Frederick County

Frederick County, highlighted in map of Virginia

In the English royal family, the Prince of Wales is like the batter in the on-deck circle waiting for the current batter to complete his swings at bat and get out of the way. Not surprisingly, the current ruler may not enjoy contemplating "getting out of the way," since that will occur by the ruler's death.

King George II and Queen Caroline were not fond of their older son Frederick or his wife Augusta, the Princess of Wales. During the reign of King George II the English political parties had not fully emerged, and opposition to the king tended to gather around the Prince of Wales to avoid being accused of threatening the monarchy itself. When he was Prince of Wales, the future George II had not gotten along well with his father either.

The royal family clearly favored the younger son, Prince William over the Prince of Wales. Their sister stated that Frederick was "a nauseous beast." The Queen said about her son, "I hope the ground would open this moment and sink the monster to the lowest hope in hell," and refused to see Frederick when on her deathbed.

Frederick had married Augusta of Saxe-Gotha in 1735, but their honeymoon was limited to the palace of King George II and Queen Caroline (St. James). They moved out in 1737 to their own quarters.

Augusta County was named for Princess Augusta, and Frederick County for Prince Frederick
Augusta County was named for Princess Augusta, and Frederick County for Prince Frederick
Source: Royal Collection Trust, Frederick and Augusta, Prince and Princess of Wales (1758)

Everyone saw clearly the family dispute, and Frederick and Augusta became the center of the opposition to the King. The royal family's public and bitter attacks on the couple generated sympathy, but the General Assembly still named two counties for them in 1738. Even after Frederick died in 1751, Augusta continued to irritate the King and Queen.

George Washington produced a 1769 survey of Frederick County, which was part of the Fairfax Grant
George Washington produced a 1769 survey of Frederick County, which was part of the Fairfax Grant
Source: Library of Congress, Map of the county of Frederick, 1769

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