The inventiveness of the 20th century left us with many viable, yet overlooked, genius brands. One such brand is the Heatilator, a fireplace heating system that gets more efficiency and safety out of the fireplace. Heatilator was created in 1927, and it was a simple idea of making a castMORE HERE

PETERSBURG, Va. –  For those who love writing instruments, the restoration of the identity of a pen company is welcome. In Petersburg, Virginia, right on the main drag, the Remmie Arnold pen sign has been a key landmark in that historic Virginia city. I have a personal interest in it,MORE HERE

RICHMOND – We hear that the much beloved Richfood store brand is disappearing. Richfood was, for most of the 20th century, the dominant grocery name in Virginia; its dairy complex along I-95 in Richmond promoted ubiquitous Richfood milk to anyone driving up and down the East Coast. A friend inMORE HERE

MATHEWS, Va. – For brand archaeologists, the best dig site is Cracker Barrel. They are fascinating museums of America’s business history, not to mention their gift shops filled with old-time brands. Here pictured in a restaurant near Jacksonville, Florida are cans of Tidewater Long Wearing Motor Oil. We thank CatesbyMORE HERE

Israel does it. Virginia does it. Britain does it. Italy does it. They even do it on Marco Island, where old native Calusa artifacts helps to define an image of the city, and the Southwest Florida kingdom that they used to rule. It’s archeology, and it’s a very under-used weaponMORE HERE

One of the oldest extant American tobacco brands is Dill’s. J.G. Dill was once a great Virginia tobacco company, known worldwide for its Dill’s Best pipe tobacco. While as far as we know the tobacco brand Dill’s does not survive, Dill’s Premium Pipe Cleaners, known by their yellow and redMORE HERE

GOOCHLAND, VA – There aren’t too many drive-ins left, but some thrive. We can think specifically of Hull’s Drive In of Lexington, Virginia, where a community comes together summer nights to watch movies in their car. Hull’s almost closed, but the community rallied round, and saved the theater. There areMORE HERE