The Gilded Age comes alive in HBO’s new series ‘The Gilded Age’

HBO’s new series, The Gilded Age, comes alive in a new historical drama created by Julian Fellowes (creator of Downton Abbey) that is set in the United States during the Gilded Age boom years of 1880s New York City. The premise of the series is – old money versus new money – as the older, wealthy faction of individuals do everything in their power to deter the efforts of the younger, more innovative generation. But only one way of life can prevail in the bustling streets of 19th-century New York City. 

Check out the series YouTube trailer below:

Episodes of The Gilded Age began streaming on Monday evenings at 9:00 p.m. on January 24, 2022 on HBO and HBO Max

The series is being filmed at historic ‘Lyndhurst’ located in Tarrytown, NY. 

Overlooking the Hudson River, Lyndhurst is one of America’s finest Gothic Revival mansions. Learn how this beautiful and historic property was transformed for use in the filming of this exciting new series.  Experience HBO’s “The Gilded Age” at Lyndhurst | National Trust for Historic Preservation (

For additional information on historic Lyndhurst, visit their website at  

Dedication of New Interpretive Historical Marker Dedicated at Historic Preston Place in Salem, VA



The Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation and Salem Museum & Historical Society dedicated a new Interpretive Historical Marker on the front lawn of historic Preston Place, the oldest standing house, in Salem, VA. 

The marker, shown below, was unveiled during a dedication ceremony held on Friday, December 3, 2021 at 12:00noon on the front lawn of historic Preston Place located at 1936 West Main Street in Salem, VA.

The current day Preston Place was built in 1820 and was donated to the Salem Historical Society in 2014 by the heirs of Dr. Esther Brown.



During the dedication ceremony held on the home’s front porch, Meredith Novak stated “We are sort of continuing the legacy of Dr. Esther Brown, who was the last resident of this house and she was the first female doctor in the area.” Ms. Novak is the owner of the new business, Glow Healing Arts, that will be occupying the historic structure.  



Since acquiring the property in 2014, the Society has carefully worked to clean, repair, and  furnish the house while restoring the grounds and gardens that features a huge  Osage Orange tree believed to be older than the home itself.


Members of the community, Salem Museum & Historical Society, and Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation were present to celebrate the dedication and celebrate both the past and future of historic Preston Place.                  

RVPF Hosts 2021 Annual Meeting and Kegley Preservation Awards

On a brisk, late Sunday afternoon, November, 14, 2021, the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation hosted their Annual Meeting and the 2021 Kegley Preservation Awards program at the Mill Mountain Discovery Center located on top of Roanoke’s Mill Mountain. 

Between 50-60 attendees enjoyed a variety of light homemade appetizers made by Trustee members Alison Blanton and Katie Gutshall along with hot apple cider on the center’s patio overlooking the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains decked out in their fall colors while others remained inside the center’s warmth.  


Following this networking social opportunity, Foundation President Whitney Leeson began the program welcoming everyone to the Mill Mountain Discovery Center and thanked them for attending.  She provided an overview of the Foundation’s mission and accomplishments that had occurred during 2021. 


Vice President Bob Clement followed by announcing the Foundation’s 2022 Board of Trustees and thanked all of the current Trustees for volunteering their service during the year. 


Kegely Preservation Awards committee Chair Whitney Feldman  then annonuced the eight (8) Kegley Preservation Award recipients for 2021.  Each award recipient provided a brief overview of their project/activity that was followed by the presentation of an awrd plaque with the assistance of committee member Judy Harrison.     


The 2021 Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation Kegley Preservation Award recipients were:

  • Kegley Preservation Award for Heritage Education & Advocacy – Joe Cobb, Honoring Their Breaths Project
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Neighborhood Preservation – Isabel Thornton, Restoration Housing, LLC
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Historic Restoration – St. Andrew’s Catholic Church
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Lifetime Achievement in Heritage Education – Margaret and Alice Roberts
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Environmental Stewardship – Renee Powers, Mill Mountain Trails Plan
  • Evelyn Bethel Award for Heritage Education – Jordan Bell, Gainsboro History Tours
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Historic Preservation – George Kegley, Historic Monterey Smokehouse
  • Kegley Preservation Award for Heritage Education & Stewardship – Michael C. Maxey

The Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation thanks all of this year’s 2021 Kegley Preservation Award recipients who have helped to protect our natural, cultural and historic resources for current and future generations to enjoy, appreciate and learn from.

