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"Let us have a bank that takes nickels and turns them into dollars." These were the words of Maggie Walker in a speech to the Board of what is now the oldest surviving black-operated bank in the United States, Consolidated Bank and Trust. This remarkable woman was its founder and was also the developer of a successful insurance company that worked to ensure proper health care and burials for African-Americans. Ms. Walker was the daughter of a former slave and a white abolitionist. The 22-room house built in 1883, where she lived for 30 years, is now open to the public for tours. Admission is free.Winter hours: Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site is open Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., November 1 through February 28.Summer hours: Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site is open Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., March 1 through October 31.
The American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar chronicles the savagery of the 19th-century American Civil War through its exhibits and displays. Discussions and analysis of the cause, effect, and legacy of the civil war are held here. Audio-visual content documenting episodes of the war are also available to visitors. The center's fantastic location by the James River in the heart of Richmond makes it one of the most noticeable and visited spots. Rental spaces at the center are much sought after. The scenic riverside backdrop and the elegant interiors make it an ideal venue for weddings and bashes.
It was here that the Virginia Convention of 1775 met to discuss the question of taking arms against the British. One of the oldest wooden buildings in Virginia, delegates to the Convention - including Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and Patrick Henry - had convened in this very spot. And it was here where Patrick Henry gave his famous speech and said the following famous lines: "Give me liberty or give me death!" Visitors can reenact this experience by watching the live performances offered by professional actors and further enrich their knowledge of history by visiting the city's first public cemetery.
Richmond Slave Trail is a significant part of Virginia's history. The trail mainly describes the dark era when the trade of African slaves took place in Virginia in the 18th and 19th Century. It begins from the Manchester dock as it acted as a major port in the trade of enslaved Africans. The trail covers major landmarks of the period including former sites of the slave markets, Lumpkin's Slave Jail and the Negro Burial Ground. The trail ends at First African Baptist Church. Tours are provided by various agencies.
Cobblestoned Monument Avenue is the only street in the country declared a national historic site. This is a favorite local spot for taking a walk or for reading a novel, spread out on the grass. After the Civil War, statues were erected on Monument Avenue to honor Confederate heroes. These include Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, commander of the Confederate Army, and General "Stonewall" Jackson, so called because he rode upon his horse immovable and expressionless as a stone wall. To better illustrate Richmond's cultural diversity, a statue of tennis great Arthur Ashe, a Richmond native, was added in 1996.
Built-in 1893, this beautiful home on the James River is a classic example of Victorian architecture and landscaping. Maymont Mansion is filled with period furniture including a magnificent swan bed. Trees and plants from all over the world were cultivated here by the owners. The English, Japanese and Italian gardens are romantic spots for strolling and picnicking. A carriage collection, children's farm, and small zoo are other favorite attractions.
The canal that was built to favor the passengers who traveled through the water ways was the James River and Kanawha Canal. Although frequently destroyed by the floods, the canal stood still in its appearance and continues to serve the passengers. This canal is spread over 138 acres (56 hectares) and is a great visiting place for the tourists. If you are still debating whether or not to visit, keep in mind that it is listed on the register of National Historic Places in the year 1971. The public pathway is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
This Tudor house once overlooked the Irwell River in Lancashire, England. In 1929, it was moved to this site, reminiscent of the original, overlooking the James River in Richmond's Windsor Farms neighborhood. Agecroft contains furnishings dating back from 1485 to 1660, including an interesting 1610 lantern clock that tells time only on the hour. Landscape artist Charles Gillette designed the gardens, which include an Elizabethan knot garden that blooms with fragrant and medicinal plants. When you visit Agecroft, you are stepping back in time and into the lives of gentry in the English Tudor period. Guided tours are available for the museum and the gardens are self-guided.
The Bryan Park is a prime historic park in the northwest of the city. Spread over a large area, the park offers an array of hiking and biking tracks. Another promising feature is the Joseph Bryan Park Azalea Garden. It boasts of over 450,000 azalea plants of roughly 50 varieties, as well as a small pond with a fountain. The park also features a well-designed golf course. It also hosts cultural events and festivals throughout the year. Admission is free, and in this fast-paced world of gadgets, a visit can revive your mind and soul.
Richmond commands much importance till today, for it served as the capital of the Confederate States of America, and an integral site during the course of the Civil War. Spanning 3,629.2 acres (14.68 square kilometers) along Virginia's coastal expanse, this historic park bears a string of nationally-significant sites including the Chimborazo Hospital, Fort Harrison, Drewry's Bluff, Tradegar Iron Works, Cold Harbor and a smattering of fortified and military remnants. The park is further accentuated by verdant, open meadows, where a melange of mammals rove along expansive, old-growth forests. It is as if the glory of the valiant Virginian soldiers yet lingers across this site, a stirring chapter which, in more than ways one, determined the fate of the country.