A Few Fun Facts
- After more than 400 years, from agricultural development to urban sprawl, about 60% of Virginia is still covered by forests.
- About 70% of all Internet traffic flows through data centers in Northern Virginia.
- Nearly 25% of all Virginia workers are employed by the United States government.
- Virginia’s 250+ wineries produced 6.5 million bottles of wine in 2015.
- The 105-mile Skyline Drive through the Shenandoah National Park connects with the first 213-mile portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway to create a spectacular Virginia roadtrip that every American should enjoy at least once.
- Sir Walter Raleigh named Virginia for Elizabeth I, the “Virgin Queen” of England. Frontier portions of the colony later became the states of Kentucky and West Virginia.
- Jamestown, the first English settlement in the U.S., was founded in 1607 for the purpose of silk cultivation. When a fungus killed the mulberry trees upon which the silkworms fed, Virginia farmers survived with a new indigenous cash crop—tobacco.
- Eight U.S. presidents were born in Virginia—George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, William Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor, and Woodrow Wilson—and 78 Virginians have become governors of other U.S. states.
- Virginia’s College of William and Mary, founded in 1693, is the nation’s second oldest institution of higher learning and home to the first U.S. law school, established in 1779.
- The 301-acre Colonial Williamsburg, with restored and replicated buildings staffed by authentically costumed guides, is the world’s largest living history museum.
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