Richmond, Virginia

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Prior to 1071 - Richemont: a town in Normandy, France.
1071 to 1501 - Richmond: a castle town in Yorkshire, UK.
1501 to 1742 - Richmond, a palace town in Surrey, UK.

Richmond (pronounced /ˈrɪtʃmənd/) is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia, in the United States. Like all Virginia municipalities incorporated as cities, it is an independent city and not part of any county. Richmond is the center of the Richmond Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) and the Greater Richmond area. Surrounded by Henrico and Chesterfield counties, the city is located at the intersections of Interstate 95 and Interstate 64, and surrounded by Interstate 295 and Virginia State Route 288 in central Virginia. The population was 200,123 in 2007,[5] with an estimated population of 1,212,977 for the Richmond Metropolitan Area — making it the third largest in Virginia.[6]

The site of Richmond, at the fall line of the James River in the Piedmont region of Virginia, was briefly settled by English settlers from Jamestown in 1609, and in 1610–11, near the site of a significant native settlement. The present city of Richmond was founded in 1737. It became the capital of the Colony and Dominion of Virginia in 1780. During the Revolutionary War period, several notable events occurred in the city, including Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in 1775 at St. John's Church, and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom in 1779—the latter of which was written by Thomas Jefferson in the city. During the American Civil War, Richmond served as the capital of the Confederate States of America, and many important American Civil War landmarks remain in the city, including the Virginia State Capitol and the White House of the Confederacy, among others.

Richmond's economy is primarily driven by law, finance, and government with several notable legal and banking firms, as well as federal, state, and local governmental agencies, located in the downtown area.

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