Visit Botetourt County and the Historical Museum

August 20, 2014


Botetourt County was created by an act of the Virginia House of Burgesses in 1769. It is named after popular governor Lord Botetourt, who was regarded as the best of Governors and best of men. When it was first established, the county extended from its gateway at the southern end of the Shenandoah Valley to the Mississippi River, and covered all or parts of seven present day states.

Early travelers (mostly Scots-Irish, and then Germans), following the Great Road, settled in the fertile valleys and hills. Descendants of many of these early families still live in the county.

The county seat of Fincastle was established in 1772 along a crossroad of the Great Road. The town of Pattonsburg (near present day Buchanan) was established in 1788 along the James River.

Botetourt County Historical Museum
In Fincastle, you will find the Botetourt County Historical Museum, housed in a building dating back to the late eighteenth century. Its past includes being a law office in 1791, to being part of the Western Hotel in the 1850s. This museum serves as a repository for hundreds of artifacts that have helped to interpret the history of Botetourt County for thousands of visitors. The museum has been open since 1966 and has over 800 artifacts that can be viewed by visitors and residents alike. Open daily Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and Sunday from 2 – 4 p.m. For specific information about the museum, call 540.473.8394 or e-mail your inquiries to

To schedule a tour of Historic Fincastle, contact Historic Fincastle Inc. at 540.473.3077 or e-mail For additional Botetourt visitor itineraries, contact the Office of Tourism at 540.473.1167 or


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