The Valentine Explores Identity Through Dress

May 1, 2019

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

The Valentine Explores Identity Through Dress

A new costume and textiles show presents visitors with a peek inside the collection to see who we are by what we wear

RICHMOND – Opening today, Dressing Identity is a one-of-a-kind two-part exhibition that presents a working Costume and Textiles Collections Lab alongside a gallery filled with powerful symbols of identity.

Taken together, these galleries provide a glimpse into how both the Valentine and the larger community claim, interpret and share identity through dress.

Dressing Identity: Caring for Collections features a Collections Lab on view where visitors can watch as members of the museum’s Costume and Textile team catalog, mount, photograph, label and prepare artifacts for storage in the museum’s collection. The lab will provide museum attendees with an inside-look at how the Valentine’s historic objects are protected for generations to come.

In the adjacent gallery and as a companion to Dressing Identity: Caring For Collections, Dressing Identity: Understanding Ourselves presents visible manifestations of grief, pride, honor, ambition, fear and joy. These objects from our collection speak in a broad array of symbolic languages that reflect the rich diversity of Richmond but also communicate a message that is shared by everyone.

“As visitors make their way through these two separate but unified galleries, I hope they will be touched by someone’s story and gain a better understanding of how we express who we are by what we wear,” said Kristen Stewart, the Nathalie L. Klaus Curator of Costume & Textiles. “I hope that the stories on view in both galleries inspire visitors to seek out deeper connections in their community.”

Dressing Identity will be on-view at the Valentine from May 1, 2019 to January 26, 2020 in the Nathalie L. Klaus Gallery on the Valentine’s lower level.



About the Valentine
The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond stories for more than a century. Through collections, exhibitions and programs, the Valentine provides residents and tourists the opportunity to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of this important region. The Valentine offers major changing exhibitions, which focus on American urban and social history, costumes, decorative arts and architecture.

About the Valentine Costume and Textiles Collection
The Costume and Textiles Collection at the Valentine comprises over 30,000 dress, accessory and textile objects made, sold, worn or used in Virginia from the late 18th century to the present day. The largest of its kind in the American South, this collection enjoys an international reputation among fashion and textile scholars.

The Valentine Unveils Dynamic New Tours

April 30, 2019

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

The Valentine Unveils Dynamic New Tours

Richmond’s History Museum has developed three new opportunities to learn about the River City

RICHMOND – The Valentine has introduced three new tours in May as part of the 76-year-old tours program that runs annually from April through November.

The new family-friendly Figures of Freedom Downtown Walking Tour invites attendees to tour Shockoe Bottom, one of Richmond’s oldest historic districts, while exploring the struggles for freedom that helped shape America. This tour will include stories of Virginia’s earliest indigenous inhabitants, Thomas Jefferson’s Statute for Religious Freedom, the struggle of Richmond’s enslaved population and more. Offered Saturdays and Sundays, May through October.

Another new tour, Museums, Murals, Monuments: Museum District Walking Tour, explores Richmond’s historic Museum District, a neighborhood with 22 sites on the National Register of Historic Places, museums, a growing collection of murals and varied monuments. A Master Valentine Tour Guide will lead a walking tour exploring how public art, spaces and museums have told the story of the city for over 150 years. Offered Sundays, May through October.

Finally, the This is Richmond Downtown Walking Tour invites tourists and locals alike to discover Richmond history from its beginnings to the present day, uncovering the best-kept secrets of River City residents. Stops will include the Broad Street historic shopping district, the Virginia Capitol Square, Jackson Ward, an exclusive tour inside local landmark Monumental Church and more. Offered Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, May through October.

“We’re excited to introduce these three new tours as part of our annual season, which now includes over 450 tours,” said Liz Reilly-Brown, the Valentine’s Director of Programs. “Both our newly developed tours as well as our neighborhood tours and specialty programming allow visitors to experience the city’s history by exploring the diverse stories that make these areas unique, vibrant and essential parts of the wider Richmond community.”

Now through November, the Valentine also offers daily walking tours of Hollywood Cemetery, bicycle and bus tours and walking tours of a different neighborhood every month.

Also returning this season are exclusive Valentine Member Tours led by Valentine Director Bill Martin.

Reserve tickets quickly as these tours sell out fast. You can find a full list of tours on our website.


