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Salem, Va., makes an interesting side trip from Roanoke

Salem, Va., offers visitors to Roanoke a fascinating day trip.
BY SANDI DAVIS Published: May 19, 2013

Just east of Roanoke off Interstate 81 is a town long on history and big on Southern charm. Gen. Andrew Lewis, who helped found Salem in 1774, is buried there, but one can find statues of him at the George Washington Monument and in Richmond's Capitol Square.

The town is full of Victorian homes on the National Register of Historic Places but the best place to go to see the town's history is the Salem Museum. There is plenty of antique furniture, clothing and photographs. Each Halloween, “ghosts” from the cemeteries appear dressed as they were the last time they were on this side of the ground and give “Ghost Tours” of the graveyards. The day we visited, two gentlemen greeted us, each wearing a suit that would make Abraham Lincoln proud. The tours are held the week before Halloween and are a big hit in town.

Salem is also home to many softball tournaments and the NCAA Division III Football Championship Game is played every December. The Boston Red Sox have a Grade A team playing here in the Carolina League.

Salem is understandably proud of its 1,400 hotel rooms, a large number for a town that size. It makes the decision to spend some time there an easy one.


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