NHPS Begins Donation Drive to Restore the 1907 Jail for Use as the Northampton County, Virginia Court Green Jail Museum
Please consider donating to restore the 1907 Jail for use as a museum about Northampton County jails. This project will complete a five-building combination of exhibits and buildings reflecting Northampton County, Virginia governance over the past three hundred years. The existing self-guided tour includes an "overview of the Northampton Court Green history" exhibit in the 1899 Courthouse (now County Administration Building) and exhibits in the 1731 Courthouse, the Old Clerk's Office (ca.1800) and the Debtors Prison (ca.1814). The addition of the 1907 Jail Museum will become the fifth stop on the educational tour. Northampton Court Green buildings showcase architectural styles from the last three centuries and provide informative exhibits about activities that took place on the court green.
With the restoration of the 1907 Jail, the Northampton County Court Green is certain to be one of the most intact and restored court greens in the Country. If you would like to contribute to restore the 1907 Jail for use as a museum, a donation button is available below. The museum will feature the role jails played in county governance in Eastville, Virginia from Colonial times until today. To place the restoration of the 1907 Jail in perspective, in 1913 the founder of NHPS saved the 1800 Clerk's Office, 1814 Debtors Prison, and the 1731 Courthouse from destruction. Think about what a significant historical loss that would have been. This time it is our turn to save this 113-year old structure for future generations to understand the role jails played in Northampton County governance, in conjunction with the other remaining historical structures, for over 300 years.
Learn more about the 1907 Jail and all the other jails that once stood on the historic Northampton County Court Green by clicking here.
The Northampton Historic Preservation Society is pleased to announce the winners of an essay contest the NHPS sponsored on the life and contributions of Peter Jacob Carter.
Arvidson won the First Place prize of $100.00. Second Place for the $75.00
prize went to Ramsey Revelle, and Jacob Morrison won $50.00 for Third Place. (Picture, left to right - Jacob Morrison, Victoria Arvidson, and Ramsey Revelle,)
congratulates the winners for rising to the challenge and submitting such
outstanding essays! The Northampton
Historic Preservation Society is committed to promoting the history and
preservation of 300+ years in Northampton County, Virginia, and encouraging
this interest in our young people is one of our priorities. Thank you to all
A well attended 2019 Holiday Dinner and Annual
Meeting was held December 4th at the Mimosa Barn in Cape
Charles. Mr. Bo Lusk, a Coastal Scientist at The Nature Conservancy's
Virginia Coast Reserve was the featured speaker. Mr. Lusk's main focus
is on marine
habitat restoration in the seaside lagoons, restoring oyster reefs,
meadows and the bay scallops. Mr. Lusk, who grew up on Cherrystone Creek and graduated from the University of Virginia with
an Environmental Science Degree, discussed how history, science and
restoration have come together in Northampton County.
One hundred years ago, the shallow bays of the Eastern
Shore's seaside were covered by seagrass that provided food and shelter for a
variety of marine life, including scallops which were harvested by Eastern
Shore fishermen. Due to a combination of factors, the habitat of the
scallops was destroyed. In the mid 1990's, scientists discovered a small patch
of native eelgrass behind Wreck Island. Scientists for the Nature
Conservancy, working in cooperation with the Virginia Institute of Marine
Science, developed a method for restoring this lost habitat to the shallow bays
of our seaside. Over the last several years, progress has been made and now
there are over 700 acres of natural eelgrass beds on the seaside.
Researchers world-wide have come to the Eastern Shore to see what is being done.
Northampton County continues to provide amazing sites for the NHPS "Lectures on the Lawn" Series. More information about past lectures can be found on the "Past Lectures" tab at the top of this page. 2019 Lectures are featured below. Be sure to check this website should adverse weather conditions occur on the dates of the program.
Northampton Historic Preservation Society held a “Lecture on the
Lawn at Prospect Hill” on Sunday, November 10th. Prospect
Hill was part of a 1200-acre plantation belonging to Colonel William
Kendall in the late 1600s and then a 675-acre plantation in the 1800’s.
Mr. John W. Leatherbury built Prospect Hill around 1824. He was a
wealthy prominent merchant whose trading interests extended to the West
Indies and his activities included smuggling.
The Northampton Historic Preservation Society offered a “Lecture on the Lawn at Chatham” on October 13th. Chatham, a stately Federal-style house located on Church Creek, is celebrating its 200th birthday. Surrounded by almost 300 acres of land protected in The Virginia Land Trust, it was originally part of a land patent granted in 1640 and has been the home of only five families. Built by Brigadier General Pitts in 1818, a prominent citizen of Northampton County, it was attached to an earlier structure that now serves as a kitchen.
The house features a Federal-style, barrel-vault brick porch with limestone steps built on the footprint of an earlier porch. The ruin of the Quarters Kitchen now shelters a kitchen garden that is enclosed by old fencing and boxwood. Restoration began by the Wehner family in 1979, and a winery completes the property which has been a working farm for four centuries.
Dr. David Scott is generously donating his research notes for this lecture. They can be found at: Chatham Lecture.
Please help support Northampton County's preservation efforts!
Already a member? Consider volunteering for the various NHPS activities.
you wish to learn more about the Northampton Historic Preservation
Society before becoming a member, receive our emails about our programs
and exhibits by sending your email address to the link below and
indicating you would like to be added to our mailing list.
Click here for: Membership Information
Town historian and NHPS board member
David Scott led the
Northampton Historic Preservation Society’s Guided Walking Tour of
Eastville this year. In
addition to a general informative overview of Eastville, he offered a
segment covering more houses on Willow Oak Road this year.
The walking tour started at the Court Green, one of the oldest in Virginia, where you can imagine how it looked at various times during its 300+ year history.
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