About the Valentine
The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond’s 400-year history for over a century. Located in the heart of historic downtown, the Valentine is a place for residents and tourists to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of the region through exhibitions, programs, events and more. To learn more, visit

Time Travelers: Free Admission to 20 Historic Sites in Richmond

March 4, 2019

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing


Time Travelers: Free Admission to 20 Historic Sites in Richmond

RICHMOND – Time Travelers, a biannual Richmond Region tradition, invites tourists and locals alike to discover the area’s treasures spanning 400 years of fascinating history, including historic homes, museums and other one-of-a-kind attractions. 20 of the area’s historic sites will offer visitors a “Passport” to time-travel during a special admission-free weekend, March 23-24.

Each site will offer complimentary admission to visitors who show a Time Travelers Passport, available via download from the participating locations’ websites.

Participating locations include:

Agecroft Hall & Gardens
Agecroft Hall was first built in England in the 1500s, then transported across the ocean and rebuilt in Richmond in the 1920s. Today it is a museum furnished with art and artifacts from 17th century England. Get your Time Travelers Passport stamped, take a 30-minute guided tour, stroll the manicured gardens overlooking the James River, explore the Sunroom Exhibit, get hands-on in the Tudor Kitchen and shop in the museum store. Located just west of Carytown at 4305 Sulgrave Road in Richmond, Agecroft Hall & Gardens will be open Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sun. 12:30-5 p.m. For more information, visit To reserve a specific tour time, call 804-353-4241.

 The American Civil War Museum – Museum & White House of the Confederacy
Best known as the Confederate executive mansion for Jefferson Davis and his family from 1861-1865, the house provides an ideal opportunity for exploring the full breadth and memory of the Civil War in Richmond. In its 200 year history, the house has served many roles: a private residence for Richmond’s influencers, a headquarters of U.S. occupying forces during Reconstruction, the Richmond Central School, The Confederate Museum, and now the fully restored White House of the Confederacy. All tours are guided and space is limited. Located at 1201 East Clay Street in Richmond, The American Civil War Museum’s White House of the Confederacy will be open Sat.-Sun. from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The American Civil War Museum’s flagship exhibit is housed in the 1861 Tredegar Gun Foundry. Enjoy rotating artifacts, detailed timelines, unique hands-on activities, films, and more. The exhibit presents the story of the Civil War, its causes, course, and its legacies from the viewpoints of Unionists, Confederates, and African Americans. The war was a matter of honor and principle for all three as each acted to uphold its own vision of America. Each remembered the war differently as well, and to this day the war means different things to different people. The dynamic interplay of three peoples at war changed America forever and created a vastly different country from the one that existed before the war. The exhibit shows how the war produced the basic structure and character of the United States we know today. Historic Tredegar is open daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 804-649-1861 or visit for more information. Note: attendees can use the passport to receive a free tour of the White House of the Confederacy OR a free tour of Historic Tredegar.

 The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design
The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design elevates awareness of the transformative power of architecture and design. They envision a society that appreciates, supports, and embraces exemplary architecture and design…past, present, and future. The Branch Museum is located in the historic Branch House, a Tudor-revival house that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was completed in 1919 by architect John Russell Pope for John and Beulah Branch. The Branch Museum is located at 2501 Monument Avenue, Richmond, Virginia 23220. The museum is open Tuesday – Friday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. We can be reached at 804-655-6055, on our website at, or via email at

The Chesterfield Historical Society’s Magnolia Grange, Chesterfield County Museum and 1892 Historic Jail
Built in 1822 by William Winfree, Magnolia Grange is a handsome Federal-style plantation house named for the circle of magnolia trees that once graced its front lawn. Noted for its distinctive architecture, the mansion contains elaborate ceiling medallions, as well as sophisticated carvings on mantels, doorways and window frames. The house has been carefully restored to its 1820s look and feel. The Chesterfield Museum is a reproduction of the colonial courthouse of 1750. Its collections tell the history of Chesterfield County from prehistoric times through the 20th century. Exhibits include early Indian culture, artifacts from the first iron and coal mines in America, which were in Chesterfield County, early household and farming tools and a country store of the early 20th century. View the new WWI centennial exhibit in the Museum “Chesterfield Remembers WWI: The Story of the WWI Soldier”. The Old Jail, built in 1892, includes a WWI changing exhibit downstairs “The Story of the Home Front”. Both exhibits will be on display through 2019. Upstairs, visitors may view cells as they were when they housed their last prisoners in 1962. Magnolia Grange, the County Museum and Historic Jail will be open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and 12 to 4 p.m. on Sunday.  Magnolia Grange is located at 10020 Iron Bridge Road; the County Museum and Jail are located nearby at 6813 Mimms Loop in Chesterfield. For more information, call Magnolia Grange at (804) 748-1498, the County Museum and Historic Jail at (804) 768-7311 or visit

