Preservation Brown Bag Talks and Tours

Preservation Brown Bag Series

Staunton Neighborhoods:  a Town within a Town

Integrated throughout the city of Staunton are multiple community neighborhoods with distinct patterns and textures. Each geographic neighborhood is uniquely defined by its history as well as tapestry of streets and buildings. Join the HSF Brown Bag series as we use a framework of preservation, sustainability, and reuse to explore the interconnected roadways, homes, churches, cemeteries, schools, commercial establishments, and civic buildings of our historic city.

Descriptions and Archived Photographs, Maps and Presentation Slides for the 2015-2017 Brown Bag Series


January 9, 2015 – Mike Brown                                                                                              They’re All Different: Energy Saving Strategies for Your Historic Structure”

February 6, 2015Katherine Browne
“Researching an Historic Property”

April 10, 2015Amy Arnold
“Staunton Neighborhoods: a Town within a Town”

May 1, 2015 – Frank Strassler & Amy Arnold
Walking Tour of the annexed community along West Beverley Street.

June 5, 2015 –  Frank Strassler & Jennifer Vickers
“West End Neighborhood & Booker T. Washington Community Center”
Discussion focusing on Booker T. Washington Community Center and the surrounding West End neighborhood

September 4, 2015
Walking Tour of the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities African-American Historical Site.

October 2, 2015
“Sears Hill”
Walking Tour of the residential neighborhood of Sears Hill.

November 13, 2015
Holiday House Tour Walking Tour
Walking Tour focusing on the lofts and homes featured in our 43rd Annual Holiday House Tour on December 5th and 6th.

January 8, 2016
Maps and Mapping
Discussion of the use of maps and mapping to aid in the identification and understanding of neighborhood patterning.

February 5, 2016
The Development and Neighborhood Transition of the Female Academy
Discussion of establishment and ultimate closing of the Female Academy and how this history impacted the Newtown neighborhood.

March 4, 2016
Presentation focusing on the history of the development in Staunton’s automobile centric architecture along Central, Lewis, and Greenwood Avenues.

April 1, 2016
“Sunnyside Neighborhood Walking Tour”
The season’s first walking neighborhood walking tour focuses on the historic black neighborhood of Sunnyside.

May 6, 2016
“Tannehill Neighborhood Walking Tour”
Our 2016 walking tours continue as we gather and stroll through the Tannehill (Tannehill-Wheat) neighborhood.

June 3, 2016
“Rehabilitation of Downtown, one building at a time; Part 1”
We will visit and hear about the process of rehabilitating two different, historically commercial buildings from the perspective of the owner / developer.

September 2, 2016
“Rehabilitation of Downtown, one building at a time; Part 2”
Our second in a two-part program begun in June, we will hear about the process of rehabilitating two additional projects and visit a project in process.  We will focus again on rehabilitating historically commercial buildings from the perspective of the owner / developer.

October 7, 2016
“Selma Neighborhood Walking Tour”
Join us as we visit the Selma neighborhood, located just north of Gypsy Hill Park. During our visit we will discuss the rich and diverse range of residential architectural styles along Selma Boulevard and take a look at the 1850, Greek Revival, Selma House, once the central manor house of a 790 acre plantation.

November 4, 2016
“Stuart Hall/Reservoir Hill Neighborhood, location of our 44th Annual Holiday House Tour”
Historic Staunton Foundation’s 44th annual Holiday House Tour, “Celebrating the Diversity of Historic Architecture,” invites you to walk the Stuart Hall/Reservoir Hill neighborhood of the Newtown Historic District.

January 6, 2017
“Casa Blanca, the reimagining of 217 North Madison Street”
We begin the 2017 HSF Preservation Brown Bag series by looking at how selected award winning projects came about. What is the process of imagining, designing, and building a residential rehabilitation project?  Join us as owners Dennis and Ingrid Blanton describe the process of imagining the contemporary rehabilitation of 217 North Madison Street and how their vision for the house came about.

February 10, 2017
“Rehabilitating 231 Sycamore Street”
Our 2017 HSF Preservation Brown Bag series continues by looking at how selected award-winning projects came about. What is the process of imagining, designing, and building a residential rehabilitation project?  HSF is pleased to have Kelly Grantier discuss her rehabilitation project of 231 Sycamore Street – winner of an HSF 2016 Residential Preservation Award.

March 3, 2017
“The History of the Augusta County Courthouse”    
We are pleased to have historian Nancy Sorrells join us to present the History of the Augusta County Courthouse.


In the spring of 2004, HSF’s Education Committee launched the Brown Bag Preservation Talk series. Since then, dozens of preservation topics have been discussed and many miles have been spent exploring Staunton’s streets and alleys. Led by HSF Executive Director Frank Strassler and a host of knowledgeable guest speakers, these informative discussions feature topics that relate to preserving the community, planning, identifying historic architecture, celebrating property rehabilitation, and experiencing neighborhood revitalization. The Brown Bag Preservation Talks are generally held on the first Friday of each month at noon in the R.R. Smith Center for History and Art 2nd floor lecture hall. The talks are casual, free, and open to the public.