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Title: Guide Book to Williamsburg Old and New
Author: Ewing, William Clinton
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                               GUIDE BOOK
                             OLD _and_ NEW


                 Copyrighted, 1943, by William C. Ewing

       Illustrations on cover and page 17 are used by courtesy of
                      Colonial Williamsburg, Inc.

                       The Dietz Printing Company
                          _Richmond, Virginia_

                       _Greetings to the Visitor_

We hope you will enjoy your stay in Williamsburg. This is the only
historically important town in America which has changed so little in
two hundred years.

We who live in Williamsburg love it. We hope you will stay long enough
to get sentimental over it, too.

To help you get the most out of your visit we offer the following

1. Williamsburg is not a museum. It is a living community.

2. The chief value of Williamsburg is its atmosphere. But for our having
a few automobiles and new-fangled clothes, there has been mighty little
change in this atmosphere since Thomas Jefferson and George Washington
helped to make it what it is.

3. If you come from New York or Chicago don’t think of going inside any
ancient building until you have spent at least one day in getting calmed
down to our tempo and learning to wander about instead of hustling. Get
into the spirit of the place.

4. Then, when you begin to feel at home and wish to see some interiors,
take it easy. Go to the Church one day, the Palace another day, and so
on. Imagine _rushing_ through the Governor’s Garden!


                           _Old Williamsburg_

                           MIDDLE PLANTATION.

After the settlement of Jamestown in 1607 the population of the Virginia
Colony gradually spread out from that center until, in 1633, it became
desirable to develop farms in the territory between the James and York
Rivers, which has ever since been called the Virginia Peninsula. From
its position in relation to the rivers, this settlement was named Middle

The privilege of dwelling in this district was granted by the colonial
legislature on condition that a Palisade be erected to keep out the
Indians. This palisade extended from Queen’s Creek, which empties into
the York River, to Archer’s Hope Creek (now called College Creek), which
is a tributary of the James. This palisade was kept in repair until

At present, only two buildings remain which were here in the 17th
century: the Galt House on Francis Street and the main building of the

                              THE COLLEGE.

The first attempt to found a college in America had its inception at
Jamestown in 1617. Land was secured near the present site of Richmond
and considerable endowment was invested in farm stock. Before operation
of the college could begin, the whole undertaking was wiped out by the
great Indian massacre of 1622. Two generations later a group of
important citizens met at the house of Col. Page to make plans for an
institution which would make advanced education possible without the
necessity of going to England. As a result of this meeting action was
secured from the colonial legislature and Rev. James Blair was sent to
London to request a charter and financial assistance from King William
and Queen Mary. Not only was he successful in his main object but, at
the same time, he got Sir Christopher Wren to draw plans for a building
which should be worthy of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.
This central structure of the College, generally known as The Wren
Building, was designed in the form of a quadrangle; the easterly side
was constructed in 1695, the northerly and westerly wings shortly
thereafter; the fourth side of the quadrangle has never been built.


Few students in the America of today have a more magnificent
inspirational background than those who attend classes in the Wren
Building. Probably nowhere else did so many of the real founders of our
government get their education and inspiration in the same rooms. In one
manner or another there have been associated with William and Mary,
Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Monroe and (in the next generation)
Tyler, as well as jurists and statesmen of the most beneficent
influence. And great teachers there were, too. Thomas Jefferson
testified that it was from Professor Small that he received the
inspiration for his life work. Bishop Madison, the first president under
the Commonwealth, was a really great teacher of Natural Phylosophy, as
were Patrick Rogers and his famous son.[1]

    [Illustration: THE CAPITOL]

Dr. Blair was a truly remarkable man. While in London he wrote back that
he had secured the necessary teachers for the College but that he could
not find anyone adequate for the presidency; but, he added, perhaps he
would do pretty well, himself, in that position; and so it came about.
It is perfectly clear that he was one of the leading citizens of
Virginia. He was simultaneously Commissary of the Bishop of London (the
highest ecclesiastical office in the Colony), Rector of Bruton Parish,
President of the College, member of the Governor’s Council and thereby a
judge in the highest court in Virginia. He was a man of very firm
character, usually in a serious controversy with some important
opponent; as a result, he secured the cashiering of three Royal
Governors. One of these contests throws interesting light on academic
customs, there being an annual “lock-out day” at the College. On one of
these celebrations (the immediate object being the securing of a longer
Christmas recess), the boys being inside the Wren Building and having
nailed the doors to prevent entrance by any faculty members, President
Blair superintended the forcing open of a door. During the scuffle he
received the contents of a gun in his shoulder, after which he sent
formal complaint to the authorities in London charging that the Governor
of the Colony had armed the pupils for an attack on their president. For
months thereafter criminations and recriminations traveled across the
Atlantic. The Governor swore that he lent the students only the gun and
powder, no bullets whatever. It became apparent that what hit the
President’s shoulder was only the paper which was used to ram in the
powder. Nevertheless, Governor Spotswood left and Dr. Blair remained.

