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Richmond, Virginia

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City of Richmond
Top: Skyline above the falls of the James River Middle: St. John's Episcopal Church, Jackson Ward, Monument Avenue. Bottom: Virginia State Capitol, Main Street Station
Flag of City of Richmond
Nickname(s): RVA,[1] The River City[2]
Motto: Sic Itur Ad Astra (Thus do we reach the stars)
Location in the Commonwealth of Virginia
Richmond, Virginia is located in USA
City of Richmond
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 37°32′27.5″N 77°25′58.4″W / 37.540972°N 77.432889°W / 37.540972; -77.432889Coordinates: 37°32′27.5″N 77°25′58.4″W / 37.540972°N 77.432889°W / 37.540972; -77.432889
Country United States
State Virginia
 • Mayor Dwight Clinton Jones (D)
 • City 62.5 sq mi (162.0 km2)
 • Land 60.1 sq mi (155.6 km2)
 • Water 2.5 sq mi (6.4 km2)
Elevation 166.45 ft (45.7 m)
Population (2010)
 • City 204,214 (103rd)
 • Density 3,211/sq mi (1,239.8/km2)
 • Metro 1,258,251 (43rd)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP Codes 23173, 23218–23242, 23249–23250, 23255, 23260–23261, 23269, 23273–23274, 23276, 23278–23279, 23282, 23284–23286, 23288–23295, 23297–23298, 23221, 23225, 23226
Area code 804
FIPS code 51-67000[3]
GNIS feature ID 1499957[4]
Nomenclature evolution

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.
1742 to present – Richmond, Virginia.

Richmond (/ˈrɪmənd/) is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia, in the United States. It is an independent city and not part of any county. The population within the city limits was 204,214 in 2010,[5] with an estimated population of 1,258,251 for the Richmond Metropolitan Area — making it the third largest in Virginia.[6]

Richmond is at the fall line of the James River, 108 miles (174 km) south of Washington DC, 71 miles (114 km) east of Charlottesville, Virginia, and 54 miles (87 km) west of Williamsburg, Virginia. Surrounded by Henrico and Chesterfield counties, the city is at the intersections of Interstate 95 and Interstate 64, and encircled by Interstate 295 and Virginia State Route 288.

Richmond began as an important village of the Powhatan Confederacy, and was briefly settled by English colonists from Jamestown in 1609, and in 1610–11. English settlers returned to found a permanent town in 1737. It became the capital of the Colony and Dominion of Virginia in 1780. During the Revolutionary War period, the city was known for Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in 1775 at St. John's Church, and the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom written by Thomas Jefferson. During the American Civil War, Richmond served as the capital of the Confederate States of America. The city entered the 20th century with one of the world's first successful electric streetcar systems.

Richmond's economy is primarily driven by law, finance, and government. It has federal, state, and local governmental agencies in its downtown. The downtown also has offices for legal and banking firms. The city is home to both the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, one of 13 federal appellate courts, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, one of 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks. Dominion Resources, Carmax, Genworth Financial, and MeadWestvaco, Fortune 500 companies, along with Massey Energy and Universal Corporation, Fortune 1000 companies, are headquartered in the city.[7] The historic sites in the area bring tourists.


  1. PEIFER, KARRI. "A year in dining." December 30, 2010: n. pag. Web. Jan 1, 2011. [1].
  2. City Connection, Office of the Press Secretary to the Mayor. January–March 2010 edition. Retrieved February 8, 2010.
  3. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  4. "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. 2010 U.S. Census Data: Virginia. Retrieved February 16, 2011.
  6. "Weldon Cooper Center 2010 Census Count Retrieved January 28, 2011". July 11, 2011. Retrieved November 1, 2011.
  7. "Fortune 500 2009: States: Virginia Companies." Fortune Magazine via May 4, 2009. Retrieved on January 21, 2010.