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Princess Anne County, Virginia facts for kids

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Lost Counties of Virginia on the mouth of the James River
1903 Map depicting Princess Anne County (1691–1963) and other "lost counties" of Virginia.

County of Princess Anne is a former county in the British Colony of Virginia and the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States, first incorporated in 1691. The county was merged into the city of Virginia Beach on January 1, 1963, ceasing to exist.

Shires, Counties

When Admiral Christopher Newport and the colonists of the Virginia Company arrived in 1607, George Percy and his fellow Englishmen's 'first landing was at Cape Henry in what was to become Princess Anne County. They named the spot in honor of Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of King James I of England. A few days later, they travelled up the James River and established Jamestown. During the early 17th century, English settlers explored and began settling the areas adjacent to Hampton Roads. By 1610, the English colonists had established a permanent settlement in the Kecoughtan area of what was to become Elizabeth Cittie (sic) in 1619. Today a part of Hampton, it is the oldest known continuously occupied English settlement in North America.

Adam Thoroughgood was an early leader in the area which became Princess Anne County, settling along the Lynnhaven River. In 1634, the King of England directed the formation of eight shires (or counties) in the colony of Virginia. One of these was Elizabeth City Shire, which included land area on both sides of Hampton Roads.

New Norfolk County was formed in 1636 from Elizabeth City Shire. New Norfolk County included all the area in South Hampton Roads. Only a year later, New Norfolk was split roughly in half into Upper Norfolk County (most of which is now the present-day city of Suffolk) and Lower Norfolk County. In 1691, Lower Norfolk was split roughly in half. The western half became Norfolk County, while the eastern half became Princess Anne County. The latter was named for Princess Anne of Denmark and Norway, first heir presumptive to the British thrones and then created heir apparent by the Claim of Right Act 1689, who later became Queen of Great Britain.

The County of Princess Anne, Virginia was governed by a Board of Supervisors. Each Supervisor represented one of six Magisterial Districts.

Consolidation with City of Virginia Beach (1963)

In 1963, after a successful referendum in both Virginia Beach and Princess Anne County, and with the approval of the Virginia General Assembly, Virginia Beach and Princess Anne County merged to form the present-day independent city of Virginia Beach. About the same time, Norfolk County merged with the small independent City of South Norfolk. The independent city that resulted from that merger, Chesapeake, became Virginia Beach's new neighbor to the southwest.

Most of the area formerly in the County of Princess Anne when it was formed in 1691 is now located within the independent City of Virginia Beach. The only exceptions are some territory of the northwestern portion which became part of the City of Norfolk through annexation and a land swap agreement between the two cities in 1988.

Administrative divisions and sub-divisions

Magisterial District of Bayside

  • Aragona, Virginia
  • Bay Shore, Virginia
  • Broad Creek, Virginia
  • Davis Corner, Virginia
  • Diamond Springs, Virginia
  • East Beach, Virginia
  • Little Creek, Virginia
  • Lynnhaven
  • Ocean Park, Virginia
  • Pembroke Manor, Virginia

Magisterial District of Black Water

  • Black Water, Virginia
  • North Landing, Virginia
  • Vine, Virginia

Magisterial District of Kempsville

  • Bonney, Virginia
  • Fairfield Manor, Virginia
  • Kempsville
  • Newtown
  • Tallwood Manor, Virginia
  • Thalia
  • Wood Stock, Virginia

Magisterial District of Lynnhaven

Magisterial District of Pungo

Magisterial District of Seaboard

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