O. Winston Link Museum


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In a Nutshell

Seven galleries trace photographer Link's documentation of steam-powered rail; students study street photography before creating their own

The Fine Print

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Museums instill wonder in children who have become bored with their own closets full of skeletons. Discover a body of knowledge with this Groupon.

Choose from Three Options

  • $5 for museum admission for two (up to a $10 value)
  • $8 for museum admission for two adults and two children (up to an $18 value)
  • $12 for a street photography workshop on Saturday, April 27, from 10 a.m. to noon (a $25 value)

During a photography workshop, budding shutterbugs study examples of street photography before heading out onto the streets of Roanoke to create their own images of historic buildings and well-dressed pigeons.

O. Winston Link Museum

While stationed on Long Island to conduct secret war research for the U.S. government during World War II, O. Winston Link started snapping photographs of the Long Island Railroad tracks behind his lab. Eager to capture large-scale railroad pictures at night, he built his own customized flash equipment. After the war, Link harnessed that creative curiosity by spending five years photographing the Norfolk and Western Railway, the last large steam-powered American railroad. From his 20 trips to the railway's tracks in four states, Link collected 2,400 pictures.

His work didn't garner attention until the 1980s, when he published his first collection of railroad photos in the lauded book Steam, Steel & Stars. The West Virginia Historical Society continues to preserve his legacy with the O. Winston Link Museum, which showcases Link's Norfolk and Western project while filling in its historical context. Throughout seven galleries, patrons hear the sounds of bustling locomotive engines, adjust the lighting of an interactive diorama's photograph, and ogle Link's original photographic equipment, including flashbulbs, power boxes, and super power boxes. The museum underscores its edifying galleries with a plentitude of tours, workshops, and ongoing photography programs.

Merchant Location Map
  1. 1


    101 Shenandoah Ave

    Roanoke, VA 24016


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