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October 14, 2021 / Joanne Yeck

Payne’s Landing, Part V

Payne’s Pond, 2010. Photo by Joanne Yeck.

In March of 1959, Buckingham County historian Lulie Patteson published an article in Charlottesville’s Daily Progress detailing the history of Payne’s Landing. Located on land owned by Nathan T. Payne, this spot in northern Buckingham on the James River once bustled with commerce.  

Click here to catch up: Payne’s Landing, Part I

Unfortunately, the two images taken by Patteson which accompany the article did not transfer well to microfilm. The captions, however, highlight more details about the Payne plantation. They read as follows:

PLANTATION RUINS — the ruins above are all that is left of the “old Pete Jefferson” house on the Payne plantation. The ruins were torn down recently because of the danger to cattle in falling into the basement of the old four-room brick building.

OLD MILL — a small mill which is still in operation as it was in the years before the Civil War, stands on little Georgia Creek north of Payne’s Mill Pond in Buckingham County. The mill is said to have once been located nearly a mile away on Big Georgia Creek. This is a remnant of the huge Payne plantation.


To learn more about Payne’s Mill, click here: Buckingham Mills: Payne’s Mill, Part I


Lulie Patteson’s mention of the ruins of old Pete Jefferson’s house is particularly intriguing. The 1900 census records an African-American named Peter Jefferson (b. 1857) living in Buckingham County’s James River District but no one by that name was enumerated in Slate River District.

Did this building date back to the mid-19th century? While it is doubtful that Peter Field Jefferson was ever known as “Pete” and he never lived on the Winfrey Tract which became Payne’s plantation, the old four-room brick building could have been built by Jefferson. It seems likely that Lulie Patteson’s informants no longer knew that Randolph Jefferson’s son had once owned this land. If they had been aware of the link to Thomas Jefferson’s nephew, surely they would have mentioned it!


For more about Peter Field Jefferson’s purchase of the Winfrey Tract, consult my book Peter Field Jefferson: Dark Prince of Scottsville and Lost Jeffersons.


For much more about Lulie Patteson’s life, search the archives at Slate River Ramblings and consult “Miss Lulie Patteson: Early Buckingham Historian” in my book “At a Place Called Buckingham.”

Special thanks to Phil James for sharing Lulie Patteson’s work published in The Daily Progress.

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