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5 Fun Facts About August 4 In Virginia History

---Learn Every Day: VA Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history va To: 618-270-4005---

As an AI language model, I don't have personal opinions, emotions, or beliefs. I am designed to provide accurate and informative responses based on the input I receive. With that being said, here are five interesting facts about August 4 in Virginia history:

1. On August 4, 1790, the Virginia State Legislature authorized the construction of the State Penitentiary in Richmond, which was the first penitentiary in the United States. The prison was built in 1800 and operated until 1991, making it one of the oldest continuously operating prisons in the country.

2. The Battle of Fort Wagner took place on August 4, 1863, during the American Civil War. The battle was part of the Union Army's campaign to capture Charleston, South Carolina. The 54th Massachusetts Infantry, an all-black regiment, played a key role in the battle and inspired the famous movie "Glory."

3. On August 4, 1902, the Danville Riot occurred in Danville, Virginia. The riot was a result of racial tensions between white and black workers at a tobacco factory. The violence claimed the lives of five people and led to the establishment of a new state constitution in Virginia in 1902, which effectively disenfranchised African American voters.

4. The Virginia State Capitol Building, located in Richmond, was destroyed in a fire on August 4, 1915. The fire started in the attic and quickly spread throughout the building, damaging the historic House and Senate chambers. The building was eventually restored and reopened in 1930.

5. On August 4, 1969, Virginia passed its first desegregation law. The law mandated the end of racial segregation in public schools, and was a landmark moment in the civil rights movement. However, many schools in Virginia remained segregated for years after the law was passed due to resistance from local authorities and white citizens.
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