American Indians, British colonists, American revolutionaries, Civil War soldiers and sailors, pioneering educators, aviators and astronauts. They all made history happen right here.
1607 Jamestown is established, marking the beginning of English America.
1693 The College of William and Mary, America's second-oldest college, is chartered.
1699 Williamsburg is recognized as the capital of Virginia, a distinction it holds until 1780.
1781 George Washington's victory at Yorktown tilts the balance for America's independence from Britain.
1861 Confederate troops burn Hampton so Federal troops will not be able to use the city.
1862 The Civil War's Peninsula campaign rages; Hampton Roads is the first site of a battle between ironclad ships.
1868 Hampton Institute (now Hampton University) is founded as a school for freed slaves and American Indians.
1917 Newport News is a major port of embarkation for troops headed to World War I. Langley Field is created.
1918 Hilton Village, the nation's first federally subsidized war-housing development, is built in then Warwick County, now part of Newport News.
1926 W.A.R. Goodwin and John D. Rockefeller Jr. join forces to restore Colonial Williamsburg.
1928 The James River Bridge opens, connecting the Peninsula to South of the James.
1930 The Mariners' Museum, founded by Archer M. Huntington, is chartered by the General Assembly.
1940 The Virginia Institute of Marine Science at Gloucester Point is chartered as the marine science school of the College of William and Mary.
1942 As America enters World War II, Newport News is once again a primary troop port.
1949 Patrick Henry Airport, now known as Newport News-Williamsburg International Airport, is dedicated.
1951 Newport News Shipbuilding launches the SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever.
1952 Elizabeth City County and the town of Phoebus merge with Hampton. The Coleman Bridge opens across the York River between Yorktown and Gloucester.
1958 The cities of Warwick and Newport News merge.
1959 America's first astronauts — Gordon Cooper, Gus Grissom, Deke Slayton, Scott Carpenter, Walter Schirra, Alan Shepard and John Glenn — train at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton.
1960 Newport News Shipbuilding launches the USS Enterprise, the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. Christopher Newport College (now Christopher Newport University) is founded as a branch of the College of William and Mary.
1966 The Virginia Community College System is established, leading to two-year colleges in our region including Thomas Nelson, Rappahannock, Paul D. Camp and Tidewater.
1981 U.S. and French dignitaries attend as Yorktown hosts the bicentennial of the American Revolution's Battle of Yorktown.
1991 Hampton Roads bases provide much of the military power that leads to victory in the Persian Gulf War.
1994 The Virginia Racing Commission chooses New Kent County as the site of the state's first pari-mutuel wagering facility. Colonial Downs hosts thoroughbred and harness races.
2001 Newport News Shipbuilding becomes Northrop Grumman Newport News. After Sept. 11, Norfolk-based aircraft carriers are sent to Afghanistan, and Langley Air Force Base pilots patrol America's skies.
2003 Archaeologists announce a Gloucester County farm might be the location of the main village of Native American Chief Powhatan. Hurricane Isabel hits Hampton Roads, leaving behind at least $1.6 billion in damage, about 1,100 homes destroyed and more than 30 people dead statewide. The aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan, built at the Newport News shipyard, is commissioned in Norfolk. The first of the Virginia-class submarines co-produced by the Newport News shipyard is christened at its partner yard, Electric Boat in Connecticut.
2004 The Ferguson Center for the Arts at Christopher Newport University makes its debut. Hollywood comes to Williamsburg as director Terrence Malick films his historical epic "The New World" in the Jamestown area. The submarine Texas becomes the first sub in nine years to be christened at the Newport News shipyard.
2005 The Base Realignment and Closure Commission, or BRAC, decides to close Hampton's Fort Monroe.
2006 The George H.W. Bush, the 10th and last Nimitz-class, nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, is christened at Newport News shipyard.
2007 The Mariners' Museum opens its $30 million USS Monitor Center, featuring the historic ironclad's recovered rotating gun turret and propeller and a full-scale replica. The fourth Virginia-class submarine, the North Carolina, is christened at the Newport News yard. The 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown is commemorated.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times