Program Overview:

Historic buildings and homes in the Roanoke area can now be recognized under the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation’s Historic Plaque Program. This program not only brings ‘history to the streets’ for those passing by but also serves to ‘brand’ historic buildings as a desirable location for owners and tenants thereby increasing property values and occupancy.

Historically ‘branding’ your home or building helps others understand its historical significance to your neighborhood, your community and our valley. Plaques are 10” x 7” cast bronze ovals with brown pebbled backgrounds forged by Paul W. Zimmerman Foundries (responsible for casting most National Register of Historic Places plaques across the country).

Sites around the city have been recipients of this plaque including:

  • Roanoke’s Fire Station No. 1 (13 Church Ave. SW),

  • the Virginia Museum of Transportation-Norfolk & Western Freight Station (303 Norfolk Ave SW),

  • the Roanoke Municipal Building (215 Church Ave SW),

  • the Roanoke Times Building (222 Campbell Ave SW) ,

  • the Meals & Burkes Building (412 S. Jefferson Street),

  • the Horton Building (Kirk Ave and 1st St SW),

  • 120 Campbell Ave (Hill Studios today), 

  • the Nelson Hardware Building-Freedom First today (201/207 Bullitt Avenue SE),

  • historic homes in Roanoke’s Old Southwest neighborhood (511 Day Avenue SW and 539 Day Avenue SW),

  • and more.

Plaque Description:
Plaques are 10″ x 7″ cast bronze ovals with brown pebbled backgrounds forged by Paul W. Zimmerman Foundries (responsible for casting most National Register of Historic Places plaques across the country). Plaque text will include the building’s historic name, brief description, and construction date as identified by the National Register of Historic Places / Virginia Landmarks Register nomination form.

1. National/State Register Status: Is the building a contributing structure to a historic district or individually listed on the National Register of Historic Places and/or the Virginia Landmarks Register? Districts listed as ‘eligible’ also qualify.
2. Architectural Integrity: Does the building still look much the way it did in the past? Have alterations to the building maintained its original character?
3. Location: Is the building within the service area of the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation (City of Roanoke, City of Salem, Roanoke County, Town of Vinton, Botetourt County, or Franklin County)? Buildings located in areas with an established plaque program will be referred to the corresponding organization.

Process:PlaqueEx3 Once submitted, applications are considered by the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation’s, Historic Plaque Committee. If a property is deemed eligible by the committee, they will research the building and draft personalized text for the plaque. Once text has been mutually agreed upon by the Committee and property owner, the Committee will place your order, monitor its progress (typically takes 4 – 6 weeks), and verify accuracy upon completion. The committee will then assemble a packet for delivery and installation of the plaque. (Note: A Certificate of Appropriateness from the Architectural Review Board will be provided for all properties located within the H-1 and H-2 Local Historic Districts of the City of Roanoke.

The cost per plaque is $375 that includes research for the text to be used on the plaque that includes the building’s historic name, brief description and construction date, the plaque’s production, cost of shipping, any local government regulatory approvals, and installation.

Please make checks payable to the ‘Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation’. A check must accompany your application for consideration by the Committee. Checks will not be cashed until the property has been approved by the committee.

Application Submission:
Please ensure the following is included in your submission.
 Completed application form.
 Check made payable to the ‘Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation’.
 Recent photograph of all accessible elevations.
 Historic photograph(s) of building, if available.
 Building history, if available.
(Note that building information as found in the National Register of Historic Places / Virginia Landmark Register nomination form as approved by the Virginia Department of Historic Resources will be used if conflicting information is provided.)

Completed applications should be mailed to:
Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation
P.O. Box 1366
Roanoke, Virginia 24007




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