new hunting grounds through the Shenandoah Valley to the West. At the Treaty of Albany in 1718, the Iroquois Five Nations ceded control of their land east of the Blue Ridge Mountains, including Lynchburg, to the Colony of Virginia. First settled by Anglo-Americans in 1757, Lynchburg was named for John Lynch; when about 17 years old, he started a ferry service at a ford across the James River to carry traffic to and from New London, where his parents had settled. The "City of Seven Hills" developed along the hills surrounding Lynch's Ferry. In 1786, Virginia's General Assembly recognized Lynchburg, the settlement by Lynch's Ferry on the James River; the James River Company had been incorporated the previous year in order to "improve" the river down to Richmond, growing and was named as the new Commonwealth's capital.
Shallow-draft James River bateau provided a easy means of transportation through Lynchburg down to Richmond and to the Atlantic Ocean. Rocks, downed trees, flood debris were constant hazards, so their removal became expensive ongoing maintenance. Lynchburg became a tobacco trading commercial, much an industrial center; the state built a canal and towpath along the river to make transportation by the waterway easier, to provide a water route around the falls at Richmond, which prevented through navigation by boat. By 1812, U. S. Chief Justice John Marshall, who lived in Richmond, reported on the navigation difficulties and construction problems on the canal and towpath; the General Assembly recognized the settlement's growth by incorporating Lynchburg as a town in 1805. In between, Lynch built Lynchburg's first bridge across the James River, a toll structure that replaced his ferry in 1812. A toll turnpike to Salem, Virginia was begun in 1817. Lynch died in 1820 and was buried beside his mother in the graveyard of the South River Friends Meetinghouse.
Quakers abandoned the town because of their opposition to slaveholding. Presbyterians adapted it as a church, it is now preserved as a historic site. To avoid the many visitors at Monticello, Thomas Jefferson in 1806 developed a plantation and house near Lynchburg, called Poplar Forest, he visited the town, noting, "Nothing would give me greater pleasure than to be useful to the town of Lynchburg. I consider it as the most interesting spot in the state." In 1810, Jefferson wrote, "Lynchburg is the most rising place in the U. S.... It ranks now next to Richmond in importance...."Early Lynchburg residents were not known for their religious enthusiasm. The established Church of England built a log church in 1765. In 1804, evangelist Lorenzo Dow wrote: "...where I spoke in the open air in what I conceived to be the seat of Satan's Kingdom. Lynchburg was a deadly place for the worship of God'." That referred to the lack of churches, corrected the following year. Itinerant Methodist Francis Asbury visited the town.
Lynchburg hosted the last Virginia Methodist Conference. As Lynchburg grew and other "rowdy" activities became part of the urban mix of the river town, they were ignored, if not accepted in a downtown area referred to as the "Buzzard's Roost." Methodist preacher and bishop John Early became one of Lynchburg's civic leaders. On December 3, 1840, the James River and Kanawha Canal from Richmond reached Lynchburg, it was extended as far as Buchanan, Virginia in 1851, but never reached a tributary of the Ohio River as planned. Lynchburg's population exceeded 6,000 by 1840, a water works system was built. Floods in 1842 and 1847 wreaked havoc with the towpath. Both were repaired. Town businessmen began to lobby for a railroad, but Virginia's General Assembly refused to fund such construction. In 1848 civic boosters began selling subscriptions for the Lynchburg and Tennessee Rail
Fluvanna County, Virginia
Fluvanna County is a county located in the Piedmont region of the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 25,691, its county seat is Palmyra. Fluvanna County is part of Virginia Metropolitan Statistical Area. Through the 17th century, the Point of Fork was the site of Rassawek, a major Monacan village of the Native Americans. By 1701, the Seneca Iroquois had overrun the entire Virginia Piedmont, which they sold to Virginia Colony in 1721 at the Treaty of Albany; the area, now Fluvanna County was once considered part of Henrico County, one of the original shires of the Virginia Colony. Henrico was divided in 1727 and the Fluvanna County area became a part of Goochland County. In 1744 Goochland was divided and the area presently known as Fluvanna became a part of Albemarle County; when Amherst County, Nelson County and Buckingham County were split off from Albemarle County, the Albemarle County Seat was moved in 1762 from Scottsville to Charlottesville. When the Albemarle County seat was moved citizens in the Fluvanna area would now have to trek over the Southwest Mountains to reach the new seat at Charlottesville.
