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Cowboys and Indians in Richmond

In the thirty-seven years that “Buffalo” Bill Cody ran his world-famous Wild West Show, he brought it to Richmond nine times from 1888 through 1913. These visits from the former Pony Express rider created weeks of anticipation. Cody’s romanticized dramatizations of…

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Ghost Town No More!

By the late 1960s, Shockoe Slip had become a rundown, little-known part of town. The decline of the nearby canal and tobacco warehouses had left the once-bustling commercial center mostly vacant in a changing economic landscape.  At a time when…

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Healing Powers of Fresh Air

One of the deadliest diseases in human history has been known by many names: phthisis, tabes, schachepheth, consumption, and white death. A highly contagious bacterial infection of the lungs, the diseases now known as tuberculosis has plagued humans for at least…

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Water, Water Everywhere

On June 19, 1972, a weak Category One hurricane hit the gulf coast of Florida. By the time it reached Virginia a few days later, Hurricane Agnes was just a tropical storm, although its fourteen inches of rain combined with…

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Crash Course in RVA Music

Through the 1980s, Richmond was home to a thriving punk music scene. In general, East Coast punk bands toured from New York to the Carolinas, getting regular gigs.  Situated on I-95, Richmond was a natural and profitable stop on the…

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Flour Capital of the World

Though tobacco is widely credited as Richmond’s founding industry, a second and lesser-known industry proved to be just as important to the city’s development and success. The first flour milling operation – belonging to William Byrd – was established here…

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Richmond’s Secret Garden

In the 1920s, a prominent Richmond businessman, C.F. Sauer, Sr., started a Japanese garden on the 4300 block of Monument Avenue.  The two-and-a-half acre parcel was a private garden, meant for use by residents of a new subdivision the prominent businessman had…

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Take That to the Bank!

In 1975, Sylvia Clute, a former attorney for Reynolds Metals, decided to open a solo law practice. But despite her reputation as a successful attorney, five banks turned her down for a business loan. If they did return her calls, they…

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An American Hero’s Story

On the day after Christmas in 1811, an enslaved African American blacksmith named Gilbert Hunt was visiting his wife downtown at a home where she was a servant. While there, news reached them that the nearby Richmond Theater had caught…

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Over the Hills We Go!

In August 1908, 387 stock-holding members organized a private club called the Old Dominion Country Club before realizing that the name was already taken. Under a new name, they raised money to buy 110 rolling, wooded acres that lay four…

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