"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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Experience the nation’s most popular toys and their stories through three imagined living rooms that bring the decades back to life.

Toys of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s

The Battlefront in Virginia Gallery

Virginia Pacificator Enter Fullscreen More information
Virginia Pacificator
Virginia Pacificator, 1861, 1990.100.50 Lorenzo Sibert of Augusta County designed and patented this repeating rifle that could fire forty-eight shots without reloading. To judge from the inscriptions on its stock––“The Virginia Pacificator” (peacemaker) and “the American Union forever”––Sibert was one of many in the state who had hoped that Virginia’s leaders might keep the Union together.
Confederate-Made Springfield rifled musket Enter Fullscreen More information
Confederate-Made Springfield rifled musket
Confederate-Made Springfield rifled musket, 1863, 1990.100.137.A One of 31,000 manufactured by the Richmond Armory on machinery captured from Harpers Ferry in 1861.
Confederate "Sharps" Carbine Enter Fullscreen More information
Confederate "Sharps" Carbine
Confederate "Sharps" Carbine made by S. C. Robinson Arms Manufactory, Richmond, 1862, 1990.100.57
Leech & Rigdon revolver Enter Fullscreen More information
Leech & Rigdon revolver
Leech & Rigdon revolver, 1863, 2007.174 Repeating firearms increased a soldier’s fire rate exponentially.
Bugle Enter Fullscreen More information
Bugle
Bugle, about 1861, courtesy of Museum of the Confederacy
“Battle between the Monitor and the Merrimack” Enter Fullscreen More information
“Battle between the Monitor and the Merrimack”
“Battle between the Monitor and the Merrimack” by Xanthus Smith, about 1880, 1998.53 The March 1862 battle of ironclads at Hampton Roads changed naval warfare forever.
Elizabeth Van Lew Enter Fullscreen More information
Elizabeth Van Lew
Elizabeth Van Lew, 2002.689.1 A unionist, Van Lew operated a successful spy ring in Richmond that included prisoners of war, government workers, and free and enslaved African Americans.
Window from Libby Prison Enter Fullscreen More information
Window from Libby Prison
Window from Libby Prison, about 1861, 1990.113
“Richmond across the Canal Basin Showing Ruined Buildings, Capitol in Distance, April, 1865,” Enter Fullscreen More information
“Richmond across the Canal Basin Showing Ruined Buildings, Capitol in Distance, April, 1865,”
“Richmond across the Canal Basin Showing Ruined Buildings, Capitol in Distance, April, 1865,” by Andrew J. Russell, 1994.121.65
Virginia Pacificator
Virginia Pacificator
Confederate-Made Springfield rifled musket
Confederate-Made Springfield rifled musket
Confederate "Sharps" Carbine
Confederate "Sharps" Carbine
Leech & Rigdon revolver
Leech & Rigdon revolver
Bugle
Bugle
“Battle between the Monitor and the Merrimack”
“Battle between the Monitor and the Merrim
Elizabeth Van Lew
Elizabeth Van Lew
Window from Libby Prison
Window from Libby Prison
“Richmond across the Canal Basin Showing Ruined Buildings, Capitol in Distance, April, 1865,”
“Richmond across the Canal Basin Showing R