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ARROHATECK

“(name now obsolete) on the eastern side of the James River ten miles downstream from the falls (Henrico County); 30 men (Smith) or 60 men (Strachey)” [The Powhatan Indians of Virginia, Helen C. Rountree, Univ. of Oklahoma Press, Norman 1989].

“Arrahattock Town Site (43-52 – Dutch Gap Quad) Arrahattock was an important Indian town when the first Englishmen sailed up the James River in 1607. Here, in May of 1607, Captain Christopher Newport was kindly received by the werowance, or chief, of the town.

John Smith writes: “We found here a wer-o-wance, for so they call their Kings, who sat upon a mat of reeds, with his people about him. He caused one to be laid for Captain Newport; gave us a deer roasted, which according to their custom they seethed (boiled) again. His people gave us mulberries, sod wheat, and beans; and he caused his women to make cakes for us. He gave our Captain (newport) his crown, which was of deer’s hair, dyed red. Certifying him our intention (to proceed) up the river, he was willing to send guides with us.”

Arrahattock is noted on the Fry-Jefferson Map of 1751. This Contact Period site may be of considerable archeological significance. [ Inventory of Early Architecture and Historic/Acheological Sites. J.M. O’Dell C 1976 rev 1978, County of Henrico, VA.]

 

BERRYHILL ROAD

Named for Berryhill Farm, a 19th Century Plantation between the two estates of Wilton and Chatsworth. Part of the land that once made up Berryhill Farm was used to develop the Richmond Heights subdivision built around 1915.

 

BOARSWAMP ROAD

This road derives its name from the Boar Swamp. There was also a church on this road named Boar Swamp Church, so designated from the Boar Swamp near which it was built. “About the year 1773, Reverend Elijah Baker, coming down into the lower end of Henrico, in conjunction with one or two others planted Boar Swamp Church.” The original church burned, but was later rebuilt by Baptists and renamed Antioch Baptist Church.

 

BOSHER DAM

This dam is located on the James River, eight miles above the City of Richmond. It is named for the Bosher family and was once part of the James River-Kanawha Canal system. Its present use is to divert water into the remains of the old canal system to be used as a source of drinking water for the City of Richmond and portions of Henrico County.

 

BROAD STREET ROAD

An extension of Broad Street. Broad Street in the City of Richmond was named because of the unusual width of the street. It was designed in this manner because the railroad tracks ran down one side of the street. Travelers needed a broad roadway to keep their horses as far away from the steam engines as possible.

On an 1819 map of the county, Broad Street and Broad Street Road were called Richmond Turnpike Road. On an 1853 map of the county, the road was named Deep Run Turnpike.

 

BROOK ROAD

One of the first toll roads in Virginia, this road has been called Brook Turnpike, Brook Avenue and Brook Road. It was chartered as Brook Turnpike in 1812 and became the first avenue in the state in 1815 when it was dedicated Brook Avenue. The road was built and improved in an effort to improve travel between the City of Richmond and the northern area of the state.

By this road, Lafayette set out to oppose the British troops under Cornwallis in April of 1781. Sheridan entered the outer defense of Richmond on the Brook Road during the War Between the States. The derivation of Brook Road could be from the fact that a man named Thomas Williamson lived on a plantation on what is now Brook Road, named “The Brook”, or ” Brook Hill.” Vestrymen of Curles Church (Williamson’s father had served as a vestryman for over 20 years) wanted to build another church and Williamson offered some land on his farm on which to build the church. After much discussion the men of the vestry decided to build the church on Indian Hill in Henrico County. This church became St. John’s Church and Indian Hill became known as Church Hill and is now in the City of Richmond.

 

BROOKLAND MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT

It is quite possible that the district gets its name from the fact that there are many brooks coursing the area. It is also possible that the district was named for Upham Brook which runs through most of this area. The exact derivation of the name is unknown.

 

BUFFIN ROAD

The Buffin family came to this country from France before the American Revolution and settled in the eastern part of Henrico County. They owned a large home on what is now Buffin Road. During the War Between the States the Union, forces marched up Osborne Turnpike to the location. They ordered the family out of the house, moved a cannon into the yard, and blew up the house. The family had to live in the slave quarters until they could rebuild their home.

 

CARTER’S MILL ROAD

An 1819 map of the eastern section of Henrico County shows a Carter’s Mill in the immediate area of what is now Carter’s Mill Road. The road is named for the Carter family who operated the mill.

 

CEDAR HILL FARM

Cedar Hill Farm derived its name from a large grove of cedar trees that once surrounded the home. The house served as a hospital for wounded Confederates and was in direct line of fire during battle. This home was one of many that served as a hospital during the fierce fighting that occurred in Henrico County during the War Between the States.

 

COAL PIT RAILROAD

To reach the Springfield and Deep Run Coal Pits, which were located about 10 miles northwest of Richmond, a branch line of the railroad approximately 31/2 miles long was needed. The owners of the coal mines, Duval, Burton & Company advanced the money to build the track. The money was returned to them by the R.F. & P. Railroad.

