Located less than a mile from the Kentucky state line in Lee County, the Keokee Commissary was built in 1910 by the Stonega Coke and Coal Company (formerly the Keokee Coal and Coke Company). Known thereafter as Keokee Store No. 1, the store was repaired in 1930, and then closed by Stonega in 1932. It was constructed of local stone, with structural walls over a foot thick. The distinctive large dormers on each side were at one time complemented by a large fan window and colonnaded entry porch. The commissary’s community importance was dual: as both the central focal point, and as a symbol of the company’s dominance. In 1938, the Lee County School Board acquired the commissary, and in 1939 applied for Works Progress Administration funds to convert the store into Keokee Gymnasium. At this time, the fan window was covered and the porch removed. After 1939, the building was part of a strong educational emphasis that influenced the lives of many students. Keokee Store No. 1 is a rare surviving coal mining-camp commissary from the earliest period of mining in the Southwest Virginia area; it remained a public school gymnasium at the time of its listing in the registers.
Many properties listed in the registers are private dwellings and are not open to the public, however many are visible from the public right-of-way. Please be respectful of owner privacy.
VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark
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