 Chimborazo Medical Museum (Richmond National Battlefield Park)
Chimborazo became one of the Civil War’s largest military hospitals. When completed it contained more than 100 wards, a bakery and even a brewery. Although the hospital no longer exists, a museum on the same grounds contains original medical instruments and personal artifacts. Other displays include a scale model of the hospital and a short film on medical and surgical practices and the caregivers that comforted the sick and wounded.  The site is located at 3215 East Broad Street in Richmond, Virginia and is open for free Wednesday through Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information, call (804) 226-1981 or visit

 Clarke-Palmore House
The Clarke-Palmore House Museum is located high atop historic Marion Hill in Henrico County. The museum interprets the lives of the Palmore family who lived on this small farm in 1930. Like other families living through the Great Depression, the Palmore family struggled to make a living during tough economic times. Self-sufficiency and frugality were the norm. The museum will be open Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 4 p.m. and is located at 904 McCoul Street in Henrico.  For more information call (804) 652-3406 or visit

 Courtney Road Service Station
The 1920s were the boom years for the construction of gas stations in the United States due to an increase of cars, improved roads and low gas prices. Many were built in the “House with Canopy” design like the Courtney Road Service Station, a style that was a 1916 Standard Oil Company prototype. In 1938, the Barlow family owned the station. The station was operated by Mr. Millard G. Wiltshire and sold Sinclair Gasoline and Oil Products. The station is located at 3401 Mountain Road in Glen Allen and will be open Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 4 p.m. For more information call (804) 652-1455 or visit

 Dabbs House Museum
The Dabbs House, built in rural eastern Henrico in 1820, gained attention as Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s field headquarters during the summer of 1862. Learn about the history of the house from its use as a residence for the Dabbs family to its tenure as Henrico’s police headquarters from 1941 to 1971 and then as a police station until 2005. Visitors can tour the 1862 field headquarters and browse the exhibit galleries. Dabbs House Museum will be open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and is located at 3812 Nine Mile Road in eastern Henrico. For more information call (804) 652-3406 or visit

Deep Run Schoolhouse
This two-room schoolhouse opened in 1902. The school was in use until 1911, offering seven grades of instruction. By folding the movable center wall the space converted into one large room for weekly square dances for the community. Henrico County moved the school to its current location, 3401 Pump Road, from Three Chopt Road in 1996. The museum will be open noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.  For more information, call (804) 652-1455 or visit

 Henricus Historical Park
Travel back in time to the Citie of Henricus, the second successful English settlement in the New World. Explore a moment in time where 300 settlers, led by Sir Thomas Dale, departed the unhealthy environment of Jamestown with the hope of establishing a strong English Colony with the intention of becoming the principal seat of the Virginia Company of London. Learn how these brave settlers traveled 80 miles up the James River to build the city named for the eldest son of King James I, Prince Henry. Henricus Historical Park re-creates this journey that took place four hundred years ago. Historical interpretation and reenactments pay tribute to Virginia’s Indians and the English settlers who carved a nation out of what was then Virginia’s western frontier. The Park will only be open for Time Travelers on Saturday. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (804) 748-1611 or visit

 The John Marshall House
The John Marshall House, built in 1790, was the home of the “Great Chief Justice” for forty-five years. Listed on the National and Virginia Historic Registers, the John Marshall House has undergone remarkably few changes since Marshall’s lifetime. The property remained in the Marshall family until 1911.  The John Marshall House will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday and is located at 818 East Marshall Street in Richmond.  For more information, call (804) 648-7998 or visit

 The Edgar Allan Poe Museum
The Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia has been interpreting the life and influence of Edgar Allan Poe for the education and enjoyment of a global audience since 1922. The Museum’s collection of diverse items relating to Poe’s life and writings is the most comprehensive in the world and its programs reach thousands of scholars, students, teachers, and literary enthusiasts every year. Call (804) 648-5523 or visit for more information about our exhibits and upcoming events.

 Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site
Businesswoman. Leader. Civil rights activist. Maggie L. Walker was all of these things, and more.  A tour of her home highlights her achievements and reminds us of the obstacles she overcame to emerge as an inspirational figure in the early twentieth century.  The Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site is located at 600 N. 2nd Street in Richmond, Virginia, is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with tours of her home available daily, and is free of charge.  Reservations are suggested for groups of six or more. For more information and for tour times, call (804) 771-2017 ext. 0 or visit

Maymont, a 100-acre American estate, was the home of New South business leader James Dooley and his wife Sallie from 1893 through 1925, and an extraordinary gift to the city of Richmond. Marvel at the 21 restored rooms that offer an unusually complete depiction of upstairs-downstairs life in the Gilded Age. The opulent upstairs interiors are decorated with Tiffany stained glass, frescoed ceilings and other sumptuous detailing, and filled with original furnishings and artwork. Downstairs service rooms tell the story of household tasks and technology and the challenges of working in domestic service during the Jim Crow era. The surrounding landscape features Italian and Japanese gardens, magnificent trees and a carriage display, as well as Virginia wildlife exhibits, a Farm and the Robins Nature & Visitor Center. Located at 1700 Hampton Street in the heart of Richmond, Maymont Mansion will be open Sat.-Sun. 12-5 p.m. (Grounds are open 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.) For more information, call 804-358-7166 ext. 310 or visit

 Meadow Farm Museum at Crump Park
Meadow Farm, one of the last remaining 19th century farms in Henrico County, is an 1860 living historical farm focusing on rural Virginia life just before the upheaval of the Civil War. Costumed interpreters provide insights into the lives of Dr. John Mosby Sheppard, the owner of Meadow Farm, his family and those who were enslaved at the farm. Explore the farmhouse, barn, doctor’s office, blacksmith’s forge, kitchen, fields and pastures. Meadow Farm Museum will be open 12 to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and is located at 3400 Mountain Road in old Glen Allen. For more information call (804) 652-1455 or visit

 The Valentine and the 1812 Wickham House
The Wickham House, built in 1812, is a spectacular example of 19th-century Federal architecture and displays some of the country’s finest examples of interior decorative painting. Listed as a National Historic Landmark, the Wickham House, built by John and Elizabeth Wickham, illustrates the lives of one of Richmond’s most prominent families. The Wickham House was purchased by Mann Valentine, Jr., and in 1898 became the first home of the Valentine Museum. It is managed and operated by the Valentine. All tours are guided. The Valentine and the 1812 Wickham House will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and is located at 1015 East Clay Street in Richmond. The Valentine’s current exhibitions, Valentine Garden, Edward V. Valentine Sculpture Studio and the Valentine Store will be open as well. For more information, call (804) 649-0711 or visit

 The Valentine First Freedom Center
The Valentine First Freedom Center houses 2,200 square feet of exhibits that delve into America’s experience of religious liberty from its European antecedents through today. It is located on the site where Thomas Jefferson’s Statute for Religious Freedom was enacted into law by the Virginia General Assembly in 1786. Outside, a 27-foot spire, a limestone wall etched with the enacting paragraph of the Statute, and a 34-foot banner of a seminal Jefferson quote imprint the importance of the “first freedom” on all who come upon that busy corner. The Valentine First Freedom Center is located on the corner of South 14th & Cary streets and will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Parking is available on the street or in public pay lots.  For more information, call (804) 649-0711 or visit

 Virginia Randolph Museum
On November 8, 1970, the Virginia Randolph Home Economics Cottage was dedicated as a museum in memory of Virginia Estelle Randolph, a pioneer educator, a humanitarian, and a creative leader in the field of education. The structure, built in 1937 was declared a National Historic landmark in 1976. She secured a teaching position with the Henrico County School Board and opened the old Mountain Road School in 1892 and taught for 57 years. The museum will be open Saturday and Sunday, Noon to 4 p.m. and is located at 2200 Mountain Road, Glen Allen. For more information call (804) 652-1475 or visit

Wilton House Museum
Overlooking a placid stretch of the James River, Wilton House has been welcoming guests since constructed in the 1750s as the centerpiece of a sprawling tobacco plantation by the Randolph Family of Virginia. Here, friends, relations, and weary travelers such as Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette were welcomed. An impressive example of 18th-century Georgian Style architecture, Wilton House boasts its original and richly detailed paneling and a collection of fine and decorative arts from the Colonial and early Federal eras. When development threatened Wilton House in the 1930s, The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in the Commonwealth of Virginia purchased and restored the property. Wilton House Museum will be open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and 1 to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday and is located at 215 South Wilton Road in Richmond. For more information, call (804) 282-5936 or visit

Black History Month Gallery Guide

As a part of the Valentine’s commitment to share diverse, important and powerful Richmond Stories, we have developed a Black History Month Gallery Guide for our visitors.