In 1867, the Springfield and Deep Run Coal Mining operation rebuilt the Branch Line at Hungary (Laurel) and contracted with the R.F. & P. for the transportation of coal from the pits to a coal yard at 5th and Byrd Streets in Richmond.

 

COURTNEY ROAD

Named for the Courtney family. Robert M. Courtney served the Confederacy during the Civil War by training troops at Laurel. Another brother served in the Confederate military.

 

CULPEPER STREET

This is not an uncommon place name in the State of Virginia and it could be derived from a former governor of the colony. Thomas, Second Lord of Culpeper, served as governor from May to August 1680 and from December until May of 1683.

The records indicate that he was an unpopular governor in Virginia.

 

CURLES NECK FARM

The name derivation comes from the “curles” in the James River. Curles Neck Farm is one of the oldest estates in Virginia, having been patented in 1617. Different portions of the tract of land have been known by various names which have been recorded in the records such as Curles, Woodsons, Barley, Tillmans, Bremo, and many others. Curles Neck Farm was the home of the rebel Nathaniel Bacon in 1670. Some references to the name Curles say it derives its name from the Curl family, however, there is no evidence that any member of the family of Curl lived in Henrico County before the land and the name “curles” had been established from the river’s meandering curves. Today it is one of the largest working dairy farms east of the Mississippi.

 

DABBS HOUSE

One of Henrico County’s prebellum homes that was named for one-time owner, Josiah Dabbs. Dabbs died in 1862, at the dawn of the War Between the States. His wife was left to run the farm, but as the war raged around the county during the Seven Days Battle, Mrs. Dabbs moved to the sanctuary of Richmond, leaving the house abandoned. General Robert E. Lee, used the house as his headquarters during the battles in defense of Richmond.

Early records of the land show that at one time the farm was called High Meadow. In 1883, the home was sold to Henrico County to be used as the county poor house. At the present time, Dabbs House is the headquarters of the Division of Police, County of Henrico.

 

DARBYTOWN ROAD

This road derives its name from the Darby family. The area around the road was peopled almost exclusively by the Darby and the Enroughty families. To other people in this section, the two names were almost synonymous and interchangeable. Darby obtained preference because of its easier pronunciation and brevity.

An early map of the eastern part of Henrico County shows that this road was previously named Central Road.

 

DEEP BOTTOM ROAD

This road leads to an unusually deep section of the James River. The road was named therefore, because of the depth of the water at this location.

 

DEEP RUN ROAD

This road derives its name from Deep Run Creek in the vicinity of this road.

 

DICKENS ROAD

Named for the Dickens family who lived on the tract of land that this road now runs through. The Dicken’s home, Brookfield, lends its name to the Brookfield complex located on Broad Street Road at the I-64 Intersection.

 

DILL ROAD

Named for the Dill family who owned the land adjacent to this road. There is a Dill pond marked on maps of the county that has the same name derivation.

 

DOTSON AND SAXBY ROADS

These roads, in the Richmond Heights section of eastern Henrico, received their names from the families who lived along the road.

 

DUMBARTON AND STAPLES MILL ROAD

The community of Dumbarton began many years ago as Staples Plantation or Staples Mill. On this land, the Staple family owned and operated a large mill for grinding corn on a nearby pond. After the War Between the States, a man by the name of Major Courtney bought the estate and changed the name from Staples Mill or Staples Plantation to Dumbarton Grange. He chose this name because his uncle, who had raised him, once owned an estate in Scotland named Dumbarton. The road that ran through the estate to the main road, which is now Broad Street, was at that time and is still referred to as Staples Mill Road.

James Branch Cabell made the little mill pond famous by choosing this site as a location to write one of his novels. Later, the estate was purchased by Mrs. Cabell and remained in her possession until 1929, when the land was sold at auction.

 

DUTCH GAP

There are three assumptions as to how this area was named. Dutch settlers living in Sir Thomas Dale’s City of Henricus had begun to dig a ditch or channel much in the design of their ancestors. The project is said to have been abandoned after about 60 yards because the Dutch Americans were afraid they might damage the river bed. Another assumption is that when Sir Thomas Dale was called upon by Prince Henry to come to the colonies of Virginia, he was serving in Holland. When he was establishing the city of Henricus he had his colonists/workmen dig a ditch similar to the one he had seen made in Holland to open up this little channel. His plan was to separate this narrow neck of land from the mainland, but the massacre of 1622 ended his plans. Finally, another assumption is that in 1864, General “Dutch” Butler ordered his soldiers to open the gap to secure a shorter route by which to carry his gunboats to Richmond and avoid Confederate Forts on the river banks. He succeeded in open ordered to retreat. The gap was not opened for transportation purposes until 1878.

