Mother of States & Mother of
Virginia is the site of the first permanent English-speaking settlement
in North America at Jamestown in 1607. Here, the English met the Powhatans,
a chiefdom of Algonquian Indians who lived in central and eastern Virginia.
The New World's first English women and Africans came to Jamestown in 1619,
the year and place where the Western Hemisphere's first representative
legislature met. Virginia was the largest, most populous and prosperous of
the original 13 colonies.
Virginia leaders including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James
Madison, James Monroe, George Mason and Patrick Henry, played a major role
in the Revolutionary War-era events and in the writing of documents such as
the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution and
the Bill of Rights.
At Yorktown on Oct. 19, 1781, British forces under General Charles
Cornwallis surrendered to the combined French and American forces serving
under the command of General George Washington.
Mother of States
& Mother of Presidents:
Eight states were formed in whole or in part from Virginia, including
Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky and
Pennsylvania. Virginia has produced more U.S. presidents than any other
state: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe,
William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor and Woodrow Wilson.
More major battles of the American Civil War were fought in Virginia
from 1861 through 1865 than in any other state. Today, one-third of
America's most important Civil War battlefields are in Virginia, and most
are open to the public.
America's first seven astronauts trained at NASA Langley Air Force Base
Blacksburg, home of Virginia Tech, is renowned as one of the world's
first electronic villages.
Newport News is the site of the nation's most powerful continuous
electron beam accelerator, located at the Thomas Jefferson National
Elizabeth Jordan Carr, the first test tube baby born in the U.S., was
delivered Dec. 28, 1981, at Norfolk General Hospital.
Two Charlottesville places designed by Thomas Jefferson are listed on
the World Heritage Foundation list of prized cultural or natural assets,
ranking them with the Great Pyramids of Egypt. These are Monticello: Home
of Thomas Jefferson and the University of Virginia.
The Capitol of Virginia in Richmond houses the only statue for which
George Washington ever posed.
One of Virginia's nicknames is "Mother of Presidents" because no other
state has produced more U.S. presidents than Virginia. The eight U.S.
presidents born in Virginia are George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James
Madison, James Monroe, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor
and Woodrow Wilson.
Two other presidents were Virginia natives. They are Joseph Jenkins
Roberts, who served as the first president of Liberia, and Sam Houston, who
served as president of Texas.
According to Braddock's "Presidential Trivia," Thomas Jefferson - not
caring for the stiff bowing prevalent among his predecessors - instituted
the custom of having guests shake hands.
James Monroe furnished the White House with items he purchased at an
auction of the possessions belonging to the executed Queen Marie
President William Henry Harrison and Vice President John Tyler were not
only elected to the White House in the same year but were also both born in
Charles City County, Va.
William Henry Harrison served for a mere 31 days before dying from
Woodrow Wilson officially proclaimed the second Sunday in May to be
Both Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe died on July 4 -- the first in
1826 and the other in 1831.
George Washington wrote a pamphlet on etiquette when he was 16 years
Zachary Taylor cast the first vote in his life when he voted for himself
in the presidential election.
James Madison, at 5-foot, 4-inches, was the shortest president.
After leaving office, John Tyler became a member of the Confederate
Natural Bridge, one of the seven natural wonders of the world, was
surveyed by George Washington and once owned by Thomas Jefferson who
purchased it for 20 shillings.
Virginia Information Courtesy Virginia
Virginia Tourism Website
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