Third Thursday Talk, January 21st, 7 pm: The People Before the Park & The Blue Ridge Heritage Project The Blue Ridge Heritage Project is a grassroots effort to create monuments and related displays that will tell the story of the people of the Blue Ridge Mountains and to honor the sacrifices they made so that the Shenandoah National Park could be established. Project founder Bill Henry will describe how his experiences in the park led to the discovery of its relatively unknown and controversial history.
Third Thursday Talk, February 18th, 7 pm: The Archaeology of Shenandoah Valley Native Americans: Deep Time and Place. By popular demand, James Madison University Archaeologist Carole Nash reviews the historical record of Native American culture in the Valley.
SPECIAL EVENT! Sunday, February 21st, 2 pm: Hobby Robinson Photography Exhibit Preview with Poetry Reading & Book Signing by special guest Sara Robinson.
Hobby Robinson was a merchant in the small town of Elkton, Virginia, but his true vocation was photography. Hobby captured on film several generations of his east Rockingham County community. His daughter Sara Robinson gifted many of the images to The Heritage Museum.
Poet Sara Robinson will read from her latest book, Sometimes the Little Town, a collections of poems inspired by her father’s photographs. Refreshments and book signing will follow the program. Copies of Sara’s book will be available for purchase.
Saturday, March 12th, 11 am. Appalachian Coverlets: Heirlooms for the Next Generation. People in southern Appalachia have always treasured the woven coverlet; it is part of their cultural history. Many early settlers stayed in the homeplace from generation to generation and carefully kept family lore and family textiles intact. Speaker Kathleen Curtis Wilson will share her 20-year journey documenting regional coverlets, the fascinating stories she heard along the way, and the Scots-Irish migration. Refreshments and book signing after the presentation. The featured exhibit Colorful & Cozy: The Woven Art of the Coverlet will be open for guests before and after the presentation.
Make it a Bedcover Celebration! Come early to view the Colorful & Cozy coverlet exhibit so that you have time after the presentation to enjoy refreshments or lunch before heading to the Virginia Quilt Museum lecture by Kyra Hicks on Franklin Roosevelt’s Postage Stamp Quilt at 1:30 pm in Harrisonburg.
For quilt lecture details visit virginiaquiltmuseum.org or call (540) 433-3818.
Third Thursday Talk, March 17, 7 pm: The Kentucky Rifle in the Shenandoah Valley, Past and Present, with Longrifle Historian and Restorer Frank Kobilis. Hear about pioneer firearm history and view examples from Kobilis’ collection.
Third Thursday Talk, April 21, 7 pm: Putting Harrisonburg’s History on the Map. JMU Associate Professor of History Dr. Kevin Borg will discuss businesses, professionals, and workers in New South Harrisonburg, combining historical maps and 21st century imagery for illustration.
Note: The audience was awed and completely engaged by the Spatial History in the Public Square website. Take a look! There’s more to come!
Third Thursday Talk, May 19, 7 pm: Reading Lousy Old Handwriting. Reading old handwriting, lousy old handwriting, can be a major obstacle to successful research. Like anything else, you have to learn the basics before you can unlock the secrets of the past. However, once you learn some of the “mysteries” of early writing, you will begin to move ahead with your research. Join author Dorothy Boyd-Bragg as she shares tips for overcoming one of the most frustrating research obstacles.
Plein Air Progressive Paint Out, Saturday, May 28th, 11 am. The Dayton Historic Triangle invites you to bring your easels and brushes to capture the beautiful history and nature around the sites of the Silver Lake Mill, the Daniel Harrison House and the Cromer-Trumbo House. The first Paint Out venue is the lawn of the Cromer-Trumbo House at The Heritage Museum. Refreshments will be served.
Third Thursday Talk, June 16th, 7 pm: Notes on Folks in the Shenandoah Valley in the Civil War. Crowd favorite Dr. Irvin Hess returns to share stories from the people of the Valley during the years of the Civil War.
Third Thursday Talk, July 21st, 7 pm: A Glimpse of George Washington: The General and the Mason. As a Very Valuable Museum Volunteer, Harrisonburg Masonic Lodge Member, and Sons of the American Revolution Member, Peyton Yancey has the roots, interest, and dedication to discover and share local history. Come hear interesting details about Freemasonry and the Father of Our Country.
Third Thursday Talk, August 18th, 7 pm: Dr. John Quincy Winfield and the Letcher Brock’s Gap Rifles. The Letcher Brock’s Gap Rifles, later Company B, of Turner Ashby’s 7th Virginia Cavalry, was regarded as one of the finest companies in that famous regiment and its Captain, John Quincy Winfield, as one of the most competent. Award-winning Historian and proud Brock’s Gap Descendant Stephen Lee Ritchie began a project to annotate Captain Winfield’s letters, but discovered an opportunity to create a biographical memorial to over 400 men who served in the Brock’s Gap Rifles.