 

FARRAR’S ISLAND

After the Indian Massacre of 1622, many colonists were in doubt as to where to settle to avoid further conflict with the Indians. Most of them were not interested in returning to the site of Henricus. This feeling proved to be fruitful to Mr. William Farrar, because he was able to choose the choice island site for his home. After his death, he left the island to his son and because the Farrar family inhabited the island for many years, it came to be known as Farrar’s Island.

The island has also been called “The Great Bent” because of its location in the James River.

 

FAIRFIELD MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT

Fairfield was a favorite name for large colonial estates in Virginia. In 1870, when Henrico County was divided into four townships, the name Fairfield was chosen because of the level fields characteristic of the area.

 

FRANCISTOWN ROAD

Named for the Francis family who lived along this road. In Francistown there were coal fields owned by Thomas Burton. The coal was brought to Richmond on carts before the railroad was built.

 

GASKINS ROAD

Named for the Gaskin family who once owned the property near the James River in the vicinity of what is now the James River Country Club.

 

GAYTON ROAD

The mining village of Gayton developed around the coal mine in the area of the western part of the county. The road and now non-existent village derived their name from the Gayton Coal mines originally owned by DuVal Coal interests.

 

GINTER STREET

Named for Major Lewis Ginter, native New Yorker, Confederate Officer, merchant, banker, owner of the Richmond Times, builder of the Jefferson Hotel, and the man who brought cigarette manufacturing to Richmond. The name of his estate, Westbrook, is preserved in an avenue east of Bryan Park. When he died in 1897, he was considered the wealthiest man in Virginia.

 

GLEN ALLEN

This area was once known as Mountain Road Crossing. It was comprised of a few obscure dwellings and broad stretches of forest interspersed with patches of Indian corn and tobacco. Earlier, before it was settled by the colonists, it was the “happy hunting ground” of the Chickahominy Indians. It was not until the War Between the States that the area was referred to as Glen Allen. The name came from the homestead of the widow, Mrs. Benjamin Allen, who operated a small post office for her neighbors in her home. In military dispatches, the area was called “Allen’s Crossing” because the Allen property served as a landmark to the soldiers who were fighting in the area. Mrs. Allen became the wife of a confederate scout and Captain, John Cussons, who built Forest Lodge.

 

GLEN ECHO

Legend has it that an early settler of Henrico County named Glen or Glenn, enjoyed yelling out into the open countryside and hearing his echo.

 

HARVIE ROAD

This road is named after Jacquelin B. Harvie, who married Mary Marshall, the daughter of Chief Justice John Marshall. John Marshall’s farm, the Chickahominy, was not far from the present Harvie Road.

 

HENRICO COUNTY

This name was chosen in honor of the son of King James 1, Henry Frederick Prince of Wales. Sir Thomas Dale was asked by Prince Henry, a patron of the Virginia Company, to correct the starving and pitiful conditions of the colonists at Jamestown. He selected a new location for a town on what is now known as Farrar’s Island and named the city Henricus. The city, founded in 1611, consisted of three streets, about 1000 houses, a hospital, a church, and the foundation for the first college in Virginia. The massacre of 1622, ended the life of the little town. The name Henricopolis was coined about 1890 in reference to the city from which Henrico County derived its name.

 

HIGHLAND SPRINGS

Mr. Edmund Sewell Read founded the community of Highland Springs in the 1890’s. He migrated to this area from Boston in hopes of finding a suitable climate for his ailing wife. The high altitude in the fall zone and the natural springs in the area made it a suitable choice for the Read family. Read bought a 1000 acre tract of land and divided it into lots. He laid out streets and named them after plants such as Ash, Beech, Cedar, Daisy, Elm, Fern, Grove, Holly, Ivy, Juniper, Kalmia, Linden, Maple, Oak, Pine, Quince, Rose, and Spruce. Read Street was named for its founder – Edmund Sewell Read.

The area of Highland Springs was known as Highland Springs Park on a map of 1893.

 

HORSEPEN ROAD

During the Revolutionary War, horses were purchased for use in the army. All of these horses were kept in a large pen. The road leading to the pen came to be known as the Horsepen Road.

 

JAMES RIVER & KANAWHA CANAL

The Indians called the river, “Powhatan’s River” in honor of their chief. Captain John Smith renamed the river, “The James”, in honor of the King of England, James I.

The Kanawha Canal, also derived its name from the Indians. Kanawha meant “river of the woods.”

 

KUKYMUTH ROAD

This road was originally named “Old Cockermouth Road”. It began as an Indian trail. In a 1795 land transfer, a 422 acre farm that encompassed Old Cockermouth Road was deeded to a man named Pleasant Younghusband. He named his plantation Cockermouth. Eventually, with the passage of time, the name evolved into Kukymuth and the road became known as Kukymuth Road.

