By 1775, Norfolk developed into what contemporary observers argued was the most prosperous city in Virginia.
It was an important port for exporting goods to the British Isles and beyond.
In part because of its merchants' numerous trading ties with other parts of the British Empire, Norfolk served as a strong base of Loyalist support during the early part of the American Revolution.
After fleeing the colonial capital of Williamsburg, Lord Dunmore, the Royal Governor of Virginia, tried to reestablish control of the colony from Norfolk.
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Norfolk developed in the late-seventeenth century as a "Half Moone" fort was constructed and 50 acres (200,000 m In 1691, a final county subdivision took place when Lower Norfolk County split to form Norfolk County (included in present-day cities of Norfolk, Chesapeake, and parts of Portsmouth) and Princess Anne County (present-day City of Virginia Beach). In 1730, a tobacco inspection site was located here.
According to the Tobacco Inspection Act, the inspection was "At Norfolk Town, upon the fort land, in the County of Norfolk; and Kemp's Landing, in Princess Anne, under one inspection."In 1736 George II granted it a royal charter as a borough.
Norfolk is one of the oldest cities in Hampton Roads, and is considered to be the historic, urban, financial, and cultural center of the region.
One year later, it was split into two counties, Upper Norfolk and Lower Norfolk (the latter is incorporated within present-day City of Norfolk), chiefly on Thoroughgood's recommendation.
This area of Virginia became known as the place of entrepreneurs, including men of the Virginia Company of London.
It is linked to its neighbors by an extensive network of Interstate highways, bridges, tunnels, and three bridge-tunnel complexes, which are the only bridge-tunnels in the United States.
In 1619, the Governor of the Virginia Colony, Sir George Yeardley incorporated four jurisdictions, termed citties, for the developed portion of the colony.