    [Illustration: LUDWELL-PARADISE HOUSE]


Shortly after the College began to function, a fire at Jamestown
destroyed the government building. As that location was quite malarial,
it was deemed best to establish a new capital on higher ground and it
was decided to locate it near the College at Middle Plantation.
Legislation was enacted setting off for such purpose approximately what
is now known as The Restoration Area, together with approaches through
Capitol Landing Road from Queen Mary’s Port on Queen’s Creek and through
South Henry Street from Princess Anne Port on Archer’s Hope Creek. Since
the receipt of the College charter in 1693, Queen Mary had died, leaving
William III to reign alone; so the newly planned city was called

This, the second planned city in America, was laid out in 1699 with the
main street named for Princess Anne’s son, Duke of Gloucester Street.
The center line of the street was laid out from the middle of the
doorway of the Wren Building in an easterly direction so far as to make
the whole length of the street exactly three-fourths of a mile long. The
street’s width was fixed at six poles (99 feet) and all buildings were
to be kept back six feet from the street. Governor Nicholson named two
of the streets for himself: Francis and Nicholson. Other streets had
such significant names as England, Ireland, Scotland, France, Nassau,
Prince George and York. Williamsburg being on the crest of the York and
James watersheds, there were many brooks or dry ravines crossing all the
east-west streets. For years Duke of Gloucester Street spanned these
ravines on bridges.

    [Illustration: THE RALEIGH TAVERN]

The first public building to be erected after the laying out of the city
was, naturally, The Capitol. This was located on the easterly extension
of the center line of Duke of Gloucester Street, thus balancing the Wren
Building on the west. Until the completion of the Capitol, the General
Assembly held its meetings in the Blue Room of the Wren Building. After
the completion of the Capitol it became for three-quarters of a century,
the center of public activity in the Virginia Colony, the
training-school of democracy, the place where Americans contended
against autocracy. Here Patrick Henry made his famous “Caesar-Brutus”
speech; here George Washington received the thanks of the Colony; here
Thomas Jefferson secured religious freedom for his State; here George
Mason presented the first Bill of Rights. The rooms in this building are
indeed hallowed for every lover of liberty!


Repeatedly, when the Royal Governor felt obliged to prorogue the
Assembly for impertinence to the King, the entire membership withdrew to
The Raleigh Tavern where rump sessions were held. In such gatherings,
and in frequent less formal meetings at this famous tavern, many
important decisions were reached in the growing contest between the
Crown and its colonial subjects. This tavern appears to have been the
most important informal social center in Virginia in the later years of
the 18th century. In the earlier years of that century, certainly as
early as 1709, this service was performed by the Bland-Wetherburn
Tavern, directly across the street. This is the third oldest building
now standing in Williamsburg. It was probably built by Richard Bland,
Sr., about the year 1700 and was a meeting place for leading citizens
after the completion of the Capitol. At various times the famous host,
Henry Wetherburn, ran this hostelry and the Raleigh, opposite.

As Solomon did not build a house for himself until he had completed the
Temple, so the colonial Virginians finished the building of the Capitol
before beginning, in 1706, a residence for the Royal Governor. Like most
great houses of the period, The Governor’s Palace was not built all at
once. In 1706, £3,000 was appropriated for the erection of a “house” for
the Governor. What with additions and furnishings, by 1718 it had become
a “palace” and the House of Burgesses was complaining of the high-handed
manner in which the Governor was “lavishing away the country’s money
contrary to the intent of the law.” As in the case of many another
public building, the extravagance of construction cost was forgotten by
later generations in their pride in the product. A traveled Englishman
considered this the finest building in America and exceeded by few in
England, an opinion which has never required revision. From its
completion, it was occupied by all the Royal Governors down to the
Revolutionary War; and then by two Governors of the Commonwealth,
Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson. After the removal of the Capital to
Richmond in 1779, the Palace was used by the army as a hospital.

