From the early days of its settlement, Richmonders relied on tobacco as a staple crop and a means to accumulate land and wealth. Even after the Civil War changed the work patterns of tobacco farmers, this leaf continued – and continues – to play a major part in Richmond's economy.
Richmond's history encompasses the struggles and accomplishments of the city's African and African American residents as they shaped, reacted, resisted and revolted to the laws and cultural norms creating Richmond.
Thanks to the Greater Richmond Chapter of the American Red Cross, the Valentine is home to a spectacular Red Cross collection. Among the thousands of items are photographs, booklets, uniforms, hats, pins and other items that document the history of one of Richmond’s most important service organizations.