In 2007, restoration and documentation of the Capitol’s 18th century woodwork is made possible with a generous donation from the Cabell Foundation, matched by the Commonwealth of Virginia. This discovery was a key element of the UNESCO World Heritage Application, the highest designation a natural or manmade site can achieve.
Restoration of the 1818 cast iron fence (including many of its 7,000 individual pickets and 350 fence posts) around Capitol Square was completed in 2009. The fence is the oldest and largest example of a cast iron fence in the United States and is listed with the Department of Historic Resources, the first step in qualifying for National Historic Landmark status for Capitol Square. Donors including the Roller-Bottimore Foundation, Marietta McNeill Morgan and Samuel Tate Morgan, Jr. Foundation, The French Heritage Society and the Commonweath Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution funded the project.
Tens of thousands of Virginia’s students will soon learn more about Virginia’s central role in American history, thanks to a new film, Keepers of the Flame, being produced by the Virginia Capitol Foundation with assistance from actor, filmmaker and Virginia native Tim Reid. Filming is complete, edits are being made, and the 20-minute visually-interactive film is expected to debut at the Virginia Capitol’s Visitor Center in the fall.
Narrated by Thomas Jefferson, portrayed by Bill Barker, the film will enhance student visitors’ experiences by featuring compelling stories of individuals who have made an impact on Virginia history – from well-known figures like Jefferson and George Washington to lesser-known citizens like Barbara Johns who proved that everyone can make a difference. This film coupled with the Capitol’s dynamic educational programs and exhibits hopes to tell the story of Virginia’s representative government, celebrate the Commonwealth’s central role in American history and inspire viewers to appreciate and become involved with public service.
We express our appreciation to these generous donors for funding they provided to produce Keepers of the Flame: Robins Foundation, Parsons Foundation, Dominion, Philip Morris USA, Genworth, MeadWestvaco, Windsor Foundation, Wachovia, Gwathmey Memorial Trust, Gilder Lehrman Institute, & many individuals.