Greene County Historical Society Museum and Rhodes Gallery
360 Main Street in Stanardsville
Ribbon Cutting and Reception at 3:00 PM
The Greene County Historical Society (GCHS) was established in 1978. Dedicated to preserving and promoting the history of Greene County, for many years the Society housed its collection of artifacts in a small museum located in the Old Jail, a part of the Stanardsville Court Square complex. In 2013 GCHS became the beneficiary of a bequest from the estate of Linwood A. Rhodes, a Greene County native, who was an avid hunter and fisherman. This bequest, along with the generosity of Ethyle Cole Giuseppe, also a Greene County native, has enabled the Society to purchase property at 360 Main Street in Stanardsville. At this new location, a beautiful Victorian house from the early 1900's is now the new home for the museum. In addition, a newly constructed, separate gallery houses the Rhodes wildlife collection.
This new facility makes it possible for the Society to exhibit a myriad of items (donated by Greene families) which have mostly remained in storage for lack of space. The Victorian house will showcase this collection of artifacts, focusing on significant themes in the County's history: Home and Hearth in the early 1900's; A Timeline for Greene County; The Greene War Story; Education in Greene; and Displacement of Greene Families During the Creation of Shenandoah National Park. The exhibit in the Rhodes Gallery will feature samples of Mr. Rhode's collection, acquired during his lifetime of travel,hunting, fishing and appreciation of the natural world. It includes hunting and fishing trophies, as well as photography and works of art.
Genealogy and research have always been a priority for GCHS. The new facility will also house a library and genealogical research center, as well as an enhanced Gift Shop. After the Grand Opening on October 4, the museum's hours will continue as previously - Fridays and Saturdays from 10 AM to 3 PM and by appointment.
On Sunday. October 4. 2015 the Grand Opening will begin at 3 PM with formal ribbon-cutting ceremonies for both the Museum and the Rhodes Gallery. A reception will follow, and the museum and gallery will remain open until 5 PM to welcome members and the public to our new location. Parking at 360 Main St. will be limited to handicapped individuals and others with special needs. Ample parking is available nearby, and there will be parking attendants.
You can visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/greenehistoryva .
Our new buy-a-brick walkway from the street to the front door has had a huge response. Descendants of Greene from as far away as California have memorialized their ancestors with bricks – and there are spaces for many more named bricks. See the attached form:
Check our Facebook page – www.facebook.com/greenehistoryva to see more pictures of the building in progress.
In May we set aside a portion of Linwood Rhodes’s bequest in an Endowment Fund with CACF (Charlottesville Area Community Foundation). Not only is this money growing to become a major source of support for the operations of the Society, the Fund provides another way for our members and friends to contribute to the Society’s long-term financial health. Contributions can be made in a number of ways – by check to us at PO Box 185, Stanardsville VA 22973, with ‘Endowment Fund’ in the memo space; online to CACF ( CACF ), by indicating in the memo line that the donation is to go to Greene County Historical Society; or by check to CACF with Greene County Historical Society on the check. CACF’s website is listed on our Links page and the postal address is 114 4th Street SE, P.O. Box 1767 Charlottesville, VA 22902. As well as managing funds like ours, CACF also disperses its own grants, and we are delighted that it has just awarded a grant to *STAR* (Stanardsville Area Revitalization), to help with managing the second phase of the streetscape improvements (for which it is now engaged in raising the $90,000 needed as a match).
As well as family histories and the genealogy database, all of which are available in the museum, we now have on the public computer twenty oral histories recorded over the last 18 months. These were produced and edited by Gregg Gilbert, a member from Charlottesville, working with Joann Powell, and they make for fascinating listening. The sound quality is excellent, and the stories - priceless!
To gather ideas for using the new display spaces, the board took a road trip in mid-December. We visited the Port Republic Museum, the Plumb House and Heritage Museum in Waynesboro, and the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Historical Society in Dayton. We got lots of different ideas, took lots of photos and came back with a much better idea of possibilities. As you see below, it was a chilly day, but well worthwhile. And we can recommend all three places as being full of interesting history. Don’t forget to check their websites for hours before you go.
Greene County Historical Society Board, from the left: Bill Steo, Dick Early, Roger Powell, Joe Freni, Cheryl Ragland, Jackie Pamenter, Joann Powell, Bobby Rhodes and Kim Spitzmiller. Missing is board member Troy Harlow.
We look forward to hearing from you. If you have thoughts to share, write to us at email@example.com.
Friday & Saturday
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Or by Appointment