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City Guide: Richmond, VA
2/22/2011
Whether your Richmond ancestors came in Colonial times and migrated to other places or stayed and helped build what is today one of the centers of the New South, you'll find plenty of records to uncover their story.
Few places have been the nexus for as much of US history as Richmond, Va. Patrick Henry helped spark the American Revolution with his "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in 1775 at Richmond's St. John's Church. As the capital of the Confederacy, Richmond saw some two dozen major Civil War battles fought on its doorstep.

Whether your Richmond ancestors came in Colonial times and migrated to other places or stayed and helped build what is today one of the centers of the New South, you'll find plenty of records to uncover their story.

Rich history
Richmond's history dates to the earliest Colonial times, when a party of English under Capt. Christopher Newport visited a Powhatan Indian settlement at the falls of the James River in 1607. Capt. John Smith sent another party to occupy the site, which Smith named "Nonesuch," in 1609, but they were soon driven back to Jamestown. French Huguenot pioneers filled the gap left by the retreating English, founding a village that's now a Richmond suburb, Manakin-Sabot.

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