annandale mapSituated in Northern Virginia, Annandale is a small city and suburb of Washington, D.C. The census-designated place (CDP) has a long, rich history dating back to the pre-revolutionary period. In 1685, Englishman and Col. William H. Fitzhugh purchased more than 24,000 acres of land in which was later named “Ravensworth.” Once an overgrown terrain, Fitzhugh and his descendants worked hard to transform what is now known as Annandale into one of Northern Virginia’s largest tobacco plantations. The opening of the plantation in old Ravensworth marked the beginning of Annandale, Virginia’s history.

Members of the Fitzhugh family farmed in Ravensworth for more than six generations. Over the decades, portions of land were sold and eventually in 1830, the plantation was no longer used. Named after the Scottish village located near the Annan River, the small community of Annandale was formed. Throughout the Ravensworth period of the eighteenth century, three spectacular homes were built by the Fitzhugh’s’. Today, only one stands as a monument to the city’s vast history. “Oak Hill,” “Ossian Hall,” and “Ravensworth” were the three mansions. Another beautiful home was also built during this time by John Moss. The eighteenth century home, “Green Spring Farm,” was built in 1760 and can still be found east of the business district near Little River Turnpike.

By 1950, Annandale had developed a downtown shopping area near the intersection of Liver River Turnpike, Columbia Pike, and Annandale Road. During this time locals had access to a variety of shops and restaurants, such as Star Supply Hardware, Annandale Grill, Campbell & Ferrara Nursey, Annandale Barber Shop, and Lord Fairfax Service Station. Between 1950 and 1955, the number of businesses in Annandale nearly doubled with at least 100 businesses belonging to the Chamber. As new retail and business shops developed, a large influx of new residents came to live in Annandale.

The population in the Annandale area has grown substantially over the last century. While the population of Fairfax County was just 18,580 in 1900, it had grown to more than 454,275 residents by 1970. In 2013, Annandale’s population was a whopping 73,699. As the business and housing markets in Fairfax County remains strong, the area continues to grow. It is even the home of the Annandale campus of the Northern Virginia Community College which attracts thousands of students each year.

The Annandale flag depicts the important history of the city and its development over the years. The white lines on the flag symbolize the Little River Turnpike which runs right to left. The Columbia Pike can be found converging from the upper right of the flag. The bird on the flat is a cardinal which represents the Virginia state bird. The emblem of the bird in the tree has been a well-used logo of Annandale for many years. It can often be seen on road signs that mark the community’s boundaries. From humble beginnings, Annandale, Virginia has made great strides in development and will surely continue to thrive.