• Indenture of James BrackenFilling an inexhaustible need in colonial Virginia. Elite Virginians required laborers and found them in indentured servants. Our entry explains why so many men and women were willing to risk their lives in the wilds of Virginia, how the system worked, and why, eventually, it gave way to racial slavery. Primary documents, meanwhile, help flesh out their lived experiences. The story of Jane Dickenson is particularly poignant. (Image courtesy of the University of Virginia Special Collections)
  • Indians in VirginiaA broad overview of the history and culture of Virginia's Indians. Our entry includes information on the languages, religions, and politics of Indians at the time Jamestown was founded. It explains where such information comes from. And, finally, it follows the tribes into the twenty-first century, from assimilation and near cultural annihilation to, for a number of tribes, state recognition. (Image courtesy of The Mariners' Museum, Newport News, Virginia)
  • Loving v. Virginia (1967)"Tell the court I love my wife." In 1967, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that interracial marriages were constitutional, striking down a Virginia law. But that's only part of the story. Our entry also tells of Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving, their love and their perseverance in the face of a system determined to outlaw their marriage. Most of the relevant court documents are linked. (Image courtesy of Getty Images)
  • United States Colored Troops

    In defense of their freedom. At least 5,723 men enlisted from Virginia in the Union army, although the actual number is probably much larger. They served in the United States Colored Troops, battling their own officers for respectful treatment and the enemy for their freedom. Five black Virginians even earned the Medal of Honor. (Image courtesy of the Virginia Historical Society.)

  • Edgar Allan Poe

    "Only this, and nothing more." Raised in Richmond, Edgar Allan Poe became one of the most important writers in American history. So many of his stories and poems have become legendary, but what do you know about his stint at the head of Virginia's influential magazine the Southern Literary Messenger? Our entry also uncovers a fraudulent Poe photo and gives readers a virtual tour of a Poe museum in Richmond. (Image courtesy of the University of Virginia Special Collections)