Henrico County Historical Society
PO Box 90775   Henrico, VA 23273   (804)501-5682   hchsinfo@yahoo.com
Open by appointment only

Henrico County Historical Society's motto, which is Preserving the Past in the Present for the FutureSkipwith Academy in Three Chopt District, Henrico County, Virginia.Log Cabin in Tuckahoe District, Henrico County, Virginia.Mankin Mansion in Fairfield District, Henrico County, Virginia.Dorey Barn in Varina District, Henrico County, Virginia.Bethlehem Church in Brookland District, Henrico County, Virginia.



Past Preservation
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Past Preservation - Cedar Hill & Armour House

The photo below shows the current state of Cedar Hill reflects boarded windows as the result of vandalism.

Cedar Hill in Varina District, Henrico County, Virginia.

In the year 2000, The Henrico County Historical Society deeded Cedar Hill to Henrico County after having acquired it from St. Paulís Baptist Church whose plans to build a new sanctuary on the original property threatened the historic structure with demolition and it was moved to its present location. Dr. Henry Nelson was instrumental in this preservation effort. (Read about other past preservation projects by Henrico County Historical Society.)

In 2003 the Henrico County Historical Society and the Henrico County Board of Supervisors received an Historic Preservation Advisory Committee (HPAC) Award of Merit for efforts to save and preserve Cedar Hill.

One of few surviving 19th century farmhouses in Henrico County, Cedar Hill represents a legacy of history.

During the Civil War, Cedar Hill was owned by the Vaughan family. James D. Vaughan served in the Virginia Militia and the 10th Regiment of the Virginia Cavalry. Along the original Creighton Road (which connected Richmond and Tappahannock) there were a number of troop camps during the Seven Days Battle. In 1862, units of Dershaws Division of the Army of the Confederate States set up camp on the property of Cedar Hill. Produce was consumed from the estate, as well as timber used to build a hospital, cabins, and fortifications. James Vaughan petitioned the Confederate Government for damages totaling $1,102.00 on October 20,1862.

The structure was in a deteriorating state when it was moved. An architect was hired to draft plans for its restoration to reflect the original structures appearance. The exterior features period reconstructed chimneys, weather boarding, beaded trim, louvered shutters, dramatic nine over nine window sashes across the facade, a vernacular front porch done in a simple Greek Revival style, and paint colors were chosen to reflect colors common to the nineteenth century. The restoration thus far has been related to the exterior of the house.

The interior, which has not yet been restored, has an early nineteenth century stairway that features a hand carved fan motif, and an upstairs that features original floor boards, door trim and doors.

An HPAC status report states that there is no funding for the completion of the interior restoration however it is a priority project in the CIP budget (see related article on Capital Improvement Program). The report also states that there may be major structural issues that need to be addressed before finishing the renovation of the house. Architects are moving forward with construction drawings.

Plans for Cedar Hill will eventually be included in the 400 acre Meadowview Park project underway in the Varina District of Henrico County. Also included in this project is the Armour House, pictured below.

Front view of Armour House in Varina District, Henrico County, Virginia. Back view of Armour House in Varina District, Henrico County, Virginia.

Archeologists identified two areas of prehistoric Native American occupation in Meadowview Park. In the early 19th century, a country residence of Chief Justice John Marshall stood nearby, known as Chickahominy Farm. Confederate General Robert E. Lee observed the beginnings of the Seven Dayís Battle from the bluff at Meadowview. Edmund Christian built the house at Meadowview in 1915.

Built between 1915 and 1918, the Armour House and Gardens at Meadowview Park are located directly behind Arthur Ashe Elementary School. This Victorian style home is rich in Henrico family history. The surrounding property boasts a scenic walking trail, tennis courts, gardens, a flowing fountain surrounded by arbors with blooming vines, and childrenís gardens and play areas.

Available for rental, The Armour House and Gardens are an ideal setting for small gatherings, celebrations, meetings, or retreats. A large shelter facility with a fireplace is also available for rent.

In addition, a variety of classes and events are offered for both children and adults.

  • Publicly owned.
  • (Henrico County)

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Past Preservation Sites: Cedar Hill and Armour House
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