The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia


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Woman filmed licking ice cream tub could face 20 years. Cabin fire forces plane to make emergency landing. Coal billionaire dies in helicopter crash, governor says. Trump: We all share an extraordinary heritage. The Colony of Virginia , chartered in and settled in , was the first enduring English colony in North America , following failed proprietary attempts at settlement on Newfoundland by Sir Humphrey Gilbert [2] in , and the subsequent further south Roanoke Island modern eastern North Carolina by Sir Walter Raleigh in the late s. The founder of the new colony was the Virginia Company , [3] with the first two settlements in Jamestown on the north bank of the James River and Popham Colony on the Kennebec River in modern-day Maine , both in The Popham colony quickly failed due to a famine , disease, and conflict with local Native American tribes in the first two years.

Jamestown occupied land belonging to the Powhatan Confederacy , and was also at the brink of failure before the arrival of a new group of settlers and supplies by ship in Tobacco became Virginia's first profitable export, the production of which had a significant impact on the society and settlement patterns. In , the Virginia Company's charter was revoked by King James I , and the Virginia colony was transferred to royal authority as a crown colony.

Jamestown on the James River remained the capital of the Virginia colony until ; from until its dissolution the capital was in Williamsburg. The colony experienced its first major political turmoil with Bacon's Rebellion of After declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain in , before the Declaration of Independence was officially adopted, the Virginia colony became the Commonwealth of Virginia , one of the original thirteen states of the United States, adopting as its official slogan "The Old Dominion".

The entire modern states of West Virginia , Kentucky , Indiana and Illinois , and portions of Ohio and Western Pennsylvania were later created from the territory encompassed, or claimed by, the colony of Virginia at the time of further American independence in July The name "Virginia" is the oldest designation for English claims in North America. In , Sir Walter Raleigh sent Philip Amadas and Arthur Barlowe to explore what is now the North Carolina coast, and they returned with word of a regional king weroance named Wingina , who ruled a land supposedly called Wingandacoa.

This area included a large section of Canada and the shores of Acadia. The state of Virginia maintains "Old Dominion" as its state nickname. The athletic teams of the University of Virginia are known as the " Cavaliers ," referring to supporters of Charles II, and Virginia has another state public university called " Old Dominion University ". Although Spain, France, Sweden, and the Netherlands all had competing claims to the region, none of these prevented the English from becoming the first European power to colonize successfully the Mid-Atlantic coastline.

Farther south, the Spanish colony of Spanish Florida , centered on St. Augustine , was established in , while to the north, the French were establishing settlements in what is now Canada Charlesbourg-Royal briefly occupied —43; Port Royal , established in In , Sir Walter Raleigh sent his first colonisation mission to the island of Roanoke in present-day North Carolina , with over male settlers.

However, when Sir Francis Drake arrived at the colony in summer , the colonists opted to return to England, due to lack of supply ships, abandoning the colony. Supply ships arrived at the now-abandoned colony later in ; 15 soldiers were left behind to hold the island, however no trace of these men was later found.

In , Raleigh sent another group to again attempt to establish a permanent settlement. The expedition leader, John White , returned to England for supplies that same year but was unable to return to the colony due to war between England and Spain. When he finally did return in , he found the colony abandoned. The houses were intact, but the colonists had completely disappeared. Although there are a number of theories about the fate of the colony, it remains a mystery and has come to be known as the "Lost Colony".

Two English children were born in this colony; the first was named Virginia Dare — Dare County, North Carolina , was named in honor of the baby, who was among those whose fate is unknown. The word Croatoan was found carved into a tree, the name of a tribe on a nearby island. Following the failure of the previous colonisation attempts, England resumed attempts to set up a number of colonies. This time joint-stock companies were used rather than giving extensive grants to a landed proprietor such as Gilbert or Raleigh. King James granted a proprietary charter to two competing branches of the Virginia Company , which were supported by investors.

These were the Plymouth Company and the London Company. The London Company was permitted to establish between the 34th parallel and the 41st parallel approximately between Cape Fear and Long Island Sound , and also owned a large portion of Atlantic and Inland Canada. In the area of overlap, the two companies were not permitted to establish colonies within one hundred miles of each other. The London company formed Jamestown in its exclusive territory, whilst the Plymouth colony formed the Popham Colony in its exclusive territory near what is now Phippsburg, Maine.

