Charlottesville, VA

Several Virginia counties were named for British Queen Sophia Charlotte who possibly had African ancestors

Cheryl E Preston

Photo byWikipedia

Queen Sophia Charlotte was honored in many ways

Mecklenburg County Virginia as well as Charlottesville and Charlotte County have something in common with several other locations in the Commonwealth. You cannot tell by the names as you can with Prince Edward County and Prince George County but the aforementioned locations were also named in honor of British royalty. They each are a reference to Queen Sophia Charlotte who was possibly descended from African ancestors and considered the first Black British royal.

Charlotte was born into the royal family of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, a duchy in northern Germany. In 1760, the young and unmarried George III inherited the British throne. As Charlotte was a minor German princess with no interest in politics, George considered her a suitable consort, and they married in 1761. The marriage lasted 57 years and produced 15 children, 13 of whom survived to adulthood. (Wikipedia).

Was Queen Charlotte descended from Africa?Photo byWikipedia

Was Queen Charlotte really the first Black British royal?

There has been a lot of talk about Meghan Markle getting hate mail because she is biracial but she is not the first woman of color to marry into the royal family. Like Markle Queen Charlotte appeared more White than Black and it's not known if her ancestry was widely publicized at the time she reigned with her husband King George III.

Prince William and Princess Kate Middleton named their daughter Charlotte Elizabeth Diana in honor of Queen Charlotte Sophia. Unlike Meghan, Queen Charlotte was not the product of parents who were African American and Caucasian. Historian Mario de Valdes y Cocom gave compelling evidence.

He argues that her features, as seen in royal portraits, were conspicuously African, and contends that they were noted by numerous contemporariesHe claims that the queen, though German, was directly descended from a black branch of the Portuguese royal family, related to Margarita de Castro e Souza, a 15th-century Portuguese noblewoman nine generations removed, whose ancestry she traces from the 13th-century ruler Alfonso III and his lover Madragana, whom Valdes takes to have been a Moor and thus a black African.

Queen Charlotte must have been well-loved because in addition to Mecklenburg, Charlottesville, and Charlotte County in Virginia the Queen City Charlotte North Carolina was also named in her honor.

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I write, about breaking news, and current events. I wrote a newspaper column from 1997 to 2007 and have written for various online platforms since 2012 including Yahoo Contributor Network, Hubpages, and Vocal Media.

Roanoke, VA

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