February 16, 2013

Vine Hill in Middleburg

Winter is a good time to visit an indoor museum and we had never been to the National Sporting Library and Museum, so last week we drove to Middleburg, which is less than an hour from home. Part of the art collection is housed in historic Vine Hill which was built in 1804. During the Civil War, Union General James Barnes briefly used Vine Hill as his headquarters and a few letters to him were found hidden in a wall when the house was remodeled to be part of the museum a couple of years ago.

The art collection centers around "sporting" which in Virginia's hunt country refers to fox hunting and other horse-related sports. Not all the art was of horses though. One temporary exhibit featured the wildlife art of illustrator Bob Kuhn and another one showed the work of Abbott Handerson Thayer, who not only painted wildlife but also researched animal camouflage and passed on his discoveries for military use during World War I.

Middleburg is surrounded by pretty countryside with rolling hills, stone fences, and horses grazing in fields. The gentleman-farmers who own these idyllic places include some of the country's rich and famous.


8 comments:

  1. Lovely colonial home. So glad it has been put to good use!

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  2. That is so beautiful and this is one my Hubs wouldn't mind visiting.

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  3. Middleburg is fun. We always get our pies from a pie shop there for Christmas.

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  4. I am always surprised at the small rooms inside. I have not been to this home but it looks like those we sometimes see or saw here where we live.

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  5. While I am not much for hunting, this museum does seem like a worthwhile stop should we get to this area on a future road trip. Thanks, Linda for the recommendation and also for the info on Middletown, VA.

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  6. i pinned it to my travel board! it's about a 3 hour drive for us...something to do in the summer maybe :)

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  7. Where was the waterlick station?

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    1. Well, it was along the railroad in Waterlick and I don't know exactly where. I think it was near the intersection of Bucks Mill Road and Richardson Road but that's a guess. It seems odd that it was so close to the Buckton Station until you consider that today's bridges did not exist then so Passage Creek was an obstacle to travel by horse. Anyway, all this is between Strasburg and Front Royal and the railroad is still in existence.

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