    [Illustration: THE GOVERNOR’S PALACE]

After providing a residence for the Governor, the next public building
erected by order of the Assembly was a Public Magazine, familiarly
called The Powder Horn. From 1714 to 1775 this octagonal brick structure
was used for the storage of ammunition; and for reasons of safety it was
placed in an open square. This building saw the beginning of the
Revolutionary War, so far as Virginia was concerned. On the 20th of
April, 1775, just one day after the Battle of Lexington, in
Massachusetts, Governor Dunmore removed the powder so that it might not
fall into the hands of the populace. Thereupon, Patrick Henry brought
troops toward Williamsburg and secured the payment of £330 from the
King’s Receiver General, with which substitute powder was purchased. The
Governor withdrew to the comparative safety of a British warship and
thus ended forever foreign dominance in Williamsburg.

    [Illustration: THE POWDER HORN]

While the Public Magazine was under construction the Colony and the
Parish were proceeding with the erection of a fine new building to take
the place of the antiquated structure of The Bruton Parish Church. The
then-existing building, whose foundations are still in place under the
sod of the churchyard, was adequate only for a small rural community.
With the influx of large numbers of people for court seasons and with
the necessity for dignity, if not grandeur, in the edifice of the
Established Church of the Colonial Capital, the Governor, the Assembly
and the Parish united in building a church which, from its completion in
1715 to the present time, has been one of the prides of Virginia,
whether Colony or Commonwealth.

    [Illustration: BRUTON PARISH CHURCH]

It will probably be impossible for one to understand the helpful
leadership of this church in the ecclesiastical life of Virginia without
an appreciation of the great difficulty experienced in securing
high-grade, or even fairly respectable, clergy in the country districts.
In all church affairs Virginia was directly under the control of the
Bishop of London. It is evident from the records that great pressure
must have been exerted on him to send to Virginia the ne’er-do-well
younger sons of British aristocrats or any other low-grade men who had
been trained for the church as for any other occupation and who had at
all costs to be got out of England. Governor Gooch, one of the best
Royal Governors Virginia ever had, was active throughout his long and
happy administration in raising the ministerial standards; it is
impossible to read his letters to the Bishop of London without having
the greatest sympathy for him in his Augean labors. Through all this sad
experience, with the exception of the reported indictment of Dr. Dawson
for drunkenness in 1760, Bruton Parish seems to have been blessed with
such leadership as helped much to raise the whole colonial standard.

    [Illustration: THE TRAVIS HOUSE]

It is somewhat difficult in this generation to realize the unity of
church with state in Colonial Virginia when the legislature might order
sermons on special subjects. A most notable case was the setting apart
by the Assembly of June 1, 1774, the day when the British were forcibly
to close the Port of Boston, as a day of fasting and prayer. The
enactment closed with these words: “Ordered, that the members of this
house do attend in their Places, at the Hour of ten in the Forenoon, on
the said first Day of June next, in order to proceed with the Speaker,
and the Mace, to the Church in this City, for the Purposes aforesaid;
and that the Reverend Mr. Price be appointed to read Prayers, and the
Reverend Mr. Gwatkin, to preach a Sermon, suitable to the Occasion.”

    [Illustration: GALT HOUSE]

                            THE RESTORATION.

During the first tenure of Rev. W. A. R. Goodwin as Rector of Bruton
Parish, in 1905, the restoration of the church building to its early
condition was begun. While no great alteration had ever been made to its
exterior, the interior arrangements had been modified to such an extent
as to make it scarcely recognizable. The entire arrangement, both within
and without, was now returned, as nearly as available information
permitted, to its condition after an enlargement that had been made in

During his second incumbency in Williamsburg, Dr. Goodwin became
increasingly impressed with the possibility of preserving this old
capital city as it was in its first period of importance. Only a few
other cities in America had the importance of Williamsburg in the
founding of our nation; and the others—Boston and Philadelphia—had long
since been swallowed up in great commercial cities. Williamsburg, on the
other hand, had remained for two hundred years very much the same both
in spirit and in physical appearance. Through the years it had continued
as the county-seat of an agricultural county and the trading center of
another similar one; no industries, no skyscrapers, no conflagrations
had changed it. To be sure, a few modern buildings would have to be
removed and a considerable number of ancient ones rebuilt. But, at that,
it remained the only center of colonial political importance where a
thorough restoration was thinkable.


