7831 Shrader Road , Richmond, VA, US, 23294
- Phone: (804) 273-6100
- Fax: (804) 273-6048
The city of Richmond was founded by English settlers in the year 1737. The city is famous for its rich history that revolves mostly around the American Civil War. Besides being the capital of the American state of Virginia, Richmond is also known for its huge tobacco production—a business that was a big part of its early economy. The city also has a host of educational institutes such as University of Richmond, Virginia Union University, and a large number of technical colleges such as the ECP College of Technology, and the ITT Technical Institute. Richmond also has multiple places for tourists to savor gourmet delights and wonderful boutiques to splurge at.
Watch the city's hub-bub from its hub. One of the best views of the city and its skyline including the clock tower of Main Street Station, the spires of Old City Hall and the gentle slope of Church Hill is from the observation deck at City Hall. Traveling in an elevator or, for the more ambitious, walking up the stairs 19 floors up to view the lights and sights of Richmond is a thrilling experience. Admission after 5pm is through the guard station. There is no charge.
Designed by Thomas Jefferson, this Classic Revival building was modeled after a Roman temple. It was completed in 1788 and is the second oldest capitol in continuous use in the country. The focal point of the building is the central rotunda featuring a life-size statue of George Washington, said to be the only one for which he actually posed. A smaller dome displays busts of the eight American presidents from Virginia. The old Hall of the House of Delegates, where the legislature met until 1906, is now a museum. Free tours, lasting about 30 minutes, are offered. Take time to stroll the Capitol grounds and see the nearby Executive Mansion.
The lush green expanse of Capitol Square is a favorite spot for locals to bring a picnic lunch. Rose bushes cluster along the rails of bubbling, antique fountains—one has a diving board for squirrels! Statues of local historical figures like Edgar Allen Poe dot the lawn. A brick sidewalk leads to an impressive monument to Virginia's presidents and statesmen. Capitol Square is a relaxing retreat from the bustle of the business district on the surrounding streets.
Richmond City Hall now called the Old City Hall is a magnificent example of Victorian Gothic architecture. Designed by Detroit architect Elijah Myers, the building was completed in 1894. It was utilized as the city hall until a new city hall was built in the 1970s.
Still an active church, St. Paul's was built in 1845. Visit here and stand on the spot where, in 1865, Confederate President Jefferson Davis was told Union troops were advancing on Richmond, a pivotal event of the Civil War. Another famous Richmond native who worshiped at St. Paul's was Edgar Allen Poe. He claimed to have left a valise, the location and contents of which remain an intriguing local mystery in the building.
Virginia Washington Monument is a 60 feet, three-tier monument located besides Virginia State Capitol. It has a statue of George Washington on a horse with six other freedom fighters on the second level. The third level has allegorical structures showcasing the individual contribution of these fighters. The monument symbolizes the role of Virginia in the American Revolution.
The home of Virginia governors since the early 1800s, this Federal-style house is located in Capitol Square. It is the oldest governor's mansion in continuous use in the country. Confederate general Robert E. Lee lay in state in one of the rooms. Prominent governors that have resided in the home include Harry Byrd, who later served 32 years in the US Senate and L. Douglas Wilder, the first elected African-American governor in the country. The home can be toured by appointment only during the designated hours.
When you’re in Virginia, the best place to stop by for all the information you would need to make your visit more memorable is the historic Bell Tower. Dating back to 1824, this red brick bell tower once served as a guard house as its ring warned the community of fires. It also played a role in the American Civil War when the bell was rung every time Federal Troops approached the city. Today, the Bell Tower serves as the hub for Virginia tourism information. With a visitors center and a gift shop selling some very cool souvenirs, no trip to Virginia is complete without a stop here.
One of the finer buildings standing in the Richmond city of the U.S. State of Virginia is the William H. Grant House. The house is a magnificent building that encompasses a land cover of 0.8 acres (0.32 hectares). The house is renowned for its spectacular architecture. It elegantly traces the Italianate style of architecture. Its historical significance has also paved the way for its inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places.
You can almost hear the rustle of papyrus and the rush of the Nile (or is it the nearby James River?) when you look at the Egyptian Building, now part of the campus of the Medical College of Virginia. Considered one of the finest examples of Egyptian Revival architecture in the United States, this landmark is a feast for the eyes. The Egyptian Building was completed in 1845 and is one of the most unusual looking sites in the city.
The Museum and White House of the Confederacy is a neoclassical mansion built in 1818. President Jefferson Davis lived here during the Civil War years, and several pieces of furniture owned by him are on display. Adjacent to the restored White House is a museum containing more than 15,000 artifacts and 500 flags from the Confederate era. The collection includes the swords and other personal effects of Generals Jackson, Lee and Stuart. Personal papers, government documents, journals and rare books are on exhibit.