The Virginia Room at Roanoke Public Libraries, in cooperation with community partners, invites you to share early pictures of Roanoke neighborhoods taken before 1975.With your help, we’ll create an online collection of the pictorial history of Roanoke from the Gainsboro and Northeast neighborhoods. Although these neighborhoods are our focus, we are also interested in photographs of other Roanoke neighborhoods which have undergone significant change over time.

Street names associated with the old Gainsboro and Northeast neighborhoods include, but are not limited to, the following:

Carver
Cherry
Chestnut
Clayton
Commonwealth
Diamond Hill
Douglas
East
Georgia
Gilmer
Gregory
Harrison
Hart
Henry
Kimball
Lincoln
Louisiana
Lynchburg
Madison
McDowell
Patton
Peach

Raleigh
Rockview
Rutherford
Walker
Wells

And numbered streets including 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th Streets.

The map below depicts the Gainsboro/Northeast neighborhoods as of the year 1930.

Criteria for Photographs:

  • Preferred photos include the exteriors of houses, neighborhood businesses, churches, and social and cultural buildings such as clubs and community centers.
  • Maximum size for photographs is 11” x 17”.
  • Scrapbooks may be considered depending on size and condition.
  • Photos will be digitally scanned and stored in a searchable database on the Virginia Room website, available for public viewing.
  • Original photographs will remain with the owner and digital copies will be provided to preserve your treasured photographs.

The Process:

Set an Appointment – Once you decide to share your photos, please call or email the Virginia Room to set an appointment to bring your photos to the Main Library at 706 S. Jefferson Street next to the Social Security Administration.

  • Sign a Consent Form – At the appointment, you will be asked to sign a consent form allowing the Library to scan and post your photos on the Library website.
  • Identify Your Photos – You may bring up to 25 pictures per visit. Bring only photos for which you can provide:
    • street name or address
    • name of the business or building, if other than a house
    • date (or at least the year) the photograph was taken
  • On the Spot Processing – Your photos will be scanned while you wait and you’ll leave with your originals and digital copies of all photos selected for use in this project.

Gainsboro and Northeast Neighborhoods, Roanoke Virginia
Compiled from 1930 Sanborn Maps
(click on map to see larger version)