In connection with meetings of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, Dr. Goodwin
convinced Mr. John D. Rockefeller, Jr., of the soundness of his views in
this regard and studied the situation with him in its broad features.
The following year (1927) Mr. Rockefeller definitely determined to
undertake, with the coöperation of the City, the restoration of the
ancient part of Williamsburg to its condition as of mid-18th century—an
undertaking which is probably the greatest educational accomplishment of
the present century.

The restoration is not yet completed and it is unlikely that further
construction will be possible during the war. It may be roughly
estimated as within eighty or ninety percent of completion. The First
Theater in America is the outstanding public building not yet
reconstructed; the number of residences still awaiting attention is
indefinite but not large.

    [Illustration: BASSETT HALL]

Not far from half the buildings now standing in the old part of the city
are the identical buildings which have lasted through from
pre-Revolutionary days. These buildings have been thoroughly repaired,
any modern additions removed and their grounds planted with such trees
and flowers as probably were there in the 18th century. These buildings
are technically described as “restored” in distinction from those which
had been destroyed and are “reconstructed.” A comparison of each
restored building with its condition just before restoration would be
interesting. The principal case available is that of the Cole Shop in
which hangs an oil painting loaned by Mrs. Rockefeller and showing the
interior of the shop in 1938 in contrast with its present condition
which is supposed to be as it was in 1780.

The most apparent change resulting from the restoration is that of Duke
of Gloucester Street itself. Prior to its restoration in 1935 there were
two concrete roadways separated by a strip of grass in which were
unpainted wooden poles carrying electric wires. The restoration of the
street illustrates very well the type of compromises which have been
necessary in order to keep Williamsburg an up-to-date community as it
distinctly was in its first century. Thus, while the wires have been
buried, the street has not been returned to its former condition of six
inches of mud or dust according to the weather; but it has been finished
with a hard surface nearly resembling gravel. The town has not reverted
to flambeaux for the wealthy and darkness for the poor; but the electric
street lights are as old-fashioned as possible. Most nearly impossible
of all problems was that of fire prevention; it was solved by installing
the least conspicuous hydrants in the grass and painting them green.

    [Illustration: GEORGE WYTHE HOUSE]

The first buildings to be restored were those of The College. The
original building had suffered from three fires. These gave excuse for
adding the beautiful wings, housing the Chapel and the Great Hall, but
also gave opportunity for departure from the plans of Sir Christopher
Wren; so that the architects estimate that the building as we know it
(and as it was just before the Revolution) is about 50 percent Wren and
50 percent local adjustment. The cost of the third fire, which occurred
while the building was in the hands of Northern troops, was reimbursed
from the Federal Treasury on motion of Senator Hoar of Massachusetts.

    [Illustration: ST. GEORGE TUCKER HOUSE]

The Botetourt Statue in the front campus has had a notable history. Lord
Botetourt was the Royal Governor who had repeatedly to prorogue the
Assembly for action inimical to the Crown. Nevertheless, the people of
Virginia respected him deeply for his personal qualities and for his
sincerely democratic sentiments, realizing that his public actions were
such as he was obliged to take regardless of his sympathies. So, after
his death in 1770, the Assembly had this statue made in London by
Sculptor Richard Hayward. The statue was erected in the open corridor of
the Capitol; but during the Revolutionary War feeling against all that
was English ran so high that some of the 100 percent disloyalists threw
it to the ground, with casualties that still are to be seen. When the
excitement somewhat calmed, and after the Capitol had been abandoned as
the seat of government, the Botetourt statue was set up in the College
campus, somewhat nearer the building than at present. During the War
Between the States the statue found refuge with the Eastern State
Hospital, thereafter being brought back to its present location. Lord
Botetourt’s body is entombed in the College Chapel.

    [Illustration: A true MAPP of the Town of
    incorporated, 1722
    at one time the CAPITAL of the Colony of

  _A_. Wren Building, A.D. 1695 (pp. 4, 16, 20)
  _B_. The Brafferton, 1723 (p. 20)
  _C_. The President’s House, 1732 (p. 20)
  _D_. The Cole Shop, _c._ 1756 (pp. 15, 24, 25)
  _E_. Old County Prison, 1715.
  _F_. Travis House, 1765 (p. 12)
  _G_. Market Square Tavern, 1749.
  _H_. Bland-Wetherburn Tavern, _c._ 1700 (p. 8)
  _I_. Office of Secretary of the Colony, _c._ 1748 (p. 25)
  _J_. Raleigh Tavern, _c._ 1740 (pp. 7, 8)
  _K_. Dr. Blair’s Apothecary Shop, 1717.
  _L_. Site of _Virginia Gazette_, 1736.
  _M_. Ludwell-Paradise House, 1716 (pp. 6, 27)
  _N_. George Wythe’s Residence, 1755 (pp. 16, 27)
  _O_. Deane House and Forge.
  _P_. Carter-Saunders House (p. 28)
  _Q_. Site of First Theater in America, 1716 (p. 28)
  _R_. St. George Tucker House, 1788 (pp. 17, 28)
  _S_. Peyton Randolph House, _c._ 1715 (pp. 20, 28)
  _T_. Coke-Garrett House, 1720 (pp. 21, 30)
  _U_. Site of Second Theater, 1751.
  _V_. Bassett Hall, 1753 (pp. 15, 30)
  _W_. Masonic Lodge.
  _X_. William Byrd’s Town House, 1769.
  _Y_. Modern Court House.
  _Z_. Tazewell Hall (p. 30)

    [Illustration: THE RANDOLPH HOUSE]

The President’s House on the right as one faces the Wren Building and
The Brafferton on the left, both date from early 18th century. The
latter was originally a school for Indian boys and was supported by
funds from the estate of the eminent chemist, Robert Boyle. In the 19th
century, when it was no longer used by Indians, it became a home for
faculty members, notably Patrick Kerr Rogers and his son William Barton
Rogers who later founded the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The
Brafferton is one of the ancient buildings which has no record of a
damaging fire. The President’s House was burned while it was being used
by the French army and was restored by King Louis XVI.

The Palace, after the Capital was removed to Richmond, was transferred
to the Army for use as a hospital, during which occupancy it was
accidentally destroyed by fire. The southerly frontage of this property
was later used for the city’s public school. In order to return the
entire site to its original condition, as called for by the restoration
program, a modern school building has been erected just west of the
Palace grounds; also the railroad tracks, which ran through the
Governor’s Garden area, have been relocated to the north; and the entire
garden as well as the Palace itself has been reconstructed. The
extremely interesting research which underlies the entire restoration is
well illustrated in the case of the Palace. Information regarding the
design and construction of the building was obtained in such diverse
places as the Huntington Library in Pasadena, California, and the
Bodleian Library in Oxford, England. Fortunately, the original
foundations were still in good condition.

    [Illustration: THE COKE-GARRETT HOUSE]

The restoration of The Capitol was facilitated by the fact that the
colonial legislature, in ordering its erection, determined the design
down to details not only of building but of furnishing. The building
itself, after various vicissitudes, was destroyed by fire in 1832. The
foundations were covered over and preserved by a patriotic group of
women who devoted themselves to saving important historical monuments,
the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities. When the
restoration of Williamsburg was undertaken, they presented this site to
the Restoration organization.

    [Illustration: THE COURT HOUSE OF 1770]

Another ancient building which had been preserved (and is still owned)
by the A. P. V. A. is The Powder Horn, more formally known as The Public
Magazine. After the Revolutionary War this building was used for a
variety of purposes, including religious worship, at which time stained
glass windows were installed. When the Baptist Church became strong
enough to build their own edifice just to the east of the Magazine, they
tore down the surrounding wall and used the bricks for the foundation of
the new church. This congregation has now removed to a newer part of the
town and the Powder Horn has been restored to its original condition. In
this building is a collection of Revolutionary arms.

Across the road from the Powder Horn is The Court House of 1770. This is
now commonly called “the Old Court House” since the location of the
still older seat of city and county government (in the rear of the
Powder Horn) has been used for the present modern Court House. The
Restoration of the Old Court House illustrates one of the guiding
policies of the restoration which is to perpetuate the old part of
Williamsburg as it was in the 18th century, by no means with the object
of beautifying it. In 1910 the Old Court House was consumed by fire
except as to the exterior walls. In rebuilding, the structure was
distinctly improved in appearance by addition of columns to support the
piazza roof; in its restoration the columns were omitted, thus securing
authenticity at the expense of beauty. The intention has been to keep to
this policy of authenticity throughout the restoration; it will be
noticed, for example, that the planting in restored gardens is of 18th
century plants, though in many cases modern culture has improved the
species. Within the Old Court House may be seen a selection from the
many tons of artifacts which have been recovered in the course of
excavations about the ancient buildings.

    [Illustration: THE PUBLIC GAOL]

As early as 1701, while meeting in the Wren Building, the Virginia
Assembly enacted legislation specifying details not only for the Capitol
but also for a Gaol (pronounced gail, not goal) to be erected on the
north side of the square which was reserved for these buildings and the
office of the Secretary of the Colony. Parts of the Gaol were torn down
after the removal of the state court to Richmond, for Williamsburg has
always been quite law-abiding. The portions thus destroyed have now been
re-added to the surviving building, as also the stocks and pillory
outside the wall. So the whole may now be seen as it stood when
Blackbeard’s men were imprisoned and hanged here.

The final restoration of Bruton Parish Church was made during the last
days of Dr. Goodwin and he was able to visit it during all but the last
stages. At the first service held in the completed edifice his body was
buried beneath the floor of the church by the side of great men of
colonial times. It has been suggested that an appropriate epitaph,
referring not alone to the church but to the community, would be: If you
would see his monument, look about you.

    [Illustration: THE COLE SHOP]

The Cole Shop (D) is believed to be the oldest store in America, having
opened for business shortly after 1750. It was built by Charles
Taliaferro, a coach and chair maker. Originally consisting of only one
room, prior to 1782 another small building was moved up and joined to it
on the west as a sort of lean-to, the roof-line which had theretofore
been a symmetrical dormer being extended to cover the addition. At a
later, but still early, date two rooms were added in the rear and the
street elevation was finished off with a false front. In 1804 the shop
was sold to Dr. Jesse Cole in whose family it remained until the death
of his grandson in 1936.

There is no record of the type of goods carried under the Taliaferro
management; but in 1827 a professor newly arrived in Williamsburg wrote
thus of the Cole Shop: “I reached the Post Office which stands in the
Center of Main St. It is one of the Curiosities of this Place.... There
is not an Article whatever in the World which could not be found in it.
It is a Book Seller’s Store in which you will find Hams and French
Brandy; it is an Apothecary’s Shop in which you can provide yourself
with silk Stockings and shell Oysters; it is a Post Office in which you
may have Glisters and chewing Tobacco & in a Word it is a Museum of
natural History in which we meet every Afternoon to dispute about the
Presidential Election and about the Quality of Irish Potatoes.”


The discussion group referred to by Prof. De La Pena was the famous
Pulaski Club which moves its sessions from indoors to the benches
outside in favorable weather. George Washington, in his diary, refers
repeatedly to attending the club at Mrs. Campbell’s Tavern (near the
Capitol) but in modern times the meeting place has been at the Cole
Shop. This is claimed to be the oldest men’s social club in the country;
and whatever may be the members’ effect on the quality of Irish
potatoes, they have effectively “saved the country” for a long time.

Le Maison des Foux (Eastern State Hospital for the Insane, to you), of
which Dr. Jesse Cole was the Superintendent was founded by the Colony in
1769. It is on the site of the Custis estate where Martha Dandridge
lived with her first husband. The only Custis building still standing is
the small brick house which can be seen over the fence from Francis
Street. This is generally known as “Martha Washington’s Kitchen.”

    [Illustration: A PAPER MULBERRY TREE]

    [Illustration: THE WILLIAMSBURG INN]

The _Virginia Gazette_ office (L) has not yet been reconstructed. The
_Gazette_, which is now published on Prince George Street, is the oldest
newspaper in the South, having been established in 1736. It probably
also operated the Post Office in the early days of that institution.

The Ludwell-Paradise House (M) now houses Mrs. John D. Rockefeller’s
collection of American Folk Art, ranging from cigar store Indians to oil
paintings. This house was owned and occupied in the early years of the
19th century by Mrs. Lucy Ludwell Paradise, daughter and granddaughter
of two Ludwells who owned this and many other Virginia estates,
including Green Spring. She and her husband held the unique distinction
of maintaining their home in London as the social center of American
sympathizers during the Revolutionary War.

George Wythe’s House (N) was erected in 1755 and has suffered remarkably
little change in the intervening years. The outbuildings were destroyed
and have been reconstructed and the restored house has been furnished
throughout with genuine 18th century furniture. Aside from the Palace,
this is the only restored residence which is open to public inspection,
all others being occupied as private homes, many of them by descendants
of the original owners. George Wythe was a very substantial citizen of
the late colonial and early republican period. He was a Signer of the
Declaration of Independence and, as first law professor in America,
instructed such leaders of democracy as Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe,
John Marshall and St. George Tucker.

The Carter-Saunders House, The Home of Robert Carter Nicholas (P),
Treasurer of the Colony, being a fine house next to the Governor’s
Palace, was close to the social center of the capital city and was
always occupied by socially prominent citizens including more than one
of the mighty Carters and by the Governor himself when his own residence
was undergoing repairs. There is a fine garden which can be seen from
the walk that connects Palace Green with West Scotland Street.