 

LAKESIDE

This area has developed over the years into a community. Major Lewis Ginter built a amusement park here by the lake and named it Lakeside. The park had a small zoo, games were played for adults and children, and the lake was used for winter and summer water sports. The first actual golf course in Richmond was constructed at Lakeside. The game had been played before in the open fields that once surrounded the Lee Monument, but the first formal course was at Lakeside. The area is now privately owned by the Lakeside Country Club.

 

LAUREL/HUNGARY

This locality, in the north western part of the county was once called Hungry. Hungary was the site of a water station for the R.F. & P. Railroad. Maps of the area indicate that Hungary was either a crossroads or a small community that grew up around the tracks. Hungary Spring Road derives its name from the settlement of Hungary – supposedly the road ran to a small spring in the area. Deep Run Baptist Church was originally called Hungary Baptist Church that had been re-organized from Chickahominy Baptist Church which was established as far back as 1792.

Hungary came to be known as Laurel sometime around the Civil War.

 

LEE AVENUE

There is more than one Lee Avenue – four of them in fact listed in the 1973 street directory for Henrico County. All of these avenues are supposed to be named for the Southern Civil War General, Robert E. Lee. Over the years, planners and developers have used the name of Richmond’s most obvious hero.

 

LIBBIE AVENUE

Named for Libbie Freeman Thompson by her husband, Mark Thomas Thompson, who settled in an area called Rio Vista, around the year 1890. Thompson published the “American’ Farm and Horticulture”. It was the first horticultural paper published in this country.

 

LONGBRIDGE ROAD

Old time residents say that many years ago a bridge was built to span the Chickahominy River and, to the people who lived in the area, it seemed to be a very long bridge. So they began to call the road leading to the bridge – The Longbridge Road.

 

LONGDALE

Longdale is an area in Henrico County between Mountain Road and U.S. Route 1. Longdale was named for E. T. Long, who moved into the area around 1924. He built, rented, and sold more homes than anyone else in the area had prior to this time.

 

MALVERN HILL

This farm was the colonial dwelling of the Cocke family and with its long history has been involved in three of this country’s wars. Lafayette camped on the hill in 1781 during the Revolutionary War, the Virginia militia camped here during the War of 1812, and one of the bloodiest battles of the War Between the States was fought on this land. Malvern Hill was first owned by Richard Cocke, who settled at Point Brerno, which is now part of the Curles Neck Farm. Cocke acquired a great deal of land in Henrico County and one such tract of land was Malvern Hill. He gave Malvern Hill, which he named because it reminded him of the Malvern Hills in England, to his son, Colonel Thomas Cocke. The ruins of a house on Malvern Hill today are said to be the last remnant of the house that Thomas Cocke built there.

The estate derives its name from the Malvern Hills in England which serve as the boundary between Hereford and Worcestershire. There is an interesting story about the naming of Malvern Hill. The story may be fact or fiction, but it lends an interesting sidelight to Malvern Hill’s history. About the year 1658, two small children, Robert Povall and Elizabeth Hooker, were brought to Virginia and bound as indentured servants. Robert Povall was bound to Charles Carter of Shirley Plantation and Elizabeth Hooker was bound to Solomon Knibbs, Carter’s nearest neighbor. The two children remained close and as they grew up, they fell in love. One day, Governor Francis Nicholson came to Shirley Plantation to see Carter on business. He said he had received a letter from a high official in England asking him to search for a girl named Elizabeth Hooker who had disappeared from her father’s estate while just a small child. Her father was Lord Hooker recently deceased. He had left an immense estate to her. Robert Povall, serving as Carter’s butler, overheard the conversation and revealed that Elizabeth Hooker was at the Knibb’s farm. It was determined that this girl was indeed the daughter of the wealthy Lord. She married Robert Povall and they returned to her father’s estate in England known as Malvern Hill. Here the couple remained for a few years, but longed for Virginia the only home either of them had ever known. So they decided to leave England and return. They bought a large farm in Henrico County and named it Malvern Hill in honor of their home in far away England.

 

MARION HILL

This name could possibly be derived from the fact that a man named Marion operated a store on the hill for many years prior to the Civil War. There is also a story that a man named Marion lived on the hill and was the first man hanged in Virginia. No written account of the naming of this area could be located and these assumptions were made by long-time residents of the area.

 

MCCOUL STREET

This street was named for the man who owned a plantation named Marion Hill in what is now known as the Marion Hill section of Henrico County.

 

MCCLELLAN STREET

The developer of Sandston named this street for the Union General, George B. McClellan, who was routed by General Robert E. Lee in the Seven Days Battles in defense of Richmond.

 

MEADOW BRIDGE ROAD

This road is a very old road that dates back to a 1751 map. A map of Henrico County dated 1853, shows that at one time, Meadow Bridge Road was a much longer and more of a main road than it is today. The name origin is unknown.

