Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Shire

Many people wonder why I refer to where I live as "the Shire."
I admit I am a fan of J. R. R Tolkien's "Hobbit" series,
but the reason I call my part of Tidewater, Virginia the shire
is because it really is a historic shire.

This map of Virginia was created in 1606:
File:Virginia map 1606.jpg

Almost 30 years after this map was drawn,
 King Charles I established the shires of the Virginia colony.
Read more here in this brief history of this Virginia Shire:

  In 1634, King Charles I of England directed the establishment of 8 shires in the colony of Virginia. One of these, the Elizabeth Cittie Shire, as well as the Elizabeth River that flows through the Cittie's southern half, were named in honor of Elizabeth of Bohemia, the eldest daughter of King James I of England and Anne of Denmark. Elizabeth Stuart of Bohemia, sometimes referred to as the Winter Queen because of her husband Frederick V of Germany's brief reign as King of Bohemia, was also known for her beautiful gardens at Heidelberg Castle.   In 1636, the Elizabeth Cittie Shire was divided into counties, including what eventually became Norfolk County. Today, the most southern part of the Shire is known as the city of Chesapeake, and it is life along the Elizabeth River in this city my blog describes.

Tomorrow's blog post will appear late in the day on Sunday, May 19th.
I'm off to explore Chippokes Plantation again.

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