The First Theater in America (Q) has not yet been reconstructed but its
location is marked on the ground. Some of the great English actors of
that day came to play in this house and the social setting was gala
indeed. As cited in a little book, _The Sports of Colonial
Williamsburg_, Shakespeare, Addison, Steele, Ciber and Garrick were
favorite authors in Colonial Williamsburg. This theater is the scene of
Mary Johnston’s book, Audrey. The heroine was portrayed as an actress in
this theater and as living in the delightful old house between the
Theater and the Palace, which is therefore often called “the Audrey
House” or The Brush-Audrey House, it having been built in 1718 by John
Brush, armorer and gunsmith to the Governor and keeper of the Powder
Magazine. In the rear of the Audrey House and the theater site is the
oldest growth of box in Williamsburg; this should be approached from
Scotland Street as the southerly portion of this box garden is so
overgrown that it has been necessary to close it.

The St. George Tucker House (R), one of the most beautiful in
Williamsburg, was ancient in its beginning and was enlarged to its
present dimensions just after the Revolutionary War by St. George Tucker
who came from Bermuda to study law under George Wythe and later
succeeded him as law teacher and author. The house is now occupied by
one of his descendants.

The Randolph House (S) was owned in 1742 by Sir John Randolph, the only
native of Virginia to be knighted. This house was the residence of Gen.
Rochambeau prior to the Battle of Yorktown and probably during the two
years of waiting for the Treaty of Paris. Here, also, Lafayette was
entertained on his return visit to America in 1824.


The Coke-Garrett House (T) was begun in 1720 and added to at later times
as shown by various floor levels. Altogether, it is one of the finest
residences in Williamsburg and has a famous old garden which is second
only to that of the Governor.

Bassett Hall (V), the only Williamsburg house with the long straight
avenue approach which was so common out in the country, was built in the
middle of the 18th century. It was at times a residence, at times a
tavern. It takes its name from Martha Washington’s nephew who bought it
soon after the Revolutionary War. Later it was owned by Abel P. Upshur,
a member of President Tyler’s Cabinet and it is believed that
Vice-President Tyler was visiting here when he was notified of his
succession. The estate is now the home of Mr. and Mrs. Rockefeller.

Tazewell Hall (Z) gets its name from an owner who purchased it after it
had been forfeited by John Randolph, the Tory, when he fled to England
at the outset of the Revolutionary War. This John Randolph (who later
returned and was buried in the College Chapel) was the last Attorney
General under the Crown and his son, who was born in this house, was the
first Attorney General of the United States. The house was moved to its
present position to facilitate a real-estate development to the south;
it formerly stood squarely opposite the end of South England Street. As
can be clearly seen, it has not yet been restored.

    [Illustration: THE CAPITOL TOWER]

    [Illustration: _SKETCH OF
                                       _By Courtesy of the City Manager_]

    1—Episcopal Church
    2—Methodist Church
    3—Presbyterian Church
    4—Baptist Church
    5—Catholic Church
    6—Masonic Lodge
    7—U. S. O.
    8—Post Office
    9—The Lodge
    10—Williamsburg Inn

                           _New Williamsburg_

Williamsburg never grew substantially beyond the limits defined in 1699
until the year 1900 when the boundaries were extended at both ends of
the town to take in the development of population that occurred with the
growth of the College. Repeatedly since then enlargements have been
made, especially as the College grew during the presidency of Dr. J. A.
C. Chandler. Of late there has been building in the Capitol Landing Road
district and out Jamestown Road; but throughout the present century the
principal growth has been along Richmond Road. Here all the churches
except Bruton have built new edifices opposite the College. The
Methodists, it is true, are just inside the ancient city limits, at the
College Corner. At the outset of the restoration it was determined,
whether wisely or not, that the westerly block on each side of Duke of
Gloucester Street should not be restored, but developed for the
convenience of the residents. The shops in these two blocks are designed
to be in keeping with the ancient architecture but are in no way

Just within the southern boundary of old Williamsburg, the Restoration
operates two modern hotels: the Williamsburg Inn and The Lodge. The
former is, during the war, reserved for military and naval officers and
their families; the Lodge is still open to the general public. In either
case, reservations should be made in advance, especially for weekends.
Persons planning to visit Williamsburg and desiring accommodations in
private families should communicate in advance with proprietors of
guest-houses or with the Room Registry jointly operated by the Chamber
of Commerce and the U. S. O.; and an advance deposit should be made. The
reason for this is that Williamsburg (as will be seen by the map on page
2) is a very small civilian island almost entirely surrounded by
military and naval establishments populated by many thousands of service
men whose relatives desire to visit them. It is this situation which
leads to the uncertainty of reply when questions are asked as to the
population of Williamsburg. Including the Hospital patients, the 1940
census showed about 4,000 residents. Up to opening of hostilities the
population is supposed to have doubled.

