It was an Adventure Day--one of those days when we get in the truck and take turns saying "Take a left here" or "Let's go right at the next intersection." We left our campground in Wytheville (VA) and stopped at the intersection of US 460 and State Route 100. Welcome to Pearisburg...sort of.
One of the first items that caught our attention was the poster
"warning" that "The Yankees are Coming." Upon closer inspection, the impending invasion referred to a Civil War reenactment of the Battle of Giles Court House scheduled for the second weekend in June.
"The original name of this town was Giles Court House,...established when Capt. George Pearis donated 53 acres in 1806."
Standing at the town's main intersection, we were drawn to the Giles County Courthouse. "In 1836, the stately brick courthouse still in use replaced the stone courthouse today. In 1854, the name of the town was changed from Giles Court House to Pearisburg in honor of George Pearis.
"In 1992, the historic district of Pearisburg was listed as a National Registry Community. The Giles County Courthouse (below) is one of
the oldest and finest buildings in Southwest Virginia and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register.
"Nearby stands the 1829 Andrew Johnston House, a Federal-style brick house," built in 1829 and believed to be the oldest brick home in Giles County. Today it also houses the Giles County Historical Society" (pearisburg.org).
Looking up Wenonah Avenue (in the opposite direction from photo #2), we could see Pearis Mountain in the background.
On the corner opposite the Courthouse, is The Bank (below). "In 1906, The First National Bank of Pearisburg purchased the bank, which served as a community bank and landmark until 1959.... In 2005, Linda and Lynn Hayes purchased the rock-faced concrete structure of Romanesque design and opened The Bank--Food and Drink.
"The exterior has been preserved in its original state, thus making the building a significant component of the original 18 buildings in downtown Pearisburg placed on the National Register of Historic Places" (thebank foodanddrink.com).
The original bank's burglar alarm still occupies a position of prominence on the exterior of The Bank restaurant.
During our brief walk around town, we saw a number of cars and trucks traveling through town. Unfortunately, the operative word was "through." There was almost no pedestrian trafffic. The corner cafe was not open the day (Saturday) of our visit and The Bank is only open for dinner.
With few people to meet, we got back in the truck,
"turned right," and headed out of town, looking for a place down the road for lunch.