At the base of the Smith Mountain in Pittsylvania and Bedford
counties is the Smith Mountain Dam, built and operated by American
Electric Power (formerly Appalachian Power Company). The dam is part of a
pumped storage and hydroelectric development project that includes
Leesville Dam in Campbell and Pittsylvania counties.
Booker T. Washington Monument
Born a slave and deprived of any early education, Booker Taliaferro
Washington went on to become America's foremost black educator of the
early 20th Century. He was the first principal at the Tuskegee
Institute, where he championed vocational training as a means for black
self-reliance. A well-known orator, Washington also wrote a best-selling
autobiography and advised Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William
Taft on race relations.
The Blue Ridge Parkway
The Blue Ridge Parkway idea came out of the Great Depression as a way
to link Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains national parks by way of a
recreational motor road. It was constructed in segments, usually from
one major access point to another. Construction began in 1935 near the
North Carolina-Virginia border and ended with completion of the
section around Grandfather Mountain in 1987.
Natural Bridge inspired both reflection on God's supreme power and
curiosity about the science of nature. In its beautiful setting, one
that became increasingly accessible as civilization expanded westward,
the Bridge inspired countless renderings that provide not just pictures
of a bridge but the frame of reference for each artist. Taken as a
continuum, these renderings are fascinating glimpses into the
philosophy, art, technology, and culture of each time period.
June 6, 1944 D-Day Normandy coast of France, Largest air, land &
sea invasion ever undertaken. A Granite Arch Monument is inscribed with
the Allied Forces Code Name for D-Day "OVERLORD" on the 88 Acre Site
overlooking Bedford and direct views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Congress selected Bedford to be the home of the national memorial to
D-Day; the reason being that according to historians Bedford sustained
the highest per-capita loss from a single community.
Peaks of Otter
Peaks of Otter is formed by three mountains positioned in a
triangular pattern-Sharp Top Mountain (3,875 feet), Flat Top Mountain
(4,001 feet), and Harkening Hill (3,372 feet). A beautiful mountain lake
rests at the triangle's center. The Blue Ridge Parkway passes through
mountain passes and intersects with Virginia highway 43 at mile marker
85.9. The Appalachian Trail passes only a few miles to the North and can
be easily accessed via the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Peaks of Otter
wilderness area is truly one of the Blue Ridge Mountain's best-kept