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Copyright © 2008 by Open Horizons and John Kremer
Last modified: 1/15/08

Hot Times, Cool Places

Virginia Vacation Fun Facts

Famous Virginians

These are just a few of the famous people who were either born in Virginia or spent some important time in Virginia.

Burke Allen, author

Richard Arlen, actor

Arthur Ashe, tennis player

Stephen F. Austin, Texas independence leader and governor

Nathaniel Bacon, patriot, leader of Bacon's Rebellion

Pearl Bailey, singer

Russell Baker, political columnist

Phil Balsley, country singer, member of the Statler Brothers

James Barbour, U.S. secretary of war

Philip Barbour, U.S. speaker of the house and Supreme Court justice

Kylene Barker, Miss America

Warren Beatty, actor

George Bingham, painter

Rita Mae Brown, mystery author

William Cabell Bruce, historian

Sandra Bullock, actress

Jeff Burton, race car driver

Ward Burton, race car driver

Richard Byrd, explorer

William Byrd II, historian

James Branch Cabell, novelist

Maybelle Carter, country singer

June Carter Cash, country singer

Willa Cather, novelist

Edgar Cayce, psychic

Kenny Chesney, musician, Big and Rich

Spencer Christian, TV weatherman

George Rogers Clark, explorer

Roy Clark, country singer

William Clark, explorer

Henry Clay, statesman

Patsy Cline, country singer

Stacy Compton, race car driver

Patricia Cornwell, mystery author

Joseph Cotten, actor

Katie Couric, Today Show host

Virginius Dabney, historian and newspaper editor

Peter Daniel, Supreme Court justice

Rita Dove, U.S. poet laureate

Bill Dudley, football player

John Elder, painter

Missy Elliot, hip hop singer

Moses Ezekiel, sculptor

Jerry Farwell, evangelical minister

Ella Fitzgerald, jazz singer

John Floyd, Virginia governor and U.S. secretary of war

Jimmy Fortune, country singer, member of the Statler Brothers

Douglas Southall Freeman, historian and newspaper editor

Thomas Gilmer, U.S. secretary of the navy

Ellen Glasgow, novelist

Jake Green, actor

John Grisham, novelist

Earl Hammer Jr., novelist and creator of The Waltons television series

William Henry Harrison, U.S. president

Patrick Henry, patriot

Bruce Hornsby, singer

Sam Houston, Tennessee governor, president of the Republic of Texas

Thomas Jefferson, U.S. president

Nicole Johnson, Miss America

Tim Kaine, Virginia governor

Elizabeth Keckly, dress designer

James Kilpatrick, political columnist

Barbara Kingsolver, novelist

Willie Lanier, football player

Charles Lee, U.S. attorney general

Henry “Lighthorse Harry” Lee, patriot

Richard Henry Lee, patriot

Robert E. Lee, Confederate general

Meriwether Lewis, explorer

Joanne Liggan, novelist

David Lynch, director and producer

Shirley MacLaine, actress

Dolly Madison, first lady

James Madison, U.S. president

Moses Malone, basketball player

John Marshall, first Supreme Court chief justice

George Mason, patriot and author of Virginia Declaration of Rights

John Y. Mason, U.S. secretary of navy and U.S. attorney general

Dave Mathews, singer

Matthew Fontaine Maury, explorer who mapped ocean currents

David Mays, historian

Eugene McCarthy, U.S. senator and presidential candidate

Cyrus McCormick, inventor

Sharyn McCrumb, novelist

Charles McDowell, newspaper columnist

Ephraim McDowell, father of abdominal surgery

William McGuffey, educator and author of the McGuffey Readers

Gari Melchers, painter and sculptor

James Monroe, U.S. president

Daniel Morgan, patriot and leader of Morgan's Rifles

Alonzo Mourning, basketball player

Al Neuharth, publisher, founder of USA Today

Tommy Newsom, band leader

Wayne Newton, singer

Opechancanough, Powhatan leader

Thomas Nelson Page, novelist

John Payne, actor

Pocahantas, daughter of Indian chief

Edgar Allan Poe, novelist, poet, and short story writer

Robert Porterfield, founder of the Barter Theatre

Powhatan, Indian chief

Edmund Randolph, Virginia governor, U.S. secretary of state, first U.S. attorney general

Peyton Randolph, patriot and president of First Continental Congress

Walter Reed, army surgeon

Don Reid, country singer, member of the Statler Brothers

Harold Reid, country singer, member of the Statler Brothers

Tim Reid, actor

Matthew Ridgway, general

Tom Robbins, novelist

Bill Bojangles Robinson, dancer

Pat Robinson, evangelical

John Rolfe, explorer and columnist, introduce tobacco to America

Ricky Rudd, race car driver

Edmund Ruffin, founded public education system in Virginia

James Rumsey, inventor, helped develop the steamboat

Elliott Sadler, race car driver

Hermie Sadler, race car driver

Ralph Sampson, basketball player

George C. Scott, actor

Willard Scott, TV weatherman

Winfield Scott, general

Bruce Smith, football player

John Smith, explorer and settler

Kate Smith, singer

Sam Snead, golfer

Ann Spencer, poet

Alexander Spotswood, explorer and royal governor

William Stith, historian

Curtis Strange, golfer

Alexander H.H. Stuart, U.S. secretary of the interior

James Jeb Stuart, Confederate military leader

William Styron, novelist

Thomas Sumter, general

Fran Tarkenton, football player

Lawrence Taylor, football player

Zachery Taylor, U.S. president

Nat Turner, leader of slave uprising

John Tyler, U.S. president

Blair Underwood, actor

Abel Upshur, U.S. secretary of the navy

Edward Valentine, sculptor

Michael Vick, football player

Lanny Wadkins, golfer

Maggie L. Walker, women's rights leader, first woman bank president in America

Booker T. Washington, educator

George Washington, U.S. president and military leader

Martha Washington, first lady

James Webb, U.S. senator and secretary of the navy

James West, inventor

Pernell Whitaker, boxer

L. Douglas Wilder, Virginia governor (first African-American governor in U.S. history)

Woodrow Wilson, U.S. president

William Wirt, U.S. attorney general

Tom Wolfe, journalist and novelist

George Wythe, first professor of law at an American college

John Kremer, Travel Guide

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