These laminated guides are located at our front desk (and available for download HERE), and direct museum attendees to objects and stories located in our main exhibition This is Richmond, Virginia that help to tell just a part of the story of African-Americans in Richmond. While this guide is by no means comprehensive, we hope it will serve as a jumping off point for visitors looking to explore the wider history of the region and the integral role African-Americans have played in its development, evolution and progress.



Richmond Made: A Museum Store Q&A Series

Richmond Made is our Q&A series focused on Richmond Makers featured in the Valentine Museum Store!

Richmond jewelry artist Icka Cantilo uses a surgeon’s precision to make hand-cut jewelry out of silver, gold and nickel free copper that is sourced from foundries specializing in recycled precious metals. Often inspired by medical illustrations, Cantilo’s designs fit perfectly with the Valentine’s Pandemic: Richmond exhibition. She sat down with our Museum Store Manager Brianna Landes to talk about her work.

Q: What is your most popular piece of jewelry? What is the story behind it? 

A: My most popular Piece of jewelry is my” Lungs” necklace, hand cut out of Nickle free copper with free hand hammered texture and Patina finish. I created this design while still a student at VCU School of the Arts and I’ve continued to make the Lung Necklace for the past 9 years. Its popularity can be from some unfortunate reasons and stories/experiences I’ve gathered from customers, but also for more positive reasons such as Respiratory therapists and students and teachers of MCV School of Medicine.  Creating this design, for me, was a study and an interest in medical drawings and how I can create a story to wear. It was one of my very first statement necklaces and now the technique of illustrating by means hand cutting metals has become my signature style.

Q: Do you make pieces by request or have a template that you typically go by for designing a piece? 

A: I selectively take custom orders. The request has to resonate with me and the design fall within my own interests. I research and source inspiration from technical drawings, medical drawings, tattoo illustrations, museum exhibits and many other creative resources. Once I draw out my design I have to ensure its lines are appropriately measured for the gauge of metal it will be cut from. From that I create a master drawing that essentially maps out where I drill and cut.

Q: How long does it typically take to make one piece? 

A: It all depends on the number of cuts and how detailed the line work of my design is. For instance I have a cat skull necklace which only has three areas of negative space to be cut out, whereas, my insect wing designs are the same size and take me 10 times longer because of the intricacy of the design.

Come see Icka Cantilo’s jewelry at The Valentine! The exclusive Apothecary Bottle necklace and earrings were inspired by the Pandemic: Richmond exhibit on view now.


The Valentine Announces 2019 Richmond History Makers

January 29, 2019

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

The Valentine Announces 2019 Richmond History Makers

RICHMOND – Today, the Valentine announced the Richmond History Makers honorees for 2019. The Richmond History Makers & Community Update highlights trailblazers in the community by celebrating their lasting contributions to the Greater Richmond region. The Valentine and the Capital Region Collaborative (CRC) are excited to partner again to highlight the work of the honorees listed below and provide data on the progress we have made as a region.

The Valentine will be honoring these individuals and organizations at the Richmond History Makers & Community Update at Virginia Union University’s Claude G. Perkins Living and Learning Center on Tuesday, March 12, 2019 at 4 p.m.

The 2019 Richmond History Makers and their categories of distinction include:

Charleita M. Richardson – Creating Quality Educational Opportunities

Charleita M. Richardson is the President and CEO of Partnership for the Future, an organization that helps students with limited resources transition from high school to college and employment. As a native Richmonder and graduate of Richmond Public Schools, she considers it a personal mission to help students in this community reach their dream of going to college.  Charleita has always lived by the concept that “to whom much is given, much is required.”

Jill Hanken – Championing Social Justice

As the Virginia Poverty Law Center’s health attorney for over 30 years, Jill Hanken advocates for improvements and access to public health insurance programs, including the newly enacted Medicaid coverage that will serve up to 400,000 adults. Jill helps lead the Health Care for All Virginians coalition and directs the Enroll Virginia navigator project which offers outreach and application assistance for the federal marketplace and other health insurance coverage.

