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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Aldridge in Jefferson County, West Virginia — The American South (Appalachia)
 

Locust Hill

Home of Lucy Washington Packette

 

— Built 1849 —

 
Locust Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 29, 2012
1. Locust Hill Marker
Inscription.  When George Washington surveyed his brother Samuel’s Berkeley County land in preparation for the building of Harwood, the property included a sizable portion which has since been separated from the Harwood Estate. Dr. Samuel Washington, Colonel Samuel’s grandson, gave to his daughter Lucy Elizabeth a beautiful section of the home property. In 1840 after her marriage to John Bainbridge Packette, Lucy built a beautiful square mansion and named the property “Locust Hill”. The house was planned for hospitality and protection. The wide entrance door opens in the center to be flung open to welcome guests. The same door is fitted with an oak bar secured by strong iron slots on either side to discourage unwanted intruders. The entrance hall is spacious, with front rooms opening on either hand. Two large rooms at the rear of the hall can be thrown together by opening the nine-foot doors between them to form one immense drawing room or ballroom. During the 1870’s the basement kitchen was moved to its present location, and enclosed former porch extending the full length of the house. The second floor rooms mirror those of the main level. Locust
Locust Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 29, 2012
2. Locust Hill Marker
Hill, facing east, commands a magnificent view of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Harper’s Ferry Gap, eleven miles away. An old stone smoke house and carriage house are still standing on the property. Locust Hill became a fort during the Civil War. General Philip Sheridan and his men took possession of the estate in the summer of 1864, placing the Packette family along with servants and guests in the basement under guard. The General used the house as his headquarters until August 21st, when General Jubal Early sent word that the house would be shelled and any civilians in residence should be removed at once. General Early waited at the back of the stone fence, which served as the west boundary line of Locust Hill, separating it from Sulgrave. Tired of waiting, General Early’s troops fired a cannon ball down the chimney and blew the stove to pieces as the family was leaving the kitchen under guard. Some of the Federal soldiers dressed themselves in clothes abandoned by the ladies and appeared at the windows, hoping that General Early and his men would think that the family was still in the main house. The scam was recognized and all were killed. After burying their dead on the estate, General Sheridan and his troops withdrew towards Harper’s Ferry. At the close of the War, the bodies were removed from Locust Hill and reburied in the National Cemetery at Winchester. Bullets and
Locust Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 29, 2012
3. Locust Hill Marker
cannon balls damaged the rear wall of the house, and their marks remain there today. A long north porch, destroyed in the conflict, has recently been restored. A pyramidal concrete marker identifies the battle scene, number twenty of twenty-five erected in Jefferson County to distinguish places of battle during the War Between the States.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Notable BuildingsWar, US Civil.
 
Location. 39° 17.436′ N, 77° 54.516′ W. Marker is near Aldridge, West Virginia, in Jefferson County. Marker can be reached from Sheriden Drive just south of St. Andrews Drive, on the left when traveling south. The marker is behind the house on 120 Sheriden Drive and is located on the corner of the Locust Hill Golf Course. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 120 Sheriden Drive, Charles Town WV 25414, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Richwood Hall (approx. 0.6 miles away); a different marker also named "Locust Hill" (approx. 0.8 miles away); Ruins of St. George’s Chapel (approx. 0.9 miles away); Harewood (approx. one mile away); Cameron's Depot (approx. 1.2 miles away); Cedar Lawn (approx. 1.2 miles away); Brownfields to Greenfields
Locust Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 29, 2012
4. Locust Hill Marker
(approx. 2.3 miles away); A Brief History of the Old Presbyterian Church in Charles Town (approx. 2.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Aldridge.
 
More about this marker. The Cameron's Depot Engagement marker, which is directly beside the Locust Hill marker, states in the last sentence that "The house burned in 1973, killing six people."
 
Locust Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bradley Owen, October 17, 2020
5. Locust Hill Marker
Marker is seen in the distance, but the brick structure has been removed.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 7, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 28, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 939 times since then and 138 times this year. Last updated on November 6, 2020, by Bradley Owen of Morgantown, West Virginia. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 28, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland.   5. submitted on November 6, 2020, by Bradley Owen of Morgantown, West Virginia. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.
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Nov. 26, 2020