Historical Virginians

Meet the notable figures of Virginia's past. These names influenced and shaped Virginia and the United States the way we know it today.

Colonial & Revolutionary

  • George Washington - (1732-1799) America's first president
  • Thomas Jefferson - (1743-1826) Wrote the Declaration of Independence
  • Nathaniel Bacon (1647-1676) led "Bacon's Rebellion" against British authority in 1676
  • George Rogers Clark (1752-1818) Charlottesville; Revolutionary War soldier captured Northwest Territories from British
  • Patrick Henry (1736-1799) Hanover; orator, patriot leader, governor; Home:Red HillFamous Speech: St. John's Episcopal Church, Richmond
  • Henry "Lighthorse Harry" Lee  (1756-1818) Prince William County; Revolutionary War hero; father of Robert E. Lee
  • Richard Henry Lee (1732-1794) Westmoreland County; presented the proposal for independence to Continental Congress in 1776; Home:Stratford Hall
  • George Mason (1725-1792) FairfaxCounty; author of Virginia Declaration of Rights; Home: Gunston Hall
  • Daniel Morgan  (1736-1802) Shenandoah Valley; Revolutionary War soldier; leader of "Morgan's Rifles"
  • Pocahontas  (1595-1617) daughter of Indian Chief Powhatan; married John Rolfe
  • Peyton Randolph  (1721-1775) Williamsburg; President of First Continental Congress
  • John Smith  (1579-1631) leader of first settlement at Jamestown
  • George Wythe  (1726-1806) Hampton; first professor of law in an American college, the College of William and Mary

Early American

  • James Madison  (1751-1836) Father of the Constitution, wrote the Bill of Rights
  • James Monroe  (1758-1831)  The last of the Founding Fathers to serve as a president.
  • Stephen F. Austin  (1793-1836) leader of Texas independence from Mexico movement
  • James Barbour  (1775-1842) Orange County; Secretary of War (1825-1828)
  • William Henry Harrison (1773-1841) His inauguration speech was the longest to date and he served just 33 days in office.
  • John Tyler (1790-1862) Was the Chancellor of the College of William and Mary
  • Zachary Taylor (1784-1850) Was a career military officer for 40 years (1808-1848) before becoming out 12th president.
  • Philip P. Barbour (1783-1841); Speaker of the House (1821-1823), Supreme Court Justice (1836-1841)
  • Henry Clay (1777-1852) Hanover County; famous orator and statesman; moved to Kentucky after youth in Virginia
  • Peter V. Daniel (1784 – 1860) Stafford County; Supreme Court Justice(1841-1860); Burial:Hollywood Cemetery
  • John B. Floyd   (1806 – 1863) Smithfield; Governor of Virginia (1849-1852); Secretary of War (1857-1861)
  • Thomas W. Gilmer  Secretary of the Navy (1844)
  • Sam Houston  (1793-1863) Rockbridge County; Governor of Tennessee (1827-1829); first President of Republic of Texas (1836-1838)
  • Charles Lee  (1731-1782) Cheshire, England; Attorney General (1795-1801)
  • John Marshall (1755-1835) Fauquier County; Chief Justice of Supreme Court (1805-1835)
  • John Y. Mason  (1799-1859) Greensville County; Secretary of the Navy (1844-1849), Attorney General (1845-1846)
  • Edmund Randolph  (1753-1813) Williamsburg; First Attorney General of the United States (1789-1794); Secretary of State (1794-1795); Governor of Virginia (1786)
  • John Randolph (1727-1784) Williamsburg; congressman, political writer
  • Winfield Scott(1786-1866) Petersburg; General, hero of Mexican-American War
  • Alexander H. H. Stuart  (1807-1891) Staunton; Secretary of the Interior (1850-1853)
  • Abel P. Upshur  (1790-1844) Northampton County; Secretary of the Navy (1841-1843)
  • William Wirt  (1772-1834) Bladensburg, MD; Attorney General (1817-1829)

Civil War

  • Hollywood Cemetery
  • Jubal Early  (1816–1894)Franklin County; Confederate general
  • A.P. Hill (1825-1865) Culpeper; Confederate general; Burial: A Monument in Richmond at corners of Hermitage Rd. and Laburnum Ave.
  • Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson  (1824-1863) Clarksburg; Confederate general; Burial: Lexington, VA
  • Joseph E. Johnston  (1807-1891) Prince Edward County; Confederate general; first commander of Confederate Army
  • Fitzhugh Lee  (1835-1905) Confederate general; Governor of Virginia; commanded United States forces in Cuba during Spanish-American War (1898); Burial: Hollywood Cemetery
  • Robert E. Lee  (1807-1870) Westmoreland County; Commanding general, Confederate Army of Northern Virginia; Birth:Stratford HallResidence:Arlington House
  • John Singleton Mosby  (1833-1916) Edgemont; "The Gray Ghost", Confederate cavalry commander
  • George Pickett  (1825-1875) Richmond; Confederate general, led fateful charge at Battle of Gettysburg; Burial:Hollywood Cemetery
  • J.E.B. Stuart  (1933-1864) Patrick County; Confederate general; Birthplace: Laurel Hill Plantation; Burial: Hollywood Cemetery

20th Century

  • Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924) Created the Fourteen Points, one of which called for the creation of a worldwide association of nations that would later become the League of Nations in the Treaty of Versailles.
  • Henry H. Fowler(1908-2000) Roanoke; Secretary of the Treasury(1965-1968)
  • Carter Glass  (1858-1946) Lynchburg; Secretary of the Treasury (1918-1920)
  • John O. Marsh Jr  (1926- ) Winchester; Secretary of the Army (1980-1989)
  • Lewis F. Powell Jar.  (1907-1998) Suffolk; Supreme Court Justice (1972-1990)
  • Claude A. Swanson  (1862-1939) Pittsylvania County; Secretary of the Navy (1933-1940)
  • Maggie L. Walker  (1867-1934) Richmond; first female bank president in America, advocate of black women's rights
  • John W. Warner (1927- ) Amherst County; Secretary of the Navy (1972-1974); U.S. Senator (1979-2009)
  • L. Douglas Wilder (1931- ) Richmond; First elected African-American Governor in U.S. history

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