Winter Wonderland

Here are a few selections from our digital library of vintage photographs of Charlottesville (along with some others we have found in other libraries) that all capture the allure of freshly fallen snow. While few of us like to shovel it, work in it, or drive in it, it is hard to deny the beauty and pleasure of just looking at it!

So, snuggle-up with your warm laptop computer, put some holiday music on your iPod, and enjoy these hand-picked images of C’ville!

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This outstanding composition was taken by photographer Ed Roseberry early in his professional career at the Academical Village at UVA.

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Another from Ed Roseberry, this photograph shows a young UVA student waiting for his date outside McKim Hall at UVA.  Taken on a snowy evening in 1949.

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This photograph from the Daily Progress in 1960 shows Beck’s Hill, where High Street meets Preston Avenue. On the hill to the left you can see the upper floors of the Altamont Apartments. In the upper right you can just barely make out the steeple of the First United Methodist Church and the belfry of Christ Episcopal Church.


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Another image from the Daily Progress shows two women enjoying the heavy snowfall by building an igloo and snowman. C’ville Images has yet to determine the exact location of this photo but it was possibly taken in North Downtown Charlottesville. Dates to the 1959.  UPDATE: (12/26/13) Wandering the streets east of downtown Charlottesville, we were able to pinpoint this location in the 1100 block of E. Market Street. (See Google Street View image below).
E. Market St. housesThe house on the far right is where the women are in the above B&W image. The house seen in the middle here is the house most visible behind them. The properties were identified by elevation and by architectural details that are still intact 54 years later.

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An earlier photo, this one from the Holsinger Collection, shows the Lawn at UVA with the Rotunda in the distance and the Homer statue in the foreground. (An edited image. The original is in Special Collections, UVA Library)

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Another photograph courtesy Special Collections at UVA Library, this one was taken from the front porch of the historic home of Birdwood which still stands west of Charlottesville, just off Rt. 250.  Today, the Birdwood golf course surrounds this grand estate.

JC26FEB1950ChapelThis “winter wonderland” photograph was taken by law student James Crewdson, circa 1949-50. A Nitro, WV native, Crewdson captured a number of photographs during his time at the University of Virginia.  We are pleased to have his work in our digital library courtesy his granddaughter, Heather Griffith.

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Crewdson took several, now-rare photos including this wintry view of some of the temporary homes at Copeley Hill.  These trailers and other structures were used at the university to house World War II veterans and their young families.

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Another classic photo from Crewdson, this one shows Memorial Gym at UVA on a cold winter day.  The black smoke is from the coal-burning furnace.  In the middle-ground you can make out the reflecting pool that once sat on the east side of the building.  Part of the original design of Mem Gym, the pool would freeze over on cold winter days like this one, providing students and visitors with an ice rink.

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This photo shows The Dolley Madison Inn that once sat on West Main Street.  A newly- constructed high rise now stands on this spot. (Courtesy Preston Coiner)

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One last winter image from Ed Roseberry, taken from Montalto looking north toward the Southwest Mountains (which actually sit northeast of Charlottesville).  Monticello and the surrounding gardens can be seen here long before Interstate 64 cuts across the middle of this landscape.

img750Once a regular Christmas tradition in Lee Park, this creche had live animals and statues for the human figures. Local memories differ on whether this was always the arrangement although many remember the great excitement of the animals escaping the fenced in area and/or biting unsuspecting on-lookers.  Nevertheless, this was an annual holiday highlight for those C’ville citizens who recall the era.

The Roseberry photographs can be purchased through C’ville Images.  See more of the “Roseberry Collection” by linking through the navigation bar above. All other photos are used with permission.  All work copyrighted.  Please do not reproduce.

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