Settled in 1793 and incorporated in 1835, Danville boasts many historic areas.
Explore the history of Danville, Virginia over its past two and a quarter centuries.
The Danville Historic District
Home to the elegant Millionaires Row and the Old West End, the Danville Historic District showcases some of the finest Victorian and Edwardian architecture in Virginia and North Carolina. Many of the old mansions built by the tobacco and textile barons of the late 19th century still stand as testimony to the wealth and power of those industries and to the skill and craftsmanship long disappeared from modern building techniques. Architectural styles include Victorian, Edwardian, Romanesque, and Gothic Revival.
The Downtown Danville Historic District
Notable structures from the turn of the century through the 1930s are housed in the Downtown Historic District. Architectural styles include Romanesque, Late Gothic Revival, and Tudor Revival.
The Danville Tobacco Warehouse and Residential District
The premier area for new investment and development, Danville's Tobacco Warehouse and Residential District houses major industry and cultural activities. Old tobacco warehouses are now being used for business, housing, and nanotechnology research. The Crossing at the Dan complex is the focal point of the area. The restored train station houses the Estelle H. Womack Natural History Collection as part of the larger Danville Science Center. The freight station was remodeled into a community market used as a farmer's market and rented out for large events and fundraisers. The Crossing also offers access to the Riverwalk trail and the Carrington Pavilion where concerts are held each summer.
Holbrook-Ross Street Historic District
Queen Anne and Italianate styles of Architecture are visible in the Holbrook-Ross Street Historic District. Home to Danville's first cemetery on Grove Street, this neighborhood displays a mix of housing and business found in a traditional downtown neighborhood.
The North Danville Historic District
The construction of the Richmond and Danville Railroad in 1856 encouraged Danville's growth as a tobacco trading and manufacturing center during this period. In 1839, the Pittsylvania-Franklin Turnpike was constructed north of the Dan River and initial development gradually began to appear along its borders. The route later evolved into what is now North Main Street in North Danville. Neopolis, an area home to many fine Victorian homes, is the original site of old North Danville.
The Mechanicsville Historic (eligible) District
Mechanicsville was first established during the antebellum period in the area west of the downtown commercial district. The neighborhood developed south of the canal and west of High Street, between Ridge Street on the south and Union Street on the North. The neighborhood experienced a period of growth in the 1870s and 1880s as a result of the post-war tobacco boom when residential construction occurred in the greatest concentration between Floyd and Union streets.
The Schoolfield Historic (eligible) Mill District
The old Mill village with its quaint homes represents one of the most unique residential areas in Danville.
Danville is also home to many historic markers erected by the Virginia Department of Historic Resources. For a listing, please visit the VDHR website.