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Open Air Schools: The Fight Against Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis is an ancient disease that has killed over one billion people in the last two centuries.

Sweeney's Claymount

Pottery production is among the earliest of American artisan crafts. Everything needed for the production of pottery was present in Virginia-clay deposits, hardwood for firing kilns, and skilled craftsmen and entrepreneurs. In 1838, Henrico County native Stephen Booker Sweeney bought land on the north side of the James River in Henrico County, adding parcels over the next twenty years to assemble a property he whimsically named Claymount.

Hollywood Cemetery is Alive

Hollywood Cemetery has it all: Civil War ghosts, mausoleums, pyramids, and a great place to run in the morning. Founded in 1847 by Richmond locals William Haxall and Joshua Fry, Hollywood Cemetery sold its first grave in 1849. Since then, the cemetery has become the resting site of numerous historical figures. Two United States Presidents: James Monroe and John Tyler reside in the cemetery. President of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis’ gravesite can also be found there.

Ruth Clide Proffitt: A Story of Portraits Series

A story of resilience, Ruth Clide Proffitt faced many adversaries her entire life. At the age of five, Proffitt’s mother passed away, causing Ruth to take on the responsibility of raising her siblings. Ruth would spend her life in Richmond, becoming a painter as a means of making money as well as a form of self-expression. Ruth settled in Oregon Hill which became a backdrop and focal point in many of her works. This family portrait paints the peaceful crowded, yet struggling life of the Proffitt family in their Oregon Hill home.

Meat Juice Love: A Story of Portraits Series

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Time to get your roses and chocolates together for your special someone, but don’t forget the meat juice, specifically Valentine’s Meat Juice. The love story of Mann and Ann Valentine is full of romance, money, and meat.

Mattie Ould: A Story of Portraits Series

Instead of following the archetypal life of the Southern Belle, Mattie Ould flipped southern family values on its head with lasting consequences. Feeling trapped in an engagement to one of her father’s associates, Ould packed her bags and ran off to elope with the dashing Oliver Schoolcraft. The two settled in Richmond, but tragically Mattie and her young daughter died shortly after in 1877, having never reconciled with her father. The Mattie Ould story has been retold for generations in Richmond.

Elisha and Joseph: A Story of Portraits Series

The Great Depression was a time of tremendous hardships for Americans, especially members of the African American community. A commissioned portrait at the time was a luxury few could afford. However, Elisha and Joseph, both of whom worked for the Mayo family had their portraits painted by Isabel Jones Mayo. The couple's smiles highlight the fortitude of the two during such a grueling moment in history.

A Story of Portraits

Focusing on portraits in current exhibition "It’s All Relative: Richmond Families (1616-2016)" the Valentine takes a look at the stories behind various portraits in our collection..

The "Victorian Christmas Tree" in the 1812 Wickham House

Today, the Christmas tree has become a standard part of celebrating Christmas in America, an unquestioned tradition with a fascinating history that comes with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. The photographs from the archival collection show grand decorated trees from 1961-1971, a period when the 1812 Wickham House annually displayed a Victorian Christmas tree.

December in Richmond through Edith Shelton's Eyes

Richmond photographer Edith K. Shelton's images show a glimpse of November in Richmond from the mid-1950s.

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