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Carter Family Memorial Music Center

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1979 founded. A. P. Carter Hwy. at VA 691
  • Carter Store

This complex of buildings includes the former Carter store (1943) that is now the Carter Family Museum, the log cabin (1880s) where A. P. Carter was born and that was moved here in 2004 from its original location, and the Carter Fold (1970s), a music and dance venue. A. P. and Sara Carter were musicians and collectors of country music. From his youth, A. P. collected traditional songs and folk tunes of the region, either performing them in their original form or reworking them in his own style. Beginning with their audition for the Victor Talking Machine Company in 1927 and ending in 1942, A. P., Sara, and their sister-in-law Maybelle Carter recorded about three hundred songs, ballads, and gospel hymns, thus contributing to the birth of the country music recording industry. Through the 1950s and 1960s, members of the family continued their musical career. After A. P.'s death in 1960, his daughter, Janette, used the former store for “Old Time Music” shows from 1974 until 1976 when the performing hall called the Carter Fold was built next door. Carter, who trained as a carpenter, built the one-story frame store, which is unusual for its steeply pitched twin gables, one at each end of the facade. A central entrance, framed by sidelights and a transom, is sheltered by a shed-roofed porch with two turned wooden posts. He may have built other stores in Scott County since a few of the same design survive. A. P. and Sara are buried in the cemetery behind the nearby Mount Vernon United Methodist Church (VA 614 at VA 690).

Writing Credits

Anne Carter Lee


What's Nearby


Anne Carter Lee, "Carter Family Memorial Music Center", [Hiltons, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Virginia vol 2

Buildings of Virginia: Valley, Piedmont, Southside, and Southwest, Anne Carter Lee and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 498-499.

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