On a starlit night, the Civil War battlefields of Vir-ginia's Prince William and Stafford counties might seem alive with the ghostly presence of men who fought there. Thousands lost their lives, and heroes were born in Manassas, Fredericksburg, Chan-cellorsville and the Wilderness.
Today, thousands of visitors walk those same battlefields and reflect on this country's past, while other people prepare for the bright future and astonishing growth of the area.
Higher education and the latest in technology are what both counties and their sister cities - Fredericksburg and Manassas - are about. All are courting com-panies that will support growth and raise incomes of the approximately 400,000 people who also enjoy the area's affordable housing.
The Potomac River flows along the eastern border of both Nor-thern Virginia counties. The 348 square miles that make up Prince William County lie just 35 miles southwest of the District. The county's population of nearly 270,000 earns a median family income of $52,078, …