History Now

For Our History Buffs

Giles County Historical Society | Pearisburg |  (540) 921-1050

Visit Giles County Historical Society, 208 North Main Street, Pearisburg and tour the 1829 Andrew Johnston House and 1857 Doctor’s Office, learn about our communities and life in Giles County at the Museum, trace your ancestors at the Genealogy Research Office, and take home a souvenir of Giles County from the Museum Shop. Open Wednesday through Friday, 12-5pm and Saturday and Sunday, 2-5pm. Admission is free.

The Reynolds Homestead | Critz | (276) 694-7181

The Reynolds Homestead is a Commonwealth Campus Center of Virginia Tech located in Critz, Virginia. It features Rock Spring Plantation, the birthplace and boyhood home of tobacco manufacturer R.J. Reynolds, and a Community Enrichment Center.

SWVA Museum State Park | Big Stone Gap | (276) 523-1322

The museum tells the story of the 1890s coal boom and chronicles early exploration and settlement of the region. By the mid-1700s, settlers looking for a fresh start were traveling south out of Pennsylvania and Maryland into the valley of Virginia. Braving the unknown and constantly facing the threat of Indian attacks, pioneer settlers were almost totally dependent on the land, their own skills and the contents of their wagon for their every need. Displays of tools, household furnishings, quilts and early commerce tell the story of these hardy pioneers. There are also displays about the area’s coal mining booms and busts, and there’s an interactive kiosk that features life and labor in the coal camps.

Pocahontas Exhibition Coal Mine and Museum | Pocahontas | (276) 945-2134

Experience life as a coal miner in the late 1800’s at the Pocahontas Exhibition Coal Mine and Museum. Learn how coal was mined with a pick and shovel and the risk coal miners endured before safety measures were mandated. Visitors will see how coal was cut, blasted down and loaded into mine cars. In contrast to modern methods of cutting the coal, there is an illustration of the old hand method of undercutting, preliminary to blasting down the coal. Opened to the public in 1938, it is the only Exhibition Coal Mine in the world in which visitors may view the famed Pocahontas #3 coal seam, which is more than ten feet in height, seen in its original state.

Glencoe Museum | Radford | (540) 731-5031

Explore the rich heritage of Radford and the New River Valley in this 19th-century Victorian building situated on the banks of the New River. Glencoe Museum provides a glimpse into the creation and settlement of life in the City of Radford. Glencoe’s construction began in the early 1870s and first appeared on the tax records in 1876. The museum and gallery includes period rooms, history exhibits, an art gallery, gift shop, visitor center and an authentic one room schoolhouse. The Radford Heritage Foundation is also involved with lectures and cultural events that promote the history of Radford and the New River Valley. The house was named Glencoe, in honor of the owners Scottish heritage, Glencoe, Scotland.