THIS DAY IN VIRGINIA HISTORY
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October 11, 1776
Mary Webley Petitioned the House of Delegates
As the American Revolutionary War was breaking out, British naval vessels attacked Norfolk on January 1, 1776. Mary Webley, a civilian, was injured when a cannonball struck her leg while she was nursing her youngest child. Her home and all her family's possessions were burned later that day when Virginia and North Carolina soldiers set fire to Norfolk. Her husband was disabled, the result of an injury much earlier in life. In this time before any broad social services or emergency agencies, Webley beseeched the General Assembly to aid her homeless family. The assembly awarded her a one-time stipend of £10.