Virginia Room Digital Collection


The Virginia Room Digital Collection includes photographs, oral histories, books, pamphlets and finding aids to items in the Virginia Room. Continue to check back for new additions.

Browse Items (73 total)

Davis2 62.1342 Airmail Service.jpg
Local officials celebrate the inauguration of airmail service to Roanoke.

Davis2 62.152 Roanoke Regional Airport.jpg
A view of the terminal at Woodrum Field, now Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport.

Davis 62.124 Biplane.jpg
Clayton Lemon (left) and an unidentified man stand next to a Waco aircraft.

Davis 62.123 Biplane.jpg
An unidentified man poses next to a biplane at Roanoke Municipal Airfield.

RAC77 VANG Ad.tiff
An advertisement for the Rice Bottling Company depicting the Virginia Air National Guard Fighter Squadron.Organized in 1946, the Virginia Air National Guard flew the P-47 Thuderbolt.

RAC76 Woodrum Aerial2.jpg
A south-facing aerial view of Woodrum Field. In the upper left of this photo, Crossroads Mall can be seen under construction.

RAC75 Woodrum Aerial2.jpg
This west-facing photograph shows the configuration of runways. There is construction work at right, indicating the extension of runway 5/23. Still noticeable are the rural surroundings of Woodrum Field. Visible at the bottom is the internal road…

RAC74 Woodrum Aerial2.jpg
This aerial photograph shows the separation of private aviation (left) and commercial aviation at the front of the terminal. Note the layout of the new parking lot behind the terminal. More passengers began leaving their cars at the airport for…

RAC73 Control Tower2.jpg
The first freestanding control tower at Woodrum Field, completed in 1943, is seen here. The tower was critical to the airport's operations. In 1943, due to the training of Army and Navy pilots at Woodrum Field, the total number of official…

RAC72 Woodrum Field2.jpg
Roanoke Municipal Airport became Woodrum Field at a dedication ceremony on 13 October 1941. The new airport received a class 3-A rating and American Airlines reestablished passenger service, which had been abandoned in 1937.

RAC71 Marine Corps2.jpg
Aircraft from the Marine Corps Air Station at Cherry Point , North Carolina are lined up at Woodrum Field during the hurricane evacuation in September 1945.

RAC70 Piedmont Airlines copy.jpg
This unusual photograph illustrates the increased traffic of Piedmont Airlines in and out of Roanoke and the transition from propeller aircraft to jets. The prop aircraft landing is a Nihon YS-11; the aircraft at lower left is a Martin 4-0-4; and the…

RAC69 RRA Terminal2.jpg
Postcard depicting the current terminal at Roanoke-Blackburg Regional Airport. The terminal opened on 13 September 1989.

RAC67 Trussmark Field.jpg
The current Trussmark field in Salem. The field is located along the Roanoke River adjacent to an industrial complex. This was the early location for the Salem auxiliary field used by naval aviation cadets enrolled at Roanoke College. The shorter…

RAC66 Trussmark Field.jpg
The current Trussmark field in Salem. The field is located along the Roanoke River adjacent to an industrial complex. This was the early location for the Salem auxiliary field used by naval aviation cadets enrolled at Roanoke College. The shorter…

RAC65 RRA Tower.jpg
This photograph shows the control tower at Roanoke Regional Airport that wsa commissioned in 2004. The large hangar at left was built bby Piedmont Airlines in the 1960s, and the emergency services facility (foreground) was placed into service in…

RAC56 Air Show.jpg
George Mason, like many early aviators, conducted air shows as a means to both entertain and earn income. This undated poster promotes an air show at Moomaw Field in Elliston, Virginia, with Mason billed as the "Nationally Known Flying Salesman and…

RAC54 Landmark Aviation.jpg
This building houses the fixed-base operation (FBO) of Landmark Aviation at the Roanoke Regional Airport. FBOs have evolved from very simple operations to full-service onces that provide fuel, maintenance, pilot support services and more. The…

RAC53 Virginia Airmotive.jpg
This is an advertisement for Virginia Airmotive Service and Supply, a business owned and operated by W. Clayton Lemon at Woodrum Field. The aircraft are identified as a Beechcraft (left) and a Stinson (right).