 

MEADOW FARM

This home, built in the late eighteenth century, has remained in the same family for almost two hundred years. In August of 1800, Mosby Sheppard, owner of Meadow Farm, was warned by two of his slaves that an insurrection was being planned by a slave on a neighboring farm. This was the first anyone in the area had heard of the rebellion whose aim was to murder white slave owners and to capture Richmond. Sheppard immediately informed Governor James Monroe, who took steps to halt the rebellion before any lives were lost. The two slaves on the Sheppard farm who had warned of the danger, were purchased by the state and given their freedom. But fear had been planted in the minds of the people of Virginia and the South, and by the end of the investigation, forty-one slaves had been executed.

 

MEHERRIN STREET

This street was named by the developer of Forest Heights and is probably derived from the town of Meherrin in Southside Virginia. Meherrin is the Indian name for island and is also the name of a river and a tribe.

 

MIDVIEW ROAD

This road was once called Atlee Road, named for the Atlee family who lived on the land nearby and owned the home Wakefield. The name of the road was later changed to Midview because the road lies between Darbytown and New Market Road.

 

MILL ROAD

This road derives its name from the fact that at one time a grain mill was in operation near the gate of the Wilton Plantation in the Eastern part of the county. The mill was operated by at least two families – the Sordelet’s and the Eaves.

 

MONTEZUMA STREET

This land was originally owned by the Schermerhorn family. On a map. made of the county during the War Between the States, the Schermerhorn farm is marked. A member of the family went to Mexico and decided that he liked the name Montezuma and subsequently named the family farm, Montezuma. The developers of the Montezuma subdivision adapted the name to the street and avenue in the area as well.

 

MOUNTAIN ROAD

This road is very old and historic. In early times, it was an Indian trail. During the Revolutionary War and the War Between the States, it was well known. Lafayette passed over this road on his way to Yorktown. In the official records of “The War of Rebellion”, it states that General Sheridan proceeded down Mountain Road to Allen’s Crossing where they tore up the tracks of the R.F. & P. Railroad.

 

NEW MARKET ROAD

The original tobacco market for the colonists was in Williamsburg and tobacco growers in Henrico County decided they needed another market. Richmond was the most likely candidate. They began to call Richmond “New Market” and the road that led to it from the eastern part of the county, the New Market Road.

New Market Road was once named River Road. A map of the county, dated 1819, shows an area off of River Road (Route 5 and later New Market Road) and Turner Road going north, called New Market. On a map of the county dated 1853, the little village of New Market is situated at the intersection of Kingsland Road and what is now New Market Road.

 

NINE MILE ROAD

This name is based on the distance between the terminal points of the road in Richmond and Seven Pines. Old deeds and maps indicate this road was once known as the New Bridge Road.

 

ORONOCO AVENUE

Named for a dark, heavy tobacco leaf which remained the standard export of Virginia prior to the War Between the States.

 

OSBORNE TURNPIKE

This road, in the eastern end of the county, was influenced by the act of some roadway engineer as is evident by its straightness. It was at Osborne’s that a ferry operated between Henrico and Chesterfield. On the Henrico side, the highway leading to the ferry was called Osborne Turnpike. The little village of Osborne was at the mouth of Proctor’s Creek and part of the original colonial glebe land. It was not particularly suited to farming, so the House of Burgesses, in 1761, approved the motion that the land be sold. The site was divided into 120 lots. The project was not a huge success and died a natural death. The area eventually became known as Osbornes, named in honor of one of the colonists, and became a busy port.

Thomas Jefferson’s father, Peter Jefferson was born and later married at the little settlement of Osbornes.

 

PARADISE

This home was named for the Paradise trees that grew wild in the yard. It was built around 1827 by the Dr. Patterson for whom Patterson Avenue was named. Tuckahoe Elementary School had its beginnings in the basement of the home during World War II.

 

PARHAM ROAD

“Parham Road, one of metropolitan Richmond’s most heavily traveled roads, was named for a lifelong resident of Montgomery County, Tennessee, whose only connection with the Richmond area was through his wife.

Junius S. Parham, for whom the road is named, acquired the land afterwards known as “the Parham tract” through his marriage to Mary E. Smith. She had inherited the property from her grandfather, John Hill, a substantial landowner in Henrico County during the middle of the nineteenth century. Most of the tract was concentrated in a vast area along the eastern side of what was then called New County Road and is now Broad Street Road.

About 1860 Parham apparently decided to begin liquidating his wife’s land. This he did through a series of transactions spanning two decades, throughout which he and his wife continued to maintain their residence in Tennessee. The process had been completed by July, 1879. Nevertheless, by 1900, New County Road had become known as Parham Road from Three Chopt Road to Broad Street Road. Gradually the name Parham was extended to include the road that covers the lengthy semi-circle of today.”

The Richmond Literature and History Quarterly, Summer 1978.