Fluvanna area citizens lobbied the Virginia General Assembly to create a new county. In 1777, Albemarle County was divided again and Fluvanna County established; the county was named for the Fluvanna River, a name once given to the James River west of Columbia. "Fluvanna" means "Anne's River", in honor of Anne, Queen of Great Britain, who reigned until 1714. Located in the Piedmont above the Fall Line, the county has the James and Rivanna rivers running through it, it was sometimes referred to as "Old Flu."Fluvanna was defended by six militia companies during the American Revolutionary War. The county was invaded by British forces in 1781. From an initial 882 "tithables," the population reached 3,300 by 1782. Columbia was formed in 1788 with Wilmington following soon after. Lyles Baptist Church was organized in 1774 and the formation of the Methodist denomination had its roots in a Conference held in Fluvanna in 1779; the "Brick Union" Church was built in 1825 for the use of Episcopalians, Methodists and Presbyterians.
The village of Fork Union grew up around the Church. When Palmyra was made the county seat in 1828 it became a thriving town after the new courthouse was completed in 1830. In the late eighteenth century, Thomas Jefferson improved the navigability of the Rivanna River, as he owned much property along its upper course, e.g. Shadwell and Monticello plantations. Improvements included in the first generation were small dams and batteaux locks. Second-generation improvements made by others included construction of long stretches of canal, serviced by large locks, many of which are still visible along the river. Shortly after the completion of the initial Rivanna navigational works, Virginia requested that the river be opened to public usage. Jefferson initially refused, but the state insisted and the Rivanna became an integral part of the central Virginian transportation network; the route serviced a large community of farmsteads, plantations throughout Albemarle and Fluvanna counties. It was lined by increasing numbers of industrial facilities, such as those at Union Mills.
Construction of the larger mills prompted the great improvements to navigation. For instance, Union Mills featured a two-and-a-half-mile long canal and towpath, one upper and two massive lower locks, all directly upon the river. Where the Rivanna meets the James River at Columbia, the Rivanna Connexion Canal merged with a much longer canal.. In 1840, the James River and Kanawha Canal was constructed adjacent to the north bank of the James River and opened to traffic; the new canal was part of a planned link between the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean via the James and the Kanawha rivers. The canal was used by packet and freight boats, which replaced the earlier shallow-draft batteau for commerce; these boats brought passengers to and from Richmond and points beyond. Long a dream of early Virginians such as George Washington, a surveyor early in his career, the canal was never completed as envisioned. In the batteaux era, Milton was the head of navigation on the river. By the early nineteenth century, horse-drawn canal boats were traveling all the way upstream to Charlottesville.
The head of navigation was located at the point where the Fredericksburg Road and Three Chopt Road, the primary road to Richmond and entered the city at the Free Bridge, establishing the city as a major commercial hub. While no Civil War battles were fought in Fluvanna, Union soldiers burned mills and bridges and damaged the James River and Kanawha Canal to disrupt traffic and commerce. During the American Civil War more than 1,200 of the county's citizens served in the Confederate forces, its citizens served in infantry and artillery units during the war, including the Fluvanna Artillery. The canal was repaired after the war, but traffic never returned to pre-war levels, as railroads were being constructed throughout the state and were more efficient. After many years of trying to compete with the ever-expanding railroad network, the James River and Kanawha Canal was conveyed to a new railroad company by a deed dated March 4, 1880. Railroad construction workers promptly started laying tracks on the towpath.
The new Richmond and Allegheny Railroad offered a water-level route fr
Albemarle County, Virginia
Albemarle County is a county located in the Piedmont region of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Its county seat is Charlottesville, an independent city and enclave surrounded by the county. Albemarle County is part of the Charlottesville Metropolitan Statistical Area; as of the 2010 census, the population of Albemarle County was 98,970, more than triple the 1960 census count. Albemarle County was created in 1744 from the western portion of Goochland County, though portions of Albemarle were carved out to create other counties. Albemarle County was named in honor of 2nd Earl of Albemarle. However, its most famous inhabitant was Thomas Jefferson, who built his estate home, Monticello, in the county. At the time of European encounter, the inhabitants of the area that became Albemarle County were a Siouan-speaking tribe called the Saponi. In 1744, the Virginia General Assembly created Albemarle County from the western portion of Goochland County; the county was named in honor of Willem Anne van Keppel, 2nd Earl of Albemarle and titular Governor of Virginia at the time.
