Welcome To KEY TO THE CITY's Page For
Rockbridge County, Virginia
Lexington is a historic place. Four American generals: George Washington, Robert E. Lee, Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, and George C. Marshall - all played a part in Lexington history. Lee and Jackson, Civil War heros, had homes in Lexington and are buried here. A fire destroyed downtown Lexington in 1796, but the Alexander-Withrow House, one of the few that survived the fire, is still standing and has been restored.
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Stonewall Jackson House
8 E. Washington St.
This was the home of General Thomas J. Jackson from 1859 until he died in 1863. The area has been restored with period furnishings along with some original pieces and personal effects. Guided tours and a slide show are available.
Virginia Military Institute
off Main St.
The Institute is listed on the National register of Historic Districts. It was founded in 1839 as the country's first state-support military college.Some alumni of the institute are General George C. Marshall and Admiral Richard E. Byrd.
Washington and Lee University
off Jefferson St.
The university was founded as Augusta Academy in 1749. It evolved into Liberty Hall Academy in 1876. Endowed by George Washington in 1796 it was renamed Washington Academy two years later. The president of the college was General Robert E. Lee from the end of the Civil War until his death in 1870. At that time, the name of the University was changed to Washington and Lee University. The Lee Chapel at the University was built in 1867 under his direction. It is now a shrine to General Lee, particularly with his office just as he left it on Sept. 28, 1870. He and his family are buried under the chapel on the museum level.
P.O. Box 57
Natural Bridge, VA 24578
Toll-free: 800-533-1410 (USA)
On U.S. 11 less than 5 minutes from I-81 and about 20 miles from Lexington.
A privately owned area, Natural Bridge is a Virginia Historic Landmark and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
See the Natural Bridge, the Glen and the Cedar Creek Trail. Also something to see are the Natural Bridge Caverns, the Wax Museum and Factory.
The Natural Bridge was known by the Monocan Indians as "The Bridge of God," and was used by them for worship. George Washington surveyed the area and carved his initials in the stone, where they may still be seen today. Thomas Jefferson bought the bridge for 20 shillings from King George III in 1774. He then built a cabin for visitors and had a caretaker there. The natural arch spans Cedar Creek and supports US 11. It is a limestone arch 215 feet high. It is 90 feet long and varies from 50 to 150 in width.
The Natural Bridge Wax Museum
Over 125 life-size replicas of historical figures in scenes from the Shenandoah Valley. Included are figures of the American Indian legends and folklore of the area.
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