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Charles City County Virginia Historical Markers

 
America’s 3rd Oldest Courthouse Marker image, Click for more information
By Bernard Fisher, March 28, 2009
America’s 3rd Oldest Courthouse Marker
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — America’s 3rd Oldest Courthouse
This courthouse has been used continuously for judicial purposes for more than 250 years — only two other courthouses in the entire country have a longer history. Built in 1757, almost 20 years before the beginning of the Revolutionary War, . . . — Map (db m17766) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — BarnettsCharles City County, Virginia
This community acquired its name from the Barnett family and was once a major commercial center for the western end of the county. The area has been served by the post offices of Bradley's Store (1879-1911) and Barnett's (est. 1911). At the time of . . . — Map (db m29154) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Benjamin Harrison
In this graveyard is buried Col. Benjamin Harrison, V December 13, 1730 April 24, 1791 Singer of the Declaration of Independence Member of Virginia House of Burgesses Continental Congress Federal Constitutional Convention . . . — Map (db m87114) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 7 — Berkeley and Harrison's Landing
A short distance south. The place was first settled in 1619 but was abandoned. It was repatented in 1636. Benjamin Harrison, signer of the Declaration of Independence, lived here; his son, William Henry Harrison, President of the United States, was . . . — Map (db m30225) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 7 — Berkeley Plantation or Harrison's Landing
A short distance south, it was first settled in 1619, when the first Thanksgiving was held here. The present mansion, built in 1726, was the birthplace of Benjamin Harrison, signer of the Declaration of Independence, and President William Henry . . . — Map (db m9284) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Binns HallCharles City County, Virginia
This community was named for the structure which housed the post office and dance hall, built in 1886 by O.P. Binns at the terminus of an old road that led to the Chickahominy River farms Cedar Forest, Cyprus Banks, the home of the Stubblefield . . . — Map (db m18593) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Blanks CrossroadsCharles City County, Virginia
This intersection of the Old Main Road, or Ridgepath, and the road from Soanes Bridge to Kennons, derives its name from an eighteenth-century tavern owned by the Blanks family. Blanks Tavern was one of a few licensed ordinaries in colonial Charles . . . — Map (db m17575) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Capt. John Woodliffe
From Prestwood, England At Jamestown 1608 First Governor of Berkeley Hundred Plantation 1619 Capt. John Woodlife and 38 settlers in the Ship "Margaret" landed here December 4, 1619 First Official Thanksgiving Day Service in . . . — Map (db m87116) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — 20 — Captain John Smith’s Trail on the JamesSouth Panel
(left panel) Gateways to Exploration Four centuries ago, English eyes searched this landscape for a place to build a fort. Three English ships: the Susan Constant, the Godspeed, and the Discovery had crossed the Atlantic and . . . — Map (db m89565) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — 20 — Captain John Smith’s Trail on the JamesNorth Panel
(left panel) Gateways to Conflict As the English began to establish settlements up river from Jamestown, they chose prime agricultural spots known as Indian fields that had been cleared and were still in use by the Natives. . . . — Map (db m89566) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V-11 — Charles City C. H.
In 1702 Charles City County, which then included both sides of James River, was divided; the courthouse here was built about 1730. Here Simcoe's British Cavalry surprised a party of militia, January 8, 1781. Here Grant's Army passed on its way to . . . — Map (db m9557) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Chickahominy Water Trail
(left panel) Sustaining a Credible Illusion The Jamestown settlement was facing a severe food shortage in November of 1607. Captain John Smith set out to trade for corn with the Indians living along this river. He traveled from . . . — Map (db m46511) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Dedicated To LearningRuthville High School
Schools were precious to a community denied education for centuries. Following the Civil War one and two-room schools for "colored" children were established around the county. It was here in Ruthville, however, that a commitment to learning first . . . — Map (db m26335) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 22 — Evelynton
Originally part of William Byrd's Westover, Evelynton has been occupied by the Ruffin family since 1847, when it was purchased by Edmund Ruffin, Jr. Fierce skirmishes took place on the property during the 1862 Peninsula Campaign. Confederate troops . . . — Map (db m9404) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Eye Witness to a Revolution
Charles City Courthouse was an eye witness to the American Revolution (1775-1783). Soldiers enlisted here before marching off to join the Continental Army. Local militia encamped on the grounds, and armies marched by throughout the course of the . . . — Map (db m17758) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 70 — First English Thanksgiving in Virginia