On December 20, , he set sail from England with his flagship , the Susan Constant , and two smaller ships, the Godspeed , and the Discovery , with men and boys, plus 39 sailors. Their instructions were to select a location inland along a waterway where they would be less vulnerable to the Spanish or other Europeans also seeking to establish colonies. They sailed westward into the Bay and reached the mouth of Hampton Roads , stopping at a location now known as Old Point Comfort.

Keeping the shoreline to their right, they then ventured up the largest river, which they named the James , for their king. After exploring at least as far upriver as the confluence of the Appomattox River at present-day Hopewell , they returned downstream to Jamestown Island , which offered a favorable defensive position against enemy ships and deep water anchorage adjacent to the land.

Within two weeks they had constructed their first fort and named their settlement Jamestown. In addition to securing gold and other precious minerals to send back to the waiting investors in England, the survival plan for the Jamestown colonists depended upon regular supplies from England and trade with the Native Americans.

The location they selected was largely cut off from the mainland and offered little game for hunting, no fresh drinking water, and very limited ground for farming. Captain Newport returned to England twice, delivering the First Supply and the Second Supply missions during , and leaving the Discovery for the use of the colonists. However, death from disease and conflicts with the Natives Americans took a fearsome toll of the colonists.

Despite attempts at mining minerals, growing silk, and exporting the native Virginia tobacco, no profitable exports had been identified, and it was unclear whether the settlement would survive financially. The Powhatan Confederacy was a confederation of numerous linguistically related tribes in the eastern part of Virginia.

The Powhatan Confederacy controlled a territory known as Tsenacommacah , which roughly corresponded with the Tidewater region of Virginia. It was in this territory that the English established Jamestown. At the time of the English arrival, the Powhatan were led by the paramount chief Wahunsenacawh. On May 31, , about men and boys left England for what is now Maine. Approximately three months later, the group landed on a wooded peninsula where the Kennebec River meets the Atlantic Ocean and began building Fort St.

By the end of the year, due to limited resources, half of the colonists returned to England. Late the next year, the remaining 45 sailed home, and the Plymouth company fell dormant. In , with the abandonment of the Plymouth Company settlement, the London Company's Virginia charter was adjusted to include the territory north of the 34th parallel and south of the 39th parallel , with its original coastal grant extended "from sea to sea". Thus, at least according to James I's writ, the Virginia Colony in its original sense extended to the coast of the Pacific Ocean, in what is now California, with all the states in between Kentucky , Missouri , Colorado , Utah , etc.

For practical purposes, though, the colonists rarely ventured far inland to what was known as "The Virginia Wilderness", although the concept itself helped renew the interest of investors, and additional funds enabled an expanded effort, known as the Third Supply. For the Third Supply, the London Company had a new ship built.

The Sea Venture was specifically designed for emigration of additional colonists and transporting supplies. It became the flagship of the Admiral of the convoy, Sir George Somers. The Third Supply was the largest to date, with eight other ships joining the Sea Venture. Hundreds of new colonists were aboard the ships. However, weather was to drastically affect the mission. A few days out of London, the nine ships of the third supply mission encountered a massive hurricane in the Atlantic Ocean.

Colony of Virginia - Wikipedia

They became separated during the three days the storm lasted. Admiral Somers had the new Sea Venture , carrying most of the supplies of the mission, deliberately driven aground onto the reefs of Bermuda to avoid sinking. However, while there was no loss of life, the ship was wrecked beyond repair, stranding its survivors on the uninhabited archipelago , to which they laid claim for England.

The survivors at Bermuda eventually built two smaller ships and most of them continued on to Jamestown, leaving a few on Bermuda to secure the claim. The Company's possession of Bermuda was made official in , when the third and final charter extended the boundaries of 'Virginia' far enough out to sea to encompass Bermuda. The shareholders of the Virginia Company spun off a second company, the Somers Isles Company , which administered Bermuda from to Upon their arrival at Jamestown, the survivors of the Sea Venture discovered that the month delay had greatly aggravated other adverse conditions.

