Home >> Encyclopedia Americana, Volume 8 >> Dance Of Death to Dean >> Danville


city, river, street and time

DANVILLE, Va., city and county-seat of Pittsylvania County, on the Dan River, 140 miles southeast of Richmond, on the Danville and Western and the Southern railroads. One of the oldest cities in the South; incorporated as a town in 1792. For a short time during the last days of the Southern it was the seat of government. It is located in the famous and picturesque Piedmont section of Virginia, on a gradual slope extending from the river to an altitude of 600 feet above the sea. The river furnishes power for the cotton-mills, flour-mills, foundry, ice factory and electric light plant; and further development of its water power has been made about three miles up the river, at an estimated cost of $2,000,000. Danville is the largest loose tobacco market in the world, her average annual sales being 50, 000,000 pounds. The surrounding country is well adapted to grain, fruits and tobacco. The improvements in public utilities within the past few years include larger water mains in the down-town district (16-inch) and additional fire engines at a cost of $23,000; Main street repaved with Belgian block and Mack brick, $100,000; Craghead street, same material, $24, 500, and several other less important streets paved with cobble. Further extension of the sewerage system from time to time as the growth of the city requires; new electric-light plant owned by city, with new $5,000 incan descent machine, furnishing lights for streets, business and dwelling houses; electric railway system rebuilt at a cost of about $320,000, first class equipment, double track on Main street, about eight miles of track, new power-house, with double set of dynamos and engines. The

Southern Bell Telephone and Telegraph Com pany has expended about $313,000 in improve ments, and the growth of their business has been such as to require additional accommoda tions. Danville is the seat of Roanoke Female College (Baptist), established 1859, Randolph Macon Institute for Young Ladies (Methodist), founded in 1883, and Danville Military Insti tute, established in 1890. The climate of the city is mild and pleasing, the streets well shaded and paved, and as a residential city it is excelkd by few locations in the South. There are many new public buildings, churches and schools; a general hospital recently enlarged and fitted with the latest improvements, seven banks one national, five State and one private and two daily newspapers. Under the new constitu tion of the State the municipal government is administered by a mayor, elected quadrennially, and a city council, composed of two branches having different numbers, which controls ap pointments to most of the administrative offices. The waterworks, electric light and gas plants are owned and operated by the municipality. Pop. 19,020.