Dale Wheary is the Curator and Director of Maymont Mansion. She talks about the history of Maymont and James and Sallie Dooley who left their house and estate Richmond.
There was so much interesting information in this conversation with Wheary that it will be released as a 2 part episode. This first episode is mostly about the Dooleys and the and the second is mostly about Maymont as a park. The people and their land is so connected that the topics are only loosely assigned to each episode. The second part will be released on May 1, 2014.
Thank you to Maymont for all three of these images.
On this episode, Leslie J. Naranjo, Director of Preservation Services for Historic Richmond talks about Monumental Church. Monumental was completed 200 years ago this year and still stand at 1224 E Broad St. It was built as a memorial to the at least 72 people that died when The Richmond Theater burned on the site on December 26, 1811. The remains of the 72 people are built into the base of the church. The ground breaking, greek revival church was designed by Robert Mills. Mills is the only architect to study under Thomas Jefferson.
Monumental Church Basement where the remains of 72 people are interred, LOC
Monumental is much more than just an old church. Naranjo talks about the connection between the theater and Edgar Allan Poe, the church and John Marshall, the site and the US Constitution, and how the fire made heros out of a slave named Gilbert Hunt and a doctor.
Monumental Church from the air, LOC
Monumental Church is maintained by Historic Richmond and is open to the public by request and is available for weddings and other events.
All photo are from the Library of Congress except the top. See more here.
John Marshall House at 818 E Marshall St, Richmond, Va c. 1900
Which Richmonder do you think has had the largest influence on the United States Government? It may be short list but at the top of that list, or at least near the top, has got to be John Marshall. On this episode Bobbie LeViness, Site Coordination of The John Marshall House at 818 E Marshall St discusses Marshall’s life.
Marshall built the house at 818 E Marshall St in 1790 and lived there until his death in 1835. Since the early 1900′s Preservation Virginia has owned the house and now runs it as a museum to the man who built it.
Marshall’s amazing life includes being an officer in the Continental Army and he was the first person, and still one of only a few, to serve in all 3 branches of the federal government. He is best know as the third confirmed Chief Justice of the United State. He is the longest serving and is known as the “Great Chief Justice”.
You are encouraged to visit the John Marshall House which closes during some of the colder months but reopens on Feb 28, 2014 and is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Richmond has often been called a Civil War town, but how much do we know about the average Richmonder during the tumultuous 4 years that were the Civil War? This is the first of a series new periodic series called Civil War Life in Richmond. The series will examine what it would be like for civilians to live in RVA. This first episode features Historian and Park Guide from the National Park Service Mike Gorman. Gorman was on episode 10 Lincoln in Richmond.
Topics rang from how the newspapers covered daily life in RVA to the reaction to already having a city government, housing the Virginia state government and then mixing in a federal government that was housed in the same building as the state government.
Mike Gorman maintains a fantastic website with a great mount of information about Civil War Richmond. It can be found at mdgorman.com
Some people may find some of the topics objectionable.
Bob Gorman is the Secretary and the Shop Foreman for the Richmond based, Slave Pit Inc., which is, better know as the metal band GWAR. GWAR is much more than band. Its a 28 year old multimedia art collective that is know for its stage show as much as its music. The group floats somewhere between musical theater, professional wrestling, and a live horror movie. The narrative or mythos of the band is always changing but is basically, a group of aliens sent to earth as a punishment only to be trapped in the ice of Antarctica. They would then be freed by global warming and discovered by a music producer. They now travel the world playing music and fighting their enemies.
Bonesnapper, played by Bob Gorman
For more than 25 years Gorman has been making monsters, playing characters on stage, and acting as GWAR’s historian. As well as continuing his work with GWAR, Gorman is currently working on a documentary and coffee table book about the group. In this conversation with host Jeff Majer Gorman discusses the humble origins of GWAR in a run down building, their run-ins with the law, one of which ended up getting the ACLU involved, the groups two Grammy nominations, why they were turned away from the Grammies, the unexpected death of their long time guitar player Cory Smoot that resulted from a preexisting condition and a lot more.
Bob Gorman working at the Slave Pit
GWAR has just released their 13th studio album Battle Maximus, and will be going on tour in Australia in February and then will be making their first trip to Japan in early 2014. To find out more information about GWAR where to buy their new album Battle Maximus, where to see the show or how to donate to the Cory Smoot foundation go to GWAR.NET.
The Wickham House where The Valentine opened, seen after 1933. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.
On this episode, Bill Martin, The Director of The Valentine Richmond History Center discusses the history of The Valentine, which is the oldest museum in Richmond. The museum opened its doors in 1898 in the Wickham House on the corner of Clay and 11th St. Over the years the museum has gone through many changes as RVA and its needs for a museum have changed, including expansion. The museum now takes up the entire block of East Grace St between 10th & 11th Streets. Martin also tells History Replays Today about the current renovations of the museums main galleries. The renovation is allowing Martin and The Valentine to reexamine what its means to live in a city like Richmond, that is layered with history and how that history should be taught and related to.
The Valentine Richmond History Center is a must visit for any one that wants to know anything about Richmond. The museum (like this podcast) focuses on ALL of Richmond’s history not just the Civil War. In fact Martin lays out why the Civil War may not even be the most important time in RVA’s history.
Correction! In my introduction I mention that Its A Wonderful Life is playing Dec 24, 2013 and Dec 25, 2013. I incorrectly said the times for Dec 25 are 7:15 and 9:30. The correct time is 7:15 and 9:45. For more info about times click here.
Todd A. Schall-Vess, General Manager of The Byrd Theater, in Carytown talks about the 85 year history of the theater. It opened on Dec 24, 1928. Schall-Vess discusses the opening of the theater, The Mighty Wurlitzer Organ, the natural spring built into the theater, and much more. The Byrd is the oldest operating movie theater in Richmond. The photo to the left and below are from opening day of The Byrd in 1928.
The Byrd is a staple in Carytown and has been there since before Carytown was called Carytown and even before that stretch of Cary St was called Cary St. Information on how to support The Byrd can be found at http://www.byrdtheatrefoundation.org/