Seven of the other ships had arrived carrying more colonists, but little in the way of food and supplies. Conditions were so adverse it appears, from skeletal evidence, that the survivors engaged in cannibalism. During this time, perhaps Virginians died of disease or were killed in the Indian massacre of Samuel Argall was the captain of one of the seven ships of the Third Supply that had arrived at Jamestown in after becoming separated from the Sea Venture , whose fate was unknown. Depositing his passengers and limited supplies, he returned to England with word of the plight of the colonists at Jamestown.

They set sail from London on April 1, Just after the survivors of the Starving Time and those who had joined them from Bermuda had abandoned Jamestown, the ships of the new supply mission sailed up the James River with food, supplies, a doctor, and more colonists. The colonists thanked Providence for the Colony's salvation. West proved far harsher and more belligerent toward the Indians than any of his predecessors, engaging in wars of conquest against them. He first sent Gates to drive off the Kecoughtan from their village on July 9, , then gave Chief Powhatan an ultimatum to either return all English subjects and property, or face war.

Powhatan responded by insisting that the English either stay in their fort or leave Virginia. Enraged, De la Warr had the hand of a Paspahegh captive cut off and sent him to the paramount chief with another ultimatum: Return all English subjects and property, or the neighboring villages would be burned. This time, Powhatan did not even respond. On August 9, , tired of waiting for a response from Powhatan, West sent George Percy with 70 men to attack the Paspahegh capital, burning the houses and cutting down their cornfields.

They killed 65 to 75, and captured one of Wowinchopunk's wives and her children. Returning downstream, the English threw the children overboard and shot out "their Braynes in the water". The queen was put to the sword in Jamestown. The Paspahegh never recovered from this attack and abandoned their town. Another small force sent with Samuel Argall against the Warraskoyaks found that they had already fled, but he destroyed their abandoned village and cornfields as well. This event triggered the first Anglo-Powhatan War. Among the individuals who had briefly abandoned Jamestown was John Rolfe , a Sea Venture survivor who had lost his wife and son in Bermuda.

He was a businessman from London who had some untried seeds for new, sweeter strains of tobacco with him, as well as some untried marketing ideas. It would turn out that John Rolfe held the key to the Colony's economic success. By , Rolfe's new strains of tobacco had been successfully cultivated and exported, establishing a first cash crop for export.

Plantations and new outposts sprung up, initially both upriver and downriver along the navigable portion of the James, and thereafter along the other rivers and waterways of the area. The settlement at Jamestown could finally be considered permanently established. A period of peace followed the marriage in of colonist John Rolfe to Pocahontas , the daughter of Algonquian chief Powhatan.

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The relations with the Natives took a turn for the worse after the death of Pocahontas in England and the return of John Rolfe and other colonial leaders in May Disease, poor harvests and the growing demand for tobacco lands caused hostilities to escalate. After Wahunsenacawh's death in , he was soon succeeded by his own younger brother, Opechancanough.

He maintained friendly relations with the Colony on the surface, negotiating with them through his warrior Nemattanew , but by , after Nemattanew had been slain, Opechancanough was ready to order a limited surprise attack on them, hoping to persuade them to move on and settle elsewhere. This event came to be known as the Indian Massacre of and resulted in the deaths of colonists including men, women, and children and the abduction of many others. The Massacre caught most of the Virginia Colony by surprise and virtually wiped out several entire communities, including Henricus and Wolstenholme Town at Martin's Hundred.

Jamestown was spared from destruction, however, due to a Virginia Indian boy named Chanco who, after learning of the planned attacks from his brother, gave warning to colonist Richard Pace with whom he lived. Pace, after securing himself and his neighbors on the south side of the James River, took a canoe across river to warn Jamestown, which narrowly escaped destruction, although there was no time to warn the other settlements.

A year later, Captain William Tucker and Dr. John Potts worked out a truce with the Powhatan and proposed a toast using liquor laced with poison. For over a decade, the English settlers killed Powhatan men and women, captured children and systematically razed villages, seizing or destroying crops. By , a six-mile-long palisade was completed across the Virginia Peninsula.

The new palisade provided some security from attacks by the Virginia Indians for colonists farming and fishing lower on the Peninsula from that point. On April 18, , Opechancanough again tried to force the colonists to abandon the region with another series of coordinated attacks, killing almost colonists. However, this was a much less devastating portion of the growing population than had been the case in the attacks. The forces of Royal Governor of Virginia William Berkeley captured the old warrior in , [21] variously thought to be between 90 and years old.

In October, while a prisoner, Opechancanough was killed by a soldier shot in the back assigned to guard him. Known as Pilgrims , they successfully established a settlement in what became Massachusetts. The portion of what had been Virginia north of the 40th parallel became known as New England , according to books written by Captain John Smith , who had made a voyage there. In , the charter of the Virginia Company was revoked by King James I and the Virginia Colony was transferred to royal authority in the form of a crown colony. Subsequent charters for the Maryland Colony in and to the eight Lords Proprietor of the Province of Carolina in and further reduced the Virginia Colony to roughly the coastal borders it held until the American Revolution.

After twelve years of peace following the Indian Wars of —, another Anglo—Powhatan War began on March 18, , as a last effort by the remnants of the Powhatan Confederacy, still under Opechancanough , to dislodge the English settlers of the Virginia Colony.

The State of My State: A Native Son's Search for West Virginia

Around colonists were killed, but that number represented a relatively low percent of the overall population, as opposed to the earlier massacre the attack had wiped out a third; that of barely a tenth. However, Opechancanough, still preferring to use Powhatan tactics, did not make any major follow-up to this attack. This was followed by a last effort by the settlers to decimate the Powhatan.

In July, they marched against the Pamunkey, Chickahominy, and Powhatan proper; and south of the James, against the Appomattoc, Weyanoke, Warraskoyak, and Nansemond, as well as two Carolina tribes, the Chowanoke and Secotan.


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  6. In February , the colony ordered the construction of three frontier forts: Fort Charles at the falls of the James, Fort James on the Chickahominy, and Fort Royal at the falls of the York. All captured males in the village over age 11 were deported to Tangier Island. Opechancanough's death resulted in the disintegration of the Powhatan Confederacy into its component tribes, whom the colonists continued to attack.

    In March , the colony decided to build a fourth frontier fort, Fort Henry , at the falls of the Appomattox, where the modern city of Petersburg is located. In the peace treaty of October , the new weroance , Necotowance , and the subtribes formerly in the Confederacy, each became tributaries to the King of England. At the same time, a racial frontier was delineated between Indian and English settlements, with members of each group forbidden to cross to the other side except by special pass obtained at one of the newly erected border forts.

    The extent of the Virginia colony open to patent by English colonists was defined as: All the land between the Blackwater and York rivers, and up to the navigable point of each of the major rivers — which were connected by a straight line running directly from modern Franklin on the Blackwater, northwesterly to the Appomattoc village beside Fort Henry, and continuing in the same direction to the Monocan village above the falls of the James, where Fort Charles was built, then turning sharp right, to Fort Royal on the York Pamunkey river.

    Necotowance thus ceded the English vast tracts of still-uncolonized land, much of it between the James and Blackwater. English settlements on the peninsula north of the York and below the Poropotank were also allowed, as they had already been there since While the newer, Puritan colonies, most notably Massachusetts , were dominated by Parliamentarians, the older colonies sided with the Crown.

    This dictated that.

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    The Act also authorised Parliamentary privateers to act against English vessels trading with the rebellious colonies: "All Ships that Trade with the Rebels may be surprized. Goods and tackle of such ships not to be embezeled, till judgement in the Admiralty; Two or three of the Officers of every ship to be examined upon oath. Virginia's population swelled with Cavaliers during and after the English Civil War. Despite the resistance of the Virginia Cavaliers , Virginian Puritan Richard Bennett was made Governor answering to Cromwell in , followed by two more nominal "Commonwealth Governors".

    Nonetheless, the colony was rewarded for its loyalty to the Crown by Charles the II following the Restoration when he dubbed it the Old Dominion. In , Bacon's Rebellion challenged the political order of the colony. While a military failure, its handling did result in Governor Berkeley being recalled to England.

