"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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Learn more about items related to commencement exercises in the VHS collections.

Van de Vyver Institute Diploma
Stories at the Museum, Saturday, 9/20/14. Free & open to all ages. Please use the new Learning Center entrance off Kensington. #rvakids #rva

Members events

The Virginia Historical Society offers a wide variety of members-only lectures and programs that feature renowned historians and authors. The following special events are open only to members. Invitations are mailed to members before each event.

Members lecture series

The VHS offers three members-only lectures each year. Read more about the Stuart G. Christian, Jr., Lecture, the Hazel and Fulton Chauncey Lecture, and the J. Harvie Wilkinson, Jr., Lecture below.

Stuart G. Christian, Jr., Lecture

The Stuart G. Christian, Jr., Lecture was named in honor of a former president of the VHS and takes place every spring. Because "Punky" Christian was a decorated veteran of the Normandy Campaign, this lecture series is focused on topics from the era of World War II. Previous speakers have included Elizabeth and Michael Norman, Robert Edsel, Mitchell Zuckoff, and Rick Atkinson.

Hazel and Fulton Chauncey Lecture

Named in honor of their parents by Edwin H. Chauncey and Warren F. Chauncey, this lecture series focuses on topics in Virginia, Civil War, or southern history. The Chauncey Lecture takes place in the spring. Past speakers have included John Y. Quarstein, Jeffry D. Wert, and Dean King.

J. Harvie Wilkinson, Jr., Lecture

The J. Harvie Wilkinson, Jr., Lecture is named in memory of Virginia banker J. Harvie Wilkinson, Jr., and takes place every year in the fall. Past lecturers have included David McCullough, Ken Burns, Doris Kearns Goodwin, H. W. Brands, Scott Berg, Juan Williams, and Erik Larson. 

The bus trips are a great way to learn more about the fabulous history of Virginia (and sometimes even beyond). The trips always provide a nice lunch and the wonderful company of fellow VHS members. “See You on the Bus” is a fun and educational way to spend the day!
Lee Ball

See You On the Bus

Have you ever wanted to visit a historic location in Virginia but did not want to deal with the hassle of planning a trip or fighting traffic? Leave the planning and driving to us! 

During the spring and fall, the VHS offers our members monthly bus trips to historic sites and museums. Our day-long bus trips leave Richmond in the morning and travel to places such a Washington, D.C., Charlottesville, art museums, private homes, and many more exciting locations across the commonwealth. You will be lead by VHS staff members and experienced tour guides, who will not only inform you about history but also make sure you have fun. Lunches and snacks are provided on each trip.

Louisville has Derby Day. London has Royal Ascot. And Richmond has Garden Party Day.
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Garden Party

For more than sixty years, our annual Garden Party has been a highlight of the calendar year for VHS members. This annual event takes place at Virginia House from 4 to 6 p.m. on the last Saturday of April. Members and their guests are free to spend the afternoon enjoying the spring flowers, delicious refreshments, and lively conversation in the gardens.

Members appreciation reception

As a way of thanking our loyal members, the VHS holds a yearly members appreciation reception. During this after-hours event, members have the museum to themselves and are free to explore the galleries or mingle with VHS staff and other members. 

Educational travel programs

Spend time exploring history with fellow VHS members. In 2013, this overnight-travel program took members to Philadelphia. "The Barnes and Beyond: Art and History in Philadelphia" trip included tours of the Barnes Foundation, Independence Hall, the National Constitution Center, Valley Forge National Historical Park, and private dinners at the Philadelphia Cricket Club and the Racquet Club of Philadelphia. Previous travel programs have included visits to Gettysburg, Baltimore, Winchester, and southside Virginia.

Matt Weber

Matt Weber, Senior Officer for Donor and Visitor Services

If you are not a member, or your membership has expired, and you would like to attend one of these events, please contact our me at 804.342.9658 or mweber@vahistorical.org.