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The name for the river was that used by the Algonquian speakers who lived 300 miles away where the river emptied into the sea near Roanoke Island.

The native people who lived near where the city was founded did not speak Algonquian. There were also Cherokee speakers in that general area who fought with the Catawba people.

Tourism is a major part of the economy, with approximately 1.5 million people visiting the Fredericksburg area annually, including the battlefield park, the downtown visitor center, events, museums and historic sites.

Fredericksburg is home to several major commercial centers including Central Park (as of 2004, the second-largest mall on the East Coast) and Spotsylvania Towne Centre, located in Spotsylvania County adjacent to the city line.

C.; commenting on rumors of the death of Confederate General Joseph Johnston at the battle of Seven Pines (Fair Oaks); noting that the Confederates have improved in their treatment of Union wounded and prisoners; and complaining about an address given by Massachusetts Governor John Andrews, stating that Massachusetts men are fighting for the Union, not to abolish slavery.

Roanoke is the largest municipality in Southwest Virginia, and is the principal municipality of the Roanoke Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which had a 2010 population of 308,707.

Letter, 26 March 1862, from Daniel [-----], a Union soldier in General Alpheus Williams' (1810-1878) division at Strasburg, Virginia, to his mother describing his division's role in the aftermath of the battle of Kernstown near Winchester, Virginia, in which Union troops under the command of General James Shields (1810-1879) defeated a Confederate force commanded by General Stonewall Jackson (1824-1863).

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The subject of the letter includes, the officers tooth ache and extraction, his wifes tooth extraction and gold filling, being charged in error for light blue military pants, studying field and light artillery, and the 1864 election of William Alfred Buckingham as Governor of Connecticut.

The city grew frequently through annexation through the middle of the twentieth century. The state legislature has since prohibited cities from annexing land from adjacent counties.

Roanoke's location in the Blue Ridge Mountains, in the middle of the Roanoke Valley between Maryland and Tennessee, made it the transportation hub of western Virginia and contributed to its rapid growth.

It is composed of the independent cities of Roanoke and Salem, and Botetourt, Craig, Franklin, and Roanoke counties.

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