The large county was partitioned in 1761, forming Buckingham and Amherst counties, at which time the county seat was moved from the central Scottsville to a piece of newly central land, christened Charlottesville. In 1777, Albemarle County was divided and Fluvanna County established, finalizing the boundaries of modern Albemarle County. Albemarle County is well known for its association with President and Founding Father Thomas Jefferson, born in the County at Shadwell, though it was part of Goochland County. However, his home of Monticello is located in the County. During the Civil War, the Battle of Rio Hill was a skirmish in which Union cavalry raided a Confederate camp in Albemarle County, Virginia; until the Civil War, the majority of Albemarle County's population consisted of enslaved African Americans. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 726 square miles, of which 721 square miles is land and 5 square miles is water; the Rivanna River's south fork forms in Albemarle County and was important for transportation.
The south fork flows in-between Darden Towe Pen Park. Boat ramp access is available at Darden Towe Park; the James River acts as a natural border between Buckingham Counties. Interstate 64 U. S. Route 29 U. S. Route 250 Virginia State Route 6 Virginia State Route 20 Virginia State Route 22 Virginia State Route 53 Virginia State Route 240 Albemarle's western border with Augusta and Rockingham Counties is located within the Shenandoah National Park. Albemarle County borders more than any other county in Virginia. Charlottesville, Virginia Greene County, Virginia Orange County, Virginia Louisa County, Virginia Fluvanna County, Virginia Buckingham County, Virginia Nelson County, Virginia Augusta County, Virginia Rockingham County, Virginia Preddy Creek Park Ivy Creek Nature Reserve Chris Green Lake Darden Towe Park Pen Park Walnut Creek Park The largest self-reported ancestry groups in Albemarle County are English 16.3%, German 16.0%, Irish 12.7%, "American" 11.4% and Italian 5.2%. As of the census of 2010, there were 98,970 people, 38,157 households, 24,578 families residing in the county.
The population density was 137 people per square mile. There were 42,122 housing units at an average density of 58 per square mile; the racial makeup of the county was 80.6% White, 9.7% Black or African American, 0.3% Native American, 4.7% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 2.3% from other races, 2.4% from two or more races. 5.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 38,157 households out of which 28.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.4% were married couples living together, 9.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 35.6% were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 25.9% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.96. In the county, the population was spread out with 21.5% under the age of 18, 12.3% from 18 to 24, 24.7% from 25 to 44, 27.2% from 45 to 64, 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.2 years. For every 100 females there were 92.69 males.
For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.59 males. 22 % of Albemarle residents have professional degree, compared with 10 % nationwide. The median income for a household in the county was $63,001, the median income for a family was $98,934. Males had a median income of $55,530 versus $52,211 for females; the per capita income for the county was $36,718. About 3.8% of families and 10.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.0% of those under age 18 and 2.4% of those age 65 or over. 35 % of people working in Albemarle live in the county. 19% of those commuting in live in Charlottesville, while the remainder live in the surrounding counties. 26,800 people commute out of Albemarle for work. 48% of those commute to Charlottesville, making up 51% of Charlottesville's in-commuters. In 2016, Albemarle has a 3.5% unemployment rate, compare with a national rate of 4.9%. The top 10 employers as of 2016 were: University of Virginia County of Albemarle Sentara Healthcare State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance U.