RAC52 Terminal Snow2.jpg
The airport engages in regular winter activity for Southwestern Virginia, snow removal. In the early days of the airport, snow would cause major delays in operations, measured in days, not hours. In later years, airports, including Woodrum Field,…

RAC50 Woodrum Flying Service.jpg
An advertisement for Woodrum Flying Service, which offered flying lessons, charters, and rentals.

RAC49 USAF C97.jpg
This photograph shows a US Air Force Boeing C-97 Stratofreighter parked on the ramp at Woodrum Field. Only sixty of these planes were built. The Roanoke airport has been and remains important to the military subce World War II, either for training,…

RAC48 American Airlines.jpg
American Airlines restored air service, notably passenger and airmail, to Woodrum Field in the 1940s. This photograph appears to have been taken at Woodrum during World War II. The statement painted on the rudder of this DC-3 reads, "Buy War…

RAC47 Wind Indicator.jpg
This is a close-up view of the tetrahedron wind-direction indicator installed at Woodrum Field. The device allowed pilots to visually determine the wind direction prior to landing in order to choose the best runway. The device became obsolete as…

RAC45 Jeep Crash Truck.jpg
Seen here is a Jeep Forward Control crash truck that was added to the emergency fleet at Woodrum Field.

RAC44 Landmark Aviation.jpg
This photograph shows a privately owned, fully restored DC-3 being refueled by Landmark Aviation at Roanoke Regional Airport. The appearance of such a vintage aircraft in restored, flying condition has become increasingly rare with limited air shows…

RAC43 Playboy.jpg
This DC-9 was purchased by Hugh Heffner in 1970 as the Playboy airplane, known as Hare Force One.

RAC41 Fire Trucks.jpg
These huge vehicles represent the evolution of fire-fighting and emergency service equipment needed by airports as the number of flights increased and the size of the aircraft became larger. Both trucks are shown at Roanoke Regional Airport. They…

RAC39 Lifeguard2.jpg
A recent promotional photograph depicting Carillion Roanoke Memorial Lifeguard 10, 11 and 12 in front of Carillion Roanoke Memorial Hospital.

RAC38 Cook Field.jpg
This photograph shows the location of the Appalachian Power substation adjacent to the rail line where Cook Field was formerly located. Cook Field was leased by Frank Reynolds and Clayton Lemon to provide an airstrip for local fliers in the late…

RAC37 Civil Air Patrol.jpg
A Cessna 172, one of 500 Cessna aircraft owned by the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) is seen here. These aircraft are rotated periodically among active stations, including Roanoke Regional Airport. The CAP was established in 1941 to serve as a civilian…

RAC35 1967 Aerial.jpg
An aerial view of Woodrum Field. I-581 opened in 1965 and can been seen at left of the airport.

RAC32 Williamson Road.jpg
In this aerial photograph, Williamson Road runs along the left side. The small structure in the open space at center is the present-day location of Breckenridge Middle School, formerly William Fleming High School. In 1921, the federal government…

RAC31 Trout Field.jpg
Trout Field is directly in the center of this aerial photograph. Fairview Cemetery is the rectangular area at top with the teardrop-shaped driveway in its center. This view illustrates why a cemetery served as a good navigational point for early…

RAC30 Shrine Hill.jpg
This aerial photograph shows the area where Patrick Henry High School is located today. During the 1920s, the pasturelands served as an early airfield known as Shrine Field. The land was owned by the Shriners in hopes of erecting a large Masonic…

RAC29 Horton Field.jpg
This 1937 aerial photograph shows the location of Horton Field, which was on the Horton Farm near the present-day intersection of 24th Street and Melrose Avenue. It is believed that the first plane to land at Horton Field in 1919 was a barnstormer…

RAC26 Cannaday, Charles.jpg
This photo is of Charles "Chuck" Cannaday, grandson of Dr. A.A. Cannaday who once owned the land where the Roanoke Regional Airport is located today. He is pictured in his Pitts special "Cloud Dancer". This airplane was the star of the movie by the…

RAC25 Rotorway Executive.jpg
Warren and Hassie Gilbert are pictured beside their Rotorway Executive helicopter that was assembled by Warren Gilbert at their home. The aircraft was registered with the Federal Aviation Administration around the time this photo was taken.

