Richmond, VA

Richmond, Va. City, port of entry, capital of the state and seat of justice of Henrico co. It is pleasantly situated on the N. side of James River, immediately below the falls, and at the head of tide water. It is 23 miles N. from Petersburg, and 117 W. from Washington. The population, in 1800, was 5737; 1810, 9785; 1820, 12,067; 1830, 16,060; 1840, 20,153; 1850, 27,483. (Gazetteer of the United States of America, 1854)

Place Unit Type
City or Town
Containing Unit
Date Type
A new statue of former Chief Justice John Marshall is installed at the Washington Monument in Richmond, Virginia. Education/Culture
A significant lunar eclipse of the Sun is visible in the morning over much of the eastern United States Science/Technology
After nine months of bloody attempts, the Union Army marches into Petersburg, Virginia Battles/Soldiers
At a private house in Richmond, Confederate cavalry commander General J.E.B. Stuart dies of his wounds Battles/Soldiers
At Fort Bliss, Confederate Brigadier-General Henry Sibley takes command of the "Army of New Mexico" Battles/Soldiers
At Hampton, Virginia, two hundred and forty exchanged Union prisoners reach Fort Monroe Battles/Soldiers
At the House of Delegates in Richmond, the Virginia Convention votes for secession Lawmaking/Litigating
Confederate authorities select two Union officer prisoners for a retaliatory execution at Libby Prison Lawmaking/Litigating
Confederate Brigadier-General Henry H. Sibley marches from San Antonio to launch his invasion of New Mexico Battles/Soldiers
Confederate president Jefferson Davis signs the first Conscription Act in American history Lawmaking/Litigating
Fast day of "humiliation, prayer, and thanksgiving" observed throughout the Confederacy Religion/Philosophy
- Financial disruption verges on panic and Virginia banks suspend specie payments Business/Industry
First Episcopal Bishop of Texas consecrated at Episcopal Convention in Richmond, Virginia Religion/Philosophy
For the second time in two days, a steamship rescues the crew of a sinking vessel off South Carolina. Crime/Disasters
Former Confederate president is transported from Fort Monroe to Richmond to appear in federal court under a writ of habeas corpus. Lawmaking/Litigating
General J.E.B. Stuart is buried with full honors at the Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia Personal
George W. Randolph, former Confederate Secretary of War and youngest grandson of Thomas Jefferson, dies at his Virginia home of tuberculosis. Personal
Governor Wise of Virginia meets with southern medical students returned from Philadelphia Legal/Political
In a rainy Richmond, Virginia, Jefferson Davis is inaugurated to a full term as Confederate president Campaigns/Elections
In Boston, Rebecca Davis Lee graduates as the first female African-American medical doctor Education/Culture
In Montgomery, Alabama, the special session session of the Confederate States Congress ends Lawmaking/Litigating
In Ohio, General Burnside executes two Confederate officers arrested in Kentucky for spying Lawmaking/Litigating
- In Richmond, 109 Union officers prisoners tunnel out of confinement and make for the Union lines Battles/Soldiers
In Richmond, a public demonstration of Virginia's loyalty to the Union is held on the Capitol grounds Campaigns/Elections
In Richmond, Confederates select prisoners for trial in retaliation for Northern convictions of privateers Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, former Confederate president Jefferson Davis appears in federal court under a writ of habeas corpus and is released on bail. Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, former Constitutional Unionist congressman John Minor Botts is arrested in dawn raid Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, teenaged Union officer Johnston De Peyster hoists the Stars and Stripes over the Confederate Capitol Battles/Soldiers
In Richmond, the Confederate Congress votes to admit Missouri as the Confederacy's eleventh state Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, the Confederate Navy convenes a court of inquiry over the destruction of the Merrimac Battles/Soldiers
In Richmond, the Confederate Navy court of inquiry into the scuttling of the Merrimac makes its report Battles/Soldiers
In Richmond, the Virginia Convention rejects secession in a decisive vote Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, Virginia, President Lincoln tours the newly captured former capital of the Confederacy Battles/Soldiers
- In Richmond, Virginia, the First Confederate Congress is meeting in its first session Lawmaking/Litigating
- In Richmond, Virginia, the First Confederate Congress is meeting in its second session Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, Virginia, the First Confederate Congress is now adjourned till August Lawmaking/Litigating
- In Richmond, Virginia, the First Confederate Congress is sitting in its fourth and final session Lawmaking/Litigating
- In Richmond, Virginia, the First Confederate Congress is sitting in its third session Lawmaking/Litigating
In Richmond, Virginia, Union agent Timothy Webster becomes the first spy executed during the war Battles/Soldiers
In the Virginia Senate, Senator R. R. Collier opens debate on the centrality of slavery to the South Lawmaking/Litigating
In Virginia, Richmond police locked up 238 people in the previous month, mostly for drunkeness Crime/Disasters
In Virginia, Richmond police raid secret meeting of African-American group called "The Sons of Ham" Slavery/Abolition
In Virginia, secessionists raise the Confederate flag in a ceremony near Richmond Campaigns/Elections
In Virginia, several former Confederate officers and officers are elected as mayor and city councillors Campaigns/Elections
In Virginia, Union General Alfred Terry voids the recent Richmond city elections Campaigns/Elections
In Winchester, a mass meeting of area Unionists protests the return of Confederates to office in Virginia Campaigns/Elections
Jefferson Davis declares a day of "fasting, humiliation, and prayer" across the Confederacy Lawmaking/Litigating
Jefferson Davis declares martial law in and around the Virginia towns of Norfolk and Portsmouth Lawmaking/Litigating
Jefferson Davis declares martial law in the Richmond area and also bans the production of spirits Lawmaking/Litigating
John Tyler, 10th United States President, dies in his hotel room in Richmond, Virginia, aged 71 Personal
John Young Mason dies in Paris where he is United States Minister Personal
Judah P. Benjamin is named as Confederate Secretary of War and Thomas Bragg as Attorney General Lawmaking/Litigating
Kentucky man sends Governor Wise the rope with which to hang John Brown Legal/Political
Mission of Confederate Vice-President Stephens seeks negotiations on prisoners Lawmaking/Litigating
President Johnson recognizes Virginia's "Alexandria" legislature and appoints Francis Pierpont provisional governor Lawmaking/Litigating
President Lincoln banishes Congressman Clement Vallandigham to the Confederacy Lawmaking/Litigating
President Lincoln rejects Confederate Vice-President Stephens' offer to negotiate on prisoners Lawmaking/Litigating
- President Monroe goes home to Virginia Personal
- Prince Albert makes a brief visit to Richmond, Virginia US/the World
Richmond newspaper editorial defends slavery as a vital financial need for Virginia Slavery/Abolition
Richmond newspaper editors reportedly exchange pistol shots in the halls of the Virginia State Capitol Crime/Disasters
Robert E. Lee and his family leave Richmond to spend summer in the Virginia countryside Personal
Robert E. Lee is appointed field commander of the Army of Northern Virginia Battles/Soldiers
Secretary of War E.M. Stanton orders appointment of Union commissioners to visit Southern prisons Lawmaking/Litigating
South Carolina Commissioner Christopher Memminger speaks for four hours before the Virginia legislature Lawmaking/Litigating
South Carolina sends Christopher Memminger to discuss the sectional crisis with the Virginia legislature Legal/Political
Southern journalist urges the South to reclaim the "Star-Spangled Banner" as a southern patriotic song Education/Culture
Southern students from Philadelphia's medical schools meet and vote to leave for the South Legal/Political
Southern students make a mass exodus from Philadelphia's medical schools Legal/Political
Statue of Henry Clay inaugurated with great ceremony in Capitol Square, Richmond, Virginia Education/Culture
The Confederate Congress outlines dire consequences for black Union soldiers and their white officers Lawmaking/Litigating
The Confederate Government evacuates its capital of Richmond, hours before victorious Union troops march in Battles/Soldiers
The Confederate Post Office issues its first postage stamps, bearing the likeness of Jefferson Davis Lawmaking/Litigating
The new Confederate National Flag flies for the first time over the Confederate Capitol in Richmond Lawmaking/Litigating
The new Virginia legislature replaces the restrictive Alexandria Oath with the milder Amnesty Oath Lawmaking/Litigating
The Prince of Wales spends twenty-four hours in Baltimore US/the World
The Union Army crosses the James River, ending Grant's Overland Campaign and besieging Petersburg Battles/Soldiers
The United States reclassifies convicted Confederate privateers as prisoners of war Lawmaking/Litigating
- The Virginia Convention on secession is meeting in Richmond Lawmaking/Litigating
The Virginia Washington Monument is unveiled in Richmond with Crawford's equestrian statue of Washington as its centerpiece Cultural
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Peter V. Daniel dies in Richmond, Virginia Personal
- Union spy Elizabeth Van Lew risks her life to shelter escaping Union officers in her Richmond home Battles/Soldiers
Virginia Democrats urge participation in the proposed convention of southern states Lawmaking/Litigating
Virginia rejects South Carolina's call for a convention of southern states Lawmaking/Litigating
Virginia State legislature finishes its 1859-1860 session Lawmaking/Litigating
Virginia working women demonstrate and then precipitate a "Bread Riot"in the Confederate capital Women/Families
- Virginia's "Alexandria" legislature moves back to Richmond for its final session Lawmaking/Litigating
Virginians elect delegates to their secession convention Lawmaking/Litigating
Name Type
Belle Isle, VA Location or Site
Fort Harrison, VA Location or Site
Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, VA Location or Site
Libby Prison, Richmond, Virginia Location or Site
Rocketts Landing, Richmond, VA Location or Site
Date Title
New York Times, “Louisiana Legislature,” December 11, 1852
John Henry Hill to William Still, January 19, 1854
John Henry Hill to William Still, March 8, 1854
James M. Mercer to William Still, March 17, 1854
Issac Forman to William Still, May 7, 1854
William Henry Gilliam to William Still, May 15, 1854
John Henry Hill to William Still, September 14, 1854
Richmond (VA) Dispatch, "The Late Tragedy," October 16, 1855
Richmond (VA) Dispatch, "The Underground Railroad," November 7, 1855
Jacob Bigelow (William Penn) to William Still, November 10, 1855
N. R. Johnston to William Still, December 26, 1855
John Hall to William Still, March 25, 1856
New York Herald, "Breakdown on the Underground Railroad," July 26, 1856
John Henry Hill to William Still, September 15, 1856
John Hall to William Still, September 15, 1856
John Hall to William Still, December 23, 1856
John Henry Hill to William Still, January 5, 1857
John Thompson to William Still, January 6, 1857
New York Times, “Virginia Frightened,” April 7, 1857
Elijah Hilton to William Still, July 28, 1857
New York Times, “The Convention of the Southern New School Presbyterians,” August 31, 1857
Washington (DC) National Era, “A Minister Driven From His Church,” September 3, 1857
Washington (DC) National Era, “The Seceders,” September 17, 1857
“Old Brown and his Friends,” Richmond (VA) Dispatch, November 10, 1859.
Hiram Wilson and Orlando J. Hunt to William Still, May 6, 1858
Cleveland (OH) Herald, "Emancipation of Slaves in Virginia," June 16, 1858
Thomas Garrett to William Still, August 21, 1858
Thomas Garrett to William Still, August 25, 1858
Charleston (SC) Mercury, “The Western Trade,” September 28, 1858
Boston (MA) Liberator, “The Underground Railroad,” October 8, 1858
New York Herald, “Our Richmond Correspondence,” October 17, 1858
New York Times, “Another Virginia Insurrection,” February 7, 1859
Charleston (SC) Mercury, “Railroad Outrages,” February 23, 1859
Chicago (IL) Press and Tribune, “Another Dred Scott Decision,” June 8, 1859
New York Times, “Albany and Richmond,” June 29, 1859
Carlisle (PA) American Volunteer, “Negro Insurrection!," October 20, 1859
Philadelphia (PA) Christian Observer, "A Regular Abolition Conspiracy," October 27, 1859
Carlisle (PA) American Volunteer, "Governor Wise on the Harper's Ferry Insurrection," October 27, 1859
Philadelphia (PA) Christian Observer, "Character of John Brown," November 10, 1859
Boston (MA) Liberator, "Bad News for the Abolitionists," November 11, 1859
Carlisle (PA) American Volunteer, "Reward for Fugitive Insurgents," November 17, 1859
Carlisle (PA) American Volunteer, "Gov. Wise to Mrs. Child," November 17, 1859
Entry by Thomas Jonathan Jackson, December 2, 1859
Columbus (OH) Gazette, "For the Columbus Gazette," December 16, 1859
New York Times, "The Southern Medical Students," December 23, 1859
Charleston (SC) Mercury, “The Medical Students,” December 26, 1859
New York Times, “The Southern Students,” January 2, 1860
Fayetteville (NC) Observer, “Harper’s Ferry Items,” January 30, 1860
Charlestown (VA) Free Press, “Harper’s Ferry Outrage,” February 9, 1860
Raleigh (NC) Register, “How Firmly United the Democracy Are,” February 22, 1860
Stepney Brown to William Still, March 3, 1860
John William Dungy to William Still, March 3, 1860
Carlisle (PA) Herald, "Hazlett and Stevens,” March 14, 1860
Lowell (MA) Citizen & News, “George Sennot’s Speech,” March 14, 1860
Carlisle (PA) American Volunteer, “The Harper’s Ferry Insurgents,” March 15, 1860
John William Dungy to William Still, April 20, 1860
Milwaukee (WI) Sentinel, “The Coming Conventions,” May 9, 1860
Atchison (KS) Freedom’s Champion, “The Charleston Convention,” May 12, 1860
New York Herald, “Bell and Everett Going Ahead,” May 27, 1860
Chicago (IL) Press and Tribune, “The Fillmore Men,” June 19, 1860
New York Herald, “The Trip to Virginia,” October 7, 1860
A Slave to William Still, October 18, 1860
New York Times, “Political Assassination,” November 29, 1860
New York Herald, “Ex-Secretary Floyd on the Crisis,” January 15, 1861
"The Floyd Banquet," New York Herald, January 17, 1861
C. A. to William Still, February 16, 1861
New York Times, “A Bloody Programme,” March 6, 1861
Fayetteville (NC) Observer, “Virginia Still for the Union,” March 28, 1861
Cleveland (OH) Herald, “Beauties of the ‘Institution’,” April 2, 1861
James Henderson to Abraham Lincoln, April 16, 1861
The Virginia Ordinance of Secession, April 17, 1861
Virginia Governor John Letcher’s Proclamation, April 24, 1861
Fayetteville (NC) Observer, “What Can We Believe?,” April 29, 1861
William Willey to Waitman Willey, April 29, 1861
New York Times, “A Halter with Two Nooses,” May 20, 1861
Chicago (IL) Tribune, “Army Slave Catching,” May 28, 1861
San Francisco (CA) Evening Bulletin, “The Lack of “Improved” Firearms in the South,” June 5, 1861
Abraham Lincoln, Message to the Congress in Special Session, July 4, 1861
Alexander Kelly McClure to Eli Slifer, July 23, 1861
Savannah (GA) News, “Abe Lincoln Assassinated!,” August 13, 1861
President Jefferson Davis, Message to the Confederate Congress, November 18, 1861
Abraham Lincoln to George B. McClellan, April 9, 1862
New York National Anti-Slavery Standard, "Speech of Rev. M.D. Conway," August 9, 1862
Abraham Lincoln to George Brinton McClellan, October 13, 1862
Cleveland (OH) Herald, “The Coming Siege of Vicksburg,” February 3, 1863
The Retaliatory Act, Confederate Congress, May 1, 1863
New York Herald, “The Pen and the Sword,” May 17, 1863
Abraham Lincoln, Telegram to Joseph Hooker, June 10, 1863
Abraham Lincoln to Joseph Hooker, June 10, 1863
Captain Henry W. Sawyer to his Wife, from Libby Prison, Richmond, Virginia
Fayetteville (NC) Observer, “Gen. Lee Again Victorious!,” July 9, 1863
Orders from Henry Wager Halleck to William Handy Ludlow, July 15, 1863
New Haven (NH) Palladium,“Port Hudson,” July 16, 1863
Jefferson Finis Davis, Proclamation concerning Military Service, Richmond, Virginia, August 1, 1863
Henry W. Sawyer to John T. Nixon, November 1, 1863
Abraham Lincoln, Speech at Great Central Sanitary Fair, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 16, 1864
Bangor (ME) Whig and Courier, “The Destruction of Chambersburg,” August 2, 1864
George F. Shepley, Orders for the Occupation of Richmond, Virginia, April 1865
Editorial, "The Fall of Richmond and Southern Feeling," New York Times, April 6, 1865
Editorial, "Grant's Negro Troops," Chicago Tribune, April 8, 1865
Abraham Lincoln, Last Speech in Public, April 11, 1865
Orlando Brown, An Official Fourth of July Address to the Freedmen of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia, July 4, 1865
"President Johnson and His Enemies," Daily Union and American (Nashville, TN), March 28, 1866
How to Cite This Page: "Richmond, VA," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College,