Past Exhibits 2012-14 at Atkinson Museum

Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War

Civil War Medicine exhibit photo, Civil War heroesNovember 2-December 14
The Esther Thomas Atkinson Museum hosted the traveling exhibit, Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War November 2 through December 14.

The perspectives of surgeons, physicians, and nurses are richly documented in the history of Civil War medicine, which highlights the heroism and brutality of battlefield operations and the challenges of caring for the wounded during wartime. Yet the experiences of injured soldiers during the conflict and in the years afterwards are less well-known.

More than three million soldiers fought in the war from 1861-1865. More than half a million died, and almost as many were wounded but survived.  Hundreds of thousands were permanently disabled by battlefield injuries or surgery, which saved lives by sacrificing limbs.  Life and Limb: The Toll of the Civil War explores the experiences of disabled Civil War veterans who served as a symbol of the fractured nation and a stark reminder of the costs of the conflict.

This exhibition was developed and produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. Regular museum hours are Tuesday through Friday, 10 AM to 12 PM and 1 to 5:00 PM.  


Unclassified: the Military Kid Art Show

Unclassified Poster, Atkinson Museum at Hampden-Sydney CollegeSeptember 26-October 26
The exhibit featured works from the transitory life of military children. According to an article on the exhibit: "Military life influences the child, whether it is living in other countries, moving often, or having deployed parents, most military children live different lives than their civilian counterparts. These programs show how different and how to bridge the gap between the two."

Exhibit Reception and Talk
Reception at 4:30 pm followed by curators talk 


Historic Home Promotion Weekend

Middlecourt at Hampden-Sydney CollegeOn September 14, 15, the Atkinson Museum of Hampden Sydney College provided walking tours of the old seminary campus, which includes exterior tours of two historic homes featured on the Governor of Virginia's Year of the Virginia Historic Homes website. The two Federal style homes, Middlecourt (1829) and Penshurst (1830), were part of the original Union Theological Seminary and retain a large portion of their original features. 

Special Museum hours during Virginia's Historic Homes Promotional Weekend are 10:00 to 3:00, Saturday, September 14, and 11:00 to 3:00, Sunday, September 15. All tours begin at the Atkinson Museum on the Campus of Hampden-Sydney College, four miles south of Farmville.  The Museum is located on College Road at the intersection of College Road and Via Sacra.


Fuqua Class at Atkinson Museum

On October 4, 2012, Ms. Penny Pairet's class from Fuqua School visited the Bortz Library as well as Atkinson Museum on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College.  The class is currently reading Sounder by William H. Armstrong who graduated from Hampden-Sydney in 1936.  The students were able to view awards received by Armstrong and several foreign language copies of Sounder. 


Patrick Henry: A Historical Interpretation
"The Voice of Liberty"

Patrick Henry: A Historical Interpretation On Tuesday, October 16, Bill Young will present a historical interpretation of Patrick Henry at Hampden-Sydney College. Henry is portrayed in the last year of his life as he reflects on his childhood, two marriages, religious convictions, love of children, various careers, and key contributions to the formation of the United States. After retiring as a trial lawyer, Young decided to make his lifelong love of history, writing, and public speaking into a second career. He presents a dramatic and historically accurate first person impression of Henry.

Free and open to the public, the event is sponsored by the Farmville/Prince Edward Historical Society and Hampden-Sydney's Atkinson Museum.  It will begin at 7 PM in the Parents & Friends Lounge in Venable Hall.
H-SC Full Story...


Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion

Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion

A Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Educational Exhibition celebrating the Commonwealth's building heritage is open in the Atkinson Museum March 1 through April 30.  The exhibition will present photographs and descriptions of 23 significant examples of our state's architecture built primarily between 1636 and 1775. The exhibition is based on "Architecture in Virginia," a popular guide written by University of Virginia architectural historian, William B. O'Neal.   The book demonstrates that Virginia has often led the way in American architecture... H-SC Full Story...

Dr. John Coombs,
Associate Professor of History

On Wednesday March 28, Dr. John Coombs, Associate Professor of History will present Architecture and the Making of the Virginia Gentry in the Seventeenth Century in conjunction with the museum exhibit,

Virginia Architecture: From Colonial to the Old Dominion.

Myths, Saints, and Symbols: The Use of Attributes in Art

Myths, Saints and Symbols

Barbara Rothermel,
Director of the Daura Gallery at Lynchburg College

On Sunday, February 5, Barbara Rothermel presented a gallery talk at Hampden-Sydney College on the exhibit, Myths, Saints, and Symbols: The Use of Attributes in Art.

This lecture traces the transition of symbols and attributes from Classical Antiquity through the Early Christian era when it was the task of the church to redeem the world and all humankind. The church did not hesitate to borrow from every available source in its effort to convert and redeem; the sign and symbol, particularly those most common in the realm of human experience, were given a Christian and spiritual meaning. The lecture continues with the full flowering of symbolism in the northern Renaissance and Baroque eras.

This program has been organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and is funded, in part, by the Jean Stafford Camp Memorial Fund. 

Liberties With Liberty

Liberties With Liberty

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Liberties with Liberty was on exhibit at the Atkinson Museum on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College through February 22. The exhibition contains twenty 24"x 36" color posters. Liberties with Liberty depicts the changing icons of liberty in America.  The images range from an Indian queen to the Statue of Liberty itself and represent three centuries of American folk art. H-SC full story...

A Venable Ghost Story

Dr. Ray A. Gaskins
Professor Emeritus of Mathematics & Computer Science, H-SC

On Friday morning, November 10, 1775, young Samuel Woodson Venable was up at the crack of dawn. This was the day of the official opening of Hampden-Sydney College and he wanted to be the first student there. He was already the first student to register for classes and he wanted to keep the string going. He grabbed something to eat, dashed out to the barn, saddled his horse, and was off at a gallop. He took the shortest route from Slate Hill to the College, which took him right past the future site of Mercy Seat Church (1870). Read this and more stories from the current Newsletter...

Slate Hill Unearthed

A staple of May Term at Hampden-Sydney is the Beneath This Hill Historical Archaeology Class, in which Doctor Charles Pearson leads his Hampden-Sydney students to the place of the founding of Hampden-Sydney College, the site of Slate Hill Plantation. Students in the May Term class have been working to reconstruct the 18th- and 19th-century landscapes at Slate Hill Plantation. This work has included identifying the locations and types of buildings that once existed on the property. Students rely on primary documents such as original deeds, wills, probate inventories, and photographs, as well as oral histories and archaeology. The full story in the current Newsletter....

The information in the above referenced article comes from the labels and panel text of an exhibit that recently closed at the Atkinson Museum, Beneath This Hill: Historical Archaeology at Slate Hill Plantation, Birthplace of Hampden-Sydney College