Dolly Hintz – Promoting Healthy Communities

Dolly Hintz helped found the Hospital Hospitality House (now The Doorways) in 1984 and was instrumental in expanding the organization’s reach as President of the board in 1994 with the purchase of a former hotel to accommodate more guests. Thanks to Dolly’s leadership, over 175,000 patients and their families from every state and 31 countries have received lodging and non-medical services in an emotionally supportive environment at little or no cost.

BikeWalkRVA – Improving Regional Transportation

Bike Walk RVA is Sports Backers’ advocacy initiative committed to making walking and biking safe, convenient, and comfortable for people of all ages and abilities. By engaging and empowering residents across the region to become their own advocacy leaders, Bike Walk RVA promotes the construction of multi-use trails, protected bike lanes, sidewalks and safe neighborhood streets so that walking and biking are part of daily transportation in the Richmond Region.

Candice Streett – Demonstrating Innovative Economic Solutions

Candice Streett is the executive director of Virginia Local Initiatives Support Corporation, an organization focused on providing Richmond residents thriving communities of choice and opportunity. For the past nine years, Candice Streett has led LISC’s economic development work, designing three small business programs and launching four financial opportunity centers, which connect residents to resources and coaching for sustainable businesses and financial stability.

Janine Bell & Richmond Triangle Players – Advancing Our Quality of Life (Two Honorees)

Janine Bell is the founder and artistic director of Elegba Folklore Society, an organization which offers immersive engagement in African and African American heritage for more than 60,000 people a year via annual festivals, performances, workshops, cultural history tours and visual arts. Elegba Folklore Society is celebrating its 29th year of programming as a pathway to enrichment, education, affirmation and joy; an experience that has been called “life changing.”

Founded in 1993, Richmond Triangle Players is the longest continuously operating professional theater in the mid-Atlantic devoted to works, artists and themes relevant to the LGBTQ experience. This work has earned the company both local and national acclaim. Executive Director Philip Crosby has guided the company over the last decade, moving it from an itinerant company to the cultural anchor of the Scott’s Addition neighborhood.

The winners were chosen by a Selection Committee made up of Leadership Metro Richmond (LMR) graduates and former honorees.

The Capital Region Collaborative (CRC) will also present regional data, providing attendees with the unique opportunity to honor Richmond’s hometown heroes while learning about the region’s progress. Tickets and sponsorships can be purchased HERE. The 2019 Richmond History Makers & Community Update is presented by Dominion Energy.


About the Valentine
The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond stories for more than a century. Through collections, exhibitions and programs, the Valentine provides residents and tourists the opportunity to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of this important region. The Valentine offers major changing exhibitions, which focus on American urban and social history, costumes, decorative arts and architecture.

About the Capital Region Collaborative
The Capital Region Collaborative brings together local government, business, and community stakeholders to achieve a shared vision for the Richmond Region. CRC partners recognize that the most pressing challenges extend across jurisdictional boundaries and that a cross-sector, cross-jurisdictional approach is needed to reach the region’s full potential.

New Exhibition Reimagines Monument Avenue

January 28, 2019

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

New Exhibition Reimagines Monument Avenue

An international ideas competition challenged designers to rethink the historic boulevard

RICHMOND — A new exhibition debuting on Valentine’s Day will conceptually reimagine Richmond’s historic Monument Avenue. Opening at the Valentine on February 14, this exhibition follows the Valentine’s Monumental: Richmond’s Monuments (1607-2018), which examined the role and context of more than 40 monuments in and around the city.

Titled Monument Avenue: General Demotion/General Devotion, this new exhibition is the result of a multi-year collaboration with the Storefront for Community Design and the mOb studiO at Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts.

“In keeping with our mission, the Valentine listened to the debate taking place in the wider Richmond community concerning monuments and what they mean to us today, and we responded with Monumental,” said Valentine Director Bill Martin. “We are excited to take this concept of important and timely community conversations a step further by hosting an exhibition that asks us to question the future of Monument Avenue.”

Last year, the Valentine, Storefront and VCUarts mOb studiO applied for and received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to host an international design competition, which invited teams of planners, architects, designers, artists and individuals to conceptually re-imagine Monument Avenue.

“We received 70 proposals from architectural firms, centers of higher education, artists and many others,” said Camden Whitehead, mOb studiO co-founder and an associate professor of interior design at VCUarts. “We hope that the diverse ideas on display in this exhibition at the Valentine will demonstrate the unique power of design to serve as a catalyst for community discussion and contribute to the important dialogue about race, memory, the urban landscape and public art.”

