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April 2, 2020 / Joanne Yeck

 Buckingham County Houses: Travelers Rest, Part I

Travelers Rest. Courtesy Historic Buckingham.

In 1937, Garnett Agee Williams surveyed Travelers Rest for the Virginia Historical Inventory. Mrs. Williams located the property 1.2 miles west of Buckingham Court House on Hwy 60, and 8.5 miles northwest on Route 604, then north 5.8 miles on Route 604. Simply put, Travelers Rest is located near the James River between Wingina and Howardsville.

Mrs. Williams believed the house was built in about 1724. The property owner at that time was William Gilmer Horsley. Without the ability to search for deeds due to Buckingham County’s burned courthouse, she identified the following owners: Mary Horsley Spencer (1760); Nancy Spencer Yancey (1800); John Horsley, Jr. (1861); Annie Horsley Moon, Louise Horsley and Ida Horsley (1901).

The house was described as follows:

“Travelers Rest” was built with hand-wrought nails, and the brick was made on the place. There were only four rooms in the original house with a very wide hallway. The original house was of brick, but about 1850 it was weatherboarded over and more rooms added. The sills of the house are of hardwood and are very large. It seems when they added rooms they also added porches. The front porch is in three sections, where it has been added to from time to time.

There is a very large lawn and it is beautifully kept. Many of the old flowers are still there, and some of the original locust trees are still standing.

Coming next: Buckingham County Houses: Travelers Rest, Part II

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