50th Anniversary of Virginia’s Preservation Easement Program: To celebrate the 50th anniversary, DHR director Julie V. Langan will offer keynote remarks during a ceremony this Saturday, July 2, beginning at 3 p.m., at Old Mansion in Bowling Green (Caroline County). The privately-owned circa-1741 Old Mansion and its 128 acres was the first historic property to receive perpetual protection under the authority of the General Assembly’s Open-Space Land Act of 1966. The ceremony will honor the easement and the program’s legislative architect, George C. Freeman, who persuaded key General Assembly members in the 1960s that the Commonwealth needed to encourage preservation of privately owned historic landmarks. Read a press release for more information.
Now Available: Classic Commonwealth: Virginia Architecture from the Colonial
Era to 1940: DHR is pleased to present
this new online publication designed to aid professionals, students, and
readers of all walks in identifying and documenting the numerous types and styles of historic buildings in the
Commonwealth. The guide opens with an overview of Virginia’s architectural heritage within
the context of larger historic trends, from its colonial-era
settlement through to the economic, technological and cultural innovations of the early
The majority of the publication consists of "Style and Form"
information sheets offering basic information about and character-defining
of the many historic architectural styles that have shaped Virginia’s public and private
spaces across more than three centuries. Because architecture is a visual medium,
Classic Commonwealth relies heavily on photographs which exemplify or illustrate relevant styles.
We hope that the Classic Commonwealth style guide will enrich your understanding and
appreciation of Virginia’s historic architecture. Additionally, this guide complements the
New Dominion Virginia Style
Guide, which DHR issued in 2014 and covers the 1940s through the late 20th century.
This guide, created originally for the 2014
Legacy Symposium convened at Fort Monroe and Hampton University, highlights 39 state historical markers that deal with
aspects of the War of 1812.
Organized by county or city locales, the guide provides the text
of each highway maker.
The 12-page guide includes illustrations and photos and should
benefit teachers, students, and travelers.
Download the PDF now.
How to Research Your Historic Property: Owners of old Virginia houses, commercial buildings,
mills, and farmsteads, as well as historians of churches, schools,
and businesses often want
to learn more about the history of their property but are not sure how to go about it. DHR recently updated
our publication on how to conduct research on a historic property
and it is available for downloading as a PDF.
The publication introduces you to some of the useful sources available for learning about the history
of a Virginia property.
Bank building after renovation.
(Photo: Kevin Blackburn)
Community Bank Building, ca. 1970s, in
(Photo: DHR tax credit file)
Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit Programs Benefit Virginia's Economy: The
rehabilitation, re-use and preservation of Virginia’s historic residential
and commercial buildings is good for the commonwealth’s economy according
to a study conducted by Virginia Commonwealth University. The
benefits of bringing old buildings back to life ripples across the economy
and through local communities, adding upwards of an estimated $3.9 billion to
the state’s economic health. Those rehabilitation expenses and their
domino effect have also created more than 31,000 full and part-time jobs
during a 17-year period and generated an estimated $133 million in state
and local tax revenues. Read the
51-page report or see this Preservation Virginia
press release highlighting the study's findings.