S. Department of Defense University of Virginia Medical Center Atlantic Coast Athletic Club Piedmont Virginia Community College Northrop Grumman Corporation Wegmans36% of workers in Albemarle are employed by the government, with 898 working for the federal government, 12,476 working for the state
The James River is a river in the U. S. state of Virginia that begins in the Appalachian Mountains and flows 348 miles to Chesapeake Bay. The river length extends to 444 miles if one includes the Jackson River, the longer of its two source tributaries, it is the longest river in Virginia and the 12th longest river in the United States that remains within a single state. Jamestown and Williamsburg, Virginia’s first colonial capitals, Richmond, Virginia's current capital, lie on the James River; the Native Americans who populated the area east of the Fall Line in the late 16th and early 17th centuries called the James River the Powhatan River, named for the chief of the Powhatan Confederacy which extended over most of the Tidewater region of Virginia. The English colonists named it "James" after King James I of England, as they constructed the first permanent English settlement in the Americas in 1607 at Jamestown along the banks of the James River about 35 miles upstream from the Chesapeake Bay.
The navigable portion of the river was the major highway of the Colony of Virginia during its first 15 years, facilitating supply ships delivering supplies and more people from England. However, for the first five years, despite many hopes of gold and riches, these ships sent little of monetary value back to the sponsors. In 1612, businessman John Rolfe cultivated a non-native strain of tobacco which proved popular in England. Soon, the river became the primary means of exporting the large hogsheads of this cash crop from an ever-growing number of plantations with wharfs along its banks; this development made the proprietary efforts of the Virginia Company of London successful financially, spurring more development and immigration. Below the falls at Richmond, many James River plantations had their own wharfs, additional ports and/or early railheads were located at Warwick, Bermuda Hundred, City Point, Claremont and Smithfield, during the 17th century, the capital of the Colony at Jamestown.
Navigation of the James River played an important role in early Virginia commerce and the settlement of the interior, although growth of the colony was in the Tidewater region during the first 75 years. The upper reaches of the river above the head of navigation at the fall line were explored by fur trading parties sent by Abraham Wood during the late 17th century. Although ocean-going ships were unable to navigate beyond present-day Richmond, portage of products and navigation with smaller craft to transport crops other than tobacco was feasible. Produce from the Piedmont and Great Valley regions traveled down the river to seaports at Richmond and Manchester through such port towns as Lynchburg, Scottsville and Buchanan; as the James River passed through the Confederate capital Richmond, it was the scene of much action in the Civil War, notably in the Peninsula Campaign, the Seven Days Battles and the Siege of Petersburg. The James River was considered a route for transport of produce from the Ohio Valley.
The James River and Kanawha Canal was built for this purpose, to provide a navigable portion of the Kanawha River, a tributary of the Ohio River. For the most mountainous section between the two points, the James River and Kanawha Turnpike was built to provide a portage link for wagons and stagecoaches. However, before the canal could be completed, in the mid-19th century, railroads emerged as a more practical technology and eclipsed canals for economical transportation; the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway was completed between Richmond and the Ohio River at the new city of Huntington, West Virginia by 1873, dooming the canal's economic prospects. In the 1880s, the Richmond and Alleghany Railroad was laid along the eastern portion of the canal's towpath, became part of the C&O within 10 years. In modern times, this rail line is used in transporting West Virginia coal to export coal piers at Newport News; the James River drains a catchment comprising 10,432 square miles. The watershed includes about an area with a population of 2.5 million people.
The James River forms near Iron Gate on the border between Alleghany and Botetourt counties, from the confluence of the Cowpasture and Jackson rivers in the Appalachian Mountains. It flows into the Chesapeake Bay at Hampton Roads. Tidal waters extend west to the capital of Virginia, at the river's fall line. Larger tributaries draining to the tidal portion include the Appomattox River, Chickahominy River, Warwick River, Pagan River, the Nansemond River. At its mouth near Newport News Point, the Elizabeth River and the Nansemond River join the James River to form the harbor area known as Hampton Roads. Between the tip of the Virginia Peninsula near Old Point Comfort and the Willoughby Spit area of Norfolk in South Hampton Roads, a channel leads from Hampton Roads into the southern portion of the Chesapeake Bay and out to the Atlantic Ocean a few miles further east. Many boats pass through this river to export Virginia products. During the 1960's and 70's, mishandling and dumping of the insecticide Kepone resulted in the contamination of large stretches or the James River Estuary downstream of the Allied Signal Company and LifeSciences Product Company plants in Hopewell, Virginia.