All Williamsburg churches have regular meetings at 11 o’clock Sunday
mornings; the Masons on the second Monday evening of each month; the
Rotary Club every Thursday; the Lions on alternate Tuesdays. For
information about other of their activities it will be well to telephone
as follows:

  Roman Catholic Church,
      Rev. T. J. Walsh (tel. 411)

  Episcopal Church,
      Rev. F. H. Craighill (tel. 158)

  Baptist Church,
      Rev. A. F. Ward (tel. 178-W)

  Presbyterian Church,
      Rev. C. M. Pratt (tel. 309-R)

  Methodist Church,
      Rev. L. F. Havermale (tel. 384-J)

  Christian Science Church,
      Mrs. J. J. Montague (tel. 258-J)

  Williamsburg Lodge No. 6, A.F. & A.M.,
      Mr. B. C. Creasy (tel. 24)

  Rotary Club,
      Mr. M. W. Foster (tel. 270)

  Lions Club,
      Capt. W. H. Kelly (tel. 226)


[1]An illustrated brochure on “Early Teaching of Science at the College
    of William and Mary in Virginia” may be had for 20c. at the Cole

                             THE COLE SHOP
                          is Headquarters for
                    _on WILLIAMSBURG and VIRGINIA._

The following are kept in stock and can be secured in person or by mail:

                      DESCRIPTIVE AND GUIDE BOOKS

  Colonial Yorktown ($3.00)
  Guide Book to Williamsburg Old and New (25¢)
  Homes and Gardens in Old Virginia ($5.00)
  Old Williamsburg and Her Neighbors ($3.00)
  Peninsula Pilgrimage ($5.00)
  Photographic Studies of Old Virginia Homes and Gardens ($1.00)
  Virginia is a State of Mind ($3.00)
  Williamsburg, Old and New ($4.00)
  Williamsburg, Virginia in Photographs ($2.00)


  Colonial Yorktown ($3.00)
  The Old South ($3.50)
  Old Williamsburg and Her Neighbors ($3.00)
  Pirates of Colonial Virginia ($2.00)
  Present State of Virginia and the College, 1697 ($2.75)
  Record of Bruton Parish Church ($3.00)
  Virginia is a State of Mind ($3.00)
  Williamsburg in Colonial Times ($3.00)
  Williamsburg in Virginia ($1.00) (in leather, $5.00)
  Williamsburg, Old and New ($4.00)

                          CUSTOMS AND MANNERS

  Below the Potomac ($3.00)
  A Children’s Color Book of Williamsburg (50¢)
  John Norton & Sons, Merchants ($6.00)
  Journal and Letters of Philip Fithian ($4.00)
  Secret Diary of William Byrd, 2 volumes ($5.00 each)
  Sports of Colonial Williamsburg ($1.00)
  Williamsburg Art of Cookery ($2.50) (in leather, $4.00)
  Williamsburg Scrap Book ($2.00)


  George Washington ($1.00)
  John Paradise and Lucy Ludwell ($4.00)
  Martha Washington ($2.50)
  Secret Diary of William Byrd. 2 volumes ($5.00 each)
  St. George Tucker ($3.00)


  Colonial Twins of Virginia (for children) ($1.75)
  Dawn’s Early Light ($2.50)
  Linda and Dick of Colonial Williamsburg (for children) ($2.00)
  Stories of the South ($1.50)
  Storm Against the Wind ($2.75)
  The Tree of Liberty ($3.00)

                     The Cole Shop also operates a
                         BOOK-OF-THE-MONTH CLUB

and carries a modest selection of other books of general literature and
popular appeal. Any desired book that is published, if not in stock,
will be secured to order. Call in or write to The Cole Shop for ANY

                          Transcriber’s Notes

—Silently corrected a few typos.

—Retained publication information from the printed edition: this eBook
  is public-domain in the country of publication.

—In the text versions only, text in italics is delimited by

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