Thanks to a generous donation from the Clarke County Rotary Club, the Clarke County Historical Association has put the finishing touch on its multi-media museum exhibit spanning 300+ years of Clarke County history. A corner devoted to rotating exhibits was in the original plan for the major overhaul and installation of the Association’s museum in 2009, but a lack of funds prevented its completionâ€¦â€¦until now.
With the Rotary’s donation, an exhibit space was installed to allow the Association to showcase artifacts, photographs, and documents from its own collection, as well as share the space with other community groups who may wish to create their own temporary exhibit. The debut exhibit features a delicate paper and bamboo fan where 22-year-old Elva Young, a resident of Berryville, kept a detailed journal of her activities from 1893 to 1895, which included attending a famous play in Berryville, a Wild West show, the Luray “Cave,” a friend’s wedding, and boating trips and fishing parties on the Shenandoah.
CCHA vice-president and Museum Committee Chair Doug Bartley found photographs, posters, and excerpts from local newspapers all related to the fan’s stories to round out the exhibit. Though the specific names and activities are different from today, it demonstrates that we still enjoy the same things – theatrical performances, a good old-fashioned fair and horse show, gatherings at the river, and love stories!
â€˜Our Land Is Our Legacy’ is the over-riding theme of the Association’s museum and uses artifacts, murals, maps, photographs, and two audio-visual presentations to tell an informative and inspiring story of Clarke County history. The rotating exhibit space will feature new, smaller exhibits every four to six months. The museum is located at 32 East Main Street in Berryville and is open Tuesday – Saturday from 11am to 4pm. The Association’s archivist, Mary Morris, is available for
research inquires Thursday – Saturday. Entrance to the museum is free and donations are always welcome.
For more information, visit www.clarkehistory.org or call 540.955.2600.