Langley AFB, VA MuseumsThere are several Virginia Peninsula historical military locations from the Revolutionary War and Civil War, and more fairly nearby, including Fort Monroe, Fort Wool, Fort Story, and several historic battles, most famously the Battle of Hampton Roads. The Revolutionary War Yorktown Campaign, ending with the ultimate clash of the War, the Battle of Yorktown, was fought in this area. The Civil War Peninsula Campaign was also fought in the area, including another Battle of Yorktown.
This area is also the site of some of the oldest colonial settlements in the USA, including Jamestown, Elizabeth City (now Hampton), Newport News, and Williamsburg, as well as many other settlements now part of other cities.
Virginia Lighthouses: Virginia has many miles of coast, with lots of navigational hazards, and historically has had a large number of lighthouses. Someone looking for a road trip or photographing project should be able to find plenty of lighthouses on wind-swept coast with a little web research.
Emancipation Oak is an oak tree, now on the grounds of Hampton University, where slaves would once gather for illegal night classes. Escaping slaves would gather here during the Civil War to flee to Union safety. It's also where many of the local slaves first heard a public reading of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Hampton Museums cover many different subjects, from general history, to specific periods or subjects.
Air Power Park is a park, monument, and museum focusing on Virginia's role in air and space technology, history, and development. The museum has several rooms with exhibits on aircraft, aviation, NASA, and different historical periods. There are also several aircraft and rockets on display in the open park.
The Virginia Air and Space Center is a museum in downtown Hampton focused on, um, air and space technology exploration, and is the visitor's center for NASA's Langley Space Center. The Center has extensive displays of airplanes, jets, weapons, and spacecraft systems and training craft. The Center has a full sized replica of the Wright Flyer, actual World War Two aircraft, real and replica lunar landing craft, and examples from all eras of aviation history.
The Hampton History Museum is a general history museum in downtown Hampton, with some emphasis on the Civil War period, and of course mainly concerned with history in the city itself.
The Mariner's Museum is a large, general maritime history museum in Newport News. It has an extensive collection of artifacts and displays on nautical subjects from the age of sail through to modern ocean shipping, including ship parts and parts of the USS Monitor, as well as a full sized replica.
Nauticus is a large museum and science center in Norfolk, educating on ocean life and maritime history. Exhibits include displays on the local seaports, historical displays, submersibles and deep sea exploration, several marine biology exhibits, the battleship USS Wisconsin. The museum also hosts camps and other educational activities. The Hampton Roads Maritime Museum is on the same site, dedicated to the history of the US Navy in the Hampton Roads area, with emphasis on specific periods from the American Revolutionary War to the end of the Cold War.
The Virginia War Museum, in Newport News, is a general US Armed Forces military history museum from Revolutionary times to the present, including a collection of tanks, cannon and other artillery, uniforms, historic rifles, women at war, and posters, plus a dedicated archive.
The Hampton University Museum focuses on native art from around the world, with an emphasis on African, Asian, Native American, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, and African-American art and fine art. It is located on the Hampton University campus, in the Huntington Building.