Third Thursday Talk, September 15th, 7 pm: The Iron History of the Valley and its Visual Impact on the Southern Decorative Arts. Luray Caverns and Luray Valley Museum Senior Vice President Rod Graves will illustrate the historic intersection of industry and art.
Special Event, Sunday, September 18th, 4-6 pm: Field Trip Fundraiser at the Widow Pence Farm in Cross Keys, Rockingham County, Virginia. It’s time for a change! In lieu of an Annual Banquet, we’re doing what we do best and sharing local history! Irvin and Nancy Hess have lovingly preserved the story of the Cross Keys battlefield and the Widow Pence farm. Join us for a tour of the home (which is a museum itself), a description of the Civil War action, and fun and festive social time in the barn. This event is a special opportunity to celebrate and raise money for The Heritage Museum’s programming. Bring some friends and food and drink, stories, and social time on this beautiful property! Click for details.
Open House, Saturday, December 10th, 10 am – 2 pm: Bring your friends and family to see the At Play Holiday Exhibit! Remember your childhood playtime as you view the dolls, toys, and trains on display. Discover the history of your matchbox car and the story of the original Teddy Bear. Watch the model train chug around the tracks, build a Lincoln Log cabin, and share your best toy memory. Refreshments and fun for everyone! Admission Free during the Open House. Donations and Shopping encouraged.
Third Thursday Talk, January 15th, 7 pm: The Good Old Days, They Were Terrible! Take a look back at the “good old days” through images from the Historical Society’s photographic archives. Local historian and author Greg Owen returns to the theme examined by Otto Bettman in his classic 1974 book of the same title, discussing the history of our country and our community ca. 1865-1900. Leave your rose-colored glasses at home! Free, donations encouraged.
POSTPONED TO APRIL 30TH, 2015 DUE TO INCLEMENT WEATHER.
Third Thursday Talk, February 19th, 7 pm: The Pivotal R. R. Moton High School Student Walkout Story. Discover how a demonstration in Farmville, Virginia, evolved into a landmark Supreme Court decision. Beau Dickenson, Social Studies Coordinator of Rockingham County Public Schools, will discuss how the 1951 student walkout at Farmville’s R.R. Moton High School later transformed into Brown v. the Board of Education. Free, donations welcomed.
Third Thursday Talk, March 19th, 7 pm: Historical Archaeology and the Battle of Cedar Creek with Dr. Clarence Geier, James Madison University Emeritus. Come hear a discussion of how historical archaeology contributes to the interpretation of Civil War battlefields. Free, donations appreciated.
Third Thursday Talk, April 16th, 7 pm: Philip Baker and his pie safes – the End of a Valley Tradition with Jeff Evans, Jeffrey S. Evans and Associates. Philip Franklin Baker (1859-1935) lived his entire life in the Fulks Run area of Brocks Gap in northwestern Rockingham County. He was a well-known and respected house builder who also built pie safes and other furniture from the 1890s into the 1930s. This presentation will explore Baker as the last traditional craftsman to make safes in the Shenandoah Valley, closely examine the safes he made, and detail the discovery of his original woodworking shop in 2013. Free, donations coveted.
Bonus Thursday Talk, April 30th, 7 pm: The Pivotal R. R. Moton High School Student Walkout Story. Discover how a demonstration in Farmville, Virginia, evolved into a landmark Supreme Court decision. Beau Dickenson, Social Studies Coordinator of Rockingham County Public Schools, will discuss how the 1951 student walkout at Farmville’s R.R. Moton High School later transformed into Brown v. the Board of Education. Free, donations welcomed.
Third Thursday Talk, May 21st, 7 pm: Weaving the Fabric of a New Nation with Nancy Sorrells, author, historian, and Immediate Past President of the Augusta County Historical Society. In the 18th century, the Ulster Scots Presbyterians from the northern areas of Ireland settled in large numbers in the Upper Valley of Virginia – so much so that southern Augusta County and Rockbridge were referred to simply as “The Irish Tract.” In this talk Nancy Sorrells will explore the connections between Ulster and the Upper Valley and the production of textiles. She will also look at how those Presbyterians helped fuel the settlement and revolutionary thinking of America’s backcountry. Free, donations discussed.
Third Thursday Talk, June 18th, 7 pm: The Stained Glass Windows of Harrisonburg with Seymour Paul, Local History Preservationist.Over ten years ago, Seymour Paul began collecting local church information as part of a book* project. In his effort to preserve a record of the churches for future generations, he has collected and snapped over 1700 photographs. This program offers a colorful tour of the history and iconography of Harrisonburg church windows. *Where the River Flows: Finding Faith in Rockingham County 1726-1876 on sale in Museum Bookstore and online: HeritageMuseumStore.org. Free, donations accepted.
Third Thursday Talk, August 20th, 7 pm: Harrisonburg and Rockingham Railroad History with Bob Cohen, Railroad Enthusiast and Author. Cohen will review local railroad history (mostly the north-south lines, but also branching into the Chesapeake Western) and share just a few of the stories which have survived the ravages of time, along with photographs and maps for better illustration. Free, donations desired.
August 29th: Last Day to view Rockingham Railroads: A 100 Year Review exhibit.
Don’t miss it!
Monday Movie Night, September 14th, 7 pm, Documentary Film: In This Land: The Camp Lyndhurst Saga. German Prisoners of War in The Old Dominion featuring Q&A with Historian and Author Gregory L. Owen, Waynesboro Heritage Foundation President Shirley Bridgeforth, and Producer/Director James Overton. Free, donations mentioned.
Third Fourth Thursday Talk, September 24th, 7 pm: The History of the Stonewall Brigade Band with Bob Moody, Band Director. The Stonewall Brigade Band is the oldest continuous community band in the nation. This year marks its 161st year! Free, donations encouraged. Get inspired to hear stories of the band by attending the “Best of the Season” concert on Tuesday, August 25th in Staunton’s Gypsy Hill Park. More information available: Stonewall Brigade Band website
The Annual Banquet is a festive occasion to celebrate the preservation and education activities of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Historical Society at The Heritage Museum. Of course, history education is included! To conclude our Civil War Sesquicentennial Commemoration, the 2015 featured speaker is Professor, Historian, and Author Jonathan Noyalas. The topic of his talk is “Ours is no longer a divided country” – The Path to Recovery, Healing, and Reconciliation in the Shenandoah.
Jonathan A. Noyalas is assistant professor of history and director of the Center for Civil War History at Lord Fairfax Community College. He is the author or editor of eleven books on Civil War Era history and has contributed scores of articles, essays, book chapters, and book reviews to a variety of publications. In addition to teaching, writing, and lecturing to a variety of popular and scholarly audiences, Noyalas has worked on a number of public history projects, including most recently serving as the content expert for the Civil War Trust’s Cedar Creek Battlefield App. Active in battlefield preservation he serves on the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation committee on Interpretation and Education.
The Annual Banquet is a fundraising event and all are welcome to come discover the stories of our rich history and heritage while supporting the programming at The Heritage Museum. Dinner, Open Bar, Door Prizes. Please call for menu details.
$40 per ticket, $75 per pair of tickets.
Third Thursday Talk, January 16th, 2014, 7 pm: “The Legacy of Elder John Kline,” with Paul Roth, Pastor and John Kline Homestead President. .
Third Thursday Talk, February 20th, 2014, 7 pm: “Learning English Through the Study of History,” with Dr. Nuray Grove and Dr. Dan Roberts, University of Richmond.
Third Thursday Talk, May 15th, 2014, 7 pm: The Good Old Days: They Were Terrible! Local author and HRHS Trustee Chairman Greg Owen extends the theme examined by Otto Bettman in his classic 1974 book of the same title, discarding the rose colored glasses and taking a look at the history of the our country and our community ca. 1865-1900.
Third Thursday Talk, June 19th, 2014, 7 pm: Ecohistory of the Shenandoah River Valley. Regional historian Hayden Mathews offers an entertaining and engaging overview of the forces that shaped the Valley (both geological and human) and how the Valley shaped human settlement. Mixing stories of star formation and stolen locomotives, cooling climate and disappearing Indian villages, and iron mining and disappearing species, this program interweaves an unforgettable tapestry of historical change.
Third Thursday Talk, July 17th, 2014, 7 pm: Shenandoah Valley Apples. Local Author,Photographer, and Associate Professor at Bridgewater College Scott Jost shares the photographs and oral histories collected for his latest book, Shenandoah Valley Apples: Where History and Photography Meet – a look at the past, present, and future of apple growing in the region. Come early to see the Apple in Rockingham exhibit on display in the featured gallery before it disappears!