On 4 Dec. 1619, Capt. John Woodlief, a member of the Virginia Company, arrived aboard the ship Margaret with 35 men to take charge of Berkeley Hundred. An experienced former Jamestown settler, he became Berkeley's first governor. He bore . . . — Map (db m70545) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — First Official Thanksgiving
Site of First Official Thanksgiving in America December 4, 1619 at Berkeley Plantation in Virginia Placed by: Virginia Society Colonial Dames XVII Century 1965 — Map (db m87107) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V-34 — Fort Pocahontas
South of here, on a bluff overlooking the James River, stands the half-mile-long Fort Pocahontas, built in the spring of 1869 by Union soldiers during the Civil War. The fort protected Union vessels on the river and guarded the landing at Wilson’s . . . — Map (db m9520) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 9 — Grant's Crossing
In mid-June 1864, Grant abandoned his works at Cold Harbor and marched to Petersburg, a vital rail center. A mile south of here, at Wilcox Wharf (now Lawrence Lewis Jr. Park), steamboats ferried the troops and wagons of two corps across the James . . . — Map (db m9407) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 10 — Greenway
This was the home of John Tyler, Governor of Virginia, 1808-1811. His son, John Tyler, President of the United States, was born here, March 29, 1790. — Map (db m9558) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Herring Creek
Herring Creek is a tributary of the James River named for the Alewife and Blueback River Herring that historically have ascended Herring creek along with Hickory Shad to spawn between February and April, and then return to the sea where they spend . . . — Map (db m99780) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Herring Creek & KimagesCharles City County, Virginia
The Herring Creek area was settled in 1619, as a portion of Westover, and a portion of Berkeley Hundred. The point where the James River Road, present-day Route 5, crossed Herring Creek was known as "The Wade." Landmarks have included Harrison's . . . — Map (db m9288) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — HoldcroftCharles City County, Virginia
The Chickahominy Indians resided near here along the river that bears their name. This area was part of Wilmington Parish and was part of James City County before 1720. In the 1800s the community acquired the name of the Holdcroft family. Mt. . . . — Map (db m18657) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — John Smith Explores the ChesapeakeCaptain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail
(panel 1) John Smith Explores the Chesapeake Captain John Smith explored the Chesapeake Bay in the early 1600s seeking precious metals and a passage to Asia. He traveled the James, Chickahominy, and York rivers in 1607, and led . . . — Map (db m89568) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 35 — Kennon's Landing
Located 1 ½ miles south of the James River is Kennon's Landing. Richard Kennon married Anne Hunt about 1735 and lived there until his death in 1761. Anne Hunt's father was Captain William Hunt whose father William Hunt, a supporter of Nathaniel . . . — Map (db m86171) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Kittiewan Plantation
Colonial home of Dr. William Rickman, Head Surgeon of the Continental Army of Virginia, and wife Elizabeth Harrison Rickman Edmondson, of Berkeley. Original section constructed ca. 1770-1790, shed roof addition added ca. 1840. Land referred . . . — Map (db m59621) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 27 — Lott Cary Birthplace
A mile and a half northwest, Lott Cary was born in slavery about 1780. In 1804 his owner, John Bowry, a Methodist minister, hired him out to a Richmond tobacco firm. Cary joined the First Baptist Church in 1807. He purchased his freedom and became a . . . — Map (db m26338) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Mt. Zion & RusticCharles City County, Virginia
These communities were established on opposite banks of Morris Creek , earlier known as Tanks Pasbye hayes the Indian name, Moyses Creek after Theodore Moyses who patented land there, and as Moses Creek. Before 1720 this area was part of James City . . . — Map (db m26333) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — New Hope & Court HouseCharles City County, Virginia
Since the establishment of the Court House during the mid-eighteenth century, this area has served as a community center for the entire county. During the Revolution and Civil War the area was the site of military encampments. A tavern built in the . . . — Map (db m9429) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Old Quaker Settlement - Adkins StoreCharles City County, Virginia
This community was the site of a Quaker settlement in the eighteenth century and the Weyanoke Quaker Meeting House and graveyard. The meetinghouse was the Upper Quarter gathering place for the Yearly Meeting of Virginia Quaker. The area has since . . . — Map (db m26328) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Origin of Taps
During the Civil War in July 1862, when the Army of the Potomac was in camp on this site, Brigadier General Daniel Butterfield summoned Private Oliver Willcox Norton, his Brigade Bugler to his tent. He whistled some new tune and asked the bugler . . . — Map (db m87110) HM WM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 50 — Paspahegh Indians
Located nearby was the main town of the Paspahegh Indians, tributaries to paramount chief Powhatan. When Jamestown was built in their territory, the Paspahegh consistently resisted the English settlement. In Aug. 1610, George Percy, on orders from . . . — Map (db m23610) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Piney GroveThe Front Line and the Home Front
