Portal:Virginia

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Introduction

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Virginia (/vərˈɪniə/ (About this soundlisten)), officially 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. 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; Virginia Beach is the most populous city, and Fairfax County is the most populous political subdivision. The Commonwealth's estimated population is over 8.54 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 English colony in the New World. Virginia's state nickname, the Old Dominion, is a reference to this status. 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 while the First Wheeling Convention resolved to remain in the Union, leading to a split that created West Virginia. Although the Commonwealth was under one-party rule for nearly a century following Reconstruction, both major national parties are competitive in modern Virginia.

Selected article

The Pittston Coal strike was a United States labor union action led by the United Mine Workers Union (UMWA) against the Pittston Coal Company, nationally headquartered in Pittston, Pennsylvania. The strike, which lasted from April 5, 1989 to February 20, 1990, resulted from Pittston's termination of health care benefits for approximately 1,500 retirees, widows, and disabled miners. The strikers also cited the refusal of the company to contribute to the benefit trust established in 1950 for miners who retired before 1974 and the refusal of the company to bargain in good faith as grounds for their action. The company cited declining coal prices, decreasing demand, and recession as its reason for limiting health care benefits.

The strike affected production in mines mostly in Virginia, but a few in West Virginia and Kentucky as well. Mine workers and their families engaged in acts of civil disobedience, work stoppage, protests, and rallies. At its peak in June 1989, the strike involved approximately 2,000 miners daily staying at Camp Solidarity with thousands more sending donations and holding wildcat walkouts that involved around 40,000 people. The participation of women in the labor action through the ad hoc formation of the Daughters of Mother Jones—reminiscent of the early days of union organization—proved an essential element of the successful strike.

Selected biography

Portrait of Angus McDonald
Angus McDonald (1727 – August 19, 1778) was a prominent Scottish American military officer, frontiersman, sheriff and landowner in Virginia.

During the Jacobite rising of 1745, McDonald fought as a lieutenant under the command of Charles Edward Stuart in the Battle of Culloden, after which, he was "attainted of treason." He fled Scotland, departing from Inverness for the Colony of Virginia in 1746 at the age of 18.

McDonald moved west into Virginia's interior and entered the military service of the colonial government under Lieutenant Governor Robert Dinwiddie, receiving the rank of captain. McDonald served in the French and Indian War under General John Forbes in which he was in command of a company of Scottish Highlanders. Following the war, McDonald retired with the rank of captain in 1763.

In 1765, McDonald returned to military service when he was commissioned by Thomas Fairfax, 6th Lord Fairfax of Cameron as a major in command of the Frederick County militia. Lord Fairfax also appointed McDonald as an attorney and land agent for his Northern Neck Proprietary.

Governor John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore commissioned McDonald in 1774 as a ranking military officer of an expedition (known as "McDonald's Expedition") to promptly organize and recruit settlers west of the Allegheny Mountains to defend settlements from Native American attacks. McDonald completed the expedition, which met its goal of temporarily relieving western Virginia frontier settlements from attack.

McDonald received a personal letter from General George Washington in 1777 appointing him a lieutenant colonel in a battalion of Thruston's Additional Continental Regiment under the command of Colonel Charles Mynn Thruston. Despite his loyalty to the American Revolutionary cause, McDonald refused Washington's appointment. McDonald was later appointed by Washington to serve as a lieutenant colonel in command of Virginia revolutionary militia forces during the American Revolutionary War. He also served on various revolutionary committees throughout the war.

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Mount Vernon Estate Mansion 2.JPG
Credit: Martin Falbisoner

Mount Vernon, the plantation home of George Washington in Fairfax County, Virginia.

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Fact sheet

  • Capital: Richmond, Virginia
  • Total area: 110,862 sq.mi
  • Highest elevation: 5,729 ft (Mount Rogers)
  • Population (2010 census) 8,001,024
  • Date Virginia joined the united States: June 25, 1788

State symbols:

Dogwood
Cardinal
Virginia Quarter

Government

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Virginia topics

Topics Rivers | Governors | Colony | Rights | Homes | Colleges & Universities | Counties | People
Regions Appomattox Basin | Eastern Shore | Middle Peninsula | Northern Neck | Northern Virginia | Piedmont | Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians | Shenandoah Valley | Southside | Southwest Virginia | Tidewater
Metros Abingdon | Blacksburg | Bluefield | Bristol | Charlottesville | Culpeper | Danville | Fredericksburg | Front Royal | Harrisonburg | Leesburg | Lynchburg | Martinsville | Marion | Poquoson | Radford | Richmond | Roanoke | Staunton | Suffolk | Virginia Beach/Hampton Roads | Warrenton | Washington, D.C./Northern | Waynesboro | Williamsburg | Winchester | Wytheville
Counties Accomack | Albemarle | Alleghany | Amelia | Amherst | Appomattox | Arlington | Augusta | Bath | Bedford | Bland | Botetourt | Brunswick | Buchanan | Buckingham | Campbell | Caroline | Carroll | Charles City | Charlotte | Chesterfield | Clarke | Craig | Culpeper | Cumberland | Dickenson | Dinwiddie | Essex | Fairfax | Fauquier | Floyd | Fluvanna | Franklin | Frederick | Giles | Gloucester | Goochland | Grayson | Greene | Greensville | Halifax | Hanover | Henrico | Henry | Highland | Isle of Wight | James City | King and Queen | King George | King William | Lancaster | Lee | Loudoun | Louisa | Lunenburg | Madison | Mathews | Mecklenburg | Middlesex | Montgomery | Nelson | New Kent | Northampton | Northumberland | Nottoway | Orange | Page | Patrick | Pittsylvania | Powhatan | Prince Edward | Prince George | Prince William | Pulaski | Rappahannock | Richmond | Roanoke | Rockbridge | Rockingham | Russell | Scott | Shenandoah | Smyth | Southampton | Spotsylvania | Stafford | Surry | Sussex | Tazewell | Warren | Washington | Westmoreland | Wise | Wythe | York
Independent
Cities
Alexandria | Bedford | Bristol | Buena Vista | Charlottesville | Chesapeake | Colonial Heights | Covington |Danville | Emporia | Fairfax | Falls Church | Franklin | Fredericksburg | Galax | Hampton | Harrisonburg | Hopewell | Lexington | Lynchburg | Manassas | Manassas Park | Martinsville | Newport News | Norfolk | Norton | Petersburg | Poquoson |Portsmouth | Radford | Richmond | Roanoke | Salem | Staunton | Suffolk | Virginia Beach | Waynesboro | Williamsburg | Winchester
Colleges & Universities Appalachian School of Law | Averett University | Bluefield College | Bridgewater College | Christendom College | Christopher Newport University | College of William & Mary | Emory and Henry College | Ferrum College | George Mason University | George Washington University Virginia Campus | Hampden–Sydney College | Hampton University | Hollins University | James Madison University | Liberty University | Longwood University | Marine Corps University | Mary Baldwin University | Marymount University | Norfolk State University | Old Dominion University | Radford University | Randolph–Macon College | Randolph–Macon Woman's College | Regent University | Roanoke College | Saint Paul's College | Shenandoah University | Southern Virginia University | Sweet Briar College | University of Mary Washington | University of Richmond | University of Virginia | University of Virginia's College at Wise | Virginia Commonwealth University | Virginia Community College System | Virginia Intermont College | Virginia Military Institute | Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University | Virginia State University | Virginia Union University | Virginia Wesleyan University | Washington and Lee University | Westwood College


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