By now Im sure youve seen the WV Historical Marker thread. Its been pretty popular, so I figured, why let the WV folks have all the fun? So now its our turn! Announcing the latest excuse to cast your responsibilities aside and go for a ride VA Historical Markers Lets Find all 2200 of Them! Here is a brief background of the Historical Marker Program as noted on their website: <st1:state w:st="on"><st1lace w:st="on">Virginia</st1lace></st1:state>'s historical marker program is one of the oldest such programs in the nation. It began in 1927 when the first highway markers were erected along <st1:country-region w:st="on">U.S.</st1:country-region> 1 between <st1:city w:st="on">Richmond</st1:city> and <st1lace w:st="on"><st1:state w:st="on">Mount Vernon</st1:state></st1lace>. The program has remained extremely popular ever since. By 1934, for instance, roughly 1,200 markers had been installed along state roadways and, significantly during this time, pull-off areas were created so motorists could actually stop to read the texts at their leisure. <st1:state w:st="on"><st1lace w:st="on">Virginia</st1lace></st1:state>'s marker program has served as a model for many other states. Moreover, for 80 years now, the <st1lace w:st="on"><st1lacetype w:st="on">Commonwealth</st1lacetype> of <st1lacename w:st="on">Virginia</st1lacename></st1lace> has continually erected new markers, except for a brief period of cessation during World War II. <o></o> The purpose of this quest is for us to gather photos and a brief footnote on all of the markers. There should be about 2200+ of them out there. Note that the exact count is not easily determined because the state is fairly slow in adding entries into their database to reflect newly-erected markers. For example, the Ira Noel Gabrielson marker has been in place for about 2 years and its still not in the states database. Guidelines: 1) Only photos of the rectangular metal signs with the state insignia on the top. You know the ones Im talking about. (See example below) Please, no funny/cute signs or ads. 2) For each sign, please post at least 2 photos: 1) a close-up photo of the sign, sized large enough to read the sign. (If the sign's back is different than the front, post a pic of both.) 2) A wider shot of the sign showing the area around the sign and your bike. (After all, thats why were here, right?) Also, if the marker describes a thing, give us a picture of the thing, whether it be a building, a river, or a battlefield. Even if the thing is a couple of miles away. (After all, you're out to ride anyway, right?) Feel free to include a couple of other photos that go along with the signs topic. Three to five photos should generally be the limit, unless there are multiple parts of the attraction. 3) The location of the sign, especially if for some reason its not located where the states records indicate. 4) If you like, give us a write-up on the sign, whether its additional historical info on the topic or a personal reflection. However, lets avoid controversial or inflammatory discussions. 5) No file photos. After all, this is an excuse to get out and ride! Announcements: 6/5/11: I have added data to the spreadsheet that should enable you to create a POI file for uploading into your GPS. See this post for details. 5/8/11: I'm back. Thanks E0D3MC for taking over while I was away. 8/15/10: E0D3MC has volunteered to take over spreadsheet updates for a while. See you after football season. 6/24/10: The link to the spreadsheet is working again. 6/23/10: I just uploaded the latest version of the spreadsheet to gdocs but when I click on the link below to open it, I get a 404 error. I will try again later to see if the problem goes away or I can upload again. 6/23/10: I haven't heard anything more from the State about them giving me data for the gmap. At this point, it's dead. 6/9/10: We're off to a great start! However, maybe we should slow down a little and provide more pics/info for each marker.The markers aren't going anywhere. See post # 287 (page 20) for more details. 6/4/10: Check out the new and improved Spreadsheet! The state sent me a list of all of the markers and I have updated it to reflect our visits. In addition to the list, there's now a Numbers tab which documents how many markers each inmate has visited. Alas, the list the state sent me excludes some of the markers we've visited, and more surprisingly, excludes some markers on their own Website. Also, I just learned from my POC at the State that their Website hasn't been updated in a couple of years. Thus, there are markers in the new spreadsheet that don't appear on the State's Website. The latest on the Map: I'm working with the state to get their map data so I can hopefully solve the map problem. Until I do so, I'm not going to update the map any further. 6/2/10: It looks like the map is only displaying 1000 of the HMs. This appears to be due to a technical limitation. If anyone has any ideas on a work-around, PM me. There are certainly some options such as splitting things up into multiple maps. I will explore these options. 5/24/10: I added to the guidelines, the following line: (If the sign's back is different than the front, post a pic of both.) This will be especially true of Z-series signs, which are located at county borders. Each side of the sign describes a different county. We'd like to see both sides! Resources: The ADV Rider VA Historical Markers Spreadsheet This is an Excel file that we will use to track which markers have been visited and by who. Use the filter buttons at the top of each column to filter on such things as County, Visitor, etc. You can also sort the list as you see fit. In addition to the list, there's now a Numbers tab which documents how many markers each inmate has visited. (Let the competition begin.) I will do my best to keep the Map & Spreadsheet up-to-date. However, when in doubt, check the most recent posts in the thread to ensure youre not bruced. The states Virginia Historical Highway Markers website. Here you can search for the Markers by Zip code, County, City, etc. The search results include a Google Map showing the location of the markers. However, note that the Website hasn't been updated in a couple of years and thus is incomplete. The book: A Guidebook to <st1:state w:st="on"><st1lace w:st="on">Virginia</st1lace></st1:state>s Historical Markers: Third Edition Acknowledgements : Thanks to the following inmates for help in getting this going: Pnoman The originator of the WV HM thread. Thanks for the advice and spreadsheet. mnd Gave me a lot of help putting together the gmap by working some voodoo on the states database and educating me on some of the finer points of google maps. vatrader01 Has pledged his support to help keep this lengthy project going.