In Virginia, the “Home Front” and the “Front Line” were often just miles apart during the Civil War. In places such as Charles City County families provided their men for troops and also lost the income from their . . . — Map (db m18589) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 38 — Piney Grove and Southalls
During the 18th century this property was established as a Southall family seat. Notable family members include James Barrett Southall, owner of Williamsburg's Raleigh Tavern, Turner Southall, member of the committee to build Thomas Jefferson's . . . — Map (db m18588) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 21 — President Tyler's Home
Just to the south is Sherwood Forest, where President John Tyler lived after his retirement from the presidency until his death in 1862. He bought the place in 1842 and came to it as his home in March, 1845. Here Tyler, with his young second wife, . . . — Map (db m9556) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Richmond Condita1737
From this spacious dwelling Colonel William Byrd, the Second, of Westover, set out in 1737 to lay the foundations and to project the future of the City of Richmond. Its grateful citizens, recalling the sufferings borne and the glory experienced, the . . . — Map (db m30236) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — RoxburyCharles City County, Virginia
Roxbury was named for a nearby plantation in New Kent County and reached by Longbridge over the Chickahominy. This community was the site of a colonial era tavern and the only railroad station in Charles City County . Roxbury post office (1883-1953) . . . — Map (db m29158) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — RuthvilleCharles City County, Virginia
This area was one of the centers of Charles City's free black community before the Civil War and was named for Ruth Brown with the establishment of the post office in 1880. Abraham Brown, a major landowner of the area, founded Elam Church in 1810, . . . — Map (db m26334) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 13 — Salem Church
This church, four miles north, was used as a field hospital, June, 1864, following the action an Nance's Shop, where the Union cavalryman Gregg, guarding a wagon train, was attacked by Wade Hampton. Gregg was driven from the field but saved the . . . — Map (db m9600) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 36 — Sherwood ForestPresident John Tyler's Home
John Tyler purchased this plantation one mile west in his native Charles City in 1842 while serving as tenth president of the United States, and made it his home from 1845 until his death in 1862. Tyler lengthened the wooden 18th-century house to . . . — Map (db m9518) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Shifting Ground
During most of the Civil War (1861-1865), Charles City County lay between two armies: the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia safeguarding the Confederate capital of Richmond and the Union Army of the Potomac occupying the Lower Peninsula. As a . . . — Map (db m17756) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 6 — Shirley
The house a short distance south, Shirley was first occupied in 1613 and was known as West-and-Shirley Hundred. In 1664, Edward Hill patented the place, which was left by the third Edward Hill to his sister, Elizabeth Carter, in 1720. Here was born . . . — Map (db m9602) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Stuart's RideSafe among Friends and Family — 1862 Peninsula Campaign
In May 1862, Union Gen. George B. McClellan led the Army of the Potomac up the Peninsula to the gates of Richmond. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee assumed command of the Army of Northern Virginia in June and began planning a counterattack. On June . . . — Map (db m61881) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Stuart's RideCoffee at Rowland’s — 1862 Peninsula Campaign
In May 1862, Union Gen. George B. McClellan led the Army of the Potomac up the Peninsula to the gates of Richmond. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee assumed command of the Army of Northern Virginia in June and began planning a counterattack. On June . . . — Map (db m61882) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Sturgeon Point & KennonsCharles City County, Virginia
Kennons originally took its name from the plantation of the Kennon family. Kennons Creek, earlier known as David Jones Creek, served as a boundary for the earlier Wallingford Parish. Kennons Landing was the terminus for the Meadow Road, as well as . . . — Map (db m9525) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Swineyards - Willcox WharfCharles City County, Virginia
This area was settled before 1622 by George Shinehow. Tobacco warehouses and docks were located at Swineyards and Willcox Wharf. A post office was established at Swineyards in 1848 and later located at Willcox Wharf. Landmarks have included Bethany . . . — Map (db m9405) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Three Courthouse Essentials
A clerk’s office, jail and tavern were located at every courthouse. The purpose of the clerk’s office and the jail are obvious, but can you guess why the tavern was just as essential? In the colonial era courts met infrequently, and lawyers and . . . — Map (db m17757) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 8 — Westover
In 1619 the first settlement was made at Westover, about 2 miles southeast. Two settlers died in the Powhatan uprising of 1622. Theodorick Bland bought Westover in 1666; William Byrd I acquired it in 1688. About 1730 his son, Colonel William Byrd . . . — Map (db m9285) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — WestoverMcClellan’s New Base — 1862 Peninsula Campaign
Following the last of the Seven Days' Battles on July 1, 1862, at Malvern Hill, Gen. George B. McClellan's Union Army of the Potomac continued its retreat to the James River. McClellan had earlier decided to "change his base" from the Pamunkey River . . . — Map (db m30227) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — V 14 — Westover Church
A short distance south is Westover Church. It was first built on the James River near Westover House early in the Seventeeth century. About 1730 the site was changed and the present building erected. Defaced in the campaign of 1862, the church was . . . — Map (db m9401) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — 18 — Westover PlantationCaptain John Smith’s Adventures on the James — www.johnsmithtrail.org
Westover Plantation was established in 1619, part of the rapid agricultural expansion that followed several years of mere subsistence for the English at Jamestown. Often, the English co-opted fields already cleared by Natives for farming or as . . . — Map (db m30228) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Wilcox’s LandingCrossing the James — Lee vs. Grant – The 1864 Campaign
With the Federal armies stalled at Cold Harbor, Gen. U.S. Grant made the fateful decision to move on Petersburg. The march began under cover of darkness on the evening of June 12, 1864, and covered some 20 miles before reaching the James River . . . — Map (db m17507) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Charles City — Wryanoke & Parrish HillCharles City County, Virginia
The Weanoc Indians gave this area its name. The Minge family settled much of the Weyanoke peninsula during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Landmarks have included Weyanoke Parish Church, Tyler’s Mill, a steamboat landing, a post office at . . . — Map (db m59618) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Cherry Hall — Sandy Point & Cherry HallCharles City County, Virginia
Originally home to the Paspahegh Indians, Sandy Point was settled in 1617 as Smith's Hundred and after 1619 known as Southampton Hundred. St. Mary's Church was established here prior to the Powhatan Uprising of 1622. During the Revolutionary War . . . — Map (db m9467) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Granville — V-15 — Scene of Jefferson’s Wedding
Two miles east is the site of “The Forest,” home of Martha Wayles Skelton, widow of Bathurst Skelton. There she was married to Thomas Jefferson, January 1, 1772. The bridal couple drove in the snow to Jefferson’s home, . . . — Map (db m86172) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Granville — Wayside & GranvilleCharles City County, Virginia
Wayside was settled after 1613 as part of West and Sherley Hundred. Landmarks have included St. John's Church, established in 1897 by the Rev. John Jones, a post office at Shirley and the Shirley Mill. In 1921 the Wayside Community Club assisted in . . . — Map (db m9252) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Kimages — PA 250 — Benjamin Harrison
Benjamin Harrison (1726-1791) - Virginia planter, politician, and signer of the Declaration of Independence - was born at nearby Berkeley plantation. He first served in the Virginia House of Burgesses in 1752, though elected in 1749, and remained in . . . — Map (db m86174) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Providence Forge — John Smith Captured by Virginia IndiansChickahominy Water Trail
John Smith explored the upper Chickahominy River in December 1607. He left his boat and seven of his crew at Apocant, the highest town on the river in the upper part of what is today the lake. Two crew members departed with Smith and two . . . — Map (db m61883) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Roxbury — PH 6 — Action of Nance's Shop
In this vicinity the Union cavalryman, Gregg, guarding army trains moving to Petersburg, was attacked by Wade Hampton, June 24, 1864. Gregg was driven back toward Charles City Courthouse, but the wagon trains crossed the James safely. This action . . . — Map (db m17755) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Rustic — V-23 — Piney Grove and E. A. Saunders
Eight miles west on "The Old Main Road" is Piney Grove. The original portion, built ca. 1800 on Southall's Plantation, is a rare survival of Tidewater log architecture. Edmund Archer Saunders, a successful Richmond businessman, operated a store at . . . — Map (db m9506) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Weyanoke — Kittiewan and Doctor Rickman
Two miles south is Kittiewan, mid-eighteenth century manor house. Here lived Doctor William Rickman. From 1776 to 1780 he was director and Chief Physician of the Continental Hospitals of Virginia. — Map (db m9434) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Weyanoke — V 24 — North Bend
Three miles south is North Bend, a Greek Revival residence built in 1819. Sarah Minge, sister of President William Henry Harrison, and her husband, John, built the original portion of the house located on Kittiewan Creek. Thomas H. Wilcox greatly . . . — Map (db m9431) HM
Virginia (Charles City County), Weyanoke — V 12 — Upper Weyanoke
In 1617, Opechancanough, Chief of Powhatan's younger brother, gave land to the south to future governor Capt. George Yeardley. Yeardley patented it and a portion became Upper Weyanoke, a James River plantation. Archaeological investigations there . . . — Map (db m9432) HM

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