Virginia State Seal

Virginia Department of Historic Resources

042-0041 Tavern at Old Church

Tavern at Old Church
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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 03/17/2016

NRHP Listing Date 05/16/2016

NPS property number 16000260

The Tavern at Old Church is an important example of a Federal-style tavern complex, an increasingly rare but once-common building type in rural Virginia. The property formed the nucleus of the crossroads community of “Old Church.” A number of historic houses and churches remain within sight of the tavern, giving it a pleasing context and intact historic setting. The Tavern at Old Church operated from around 1820 to 1890. Its owners also often served as postmasters and, around 1870, a purpose-built, frame post office building was constructed on the property. The property’s period of significance extends from circa 1820 to 1893, when the tavern building was divided into two private dwellings. The tavern shows outstanding vernacular character with one half of the building constructed in brick and the other half in heavy frame, all dating to before 1860. Two consolidated schools, one in Bath County and the other in Roanoke County, reflect changes in public school education during the early 20th century. Constructed for white students during the era of racial segregation in Virginia’s public schools, the two newly-listed schools arose during a period when jurisdictions consolidated schools in response to Progressive Era concerns about the quality of life and education in rural areas. Reformers envisioned a consolidated school as a center of community life, replacing dispersed one-room schoolhouses. With their multiple classrooms, consolidated schools enabled teachers to separate and instruct students by class level and age.

VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

Updated April 4, 2018