The cultural acropolis of Richmond, the Boulevard had its origins in the plan of the Fan district. In the 1880s the Commonwealth of Virginia acquired a tract of land for a Confederate veterans' home, to be known as the R. E. Lee Camp. In 1891 city engineer Wilfred Emory Cutshaw laid out a grand, 100-foot-wide boulevard that extended from West Broad Street on the north to the center of New Reservoir (now Byrd) Park on the south. Not until after 1910 did any appreciable building get underway. When it did begin, it took the form of speculative town houses, luxury apartment buildings, and cultural institutions. These structures went up a block at a time, and by 1930 the development was largely complete. The cottages of the veterans' home eventually gave way to institutions, including the Confederate Memorial Institute (now the Virginia Historical Society), the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and United Daughters of the Confederacy.
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