Due to the pollution risks, many businesses and restaurants along the river suffered economic losses. In 1975 Governor Mills Godwin Jr. shut down the James River to fishing for 100 miles, from Richmond to the Chesapeake Bay. This ban remained in effect for 13 years. A decade of accumulated silt, lying above the contaminated riverbed, helped to reduce levels of the chemical; the James River contains numerous park
Confederate States of America
The Confederate States of America referred to as the Confederacy, was an unrecognized country in North America that existed from 1861 to 1865. The Confederacy was formed by seven secessionist slave-holding states—South Carolina, Florida, Georgia and Texas—in the Lower South region of the United States, whose economy was dependent upon agriculture cotton, a plantation system that relied upon the labor of African-American slaves; each state declared its secession from the United States, which became known as the Union during the ensuing civil war, following the November 1860 election of Republican candidate Abraham Lincoln to the U. S. presidency on a platform which opposed the expansion of slavery into the western territories. Before Lincoln took office in March, a new Confederate government was established in February 1861, considered illegal by the government of the United States. States volunteered militia units and the new government hastened to form its own Confederate States Army from scratch overnight.
After the American Civil War began in April, four slave states of the Upper South—Virginia, Arkansas and North Carolina—also declared their secession and joined the Confederacy. The Confederacy accepted Missouri and Kentucky as members, although neither declared secession nor were they largely controlled by Confederate forces; the government of the United States rejected the claims of secession and considered the Confederacy illegally founded. The War began with the Confederate attack upon Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, a Union fort in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. No foreign government recognized the Confederacy as an independent country, although Great Britain and France granted it belligerent status, which allowed Confederate agents to contract with private concerns for arms and other supplies. In early 1865, after four years of heavy fighting which led to 620,000–850,000 military deaths, all the Confederate forces surrendered and the Confederacy vanished; the war lacked a formal end.
By 1865 Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederate States of America for the duration of the civil war, lamented that the Confederacy had "disappeared". On February 22, 1862, the Confederate Constitution of seven state signatories – Mississippi, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia and Texas – replaced the Provisional Constitution of February 8, 1861, with one stating in its preamble a desire for a "permanent federal government". Four additional slave-holding states – Virginia, Arkansas and North Carolina – declared their secession and joined the Confederacy following a call by U. S. President Abraham Lincoln for troops from each state to recapture Sumter and other seized federal properties in the South. Missouri and Kentucky were represented by partisan factions adopting the forms of state governments without control of substantial territory or population in either case; the antebellum state governments in both maintained their representation in the Union. Fighting for the Confederacy were two of the "Five Civilized Tribes" – the Choctaw and the Chickasaw – in Indian Territory and a new, but uncontrolled, Confederate Territory of Arizona.
Efforts by certain factions in Maryland to secede were halted by federal imposition of martial law. A Unionist government was formed in opposition to the secessionist state government in Richmond and administered the western parts of Virginia, occupied by Federal troops; the Restored Government recognized the new state of West Virginia, admitted to the Union during the war on June 20, 1863, re-located to Alexandria for the rest of the war. Confederate control over its claimed territory and population in congressional districts shrank from 73% to 34% during the course of the American Civil War due to the Union's successful overland campaigns, its control of the inland waterways into the South, its blockade of the southern coast. With the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, the Union made abolition of slavery a war goal; as Union forces moved southward, large numbers of plantation slaves were freed. Many joined the Union lines, enrolling in service as soldiers and laborers; the most notable advance was Sherman's "March to the Sea" in late 1864.
Much of the Confederacy's infrastructure was destroyed, including telegraphs and bridges. Plantations in the path of Sherman's forces were damaged. Internal movement became difficult for Southerners, weakening the economy and limiting army mobility; these losses created an insurmountable disadvantage in men and finance. Public support for Confederate President Jefferson Davis's administration eroded over time due to repeated military reverses, economic hardships, allegations of autocratic government. After four years of campaigning, Richmond was captured by Union forces in April 1865. A few days General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Union General Ulysses S. Grant signalling the collapse of the Confederacy. President Davis was captured on May 10, 1865, jailed in preparation for a treason trial, never held; the initial Confederacy was established in the Montgomery Convention in February 1861 by seven states (South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana