Occoquan, Virginia

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Occoquan is a town in Prince William County in the U.S. state of Virginia. The population was 759 at the 2000 census. The town is a suburb of Washington, D.C. and is adjacent to Woodbridge. The current mayor is Earnest "Earnie" Porta, who was first elected in 2006, and won re-election in 2008.



Occoquan is derived from an Algonquian Doeg Indian word, meaning "at the end of the water". Located on the Occoquan River, Occoquan was long a site of indigenous peoples' habitation. Like the British colonists after them, they relied on the river for transportation and trade, as well as fish.

By 1765, Anglo-American colonists had established an industrial settlement at Occoquan, with grist mills and tobacco warehouses. The Merchant's Mill was the first automated grist mill in the nation. It operated for 175 years until destroyed by fire.

During the Civil War, the post office passed letters and packages between North and South. River silting reduced ship traffic to Occoquan and ended its days as a port, as did the shift in traffic to railroads.

The town has survived and thrived. Today, it is a restored artists' community, with shops, outdoor dining, ghost walks, a town boat dock and more. A number of structures in town, including many in the downtown commercial area, are part of the Occoquan Historic District listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). Rockledge, the former house of the town's founder, is also listed as a significant structure on the NRHP.


Occoquan is located at 38°40′58″N 77°15′39″W / 38.68278°N 77.26083°W / 38.68278; -77.26083 (38.682916, -77.260830)[4].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.2 square mile (0.5 km²) of which, 0.2 square mile (0.4 km²) is land and 0.04 square mile (0.1 km²) (15.79%) is water.

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