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Reston in Fairfax County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Sunset Hills Station
 
Sunset Hills Station Marker Photo, Click for full size
By Craig Swain, November 19, 2009
1. Sunset Hills Station Marker
 
Inscription. Sunset Hills Station, shown below in the 1960s, stands as a reminder that today's Reston was not the first "new town" to be planned for this area. In 1886 Dr. Carl Wiehle bought a large parcel of land north and south of the railroad tracks. He intended to establish a utopian community, a popular concept in the 19th century. Lakes were dug, roads laid out, and buildings constructed - including a large mansion and the gazebo shown here. Wiehle died in 1901, his vision never fulfilled.

A lumber business opened, taking advantage of the railroad and nearby stand of trees. Much of the property was acquired by A. Smith Bowman in 1927. In 1934, with the repeal of Prohibition, Bowman built a distillery north of the railroad. The Wiehle family home became the part of the 7,200-acre Bowman estate, "Sunset Hills."
 
Erected by The Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park - Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Washington and Old Dominion Railroad marker series.
 
Location. 38° 57.333′ N, 77° 21.082′ W. Marker is in Reston, Virginia, in Fairfax County. Marker is on Old Reston Avenue, on the right when traveling north. Click for map. Located at the Sunset Hills Station trail stop. Marker is in this post office area: Reston VA 20190, United States of America.
 
Sunset Hills Station Marker Photo, Click for full size
By Craig Swain, November 19, 2009
2. Sunset Hills Station Marker
 

 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Train Wrecks (within shouting distance of this marker); The Rail Strike of 1916 (approx. 2 miles away); Mosby’s Herndon Station Raid (approx. 2.1 miles away); Herndon Station (approx. 2.1 miles away); Tracks Into History (approx. 2.1 miles away); Acetylene Gas Generating Station (approx. 2.1 miles away); Cartersville Baptist Church (approx. 2.3 miles away); Laura Ratcliffe (approx. 2.7 miles away).
 
More about this marker. The background of the marker is a photo of a train stopping at the Sunset Hills Station in 1967. A small inset photo on the upper right is captioned Lumber mill buildings were converted to warehouse for the Bowman distillery. It continued to operate at Sunset Hills until 1986, when it moved to Fredericksburg, Virginia.
 
Also see . . .  W & OD Railroad. Wikipedia article offering a wealth of detail about the railroad line. (Submitted on December 3, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Sunset Hills Station Today Photo, Click for full size
By Craig Swain, November 19, 2009
3. Sunset Hills Station Today
The gazebo mentioned on the marker stands behind the trees, just off the trail.
 
 
Informational Wayside at Sunset Hills Photo, Click for full size
By Craig Swain, November 19, 2009
4. Informational Wayside at Sunset Hills
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on December 3, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,205 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 3, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.
 
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