 

PATTERSON AVENUE

Named for Dr. Richard Archibald Patterson, tobacco manufacturer and medical doctor who served the Confederacy as. a surgeon. Before the war, Patterson and Thomas C. Williams began a modest tobacco business that failed, as many other businesses did, with the onslaught of the war. Patterson became a surgeon for the Confederacy and as he tended troops during the bloody battle of Malvern Hill, his wife gave birth to a son. She named him Malvern, after the battle of Malvern Hill. He later became one of the first Vice-Presidents of the American Tobacco Company.

After the war, Dr. Patterson operated a small farm in Henrico County and practiced medicine in the neighborhood, but his life took a turn for the better when one day he received word that a tobacco shipment made by his now defunct tobacco company had made it through the wartime blockade. During the war, the money from the sale of the tobacco had been kept for him until after the fighting to insure that he received it. The amount was around $9,000.00, a fortune in those postwar days. Patterson re-opened his tobacco business under the name of R. A. Patterson & Company. He became a wealthy man. A road was cut through the property and named Patterson Avenue after this gentleman. The Patterson Tobacco Company was bought out by the American Tobacco Company, which kept the Lucky Strike Brand, which was an original brand of the Patterson Company.

 

PENICK ROAD

The Penicks were prosperous farmers in Halifax County, and Junius made that his occupation as well. Evidently interested in local politics, records show he was chosen in Sept. 1889 at a meeting of the Brookland Democrats to be a delegate at the state senatorial convention that October. In 1891, he was elected to serve on the Henrico County Board of Supervisors from Brookland District, for the 1891-92 and 1892-93 terms. A notable achievement during his board tenure was the erection of the new Henrico County jail building. Penick, a longtime farmer, was also an active member of the Tuckahoe Farmers Club attending meetings at places like “Laburnum” in 1892 and others.

 

PORTUGEE ROAD

This road was originally referred to as the New Road. It was common for the newest roads in a area to be called the “new road” for lack of anything else to call it. An 1887 map, however, shows that the road had become White Oak Swamp Road and when the name was changed to Portugee or how this name came about is unknown.

 

POUNCEY TRACT ROAD

A map of Henrico County dated 1819 shows this road as Pounce’s Tract. It is quite possible that the road derived its name from a family named Pounce or Pouncey who owned the land through which the road was cut.

 

PUMP ROAD

This road was used as an access road to the Short Pump Tavern and was shortened to Pump Road simply by usage.

 

QUIOCCASIN ROAD

This road derives its name from Indian usage. The name could evolve from the Indian name, Quiasosough, meaning a lesser deity of the Indians. Another possibility is that the name comes from the Indian word translating into a temple or meeting place, a gathering spot. A paragraph from a work dated 1705, concerning the Virginia Indians and their life style says … The Indians have posts fix’d around their Quioccasin which have men’s faces carved upon them and are painted. They are likewise set up round some of their other celebrated places and make a circle for them to dance about on certain solemn occasions.

 

SAVAGE STATION

This was formally a railroad stop that gave its name to the third battle of the Seven Days Campaign. An 1819 map of the county, shows that a Savage Family lived near the location of the station.

 

SEVEN PINES

Seven Pines was a battle site of one of the Seven Days Battles in 1862. The location was so named because of the unusual growth of seven pine trees in the area.

 

SHORTPUMP

A tavern and stage coach stop on the road to mountains and western settlements had a well in the yard with an unusually short pump handle. The name Short Pump thus came about as a popular designation for the establishment and now is applied to a considerable area in the vicinity of the intersection of Broad Street Road (Rt. 250) and Three Chopt Road.

 

SKIPWITH ROAD

This road was named for the Skipwith family who owned the property on the road where the Three Chopt Elementary School is now located.

 

SPRINGFIELD ROAD

This road is shown on an 1853 map as Springfield Pit Road, named for the Springfield Coal Pits in the area.

 

SPRINGFIELD FARM

South of Mountain Road was Springfield Farm containing mineral and sulfur springs of great medicinal value. About 100 years ago, a resort was built here and this is where the wealthy and fashionable Richmonders spent their summer.

 

TELEGRAPH ROAD

This road is a historic route from Richmond to Washington. It was replaced by U.S. Route 1 when this road was constructed. The name comes from the fact that it was located along the telegraph line connecting Richmond and Washington.

Just off Old Telegraph Road, one half mile to the east, is a monument marking the field where General J.E.B. Stuart was mortally wounded May 11, 1864. (See Yellow Tavern).

 

THIMBLE LANE

This road was cut through the property of Mrs. H.O. Arnold, who was a seamstress by trade. When the road was completed the engineer asked her what she thought the road ought to be called. She replied that Thimble Lane might be a nice name due to her trade. The house on the farm became known as Thimble Lane House.

 

THREE CHOPT MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT

This district was created by court order in 1969. Because a considerable portion of its boundary was delineated by Three Chopt Road, it was given this name.

 

THREE CHOPT ROAD

Three Chopt Road began as an Old Indian Trail that was marked by making three notches on the trees. As the English colonists moved into the area, the road was called the King’s Highway. Because there were so few roads at this time, it was not uncommon for a road to be referred to by local residents as the King’s Highway. More often than not, however, the road was called the Three Notched Road. A map of Henrico County dated 1819, shows theroad marked as Three Chopped Road. Years later the spelling of the road changed from Three Chopped to Three Chopt, as the latter spelling is used on Smith’s map of 1853. Such notables as Lafayette, Cornwallis, Washington, Jefferson and Robert E. Lee have traveled down this ancient roadway that began at Powhatan’s Village, a few miles east of Richmond, and ran westward into the mountains.

 

TREE HILL FARM

A center of horse racing in the post-Revolutionary War period, the original house was built about 1775. It was the site of the surrender of Richmond by Mayor Joseph Mayo in 1865.

The United States Department of the Interior has placed Tree Hill on the National Register of Historic Places.

 

TRENT HOUSE

This home is named for one time owner, Dr. Peterfield Trent. The home served as General McClellan’s Headquarters in May and June of 1862 during the Seven Days Battles around Richmond.

 

TUCKAHOE MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT

A word used by the Indians to denote a plant whose root was edible and served as a nutritional food source. From New Jersey to Virginia the tribes fed upon these plants and often named the waterways on whose banks they abundantly grew, Tuckahoe. There is a Tuckahoe River in New Jersey, a town named Tuckahoe in New York, a Tuckahoe Creek in Maryland as well as the Tuckahoe Creek and District in Henrico, all having the same Indian origin. In the 17th Century, near where the Tuckahoe Creek flows into the James River, William Randolph of Turkey Island granted a tract of land to his son Thomas Randolph. The estate became known as Tuckahoe, taking its name from the creek and a nearby Indian town. The Randolph home on the estate was built around 1698 and its boxwood garden is one of the most interesting in Virginia.

 

TURKEY ISLAND

Turkey Island received its name in 1607, when a group of explorers and settlers led by Captain Christopher Newport, sailed up the James and found an islet on which there was a great number of turkeys and other fowl. They named the islet, Turkey Island. Many years later, the Randolph family lived on the land (William Randolph of Turkey Island). Turkey Island Plantation was later owned by General George Pickett, who led Pickett’s charge at the battle of Gettysburg. The home was destroyed by Federal gunboats on their way up the river to attack Richmond.

 

TURNER ROAD

Named for the Turner family who lived on this road, located in the eastern part of the county.

 

VARINA MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT

In 1610, John Rolfe came to America and settled on what is now known as Varina Farm. In route to Virginia, Rolfe had landed on the Bermuda Island and took great interest in the type of tobacco grown there. When he arrived in Virginia, he began cultivating a type of tobacco that was a cross between Indian tobacco and Bermuda tobacco. The end result was a tobacco crop that was very similar to tobacco being grown in the Spanish Varinas. Rolfe named his tobacco plantation Varina, because of this similarity. It was there that he lived with his wife Pocahontas, the Indian Princess. The Indian Massacre of 1622 ended the settlement of Henricus and a tiny village grew up on Rolfe’s Plantation called Varina or Henrico Parish. Varina was the first County seat of Henrico and the first courthouse was built there. Originally the name Varina denoted an area of some 18 by 25 miles in measurement. Later, when this area became known simply as Henrico, Varina usually referred to the farm. General “Dutch” Butler, a Union commander during the Civil War, set up his headquarters in Varina while he tried to cut a canal through Dutch Gap. Varina was also a place for prisoner exchange between the North and the South during the war, but then it was called Aiken’s Landing.

 

VINEGAR HILL TAVERN

Four miles from the Old Henrico County Court House at the northeast intersection of Harvie Road and Laburnum Avenue, is the site of what was once the Vinegar Hill Tavern. The tavern got its name because of a large apple orchard behind it whose apples made cider and, when allowed to turn to vinegar, was used in Richmond for all pickling purposes. The story is told that during the Seven Days battles during the Civil War, all the young ladies in the county who lived near the tavern, sat out in front and sang songs to the young Confederate soldiers marching to meet the Federal troops.

 

WALKERTON

Among the oldest original homes in Henrico County, Walkerton was built by an Englishman named John Walker, who came to the colonies (date unknown), and acquired a large tract of land on both sides of Mountain Road. Walkerton served as a tavern and was the twin of Walker’s residence across the road. The tavern was equipped with a wine cellar, three ice houses, and a 20 horse stable to accommodate its guests.

 

WARRICK PARK (43-221 – Drewry’s Bluff Quad)

Warrick Park, probably named after the vanished 18th century town of Warrick on the opposite bank of the James, was developed as a “summer resort” for Richmonders in the latter 19th century. The park itselve, located about four miles downstream from the port of Rocketts, was owned and operated by Warwick Park Transportation Company, which had erected a pavilion and other accomodationss for picnicers. Small steamboats and open-air barges . . . made regular runs from the city during the warm mont hs of the year.

