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Virginia Craftsmen Ledgers

Identifier: SC 0229
  • Not requestable

  • Staff Only

Scope and Content

The Virginia Craftsmen Ledgers, 1938-1955, consist of disbound ledger pages documenting the business activities of Virginia Craftsmen. Each page serves as a record of how many and what type of item was bought, the buyer of the item, and where the item was shipped. The collection is arranged chronologically.


  • Creation: 1938-1955


Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the James Madison University Special Collections Library to use this collection.

Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have been transferred to the James Madison University Special Collections Library. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library Reference Desk (

Administrative History

Founded in 1927 by Walter Zirkle Sr. (1896-1984), Virginia Craftsmen manufactures and supplies handmade, reproduction eighteenth-century style furniture. They have provided furniture to Monticello, Colonial Williamsburg, the Rotunda at the University of Virginia, and other historical sites. They originally operated out of Harrisonburg, Virginia, with a show room in the Craft House on the corner of S. Main St. and E. Bruce St. Virginia Craftsmen still makes furniture, but they are now located in Hinton, Virginia. Their Harrisonburg show room is located in the Hardesty-Higgens House (formerly known as the Craft House). Carrier Library is in possession of multiple chairs made by Virginia Craftsmen.


2.64 cubic feet (8 boxes)

Language of Materials



Ledger pages documenting the business activities of Virginia Craftsmen of Harrisonburg, Virginia.


The collection is arranged chronologically.


The former director of the Massanutten Regional Library pulled the records from the Craft House in downtown Harrisonburg (corner of S. Main St. and Bruce St.) before it underwent renovation.

Acquisition Information

The ledgers were donated in March 2012 by Susan Versen, Head of Reference at Massanutten Regional Library.


  • "Our History: The History of Virginia Craftsmen," Virginia Craftsmen., (accessed January 25, 2019).

Processing Information

The bound ledgers were found in the mud in the Craft House building, so the covers of the ledgers needed to be cleaned prior to processing. After the ledgers had been cleaned with a preservation grade HEPA vacuum, the records were cut from the binding and the binding was discarded. Some of the pages were wrinkled, so a humidification process was used to flatten them. Lastly, the pages that were severely damaged were photocopied and the originals were discarded.

Prior to disbinding, the ledgers were bound according to the following chronological arrangement: December 1938-Miscellaneous, February 1940-January 1942, April 1947-June 1948, July 1948-June 1949, October 1950-October 1951, November 1951-October 1952, November 1952-October 1953, November 1953-December 1954, January 1955-December 1955.

In order to streamline the process of applying collection numbers, Special Collections staff completed a large-scale renumbering campaign in 2017-2018. This collection was previously cataloged as SC 5061. At this time, the collection was rehoused and consolidated.

A Guide to the Virginia Craftsmen Ledgers, 1938-1955
Peter Watt
July 2013
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the James Madison University Libraries Special Collections Repository

820 Madison Drive
MSC 1706
Harrisonburg Virginia 22807
(540) 568-3612