Vienna is a town in Fairfax County, Virginia, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, it had a population of 15,687. Significantly more people live in zip codes with the Vienna postal addresses (22180, 22181, and 22182) bordered approximately by Interstate 66 on the south, Interstate 495 on the east, Route 7 to the north, and Hunter Mill road.
In August 2013, CNN/Money and Money magazine ranked Vienna, VA third on its list of the 100 best places to live in the United States. In addition to highly ranked public schools, its assets include a downtown with many small businesses, a Washington Metro station with large parking garages (the western terminus of the Orange Line) just south of the town, and a portion of the Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park hiker/biker trail cutting through the center of the town. Tysons Corner a residential and shopping district is nearby, as is Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts.
Non-native settlement in the region dates to ca. 1740. In 1754, prominent soldier and land owner Colonel Charles Broadwater settled within the town boundaries. Broadwater’s son-in-law, John Hunter built the first recorded house there in 1767, naming it Ayr Hill (recalling his birthplace, Ayr, Scotland.) That name was subsequently applied to the tiny, developing community. The name of the town was changed in the 1850s, when a doctor named William Hendrick settled there on the condition that the town would rename itself after his hometown, Vienna, New York.
On June 17, 1861 a relatively minor but widely noted military engagement occurred there, the Battle of Vienna, one of the earliest armed clashes of the Civil War. A would-be Union occupation unit under Brig. Gen. Robert C. Schenckapproached Vienna from the east by train but was ambushed and forced to retreat by a superior Confederate force led by Colonel Maxcy Gregg.
The First Baptist Church of Vienna was founded in 1867, and the original church structure was built using Union Army barracks lumber obtained through the Freedmen’s Bureau. This church building was also the town’s first black public school. The first white public school was built in 1872. A permanent black elementary school was built, which was later named for its long-time principal, Louise Archer. Fairfax County Schools were completely desegregated by the Fall of 1965.
Robert Hanssen was arrested in Vienna in 2001 for spying for the Russian intelligence service (and previously theKGB). His home was outside the town but had a Vienna mailing address. He used dead drops in nearby Foxstone Park to deliver U.S. government secrets to his handlers, and to collect cash or diamonds in exchange. Hanssen was sentenced that year to serve multiple life terms in prison.
The town is served by Fairfax County Public Schools.
Vienna is home to two high schools (Oakton and Madison), two middle schools, and six elementary schools. However, of all the schools Vienna students attend, only four public and one Catholic elementary schools are actually within the town limits: Cunningham Park Elementary School, Marshall Road Elementary School, Louise Archer Elementary School, Vienna Elementary School, and Our Lady of Good Counsel.
Vienna is home to two Catholic elementary schools: St. Mark Catholic School and Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic School.
The music program at James Madison High School includes a marching band, “The Pride of Vienna”, and color guard, two symphonic bands, jazz band, orchestra, and chorus. The Crew team at James Madison has won many awards. The novice team had won states three years in a row. In addition, the Women’s Junior Eight of 2010 won second in the nation as well as Virginia States.Their Team sent all their boats but two, to the nationals in Saratoga. Their Varsity Baseball team has won 18 District titles, 5 Region titles, and 3 State titles (1968, 1971, 2002), led by Coach Tom Christie’s 8-year run which produced 11 of the 26 titles (6 district/3 region/2 state). A water tower stating “Home of the Warhawks” can be seen towering over the school. Thoreau Middle School shares a class with Joyce Kilmer Middle School (also located in Vienna) and Longfellow Middle School (located in Falls Church). Kilmer had accelerated programs for students that have passed certain aptitude tests, known as the Gifted and Talented (GT) program. This program has also been introduced into Luther Jackson Middle School. Kilmer also has a band and orchestra program, and recently started up a Science Olympiad and Chess Club program. Close to Madison sit the six elementary schools: Flint Hill Elementary (not to be confused with Flint Hill School, a private school in neighboring Oakton, Virginia), Louise Archer (which also has an AP program), Marshall Road, Vienna Elementary, Wolftrap, and Cunningham Park. Each of these schools send graduates into Thoreau, Kilmer, Luther Jackson Middle School or Longfellow, and afterwards James Madison High School, Oakton High School (just outside Vienna on the border with Oakton, with a Vienna address), George C. Marshall High School(in the Falls Church area of Fairfax County), Falls Church High School (just outside Vienna in Merrifield) or McLean High School. Freedom Hill Elementary, which recently started a Gifted and Talented program, sends graduates to Kilmer, and afterward to Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology or Marshall High School. Residents of Vienna that live along the town’s border with Great Falls, VA also send graduates into Langley High School via Cooper Middle School. Because of the large influx of new residents in the last decade, the classes of ’09, ’10, and ’11 at these regional high schools are expected to be the largest over the next ten years.
(courtesy of Wikipedia)
For more about Vienna
- Jammin’ Java coffeehouse and music club
- Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
- Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts
- Town of Vienna