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5 Fun Facts About August 7 In Virginia History

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

1. First English ship arrives in Virginia (1607)
On August 7, 1607, Virginia witnessed the arrival of the first English ship, the Susan Constant, which sailed into Chesapeake Bay. The ship was part of the three-ship fleet that carried the first 104 colonists who settled in Jamestown, Virginia, the first permanent English settlement in North America.

2. Governor's Palace burned down (1781)
On August 7, 1781, the Governor's Palace in Williamsburg, Virginia, burned down. The Palace served as the residence of the Royal Governors of Virginia until the Revolutionary War, after which the building was used by Thomas Jefferson and his successors.

3. Virginia native earns NASA's highest honor (1997)
On August 7, 1997, Virginia native Katherine Johnson was awarded NASA's highest honor, the Distinguished Service Medal, for her pioneering work in mathematics that helped to put the first humans in space, including John Glenn's orbit of Earth in 1962.

4. First Virginia-born Navy SEAL killed in action (2011)
On August 7, 2011, the first Virginia-born Navy SEAL, Jon Tumilson, was killed in Afghanistan, along with 29 other American military personnel, after their helicopter was shot down by Taliban forces.

5. Confederate statue removals approved by Richmond City Council (2017)
On August 7, 2017, the Richmond City Council in Virginia approved the removal of several Confederate statues from public spaces in the city, a symbolic move that reflected the growing controversy around Confederate monuments in the wake of the "Unite the Right" rally in nearby Charlottesville, Virginia, which had turned violent just a few days earlier.
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