Established in 1798, this central Virginia community was laid out in an irregular grid pattern and grew by steady accretion. Its commercial, residential, and industrial sections preserve an instructive assemblage of historic buildings. Main Street, the primary commercial corridor, is dominated by the 1939 Prince Edward County Courthouse and blocks of late-19th- and early-20th-century brick commercial buildings. The district’s northern section contains an impressive grouping of large turn-of-the-century warehouses, reflecting the importance of the tobacco industry to Farmville’s economy. Three residential neighborhoods—the western High Street corridor, the area bounded by High, Beech, Randolph, and Grove streets, and First and Second avenues—contain a variety of dwellings, churches, and schools, illustrating changing architectural tastes over 150 years. These quiet, shady streets are particularly rich both in restrained antebellum brick dwellings and more architecturally assertive Victorian and Colonial Revival residences.
A 2005 amendment to the original nomination for the Farmville Historic District was submitted to change the contributing status of the building at 119-123 West Third Street.
[NRHP Approved: 10/11/2005]
In 2016, additional documentation was approved to update the Farmville Historic District’s inventory, and more importantly, to expand the period of significance to end in 1966, in order to include additional historic trends and architecture dating from 1940 to 1966. Five areas of significance were added to the historic district at the state level of significance (Education, Ethnic Heritage: African American, Law, Politics/Government, Religion, and Social History). The historic district also is significant at the statewide level for its association with Reverend L. Francis Griffin of the First Baptist Church, who played a major role in the struggle to integrate Prince Edward County’s public schools. The expanded period of significance includes events associated with the Civil Rights movement in Farmville and Prince Edward County up through 1966.
[NRHP Approved: 10/17/2016]
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