RAC22 Stearman.jpg
A 1942 Stearman bi-plane is parked on the south ramp at Roanoke Regional Airport. The tower stands in the background. Restoration of these vintage planes has allowed new generations to relive aviation history. Such planes used to be seen regularly…

RAC21 Air Force One.jpg
Roanoke Regional Airport was host to this Boeing 757, and on that date the aircraft was designated as "Air Force One" because President Barack Obama was on board. Air Force One pilots have often used Roanoke Regional Airport as a site for "touch and…

RAC20 C-17 Globemaster.jpg
With Tinker Mountain as a backdrop, a C-17 Globemaster sits on the north ramp at Roanoke Regional Airport. This aircraft, one of the US Air Force's largest transport planes, has significant operational flexibility.

RAC18 Woodrum Field.jpg
The main facilities at Woodrum Field are seen here as they existed during much of the 1940s. From left to right are Clayton Lemon's hangar, the hangar leased to Martin O'Brien Flying Service (which trained naval cadets until 1944), the terminal…

RAC16 Terminal Construction.jpg
Starting in the fall of 1950, construction began on the first modern terminal facility at Woodrum Field. It was designed to house commercial air service, administrative functions and government services such as weather and air-traffic control. …

RAC14 Woodrum Field.jpg
This photograph was taken three days before the dedication and renaming of Roanoke Municipal Airport to Woodrum Field. The airport is receiving a final inspection, having just undergone a $400,000 multifaceted construction project as a WPA Certified…

RAC13 Hillman, Wes.jpg
Wes Hillman sits in his Waco "F" in front of the terminal at Woodrum Field. At left is a Pan American DC-4 (most likely a charter, as Pan Am did not serve Roanoke). A Piedmont Airlines DC-3 can be seen in the distance at right.

RAC12 Piedmont Airlines.jpg
January 1967 saw the introduction of the Boeing 727 by Piedmont Airlines to its routes. The first 727 to visit Woodrum Field is seen here. Just a few months earlier, in November 1966, Piedmont Airlines had opened routes through Roanoke to New York.…

RAC11 Woodrum Field.jpg
The progress made at Woodrum Field is seen here in 1971. Among the facilities shown are the terminal dedicated in 1953, the nose-in hangar (left of center, top), general aviation hangars and the service hangar for Piedmont Airlines (upper right).…

RAC10 Airport Terminal.jpg
Customers at Woodrum Field pose in front of the soon-to-be-demolished terminal building. Shown here, from left are Mike Davis, June Carr, Parker Smith (behind the scope), Lou Urquhart, and Jo Hambrick. Note the American Airlines and Piedmont logos…

RAC9 Airport Dedication.jpg
Many types of military aircraft were present in Roanoke at the dedication of the airport. Among them were the Douglas B-23 Dragon (left) and the Douglas B-18 (right).

RAC8 First Flight.jpg
The first flight of an aeroplane in the Roanoke Valley occurred at the Great Roanoke Fair, when aviator Eugene Ely flew his Curtiss Pusher biplane from a hill in South Roanoke. Ely flew across the Roanoke River and circled the fairgrounds, where he…

RAC7 Lemon, Clayton.jpg
This image shows Clayton Lemon standing in front of the hangar that housed his company, Virginia Airmotive, at the time. Lemon was one of the first pilots in Roanoke to fully understand the "business" of aviation and had a long career at Woodrum…

RAC4 Woodrum, Martha.jpg
Martha Anne Woodrum displays her trophy for winning a trancontinental air race in 1950. She and her Beechcraft Bonanza were sponsered by Johnson-Carper Furniture of Roanoke.

RAC1 Mason, George H.jpg
An early Roanoke aviator who used flight for commercial success was George H. Mason, shown here in 1929 with his Waco. Mason sold textbooks throughout Virginia, the Carolinas, George and Florida. He would circle a town, drawing attention, and then…

Davis 62.17 Roanoke Municipal Airfield.jpg
Mayor Sidney F. Small (left) and pilot B.A. Carpenter at the inauguration of Roanoke's passenger air service by American Airlines.

Davis 62.1 Modern Air Transport.jpg
Modern Air Transport plane parked at Woodrum Field. Modern Are Transport commenced commerical operations in 1946.
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