RVA50 Object 5 “James Armistead Lafayette, (1748-1830)”

James Armistead Lafayette, (1748-1830)
circa 1824
John B. Martin
Oil on canvas
OM.23 Read more

RVA50 Object 4 “Storebook, Volume 1, 1760-1762”

Storebook, Volume 1, 1760-1762
Patrick Henry
Paper, leather
MS. FB 109 Read more

Let us out!

Construction fencing is now in place and our directional banners and signs are going up. Thanks to the folks at Kjellstrom and Lee all of the staging for the renovations will be organized along the Clay Street sidewalk.

 

Construction fencing is now in place and our directional banners and signs are going up. Thanks to the folks at Kjellstrom and Lee all of the staging for the renovations will be organized along the Clay Street sidewalk. This keeps our parking lot open and the Wickham House and Sally Bell’s Kitchen accessible. The demolition of walls will begin downstairs next week. All of the glass from the exhibition cases has been removed and all of the exterior windows are now fully visible.Staff and volunteers are settling into new routines. We are beginning to realize that each day will require our patience and flexibility to adjust to changes in the building. (I have been told that these changes are much easier to deal with than a certain director’s mood changes.)

Thanks to great planning, our staff have been able to stay in their offices during the renovation and our collection of over 1.6 million objects remains on site. Wickham House visitors seem to be enjoying the revised tour and the new exhibitions on the second floor. Not a bad start…but looking forward to some real noise next week!

Don’t forget you can join us for a Hard Hat Happy Hour on Wednesdays from 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. Join us for a cocktail and a tour of our progress. You can RSVP online to schedule a time to stop by.

Creating History Tour

 Clay Street Fence

 Sidewalk Closed

 

-Bill Martin, Director

RVA50 Object 3 “Dressing Table, circa 1760”

Dressing Table, circa 1760
Unidentified Cabinetmaker
Virginia or Mid-Atlantic
Walnut, pine and brass
V.87.22.01 Read more

Hard Hat Happy Hours

Many of you have asked me, “Are you really going to stay open during the renovations?” We are very much open! Just come to the new reception area located in the Davis House right next to the terrace and parking lot. Our visitors’ services staff will make sure that you find your way to your meeting, research appointment, or tour of the Wickham House. Of course, there is always Sally Bell’s Kitchen for lunch in the Valentine Garden.

 

Many of you have asked me, “Are you really going to stay open during the renovations?” We are very much open! Just come to the new reception area located in the Davis House right next to the terrace and parking lot. Our visitors’ services staff will make sure that you find your way to your meeting, research appointment, or tour of the Wickham House. Of course, there is always Sally Bell’s Kitchen for lunch in the Valentine Garden.

We are also scheduling Hard Hat Happy Hours on Wednesdays from 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. We would like for you to join us for a cocktail and a tour. You can RSVP online or contact me for more information and to schedule a time to stop by.

If you have any questions about this project or about our programming, just call me at 804.649.0711 ext. 340.

If you would like to help keep us calm and hammering on, you can support the History Center on our secure donation page at /give.

Massey Gallery

Old Front Desk

Sally Bell's

-Bill Martin, Director

RVA50 Object 2 “Lottery Ticket No. 5099, circa 1768”

Lottery Ticket No. 5099, circa 1768
Issued by William Byrd III
Printed possibly in Williamsburg, Virginia
X.47.53 Read more

The History Center is Open During Renovations

Today marks the first day on site for our contractors Kjellstrom and Lee as we begin the renovations at the History Center. Over the next year, we will be transforming our existing museum buildings to create new galleries, education center, gift shop, lobby, and special events spaces.

Today marks the first day on site for our contractors Kjellstrom and Lee as we begin the renovations at the History Center.  Over the next year, we will be transforming our existing museum buildings to create new galleries, education center, gift shop, lobby, and special events spaces.

We are excited (and a little anxious) as we create a great place for the next generation of Richmonders to discover their history.  While our galleries and gift shop may be closed, the Wickham House and archives remain open and our school and adult programs continue. We would not be at this important moment without our incredible staff and volunteers who have worked over the last several years to coordinate the complex details of relocating our collections and exhibitions and refocusing our education programs.  For the contractor to begin the work required that the main and basement floors be completely emptied.  Objects from the exhibitions are now safely tucked back in storage, the education materials have been relocated to provide easy access for our teachers, and the remaining gift shop inventory is packed and awaiting the opening of the new shop next fall.  We have even moved the reception area for our visitors into the Davis House.

We would also not be here without the unwavering support of our trustees and donors for this campaign.  This project is a bold statement of their commitment to preserving Richmond’s history and to the continuing revitalization of downtown.

So….let the hammers begin. Each Monday until renovations end in October, I will be posting quick updates and a few photos on our renovation progress and on the ongoing programs of the History Center. We hope that you will join us in this journey.

Today’s photos are of the last few objects being removed from the galleries and a message from those that “left their mark” at the recent Richmond History Makers Celebration that happened on October 15, 2013.

If you would like to help keep us calm and hammering on, you can support the History Center on our secure donation page at /give.

Making Mark

Thomas Jefferson Mirror Move

History Alive

 

-Bill Martin, Director

RVA50 Object 1 “Virginia, Discovered and Discribed by Captayn John Smith”

Virginia, Discovered and Discribed by Captayn John Smith
John Smith (circa 1580-1631)
London: William Hole, 1624
(Richmond: Franklin Press, 1819 facsimile)
Engraved map
V.45.28.01a Read more

A History of Richmond in 50 Objects #RVA50

This exhibition explores the history of Richmond, Virginia, through a selection of objects from the Valentine Richmond History Center collection. Paying homage to “A History of the World in 100 Objects,” the ground-breaking partnership of the British Museum and BBC Radio 4 in 2010 that focused on world history, our contribution continues the dialogue in a way that is uniquely Richmond. Read more

A Reflection on the 9/11 Attacks by Marjorie Grier

A Reflection on the 9/11 Attacks by Marjorie Grier Read more