Raphine, Virginia

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Unincorporated community
A picturesque scene in Raphine, Virginia
A picturesque scene in Raphine, Virginia
Raphine is located in Virginia
Raphine is located in the US
Location within the state of Virginia
Coordinates: 37°56′14″N 79°13′58″W / 37.93722°N 79.23278°W / 37.93722; -79.23278Coordinates: 37°56′14″N 79°13′58″W / 37.93722°N 79.23278°W / 37.93722; -79.23278
Country United States
State Virginia
County Rockbridge
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)

Raphine is an unincorporated community in Rockbridge County in the Shenandoah Valley in the U.S. state of Virginia.[1]


The name "Raphine" came from an old Greek word "raphis", meaning "to sew." It was chosen in honor of James Edward Allen Gibbs (1829-1902), a local farmer who patented the first chain-stitch single-thread sewing machine on June 2, 1857. In partnership with James Wilcox, Gibbs became a principal in Wilcox & Gibbs Sewing Machine Company. Wilcox & Gibbs commercial sewing machines are still made and used in the 21st century.

Nearby, the McCormick family farm, Walnut Grove, was the home of Cyrus McCormick (1809-1884). He became famous as the inventor of the mechanical reaper in 1831. He moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1847, and was the founder, with his brother Leander, of the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company which became part of International Harvester Corporation in 1902. The McCormick farm became a test farm for Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (better known as "Virginia Tech").

In addition to Walnut Grove, the Kennedy-Lunsford Farm and Kennedy-Wade Mill are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[2]

Christopher Young, an accomplished student and Subway employee, is a notable resident of Raphine. He was also the first place winner of "Ugliest Humans of America," and is slated to compete in the global competition in June of 2017.


  • The Rockbridge Advocate (monthly magazine)
  • The News-Gazette (weekly newspaper)
  • Rockbridge Weekly (weekly newspaper)


External links[edit]

Local Attractions: