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January 27, 2022 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Houses: Montevideo

Courtesy University of Virginia

In 1937, Rosa G. Williams surveyed Montevideo for the Virginia Historical Inventory. She began by locating the property, 9 miles west of Buckingham Courthouse on Route 60, then 7.4 miles northwest on Route 56, then 5.1 miles on Route 601. The house sat to the east of the highway.

Established in 1785, Montevideo was also known as Repton. The owners, as determined by Mrs. Williams were: Col. Joseph Cabell, Jr. (1785), Gov. William Cabell (about 1810), Maj. Charles Yancey (1830), Mrs. Charles Morriss (1835), Walter Morriss (1890), and Mrs. Walter Morriss (1920, still the owner in 1937).

The original house burned during the Civil War and, Mrs. Williams remarked, it was said to have been one of the “finest homes” in the county. The side of the house overlooking the James River was made of glass, indicating a spectacular view.

The property carries with it some fascinating tales. Mrs. Williams wrote:

In the year 1785, Col. Joseph Cabell, Jr. moved to Buckingham from Amherst County, and settled on the James River near Warminster. He built a lovely home and named it “Repton”. A number of years later, he sold the place to Governor William Cabell, who changed the name to “Montevideo”. Maj. Charles Yancey won his estate from Governor Cabell in a card game, and gave it to his daughter, Mrs. Charles Morriss.

According to tradition, Mr. Morriss found one of the colored boys asleep while minding the cows, and tied him to a board for punishment. The child’s mother, who was a slave and maid in house, to retaliate, started a fire in the bureau drawers, which destroyed the whole house. The colored boy grew up to be a noted colored preacher.

After the fire, the family moved into the Overseer’s House. It still stands, and is occupied by the widow of Walter Morriss who inherited it from his mother, Mrs. Charles Morriss.

If a Slate River Ramblings reader knows more about the burning of the dwelling house at Montevideo, please comment.

For more about Montevideo, click here For Sale: Montevideo

2 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. Kenda Hanuman / Jan 27 2022 7:52 am

    Thanks, Joanne. I’ll see about putting you in touch with the family who I bought the property from in 1999. It’s been sold twice since then and I know the current owners. Warmly, Kenda Hanuman 434-969-1586

    On Thu, Jan 27, 2022 at 4:51 AM slate river ramblings . . . . wrote:

    > Joanne Yeck posted: ” Courtesy University of Virginia In 1937, Rosa G. > Williams surveyed Montevideo for the Virginia Historical Inventory. She > began by locating the property, 9 miles west of Buckingham Courthouse on > Route 60, then 7.4 miles northwest on Route 56, then ” >

    • Joanne Yeck / Jan 27 2022 2:35 pm

      Thanks, Kenda.

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