Situated along the Scott-Morgan county line on S.R. 52, and bordering the Big South Fork National River & Recreation Area, Historic Rugby is a restored Victorian village founded in 1880 by British author and social reformer Thomas Hughes.
Rugby was designed to be a cooperative, class-free, agricultural community for the sons of English gentry and others looking to start life anew in America.
At its peak, more than 65 Victorian buildings and 300 townspeople made up the colony. Today, Rugby survives as a public historic site, unspoiled by modern development. Twenty of the original buildings remain, surrounded by rugged river gorges and historic trails.
Rugby has been open to the public since 1966 and is recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as one of the most authentically restored and preserved communities in America.
Things to do here
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Events at Historic Rugby include the Festival of British & Appalachian Culture in May, the Halloween Ghostly Gathering, and Christmas at Rugby. In addition, the Pilgrimage of Rugby Homes is held the first Saturday in September.
Visits to Rugby begin with a stop at the Rugby Visitor Centre and Theatre, which includes a 22-minute film — The Power of a Dream — on the history of Rugby. A guided walking tour includes stops at the 1882 Thomas Hughes Free Public Library, the 1884 Kingstone Lisle, the 1887 Christ Church Episcopal and the 1906 Schoolhouse.