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Formerly known as Belhaven and as Hunting Creek Warehouse, is an independent city in Virginia. Alexandria’s biggest employers are the United States Department of Defense, the Center for Naval Analyses, and the Institute for Defense Analyses. It was established as a settlement in 1695 and called the English Colony of Virginia. The settlement was situated on the upper Potomac River at the mouth of Hunting Creek. Because there was a law, the Tobacco Inspection Law of 1730, which mandated that all tobacco gown in the colony had to be brought to local warehouses for inspection, the warehouse at Hunting Creek became important, and that was the name of the town for a while. Alexandria has always been important to the area. In 1791, it was part of the area which George Washington set aside to be the District of Columbia. It was given back to Virginia by the government in 1846. In the War of 1812, it was the target of the Raid on Alexandria by the British. In later years, it was the home of one of the largest slave trading company in the nation. The first fatalities f the Civil War took place in Alexandria, which was occupied by the Union Army until the end of that war.

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