Alexandria, Virginia, a city on the Potomac River opposite Washington, D.C. The city, which is independent of any county, is primarily a residential suburb. It is also a river port and industrial center. Products include electronic equipment, fabricated metals, and paper products.
Alexandria is known for its historic shrines and monuments. The home of the Revolutionary War hero “Light-Horse Harry” Lee and the boyhood home of Robert E. Lee are here. Gadsby's Tavern, an 18th-century inn, was frequented by George Washington and other notables. The George Washington Masonic National Memorial, 333 feet (101 m) tall, is patterned after the ancient lighthouse at Alexandria, Egypt. Near the city is Mount Vernon, the home and burial place of George and Martha Washington. Alexandria was settled in 1748. It was part of the District of Columbia from 1791 until 1846. In 1852 Alexandria received a city charter. Union forces occupied the city throughout the Civil War.