- Provide historical programs for members and the community. Recent, well-attended programs have focused on topics such as the Claudius Crozet Blue Ridge Tunnel Project, Remembering Gladstone, and Michael Kranish’s book Flight from Monticello: Thomas Jefferson at War.
- Organize historic house and property tours. In the spring of 2013, the tour featured Woodson’s Mill, The Rock House (Rose Mill Road), Oakland Museum, Trinity Church, the Old Arrington School, and Inglewood Lavender Farm.
- Publish quarterly newsletters. Distributed to all members, these newsletters highlight upcoming programs and contain articles of historical interest.
- Maintain historical society files in the Nelson Memorial Library. Many of these files are available to the public whenever the Library is open.
- Respond to genealogy and other research requests. The Research and Collections Committee meets every Wednesday afternoon to help researchers and to respond to inquiries.
- Support historic preservation in the county. In recent years, the Society has contributed financially to the report on the rehabilitation of the ca. 1824 jail designed by Thomas Jefferson and assisted with research relating to the architectural survey of historic resources of the Norwood-Wingina area.
- Support historical projects in Nelson County. For example, members of the Society board worked with members of the Board of Supervisors and others to develop an exhibit on the Courthouse for the new Courthouse entrance.
- Work with Oakland – Nelson County’s Museum of Rural History. The Society owns the property on which the museum is located and appoints at least half of the museum’s board. The two organizations share many of the same board members and cooperate in numerous ways.