Feature Exhibits

Reopening February 22
The Other Side of the Mountain: Life in the Catawba Valley
Through April 9

The Salem Museum announces its newest feature exhibit, The Other Side of the Mountain: Life in the Catawba Valley. Based on the popular book series Echoes From Catawba by the Rev. Ted Carroll, this exhibit explores everyday life beginning with the Virginia Indians who first settled in Catawba; the culture that developed in the largely agrarian community; the stunning scenery—Dragon’s Tooth and McAfee Knob; and the modern institutions that have formed there. This exhibit will continue through March, 2022. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 10-4. Masks are recommended for all visitors and required for those who are unvaccinated or attending with a group.

The Salem Museum thanks the following for making this exhibit possible: Rev. Ted Carroll and Tina Carroll; The Honorable Martha B. Hooker, Roanoke County, VA Board of Supervisors– Catawba Magisterial District; Roanoke County, VA –Geographic Information Systems Department; Roanoke County, VA – Richard Caywood, Gray Craig, and Darren Jones; Historical Society of Western Virginia; Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club—Diana Christopulos, Tim Lewis, and Bill Neilan; Marian McConnell, Murder Hole Cave; and the Catawba Sustainability Center.

Reopening on February 22:
Celebrating local author Cece Bell and her new AppleTV series!

Congratulations to Cece Bell, author of the beloved #1 New York Times bestselling and Newbery Honor winning graphic novel, El Deafo, which has been adapted into a television series for AppleTV! Learn more about Bell and her book in a newly installed exhibit at the Salem Museum. The exhibit describes her early life growing up in Salem with her family. The display also includes examples of her art and a message from the author about what inspired her to write the book.

El Deafo is about Bell’s experiences growing up deaf in Salem in the 1970s.  At the age of four, she lost her hearing and had to wear a “phonic ear,” a device she wore on her chest that connected to her hearing aids.  The novel’s main character, a cartoon bunny also named Cece, imagines that the phonic ear gives her super powers and so she calls herself El Deafo.  The story explores themes of friendship, first crushes, and fitting in, and how Cece experiences each of these as a deaf child.

Bell is a writer, executive producer, and narrator for the show. All three episodes premiered on AppleTV on January 7. Watch the trailer…