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Orange County, Virginia
Seal of Orange County, Virginia
Map of Virginia highlighting Orange County
Location in the state of Virginia
Map of the U.S. highlighting Virginia
Virginia's location in the U.S.
Seat Orange
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

343 sq mi (888 km²)
342 sq mi (886 km²)
2 sq mi (5 km²), 0.50%
Population
 - (2000)
 - Density

25,881
75/sq mi (29/km²)
Founded 1734
Website www.orangecova.com

Orange County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2000 census, the population was 25,881. Its county seat is Orange.[1]

Contents

History

The area was previously inhabited by the Siouan Manahoac tribe, the first white settlement in what was to become Orange County was Germanna. It was there in 1714 that Governor Alexander Spotswood settled 12 families from Westphalia, Germany—42 people in all. The legal entity of Orange County was established in 1734 from a portion of Spotsylvania County. However, unlike other counties which had terminated at the Blue Ridge, Orange at its creation was conceived of as extending all the way to the Mississippi River and Great Lakes - land claimed by Virginia, but very little of which had yet been occupied by any English. For this reason, some contend that Orange County was at one time the largest county that ever existed.[2] This condition lasted only four years, when most of this tract was split off into Augusta County in 1738.

Orange County is named for Prince William III of Orange, a famous Protestant King of Great Britain and Ireland, by Ulster-Scots settlers. The family name of William of Orange was derived from the dynasty's ancestral origins as feudal lords of the French town of Orange, which was named by the ancient Gauls in honour of a Celtic water deity.

President James Madison's home, Montpelier, and Virginia governor and U.S. Senator James Barbour's ruined home, Barboursville, are located in the county. President Zachary Taylor was born here.[3] During the Civil War, the Battle of the Wilderness took place in the County in May 1864.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 343 square miles (889 km²), of which, 342 square miles (885 km²) of it is land and 2 square miles (4 km²) of it (0.50%) is water.

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Adjacent Counties

Demographics

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 25,881 people, 10,150 households, and 7,470 families residing in the county. The population density was 76 people per square mile (29/km²). There were 11,354 housing units at an average density of 33 per square mile (13/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 84.36% White, 13.78% Black or African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.34% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 0.90% from two or more races. 1.28% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 10,150 households out of which 29.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.70% were married couples living together, 10.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.40% were non-families. 22.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 2.90.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.00% under the age of 18, 6.50% from 18 to 24, 27.80% from 25 to 44, 25.60% from 45 to 64, and 17.20% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 93.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,889, and the median income for a family was $48,197. Males had a median income of $31,982 versus $24,209 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,107. About 7.10% of families and 9.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.60% of those under age 18 and 10.80% of those aged 65 or over.

Education

The county is served by Orange County Public Schools[5], whose superintendent is Dr. Robert P. Grimesey[6].

Media

The county is served locally by the Orange County Review a Media General owned weekly newspaper and regionally by the Fredericksburg, Virginia based The Free Lance Star. Radio station WVCV is licensed to Orange and the county is also served by radio stations in the Fredericksburg, Virginia and Charlottesville, Virginia radio markets.

Towns

Incorporated

Unincorporated

Attractions

Orange County is the location of a number of National Register of Historic Places-listed properties and districts, including Montpelier and Barboursville.

The Wilderness Battlefield

The Wilderness Battlefield - Widow Tapp Field

The Battle of the Wilderness was fought in Orange County on May 5-6, 1864. The battle marked the first occasion legendary Generals Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee would face each other in battle. The fighting at the Wilderness was also the first battle in Grant's Overland Campaign that would ultimately lead to the fall of Richmond and Lee’s surrender at Appomattox.

Over 160,000 troops were engaged at the Wilderness in a bloody, see-saw, battle that saw both sides on the brink of destruction. When the guns fell silent on May 7, over 29,000 soldiers lay dead or wounded on the fields at the Wilderness, and Grant’s Union army was able to disengage and press on toward Richmond.

Today, the Battle of the Wilderness is a part of the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, which has preserved 2,773 acres (11.22 km2) of the original battlefield. The park is closed on New Years Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Otherwise the park grounds are open from dawn to dusk on a daily basis.

Ellwood

Ellwood Manor

The Ellwood Manor is the only surviving house that witnessed the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864. During the battle Ellwood became a base of operations for the Union Army as Union General Ulysses S. Grant made his headquarters nearby. Ellwood would also play a role in the Battle of Chancellorsville in 1863 when Confederate General Stonewall Jackson, who was wounded during the battle, had his arm amputated and buried in the family cemetery at Ellwood. Following the battle at Chancellorsville, Ellwood served as a Confederate hospital.

In 2008, Ellwood was named “Favorite Virginia Civil War Site” by the Rappahannock Electric Cooperative’s “Cooperative Living” magazine.[7]

Portions of Orange County lie within the Monticello AVA. Several award-winning wineries are within the county, including Barboursville Vineyards, Burnley Vineyards and Horton Vineyards.

Development Concerns

As of September 2008, Wal-Mart has submitted a proposal to build a 141,000-square-foot (13,100 m2) Supercenter store less than one quarter mile from the National Park Service Boundary of the Wilderness Battlefield. It would be situated on a 52-acre (210,000 m2) tract just north of the Route 3/Route 20 intersection in Orange County. Preservation groups have formed the Wilderness Battlefield Coalition to oppose the construction of this Wal-Mart, arguing that it is likely to produce a significant increase in traffic and subsequent development.[8]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. http://www.naco.org/Template.cfm?Section=Find_a_County&Template=/cffiles/counties/usamap.cfm. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  2. ^ John Gwathmey, 1937, Twelve Virginia Counties p. 277.
  3. ^ "American President: Zachary Taylor". Miller Center of Public Affairs. http://millercenter.org/academic/americanpresident/taylor.  
  4. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  5. ^ Virginia, State of (1998-2009). "Virginia.gov - Education - Home Page". http://www.state.va.us/cmsportal3/education_4096/schools,_libraries_and_museums_4101/k-12_schools_4356/index.html. Retrieved 2009-05-30.  
  6. ^ Schools, Orange County Public. "Orange County Schools Office of the Superintendent". http://www.ocss-va.org/departments/superintendent/index.htm. Retrieved 2009-05-30.  
  7. ^ Ellwood named favorite Virginia Civil War site - Culpeper Star-Exponent
  8. ^ Groups want to sidetrack Orange project - Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star

External links

Coordinates: 38°14′N 78°01′W / 38.24°N 78.01°W / 38.24; -78.01


Genealogy

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Familypedia

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Orange County, Virginia
Seal of Orange County, Virginia
Map
File:Map of Virginia highlighting Orange County.png
Location in the state of Virginia
Map of the USA highlighting Virginia
Virginia's location in the USA
Statistics
Founded 1734
Seat Orange
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

889 km² (343 mi²)
885 km² (342 mi²)
4 km² (2 mi²), 0.50%
wikipedia:Population
 - (2000)
 - Density

25,881
29/km² 
Website: www.orangecova.com

Orange County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2000 census, the population was 25,881. Its county seat is Orange6.

Contents

History

Previously inhabited by the Siouan Manahoac tribe, the first white settlement in what was to become Orange County was Germanna in 1714, where Governor Spotswood settled 12 families from Westphalia, Germany - 42 persons in all. Orange County was established in 1734 from Spotsylvania. The county is named for Prince William IV of Orange, who in that year married Princess Anne, daughter of King George II of Great Britain. President James Madison's home, Montpelier, and Virginia Governor and U.S. Senator James Barbour's ruined home, Barboursville, are located in the county. President Zachary Taylor was born here. During the Civil War, the Battle of the Wilderness took place in the County in May 1864.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 889 km² (343 mi²). 885 km² (342 mi²) of it is land and 4 km² (2 mi²) of it (0.50%) is water.

Demographics

As of the census² of 2000, there were 25,881 people, 10,150 households, and 7,470 families residing in the county. The population density was 29/km² (76/mi²). There were 11,354 housing units at an average density of 13/km² (33/mi²). The racial makeup of the county was 84.36% White, 13.78% Black or African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.34% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 0.90% from two or more races. 1.28% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 10,150 households out of which 29.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.70% were married couples living together, 10.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.40% were non-families. 22.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 2.90.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.00% under the age of 18, 6.50% from 18 to 24, 27.80% from 25 to 44, 25.60% from 45 to 64, and 17.20% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 93.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,889, and the median income for a family was $48,197. Males had a median income of $31,982 versus $24,209 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,107. About 7.10% of families and 9.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.60% of those under age 18 and 10.80% of those aged 65 or over.

Piedmont Environmental Council reports that the county has a 4% annual growth rate, meaning that the population will double in 18 years[1].

Towns

Incorporated

Unincorporated

Attractions

Orange County is the location of a number of National Register of Historic Places-listed properties and districts. Two of the more well-known of these are Montpelier and Barboursville. Montpelier was the home of former United States President James Madison. Barboursville is the ruins of the former home of Virginia Governor James Barbour, designed by Barbour's friend and political ally Thomas Jefferson.

Portions of Orange County lie within the Monticello AVA, an American Viticultural Area. The County hosts several award-winning wineries, including Barboursville Vineyards, Burnley Vineyards and Horton Vineyards.

External links

Coordinates: 38°14′N 78°01′W / 38.24, -78.01


This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Orange County, Virginia. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
Facts about Orange County, VirginiaRDF feed
County of country United States  +
County of subdivision1 Virginia  +
Short name Orange County  +

This article uses material from the "Orange County, Virginia" article on the Genealogy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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