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The independent city of Charlottesville, Virginia is the county seat of Albermarle County. It is named in honor of the Queen Consort of King George III, Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. Formed by charter in 1762, Charlottesville was on the trade route known as Three Notched Road, which went from Richmond to the Great Valley. The city escaped destruction during the Civil War, with only one skirmish to be centered there: the Skirmish at Rio Hill. The mayor surrendered the city that same afternoon. Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe all had homes just miles from downtown Charlottesville.

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