Submitted concepts will be featured in the exhibition at the Valentine. A jury will also review the submissions and select finalists. The winning concepts, including a People’s Choice Award, will be announced on November 21 at a closing reception hosted at the Valentine.

As part of related programming, exhibition organizers are in the process of planning two community conversation events.

Additionally, from February 16 to April 20, the Branch Museum of Architecture and Design will host the results of a similar design competition specifically for Richmond students in an exhibition titled Monumental Youth.

“The Branch Museum is excited to have the Monumental Youth exhibition in our galleries, as it gives a voice to young people tackling large design ideas in thoughtful and exciting ways,” said Branch Museum Executive Director Penny Fletcher. “In addition, it addresses a pressing design challenge confronting our community and many others – how can we make public spaces, designed a century or more ago, relevant and accessible today? We are proud to be showcasing this important and contemplative work from students in and around Richmond. The Branch Museum is dedicated to bringing exciting and challenging design thinking to our community, and the students represented in this exhibition have done that beautifully.”

Monument Avenue: General Demotion/General Devotion closes at the Valentine on December 1, 2019.


About the Valentine
The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond’s 400-year history for over a century. Located in the heart of historic downtown, the Valentine is a place for residents and tourists to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of the region through exhibitions, programs, events and more. To learn more, visit

About Storefront
Storefront for Community Design is a non-profit design center in the center of Richmond, Virginia. Storefront operates three main community-based program branches: Youth Empowerment, Affordable Design Assistance, and Community Advocacy. To learn more, visit

About VCUarts mOb studio
VCUarts mOb studiO is a partnership of three design departments: graphic design, fashion design and interior design. Together, they operate this innovative design lab, which realizes the potential of design to shape the City of Richmond. mOb studiO combines the energy, enthusiasm and expertise of Virginia Commonwealth University’s students, fellows and faculty with Storefront’s community involvement. The two entities partner, working directly in and for Richmond-area communities, to improve and elevate the city’s design—from city bike racks, to the corner store, and from neighborhoods to the James River.

The Valentine First Freedom Center, Monticello Celebrate Religious Freedom Day

December 8, 2018

Eric Steigleder
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

The Valentine First Freedom Center, Monticello Celebrate Religious Freedom Day

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney and First Lady Pamela Northam to Deliver Remarks

RICHMOND — The Valentine First Freedom Center and Monticello are partnering to sponsor an open press Religious Freedom Day Celebration on Wednesday, January 16, the anniversary of the signing of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.

The Valentine First Freedom Center, located in Shockoe Slip at the site of the original General Assembly Building where the statute was signed in 1786, will welcome museum guests, local religious leaders and legislators beginning at 9 a.m. to experience the exhibition space.

At 10 a.m., Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney and First Lady of Virginia Pamela Northam will deliver remarks. Bill Barker, as Thomas Jefferson, will also be on hand to read excerpts from the historic Statute.

“The Valentine First Freedom Center is dedicated to commemorating and educating about freedom of conscience as proclaimed in Thomas Jefferson’s Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom,” Valentine Director Bill Martin said. “We are excited to take that commemoration to new heights with this celebration, and we’re looking forward to working alongside Monticello to honor the ideals codified in the Statute and the worldwide impact of those words some 232 years later.”

“We are delighted to co-host this event with The Valentine First Freedom Center,” said Monticello Vice President of Visitor Programs, Gary Sandling. “Thomas Jefferson believed that freedom of conscience was essential to the success of a self-governing people, and no more so than in matters of faith. For Jefferson, this statute established the principle that no citizen should be denied participation in public life on the basis of their religious belief nor suffer persecution from their fellow citizens.”


About the Valentine
The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond’s 400-year history for over a century. Located in the heart of historic downtown, Through exhibitions, programs, events and more, the Valentine is a place for residents and tourists to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of this important region. To learn more, visit

About The Thomas Jefferson Foundation
The Thomas Jefferson Foundation was incorporated in 1923 to preserve Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, in Charlottesville, Virginia. Today, the foundation seeks to bring history forward into national and global dialogues by engaging audiences with Jefferson’s world and ideas and inviting them to experience the power of place at Monticello. Monticello is recognized as a National Historic Landmark, a United Nations World Heritage Site and a Site of Conscience. As a private, nonprofit organization, the foundation’s regular operating budget does not receive ongoing government support to fund its twofold mission of preservation and education. For information, visit