Third Thursday Talk, August 21st, 2014, 7 pm: Finding Gold in Your Attic and Basement: How to Use Artifacts to Tell Your Life Story. Local author Shirley Hershey Showalter explains how old artifacts turned to “gold” as she wove together stories from her childhood in her memoir Blush: A Mennonite Girl Meets a Glittering World. Through show and tell of her family’s memories and treasures, she will inspire members of the audience to search their own attics and basements for artifacts that tell stories. She will sign copies of her book. Free, but donations encouraged.
Third Thursday Talk, September 18th, 2014, 7 pm: Faded… From the Memory of the Average Reader: The Meaning and Legacy of Fisher’s Hill, with Jonathan Noyalas, Professor, Author, and Civil War Historian. Noyalas examines what the battle meant to both Union and Confederate operations in the Shenandoah Valley and what it meant to the legacies of Gen. Philip H. Sheridan and Gen. Jubal A. Early. Additionally, the presentation will examine what the battlefield landscape meant to veterans on both sides after the conflict in the postwar era of reconciliation. Free, but donations gratefully accepted.
Friday, October 3rd, 2014: Sesquicentennial Commemoration of The Burning and the Death of Lt. John Rodgers Meigs. Descendants of the Meigs, Wildes, and Shaver families are invited to participate – please contact The Heritage Museum to rsvp and for further details. Events free.
- 2 pm: Ceremony at Wildes Marker, corner of Mill and Main Streets in Dayton, in coordination with the Town of Dayton
- 6 pm: Reception at The Heritage Museum, galleries open.
- 7 pm: The Burning presentation with Dr. Irvin Hess.
Thursday, October 16th, 2014, 6:30 pm: Annual Banquet & Silent Auction, Holiday Inn Harrisonburg. Featured guest Jeffrey S. Evans will speak on Safes of the Valley: Not Just for Pies! – an examination of the “pie safe” from 1820 to 1930, including the meaning and inspiration of the punched-tin designs and a look at the safe’s evolution from a simple storage cabinet in the pantry to a focal point of the dining room. Silent auction items include books, reproduction housewares, framed images from the photo archives, and gift certificates. Tickets: $40 each or two for $75.
In recognition of Veterans Day, The Heritage Museum is sponsoring a presentation by Major General Jerry R. Curry on Thursday, November 6th, at 7 pm at Wilbur S. Pence Middle School in Dayton, VA. The event is free and open to the public. A freewill offering will be collected.
Third Thursday Talk, Feb 21st, 7 pm: “Massanutten Caverns: The Gem of the Shenandoah Valley, A History,” with Cheryl Metz, Reference Librarian at Massanutten Regional Library. Image courtesy of postcardroundup.com
Third Thursday Talk, Mar 31st, 7 pm: “Historic Brickmaking and Bricklaying in the Central Valley,” with Mike Pulice, Architectural Historian with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.
Third Thursday Talk, Apr 18th, 7 pm: “Keiffer, Funk, Singer’s Glen & Shape Notes,” with Dale MacAllister, Resident Historian.
Saturday-Sunday, Apr 20th-21st: 10th Virginia Infantry Encampment. The 10th Virginia Infantry returns to the lawn and the lecture hall for the third year of its Civil War history. Come meet the soldiers by the campfire at any time from Saturday morning until Sunday afternoon. 10th Virginia Living Historian John Mann provides 10th Virginia history in the lecture hall on Saturday and Sunday.
Sunday, Apr 21st, 10:30 am: Civil War Era Worship Service, with Chaplain Gary Zeigler, including Circuit Rider history, artifacts, and refreshments. Recipe authenticity is not guaranteed.
Saturday, Apr 27th: Dayton Redbud Spring Arts & Crafts Festival. Peruse the titles at The Heritage Museum BIG Book Sale and enjoy arts, crafts, and music on the lawn around Dayton.
Third Thursday Talk, May 16th, 7 pm Lecture: “In Her Own Words: Civil War Stories of Brethren & Mennonite Women in the Shenandoah Valley,” with Kirsten Eve Beachy, Journalism and Creative Writing Professor at Eastern Mennonite University.
Special Event! Tuesday, July 31st, 2013, 10 am: Transfer of Confederate Naval Flag to the United States Naval History and Heritage Command.
Third Thursday Talk, August 15th, 2013, 7 pm: “Civil War Hospitals,” with Dale MacAllister.
Friday, October 18th, Annual Banquet 2013 with featured guest Joseph W. A. Whitehorne speaking on “The Division of West Virginia from Virginia in 1863.”
Lunch/Lecture Fundraiser, Saturday, November 9th, 2013, noon: “The Union Fishhook Breaks: The 10th Virginia Infantry at Gettysburg,” with Jeremy Hilliard, 10th Virginia Living Historian.