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Ararat in Patrick County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Finding William Letcher's Home

 
 
Finding William Letcher's Home Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, July 26, 2020
1. Finding William Letcher's Home Marker
Inscription.  One of the enduring mysteries in the preservation of Laurel Hill has been finding the location of William Letcher's home. Recent discoveries have shed some light on that question. In June of 2009, a number of students from Radford University, led by Dr. Cliff Boyd, Dr. Rhett Herman, and Dr. Susan Christorpher attempted to answer that question. Using modern methods including ground penetrating radar, the group set out to locate foundations and other evidence dating back to William Letcher's time. After an initial evaluation, a grid was laid out over the area, and then scanned with radar. The area before you showed clear evidence of a previous structure. After surface excavation, numerous foundation stones and other small items were uncovered. This location was where what appeared to be foundation stones laying on the surface, and where local and oral tradition stated was the location of Letcher's home. Additional studies are planned for the future.

It must be noted that the Stuart family also occupied this area at a later date as was evidenced by a Scottish Thistle button found near the old well by Tony Marks. The button was dated about

Finding William Letcher's Home Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, July 26, 2020
2. Finding William Letcher's Home Marker
1840. A second mystery was finding the graves listed as "others,” that Elizabeth Stuart designated when she sold the Laurel Hill farm in 1859. These graves were for an infant son who died in 1834 and a daughter who died at the age of six in 1842. These burial plots, children of Archibald and Elizabeth Stuart, were thought to be near William Letcher's grave. After initial scans at least one spot looked promising, but after further study, it was determined not to be a grave. At this time the location of the "others" still remain a mystery.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Anthropology & ArchaeologyArchitectureCemeteries & Burial Sites.
 
Location. 36° 34.032′ N, 80° 33.293′ W. Marker is in Ararat, Virginia, in Patrick County. Marker can be reached from Letcher Lane (Virginia Route 749) half a mile south of Ararat Highway (Virginia Route 773), on the left when traveling west. On the grounds of the William Letcher Home Site. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Ararat VA 24053, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. William Letcher (a few steps from this marker); Life after William Letcher (a few steps from this marker); William A. Mitchell Family (within shouting distance of this marker); Elizabeth Stuart's Boxwoods
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(within shouting distance of this marker); The Dellenback Family (within shouting distance of this marker); Stuart Well (within shouting distance of this marker); The William Letcher Grave (within shouting distance of this marker); The Grave of William Letcher (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ararat.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 20, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 19, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 25 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on December 19, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 3, 2021