Survey of Early Virginia Road Stones, Milestones and Related Objects

Project No: 91418

Target Completion Date: June 29, 2009 Environment, Planning, and Economics

About the project:

A 1738 Virginia law required all crossroads be marked with directional signposts. Early signs were usually made of wood, but by the early 1800s, a number of Virginia roads featured more permanent directional signs and mileposts made of stone. A few 20th-century markers were rendered in concrete.  Use of these markers died out around the 1920s when standardized highway signs began to appear.  Early stone markers have been categorized under various names: road stones (a general term for both directional markers and milestones), sign rocks (bearing written inscriptions) and milestones (carved with a numeral showing mileage to a certain point). 

Previous VTRC field research identified more than three dozen early road stones and related features.  This project will compile this data into a single report, along with the historical background of these objects, to support Virginia’s cultural resource work.

Project Team

Principal Investigators

Last updated: July 5, 2023

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