We need your help!

Listed below are some of the future project items on our Red Hill “wish list.” Each of these items is just waiting for a generous donor to provide the funding to make them happen. If you are interested in being that donor and one of these projects strikes a chord, please call 434-376-2044 or email info@redhill.org to discuss what your sponsorship can look like.

Preservation & Archaeology

Exploratory Archaeology

A future project that could yield huge benefits to our historical knowledge of Red Hill is to perform systematic shovel test pits. Exploratory archaeology has the potential to turn up all sorts of unexpected information and could result in a huge gain in our understanding of the site.

Depending on the funding we could attain, this project might be undertaken in stages or as a whole attempt. It will require manpower and careful cataloging, making it an ambitious but very worthy goal.


Viewshed Protection

Part of what makes Red Hill special is its rural setting, untouched for centuries and standing much as it was during Patrick Henry’s time. However, this viewshed is threatened by unregulated development which may drastically change the landscape surrounding Red Hill.

With the help of generous individuals, we will be able to acquire property within the Red Hill viewshed and place it under the protection of a conservation easement in perpetuity. These protections will not only help expand the property closer to Henry’s original 2,900 acres, but also preserve the natural habitats for countless native plants and animals.

Quarter Place Preservation

The Quarter Place was, for nearly 180 years, home to the enslaved and free Black populations of Red Hill. Patrick Henry enslaved 67 persons before his death in 1799, many of whom lived and worked on the Quarter Place. Today, the Quarter Place trail leads visitors along a wooded path which terminates at the Quarter Place Cemetery. The stories of these laborers are now being told through new interpretive signage, guided tours, and a permanent exhibition on the trail.

Future projects on the Quarter Place include additional archaeological work, preserving existing historic structures such as the 19th century tobacco barn, and constructing a monument to those buried at the Quarter Place Cemetery.

Restoration & Reconstruction

Building Relocation

When the Patrick Henry Memorial Foundation acquired Red Hill in 1944, all but one 18th century building was lost. The Foundation set to work restoring lost buildings to what they believed to be their original size and location; however, new research has proven that most reconstructed outbuildings did not originally exist where they do today.

Although a monumental task, relocating these buildings to their original foundations would return the property to how Patrick Henry would have known it. This is one of the most visible and permanent project opportunities. 

Distillery Reconstruction

A year before George Washington began distilling whiskey at Mount Vernon, Patrick Henry obtained a license to operate three stills at Red Hill, which his wife continued to run after his death. Producing around 2,000 gallons a year, Henry sold his rye whiskey to taverns and stores, as well as to nearby farms and plantations. In distilling whiskey at Red Hill, Henry, who rarely drank anything harder than water, was diversifying his means of income and not relying solely on tobacco.

Rebuilding the distillery will give visitors a better understanding of Red Hill as a working, self-sustaining plantation, and the skills required of his enslaved and hired workers to produce this whiskey.

Once the distillery is built, Red Hill hopes to be part of the American Whiskey Trail and could serve as a half-way point between guests visiting distilleries from Kentucky to Washington, DC. It is an interesting historical challenge to reconstruct and would be a memorable addition to the grounds. All we need is a patriotic lover of home brew to take an interest in the project and offer the funding to get started!

Structural Restorations

Most of the buildings at Red Hill today were reconstructed during the principal restoration of the 1950s and 1960s. Ideas surrounding preservation and historical accuracy were still in their infancy. As a result, what was constructed represents an ideal fantasy and 21st century research has now deemed these buildings historically inaccurate.

Structural and aesthetic changes can be made to help bring these buildings closer in line with what may have existed in the 18th century. Projects ranging from repainting using historical colors to interior wall removal and woodwork restoration can all contribute to showing a more accurate built environment.

Visitor & Administrative Facilities

Administrative Office Remodel

With an expanding staff and burgeoning museum collection, Red Hill is currently undertaking work to remodel a new 10,000-square-feet administrative building. This building requires much work to be completed before we can move in, such as flooring replacement, repainting, and more.

This building will also hold our new collections storage rooms and archaeological lab, allowing us to better store, research, and access our collection of over 3,000 artifacts.

Supplies such as specimen cabinets, digging tools, drying trays, and archival boxes are greatly needed to equip these rooms and ensure successful stewardship of our collection.

Museum Expansion

Built in 1996, the E. Stuart James Grant Museum Room allows us to exhibit and interpret our large collection of historical artifacts. A growing collection and lack of space facilitates the need to expand this room to allow for additional exhibit space.

Generous individuals can help us achieve this goal by helping to fund a structural addition, new HVAC and humidity control systems, upgraded exhibit cases and security, and more.

Visitor Center Remodel

The Red Hill Visitor Center has served as a visitor’s first introduction to the property since its construction in 1976. As time has moved on, the building now requires upgraded facilities, additional space, and a fresh look for our visitors.

Interior projects include lighting upgrades, expanding our gift shop and orientation room, repainting, and new exhibition panels. Exterior projects include window replacement, repainting, upgraded security systems, and more.


Artifact Acquisition

When guests visit Red Hill, they experience an impressive array of artifacts in the museum and historic structures. Each one has a unique and fascinating story that adds to the larger narrative. Our curator is actively seeking to expand the collection with objects that enhance the interpretation of the site and aid in a better understanding of the lives lived here.
One ongoing venture includes the acquisition of original Patrick Henry pieces and period items to satisfy the inventory taken of Henry’s possessions in 1799, in order to provide the most complete and accurate visual interpretation of his final home. Another priority is to acquire meaningful objects that help us to honor the stories of the African American inhabitants.

Artifact Conservation

Red Hill aspires to steward our collection for the public with the utmost integrity. Caring for the artifacts is a constant, significant effort in which conservation plays a vital role. Several special objects are awaiting additional funding to be expertly cleaned, repaired, and restored to their best condition.

Your partnership in this mission ensures that the collection can continue teaching and inspiring visitors for generations to come.

Archival Supplies

As part of the care and organization of our collections, appropriate archival supplies are necessary. These materials are used on a daily basis, thus there is a steady need.

Acid-free containers, object tags, and file folders allow for the long-term preservation of our artifacts and information. Storage cabinets and artifact-safe cleaners are examples of other valuable tools that allow us to protect the collection from the effects of time and wear.

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Patrick Henry's Red Hill is always looking to the future. Contact us to find out how you can be a part of it!
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