The court was then moved closer to the county center in Spotsylvania County.
As interest in the frontier grew, the colonial assembly responded by forming a new county named Spotsylvania (after Alexander Spotswood, the governor at the time) in 1720 and establishing Fredericksburg in 1728 as a port for the county, of which it was then a part.
Siouan tribes occupied much of the area of the Piedmont.
The Tidewater areas of the coastal plain had primarily Algonquian-speaking tribes making up the Powhatan Confederacy.
A much-needed railroad joining the town to the farming region to the west was not finished until after the Civil War.
During the Civil War, Fredericksburg was strategically important because of its port location midway between Washington and Richmond, the opposing capitals of the Union and the Confederacy.