2014 Exhibit: Images of the Rock Bridge – From Jefferson to Miley … to Today

Miley photo of Natural Bridge

Miley photo of Natural Bridge


RHS exhibits a collection of 19th Century art prints and photographs of Natural Bridge. Highlights include greatly enlarged prints of the Bridge in the 1880s, taken from large-format camera photos by Michael Miley and C.H. James, a Philadelphia photographer who was engaged by the Natural Bridge Forest Company. Text includes a letter by Jefferson’s granddaughter about their unpleasant trip to Natural Bridge in 1817; material on Colonel Henry C. Parsons, a railroad entrepreneur who formed the Natural Bridge Forest Company in the 1880s and made Natural Bridge the largest privately owned park in the United States and a popular tourist vacation destination; the story of the Greyhound bus bound for Washington, D.C. that nearly plummeted off the top of the Bridge in 1936;  Eleanor Roosevelt’s trip to the Bridge in 1937; and perspectives on the recent purchase and preservation efforts involving Natural Bridge.





2013 Exhibit: Main Street Lexington, 1867

Dooley Streetscape

Beginning May 3, 25 framed virtual reproductions of the buildings that lined Lexington’s Main Street in 1867 are on view. These highly detailed color prints come from computer reconstructions that Col. Ed Dooley created based on existing buildings or from historic photographs.  Using Google SketchUp software, he was able to model these buildings in 3-D – brick by brick, cornice by cornice, doornail by doornail – to near exact dimensions and design, basing his decisions on images where he had clear visual evidence to flesh out a particular building (or side of a building for that matter).  The prints will be displayed along with historic photographs that inspired them, some interpretive text describing the buildings’ features and history, and some contemporary images that will help visitors identify the buildings or locations along Main Street.

2011 Exhibit: When Rail Ruled the Valley


The summer 2011 RHS Exhibit depicts a century of railroading in the Valley of Virginia though the medium of two dozen original works of art by local artist, Louis Caddell. Using pencil, pen and watercolor, Caddell has recreated images of the Rockbridge County depots serving the Valley Railroad and the majestic steam locomotives that were such an awesome spectacle of nineteenth century transportation power. Additional railroad memorabilia including a real conductor’s uniform fill out the exhibit. Everyone loves trains. Come and enjoy this glimpse into the past.

2010 Exhibit


RHS Exhibit photo

Curated by Dorothy Blackwell
Assistant Curators: Seth Goodhart and Byron Faidley

Recent past exhibits at Campbell House

Feb. 2009-May 2010: Visions of Rockbridge
May 2008-Feb. 2009: The Golden Age of Childhood in Rockbridge County, 1890-1950
Apr. ’04 – Feb. ’05: Sixty-Five Years of Collecting
Nov. ’03-Apr. ’04: Exhibits from Stonewall Jackson House
Nov.’02-Feb. ’03: The Photography of Michael Miley – Gen. Lee’s photographer
May-Oct. ’02: Patrick Hinely’s photos, Dorothy Blackwell’s antique pottery collection
Mar.’01-Feb.’02: African-American Heritage of Rockbridge County
Sep.’00-Feb. 01: Imitative Architectural Materials, 1870-1930