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Virginia Department of Historic Resources

The Virginia Department of Historic Resources is the State Historic Preservation Office.
Our mission is to foster, encourage, and support the stewardship of Virginia's significant historic architectural, archaeological, and cultural resources.

Historic Virginia

Application for Archaeological Removal of Buried Human Remains in York County

DHR has been notified of the intent to apply for a permit to allow the archaeological recovery of buried human remains pursuant to Code of Virginia Section 10.1-2305. The unmarked interments are located near 401 Bulifants Boulevard in York County (VA). Available information indicates that these interments date to the mid- to late 19th century and may be associated with the ownership of Lemuel Bowden, Charles S. Porter, or John Lamb. A public hearing will be held to offer interested parties an opportunity to discuss the proposed recovery with the project archaeologist and representatives of the Department. We invite interested persons to contact David Dutton, project archaeologist, at or Joanna Wilson Green, archaeologist with DHR, at with any questions, concerns, or comments.

Spotlight on DHR Collections: Tenacity: Women in Jamestown and Early Virginia

A Needle Case & Schreger Lines

A needle case or hussif. (Click this and other photos to enlarge.)

One of the things that conservators are experts at is figuring out what an artifact is made from.

Recently an artifact arrived at the DHR Conservation Lab to be prepared for loan for an exhibition. The item, a needle case—also known as a hussif*consists of two parts. It has a base, similar in appearance to an inkwell, and a hollow tube that screws into the base. A lady could store her needles in the case and carry it around with her to do her sewing.

Dating to the early 1600s and recovered from a site called Causeys Care (44CC0178) in Charles City County, the needle case helps tell the story of women in early Virginia, and it is now on display at Jamestown Settlement Museum, along with other DHR artifacts, as a part of the exhibit Tenacity: Women in Jamestown and Early Virginia.


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2019 DHR Historic Resource Commission — CLG Training Workshops

CLG Workshop in 2018


Registration is now open for this year’s Historic Resource Commission / CLG Training Workshops!  DHR has three training opportunities for Historic Resource Commission members in 2019. Read full text »

Ten New State Historical Highway Markers Approved in Dec.

Highway marker sign outlineNew markers cover topics in the counties of Appomattox, Chesterfield, Fairfax, Lunenburg, and Prince William; and the cities of Lynchburg (2), Petersburg, Richmond and Virginia Beach

 [The full text for each marker is reproduced below.]

Among ten new historical markers approved for placement along Virginia roads will be ones to highlight Lynchburg’s ties to the “world’s first nuclear-powered merchant ship,” the African origins of the banjo and its emergence in mainstream American music, and George Washington’s early and influential biographer Mason Weems.

The “Nuclear Ship Savannah” marker will rise in Lynchburg to recall the world’s first nuclear-powered merchant ship. The Savannah’s nuclear propulsion system was designed by the Babcock & Wilcox Company at its Lynchburg office on Kemper Street. The company also built the propulsion system at its Mount Athos facility located outside Lynchburg, and the ship’s first crew trained at Lynchburg College. In 1991, the Savannah was designated a National Historic Landmark.

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13 Sites Added to the Virginia Landmarks Register in December

—New listings are in the counties of Amherst, Bath, Botetourt, Clarke, Culpeper, James City, and Nelson; and cities of Newport News, Richmond (3), Roanoke, and Virginia Beach —

 —VLR listings will be forwarded for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places—

Among 13 places approved for listing on the Virginia Landmarks Register by the Department of Historic Resources are districts in Roanoke and James City County that highlight the economic impact of railroads in the late 1800s, a municipal electric power plant and waterworks in Culpeper, a mill from the 1700s in the northern Shenandoah Valley, and a 101-year old theater in Botetourt County.

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DHR Announces $1.1 Million in 2018 Va. Battlefield Preservation Grants

State grants will help protect over 562 acres of battlefield across Virginia
           Battlefield tracts are in the counties of Culpeper, Dinwiddie, Frederick, Hanover, Henrico, Shenandoah, and York; and the City of Petersburg–

Kurz & Allison illustration of the Battle of Cold Harbor (Library of Congress)
Kurz & Allison illustration of the Battle of Cold Harbor (Library of Congress)

More than 562 acres of battlefield will be placed under protection through grants from this year’s Virginia Battlefield Preservation Fund. The awards totaling $1.15 million will be disbursed by the Department of Historic Resources (DHR) to the American Battlefield Trust and the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation. These nonprofit organizations will use the state funds awards to secure matching private donations with the goal of preserving targeted acreage.

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Two Audio Tours of Historical Highway Markers Available

Logo of DHR historical marker audio tourDHR has produced two audio tours of state historical markers, available on any device including laptops. One tour follows the I-95 corridor through Virginia, another stretches along Route 5 and the Capital (Hike and Bike) Trail between Richmond, Williamsburg, and Jamestown. The tours are the start of an ambitious project to record for online listening the texts of the more than 2,600 markers erected in Virginia between 1927 and 2018. Visit our audio tours homepage to download the app and to give the tours a spin.

Natural Disaster Recovery Advisory