    The largest and richest and most influential of the American colonies was Virginia, where conservatives were in full control of the colonial and local governments. At the local level, Church of England parishes handled many local affairs, and they in turn were controlled not by the minister, but rather by a closed circle of rich landowners who comprised the parish vestry. Ronald L. Heinemann emphasizes the ideological conservatism of Virginia, while noting there were also religious dissenters who were gaining strength by the s:.

    In actual practice, colonial Virginia never had a bishop to represent God nor a hereditary aristocracy with titles like 'duke' or 'baron'. However it did have a royal governor appointed by the king, as well as a powerful landed gentry. The status quo was strongly reinforced by what Jefferson called "feudal and unnatural distinctions" that were vital to the maintenance of aristocracy in Virginia. He targeted laws such as entail and primogeniture by which the oldest son inherited all the land. As a result increasingly large plantations, worked by white tenant farmers and by black slaves, gained in size and wealth and political power in the eastern "Tidewater" tobacco areas.

    They introduced primogeniture in Upper Canada Ontario in , and it lasted until Such laws lasted in England until As the English expanded out from Jamestown, encroachment of the new arrivals and their ever-growing numbers on what had been Indian lands resulted in several conflicts with the Virginia Indians. For much of the 17th century, English contact and conflict was mostly with the Algonquian peoples that populated the coastal regions, primarily the Powhatan Confederacy. Following a series of wars and the decline of the Powhatan as a political entity, the colonists expanded westward in the late 17th and 18th centuries, encountering the Shawnee , Iroquoian -speaking peoples such as the Nottoway , Meherrin , Iroquois and Cherokee , as well as Siouan -speaking peoples such as the Tutelo , Saponi , and Occaneechi.

    As the English settlements expanded beyond the Tidewater territory traditionally occupied by the Powhatan, they encountered new groups with which there had been minimal relations with the Colony. In the late 17th century, the Iroquois Confederacy expanded into the Western region of Virginia as part of the Beaver Wars.

    They arrived shortly before the English settlers, and displaced the resident Siouan tribes. Alexander Spotswood made further advances in policy with the Virginia Indians along the frontier. In , he established Fort Christanna to help educate and trade with several tribes with which the colony had friendly relations, as well as to help protect them from hostile tribes. In , he negotiated the Treaty of Albany.

    The cultural geography of colonial Virginia gradually evolved, with a variety of settlement and jurisdiction models experimented with. By the late 17th century and into the 18th century, the primary settlement pattern was based on plantations to grow tobacco , farms, and some towns mostly ports or courthouse villages. The fort at Jamestown, founded in , remained the primary settlement of the colonists for several years. A few strategic outposts were constructed, including Fort Algernon at the entrance to the James River.

    Early attempts to occupy strategic locations already inhabited by natives at what is now Richmond and Suffolk failed owing to native resistance. A short distance farther up the James, in , Thomas Dale began the construction of a progressive development at Henricus on and about what was later known as Farrars Island.

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    Henricus was envisioned as possible replacement capital for Jamestown, and was to have the first college in Virginia. The ill-fated Henricus was destroyed during the Indian Massacre of In addition to creating the new settlement at Henricus, Dale also established the port town of Bermuda Hundred , as well as "Bermuda Cittie" sic in , now part of Hopewell, Virginia. He began the excavation work at Dutch Gap , using methods he had learned while serving in Holland.

    Once tobacco had been established as an export cash crop, investors became more interested and groups of them united to create largely self-sufficient "hundreds. The "hundreds" were required to be at least several miles from any existing community. Soon, these patented tracts of land sprang up along the rivers. The investors sent shiploads of settlers and supplies to Virginia to establish the new developments.

    The administrative centers of Virginia's hundreds were essentially small towns or villages, and were often palisaded for defense. An example was Martin's Hundred , located downstream from Jamestown on the north bank of the James River. It was sponsored by the Martin's Hundred Society , a group of investors in London. It was settled in , and Wolstenholme Towne was its administrative center, named for Sir John Wolstenholme, one of the investors.

    Including the creation of the "hundreds", the various incentives to investors in the Virginia Colony finally paid off by

    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia
    The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia The State of My State: A Native Sons Search for West Virginia

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