The invention of the cotton gin in the late-eighteenth century had enabled the profitable cultivation of short-staple cotton in the uplands, which was widely used.
Following recovery from the Revolutionary War's burning, Norfolk and her citizens struggled to rebuild.
Virginia made some attempts to phase out slavery, and manumissions had increased in the first two decades after the war.
Thomas Jefferson Randolph gained passage of an 1832 resolution for gradual abolition in the state, but by that time, increased demand from development in the Deep South created a large internal market for slavery.
After persuading 105 people to settle in the colony, Adam Thoroughgood (who had immigrated to Virginia in 1622 from King's Lynn, Norfolk, England) was granted a large land holding, through the head rights system, along the Lynnhaven River in 1636.
When the South Hampton Roads portion of the shire was separated, Thoroughgood suggested the name of his birthplace for the newly formed New Norfolk County.Norfolk developed in the late-seventeenth century as a "Half Moone" fort was constructed and 50 acres (200,000 m In 1691, a final county subdivision took place when Lower Norfolk County split to form Norfolk County (included in present-day cities of Norfolk, Chesapeake, and parts of Portsmouth) and Princess Anne County (present-day City of Virginia Beach). In 1730, a tobacco inspection site was located here.