For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF
VLR Listing Date 08/21/1984
NRHP Listing Date 10/04/1984
NRHP Reference Number 84000031
The Bedford Historic District, encompassing the town’s residential, commercial, and industrial areas, displays 19th- and 20th-century architectural styles and preserves a peaceful image of small-town America. Originally named Liberty, Bedford has served as the county seat and economic hub of Bedford County since 1782. Its situation on an early turnpike between Lynchburg and Salem, and on the principal line of the old Virginia and Tennessee Railroad, contributed to Bedford’s 19th-century prosperity. Bedford was also a major center of tobacco manufacturing, ranking in 1881 as the state’s fifth largest producer of tobacco. The late-Victorian character of the business section results from a rebuilding following a disastrous fire in 1884. Notable individual structures include the Greek Revival Bedford Presbyterian Church, a 1912 Spanish Colonial Revival public school, the stately 1930 Georgian Revival county courthouse (designed by Clarence Henry Hinnant), and a handful of handsome dwellings that are individually listed in the registers (Avenel, the Ballard-Worsham House, and the Burks-Guy-Hagan House).
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
Updated: January 13, 2023