Although no evidence of Warwick Park remains today, these broad fields overlooking the James still retain the rural qualities that attract people here four generations ago. Today, a race track replaces the pavilion, and once each year the recently-formed Warwick Park Association sponsors a horse race whose proceeds are given to a local charity. [ Inventory of Early Architecture and Historic/Acheological Sites. J.M. O’Dell C 1976 rev 1978, County of Henrico, VA.]

 

WARRICK ROAD

This road derives its name from the Warrick Park that existed in the Eastern section of the county before 1900. It was a gathering spot for local residents who used it for picnics and water sports. There were excursions made from Richmond to the park by way of the river. There is mention of a small village named Warrick in early records of the county, but there is not much information on this settlement.

 

WARRICK TOWN

“In May 1748 the General Assembly approved an act to establish the town of Warwick on the south bank of the James River, just above Falling Creek. A warehouse and mills had been built on the site earlier, and a tobacco inspection had been authorized at the warehouse in 1730. The town later served as a supply point for the state navy during the Revolutionary War, and when the British occupied it in 1781, they burned it. In 1748, additional inspectors were requested for the warehouses at Shockoe and Warwick, and citizens of Henrico and Amelia petitioned for a warehouse on the land of John Osborne on the south side of the James below Warwick.[The History of Henrico County – Manarin and Dowdy, Univ. Press of VA. 1984]

 

WARRINER ROAD

This road derives its name from a family of Warriners who owned land in the area of this road. The Warriner name appears on maps dating back to the War Between the States.

 

WESTHAM

Westham was a small trading town in western Henrico County. In 1752, the town was laid off into 150 lots with streets. The village of Westham appears on a map dated 1755. The main road through Westham was Westham Plank Road, which is now Cary Street Road. There were tobacco warehouses in the village and there are references to Westham in connection with events during the Revolutionary War. The land on which Westham was built was originally owned by the Randolph family. The village must have disappeared around 1800, because it no longer appears on maps dated after that time. It is logical to assume that many areas in western Henrico bearing the name Westham derived it from the 18th Century town.

 

WEYANOKE ROAD

This road was named by the developer of Forest Heights Subdivision and is derived from an early Indian tribe known as the Wyanokes. This tribe lived in various locations on both sides of the James River.

 

WHITE OAK ROAD

This is an old road existing during the War Between the States. Its name was likely derived from the Whiteoak Swamp through which it passed.

 

WHITESIDE ROAD

This road derives its name from the Whiteside Plantation in this area. Whiteside is an old family name of English extraction.

 

WILLIAMSBURG ROAD

The present Williamsburg Road is said to have been a trail used by the Indians before this country was settled. It was called the “Pocohontas Trail”. There were once two toll gates on the. road, one of them being where Darbytown Road intersected Williamsburg Road. The road in early days was the major road to the town of Williamsburg.

 

WILLIS CHURCH ROAD

This road was originally called Quaker Road because in PreRevolutionary War days, there was a Quaker settlement in the area and they used this road to get to their church at Curies in Varina. Smith’s map of 1853, has this road marked as Quaker Road. The road was renamed for Willis Church which was used as a field hospital during the War Between the States. During the battle of Frasier’s farm, the church caught on fire. General Robert E. Lee ordered his men to put the fire out and save the church.

 

WILTON

This home was built between 1750 and 1753 by William Randolph, son of William Randolph of Turkey Island, who had a daughter named Anne. A problem arose because there was another Anne Randolph in the family, and to distinguish one from another, William Randolph’s daughter came to be known as Nancy Wilton Randolph or simply, “Nancy Wilton”. She had many suitors. One of them, Benjamin Harrison of Brandon, became her husband. Thomas Jefferson, a contemporary of hers, referred to her home as “Wilton” in letters, saying, “I hear that Ben Harrison has been at Wilton, let me know his success.” Early records refer to the property as “Worlds End”, because of its once remote location. It was Lafayette’s Headquarters in May of 1781 while Cornwallis was in the Richmond area.

The home has been moved from its original location in Varina and is owned by and used as the Headquarters of the National Society of the Colonial Dames in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

 

YAHLEY’S MILL ROAD

This road is named after the man who operated Yahley’s Mill in Varina. Mr. Yahley came to the area around 1890 and operated the flour mill until about 1940. An early map indicates that the mill was previously called Fussel’s Mill.

 

YELLOW TAVERN

An old tavern that gave its name to the calvary engagement in which General J.E.B. Stuart was mortally wounded May 11, 1864. The Battle of Yellow Tavern was fought between Sheridan’s Cavalry and the Confederates Cavalry under Stuart. The famous opera star of that period, Jenny Lind, spent the night at Yellow Tavern when caught in a violent snowstorm while making an appearance in Richmond.

An 1853 map of the county shows that a J. Hill was the proprietor at the tavern at this time.

Division of Recreation and Parks

 

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