American Revolution 250th Commemoration

History 250 Years in the Making

In 2016, U.S. Congress created the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission. In 2021, the Virginia General Assembly created the Virginia 250th American Revolution Commission, which has been funded through 2032. The state commission was organized to prepare for, and commemorate, Virginia’s participation in the American Revolution commemoration and create a balanced narrative to tell share stories from the perspectives of those on the homefront, Continental and British soldiers, and African American individuals. Shortly after, the state commission charged each Virginia locality to form their own committee to plan for the state’s commemoration by inventorying, preparing and highlighting many rich historical resources each locality has to offer its community and tourists.

Chesterfield County has answered the call of the state commission. A committee has been formed and has begun plans for Chesterfield County’s involvement in this initiative which will involve collaborating with regional partners and promoting community engagement. Chesterfield County plans to commemorate the American Revolution and tell our stories through special events and interpretive programs, a video series, signage for trails and historical sites, driving tours of significant sites, preservation of culturally significant areas of military engagements, and building a Continental Army training barracks to be used for educational programming.

Many significant battles were fought in Chesterfield County during the American Revolution and the Chesterfield Continental Training Barracks, established in 1781, was known as the Valley Forge of the South. As part of the 250th commemoration, Chesterfield will provide opportunities for students, residents and tourists to remember, revisit and learn from the events of the American Revolution.

Upcoming Rev250 Events

Getting to Know James Lafayette
Thursday, Feb. 1; 6-7 p.m. - Did he ask to be a spy, or was he asked to be a spy? Through historical reenactment, Stephen Seals of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation tells us the story of James Armistead Lafayette, an enslaved spy during the American Revolution. Registration begins Thursday, Jan. 18.

Forgotten Patriots - Virginia’s Black Continental Army Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolution
Thursday, Feb. 15; 6-7 p.m. - In 1781, citizens of Chesterfield County witnessed the American Revolution come right through their community. Black Virginia men camped, marched, and fought side by side with their white neighbors in pursuit of liberty and independence from King George III and English rule. Their roles are still often overlooked but undoubtedly helped the ideas of the Revolution to take root. Registration begins Feb. 1.

Chesterfield County, VA Revolutionary War 1776-1781 250th Anniversary