The Foundation also sincerely thanks WDBJ7 television Joe Dashiell who was on hand to do a story on this year’s 2021 Kegley Preservation Award program recipients.


Historic Tax Credits Excluded From Proposed ‘Build Better Back’ Legislation Before Congress

The House Rules Committee released another draft of the Build Back Better legislation last night.  The Historic Tax Credit enhancements are excluded again.  The draft does include other Community Development tax credit provisions. 
Now is a critical time to urge Congress to include improvements to the Historic Tax Credit in the final infrastructure package.  Decisions are being made as we speak.   This week, Preservation Virginia organized meetings for PastForward conference attendees with Virginia’s Congressional Delegation.  All are supportive and need your encouragement.
Please add your name to the sign-on letter organized by the National Trust.  They hope to have 1000 signatures in the next 24 hours.  It is easy and quick to add your name to the sign-on letter:
Spread the word to your networks!  Let’s make sure Virginia is well represented on the sign on letter. And thank you for your continued support of this program.

Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation and City of Roanoke Fire-EMS Dedicate Historical Interpretive Sign

The Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation (RVPF) and members of the City of Roanoke’s Fire-EMS Department held a dedication ceremony of the Fire Station No. 7 historical interpretive sign, commemorating the history of the station from its original 1922 construction with an unveiling on Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 5:30pm. 

The sign commemorates the City’s commitment to preserving the history of the station located at 1742 Memorial Ave. SW, Roanoke, VA 24015. Members of the community joined Roanoke Valley Preservation Board members and Roanoke Fire/EMS staff in celebration of both the past and the future of Fire Station No. 7 in the dedication of the historical sign at the new station.

Attendees toured the inside of the station inside but were asked to wear masks respective to the City’s COVID-19 policies. The station’s Fire-EMS crew served ice cream to those who attended, in keeping with the historical spirit of the fire station as an integral part of the neighborhood.

As part of the plan to build the new station on the site, the City partnered with the RVPF to install the interpretive sign to tell the history of the original 1922 fire station and its role in the development of the surrounding neighborhoods of Ghent, Raleigh Court, and Wasena during the early to mid-20th century. While the RVPF fought to save the original 1922 station, they believe that preserving the history of the station in the neighborhood is what is most important and the sign helps to accomplish this.

In early-2021, the newly constructed Fire Station No. 7 was unveiled to the public after more than a year of work. The new station, which houses Ladder 7 and Medic 7, offers four times as much space as its predecessor, allowing modern and EMS apparatus to fit in the station’s bay. New Station 7 was designed by a team from SFCS Architects, City staff, and Fire-EMS employees whose focus was to preserve the exterior character of the 1922 station and the surrounding residential neighborhood, while providing a state-of-the-art facility for modern Fire and EMS services. Historic materials and features from the original station, including bricks, wood trim, doors, and other historical artifacts were salvaged and incorporated into the new station.


The station also continues to feature the Trojan Dog sculpture, designed by artist Ann Glover. Located prominently in front of the new station, this project of the Roanoke Arts Commission and Greater Raleigh Court Civic League is a favorite in the community.


“The historical preservation of the station has not lost sight of its history in paying tribute to the 1922 station, with the detailed refurbished artifacts from the 1922 station and community support from the RVPF,” said Chief David Hoback of Roanoke’s Fire-EMS Department. “The community effort has resulted in the Fire-EMS team being able to have expanded resources to better serve the needs and ensure the safety of the neighborhood and residents.”

To view a virtual tour of the station, watch here.

RVPF Joins Board Member Jordan Bell on Walking Tour of Historic Gainsboro Neighborhood

Several RVPF Board members joined RVPF Board member and historian Jordan Bell on his walking tour of the Historic Gainsboro neighborhood held on Saturday October 23rd, 2021. Participants met at the historic Gainsboro Library located at 15 Patton Avenue NE at 10am.

Jordan introduced participants to Roanoke’s historic Gainsboro neighborhood, a predominantly black enclave where residents built a community that included self-sufficient businesses, medical offices & facilities, churches, a theatre, a hotel, school, and more creating a vibrant self-sufficient center of Roanoke’s black culture and commerce.

Participants also visited Henry Street which was the heart of entertainment in Gainsboro with restaurants, hotels, and clubs that hosted musical icons like Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Nat “King” Cole, Dizzie Gillespie and more. 

For more information on Jordan’s Historic Gainsboro Walking tour, visit our site’s Historic Gainsboro History Walk page.

Additionally, for an opportunity to participate on a future walking tour, visit our site’s  Upcoming Events and Activities page.  

RVPF Participates at Restoration Housing, LLC 6th Annual Community Partnership Day


RVPF Board members Lynsey Allie and Bob Clement represented the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation at Restoration Housing LLC’s 6th Annual Community Partnership Day held on Saturday, Oct 23, 2021 between 9:00am – 12noon at 820 Dale Avenue, SE in Roanoke. They and roughly 25 other community volunteers got their hands dirty during this annual day of service while experiencing the power of community from working together! They helped prep flower beds, pull weeds, install landscaping and mulch, establish a parking area, and sod and seed the lawn at Restoration Housing’s 5th housing restoration project site located at 820 Dale Avenue in Southeast Roanoke.

Both brought their own gloves and trowels as all other tools, refreshments, and a Restoration Housing Community Partnership Day t-shirt were provided to all of those who volunteered to help.

Click here to see a video created to document Restoration Housing LLC’s 6th Annual Community Partnership Day 

For more information on this event and/or other Housing Restoration, LLC activities, please contact Maribeth at or visit their website at

1880s Smokehouse Rehabilitation Project Completed at Monterey

Congratulations to Ariel Clark of Southwest Restoration on the August 2021 completion of an 1880s smokehouse rehabilitation for George Kegley, owner of historic Monterey in Roanoke, VA.  Ariel, a former Foundation Board member, inherited the company from her father, Mark Clark, who retired after restoring many old buildings in the Roanoke Valley and the surrounding regions.

Ariel stabilized the 1800s smokehouse located in the back yard of Monterey, the 1845 home of George and the late Louise Kegley in northeast Roanoke. Termites had seriously damaged the old building. 

Noted in this 1889 photo above is a small building to the right of the main building that was part of the smokehouse, It was identified as such after hooks used to hold hams were seen in its top.  The main  building, pictured with four generations of servants (a great-grandmother was out sick) unfortunately is no longer standing along with the others shown in the background. No one knows when these outbuildings were constructed. Most recently, the old smokehouse building was used for storage.

Prior to beginning the project, Ariel held a tour of the smokehouse on May 8, 2021 and explained her plans for salvaging and stabilizing the wood damaged by termites. She did a beautiful job preserving as much of the original structure as possible and the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation appauds her efforts.  Ariel can be reached at withany questions specific to the project,

RVPF, Inc. thanks Lynsey Crantz for taking photos of the completed project during its unveiling on August 21, 2021. 

RVPF Supports National Trust Position on Confederate Monuments

Although Confederate monuments are sometimes designated as historic, and while many were erected more than a century ago, the National Trust supports their removal from our public spaces when they continue to serve the purposes for which many were built—to glorify, promote, and reinforce white supremacy, overtly or implicitly.

While some have suggested that removal may result in erasing history, we believe that removal may be necessary to achieve the greater good of ensuring racial justice and equality. And their history needs not end with their removal: we support relocation of these monuments to museums or other places where they may be preserved so that their history as elements of Jim Crow and racial injustice can be recognized and interpreted.”

Read our full Statement on Confederate Monuments: