Revolution

HERITAGE TRAIL
FAIRFAX
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Road to

WASHINGTON, D.C.

ALEXANDRIA

LORTON WARRENTON
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Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon

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522

Gunston Hall

CULPEPER

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95

POTO M

Montpelier
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AC

Stratford Hall

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Ferry Farm
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Scotchtown
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FREDERICKSBURG
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COLONIAL BEACH

Montpelier
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Ash Lawn–Highland
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ORANGE

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James Monroe Birthplace George Washington Birthplace
4 Stratford

Hall

250 250 64

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CHARLOTTESVILLE

Hanover Courthouse
3 738

Monticello

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Ash Lawn–Highland
53 20 250

Rural Plains

95

HANOVER ASHLAND
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Hanover County Courthouse
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Scotchtown
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Hanover Tavern
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Hanover Tavern

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HANOVER
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Enlargement at right
360 33 295

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301

ASHLAND
522 64 295 29

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Pine Studley Slash 11
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Rural Plains
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Polegreen Church

60 288 60 60

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RICHMOND
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MECHANICSVILLE

360 64

MECHANICSVILLE
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64 301 150 60 147

Wilton
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RICHMOND
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The John Marshall House
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Hampden-Sydney College
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295
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Bell Tower

St. John’s Church

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FARMVILLE

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ME S

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Colonial Williamsburg
PETERSBURG
301 460 460

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Yorktown

Red Hill

Hampden-Sydney College

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501

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360

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BROOKNEAL
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Red Hill

Wilton
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HAMPTON

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Visit these sites to learn more about the Virginia leaders and events essential to establishing American independence and liberty. For more details, including directions and hours, use the contact information provided.

Colonial Williamsburg

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Mount Vernon – Alexandria
www.mountvernon.org (703) 780-2000 George Washington inherited Mount Vernon upon the death of his half-brother’s widow in 1761. He started making additions to the central portion of the building in 1757 and completed the house in its present form 30 years later. In the first national historic preservation effort, the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association took possession of the house in 1860.

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Monticello – Charlottesville
www.monticello.org (434) 984-9800 A self-taught architect, Thomas Jefferson took 40 years (from 1768 to 1809) to complete his home, built on a leveled mountaintop. Jefferson designed two Monticellos: the first, a tripartite Palladian villa, was not quite finished when he demolished part of it in the 1790s and began the second, a much larger mansion reflecting Palladian, Roman, and French architectural ideals. Jefferson died at Monticello in 1826, and he and members of his family are buried in the on-site graveyard.

pine slasH and studley – Mechanicsville
admin@historicpolegreen.org Patrick Henry and his bride, Sarah Shelton, lived at Pine Slash from 1754 until 1757, when they moved to Hanover Tavern after the main house burned. Henry was born at Studley, now an archaeological site owned by Preservation Virginia, on May 29, 1736. The two-story brick house burned in 1807.

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wilton – Richmond
www.wiltonhousemuseum.org (804) 282-5936 At the original site in eastern Henrico County, Marquis de Lafayette camped and drilled his troops for two weeks in May 1781, a few months before the Battle of Yorktown. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson visited Wilton. When threatened with demolition in 1933, the ca. 1753 house was relocated to its current site. The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in the Commonwealth of Virginia operates Wilton.

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rural plains – Mechanicsville
www.nps.gov/rich/historyculture/rural-plains.htm (804) 226-1981 Rural Plains was built ca. 1723. This was the home of Sarah Shelton, who, according to family tradition, married Patrick Henry here in 1754. The teenage couple soon moved to nearby Pine Slash. During the Civil War, the Battle of Totopotomoy Creek raged around the property May 29–30, 1864. As part of the Richmond National Battlefield Park, Rural Plains is a unit of the National Park Service.
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Gunston Hall – Lorton
www.gunstonhall.org (703) 550-9220 George Mason—author of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, from which the Bill of Rights was derived—constructed this small but elaborately detailed house between 1755 and 1759. English carpenter William Buckland designed the beautiful interior woodwork. The home and gardens are situated on the Potomac River.
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colonial williaMsBurG – Williamsburg
www.colonialwilliamsburg.com (800) 447-8679 The capital of Virginia from 1699 until 1780, Williamsburg is where early American leaders — such as Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington — steered the colony toward independence. The historic area of town has been restored to its 18th-century appearance. The restored and reconstructed buildings include the Capitol, the Governor’s Palace, Bruton Parish Church, Raleigh Tavern, and the George Wythe House.

a sH l awn–HiGHland – Charlottesville
www.ashlawnhighland.org (434) 293-8000 James Monroe purchased his Highland property in 1793 at the urging of his friend and mentor Thomas Jefferson, who lived nearby. Monroe and his wife resided on the property between 1799 and 1823. They sold the house and land in 1826. After the Monroes’ tenure, the property was known as Ash Lawn and was in private hands until it was bequeathed to the College of William and Mary, its current owner, in 1974.

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JaMes Monroe BirtHplace – Colonial Beach
www.monroefoundation.org (804) 231-1827 President James Monroe lived at this site from his birth in 1758 until 1774, when he left to attend the College of William and Mary. The James Monroe Memorial Foundation plans to reconstruct the dwelling, the ruins of which were uncovered in 1976.
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poleGreen cHurcH – Mechanicsville
www.historicpolegreen.org (804) 730-3837 The Reverend Samuel Davies, the first non-Anglican minister whom Virginia colonial authorities licensed to preach, made Polegreen his home church in 1748. Ministering until 1759, he spread Presbyterianism throughout Virginia and espoused freedom of religion and expression. Patrick Henry attended Polegreen Church. The building survived until Confederate artillery destroyed it during Civil War combat on June 1, 1864. Today, a “ghost frame” outlines the church atop its original foundation.
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yorktown – Yorktown
www.nps.gov/yonb (757) 898-2410 www.historyisfun.org (888) 593-4682 The National Park Service interprets Yorktown National Battlefield, where, on October 19, 1781, Lord Cornwallis surrendered to General George Washington. The nearby Yorktown Victory Center, operated by the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, chronicles America’s evolution to nationhood. The town of Yorktown, adjacent to the battlefield, features many 18th-century structures for viewing or touring.

patrick Henry ’s scotcHtown – Beaverdam
www.preservationvirginia.org/scotchtown (804) 227-3500 Patrick Henry lived here from 1771 to 1778. This period was Henry’s greatest era of influence as “Orator of the Revolution” and included his election as first governor of the state of Virginia in 1776. The house, built ca. 1719, is thought to be the largest one-story colonial dwelling in Virginia. Preservation Virginia has owned and maintained the property since 1958.

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stratford Hall – Stratford
www.stratfordhall.org (804) 493-8038 In the 1730s, Thomas Lee built Stratford Hall, home to many members of the Lee family—including his sons Richard Henry Lee and Francis Lightfoot Lee, only brothers to sign the Declaration of Independence, and Revolutionary War hero Henry “Light-Horse Harry” Lee. Confederate General Robert E. Lee, Henry Lee’s son, was born at Stratford in 1807. Since 1929, the Robert E. Lee Memorial Association has preserved the massive H-shaped brick mansion, unique in America, and surrounding outbuildings.

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st. JoHn’s cHurcH – Richmond
www.historicstjohnschurch.org (804) 649-0263 Here, on March 23, 1775, during the Second Virginia Convention, Patrick Henry delivered his celebrated “Liberty or Death” speech. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Richard Henry Lee, and Peyton Randolph were among the delegates present for the speech, which is reenacted seasonally in the church. George Wythe, Jefferson’s law professor, and Elizabeth Arnold Poe, mother of Edgar Allan Poe, are buried in the churchyard.
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HanoVer county courtHouse – Hanover
www.co.hanover.va.us/planning/histresr.htm (804) 365-6000 The Hanover County Courthouse was built ca. 1737–1742 and is one of only six surviving arcaded courthouses in Virginia. Here, in 1763, Patrick Henry argued his first famous case, the Parson’s Cause, which challenged the British claim to authority over Virginia’s laws. Colonists gathered at the courthouse in 1774 to address grievances in preparation for the First Virginia Convention in Williamsburg.

HaMpden-sydney colleGe – Hampden-Sydney
www.hsc.edu (434) 223-6000 Named for 17th-century English antiroyalists John Hampden and Algernon Sydney, this Presbyterian-affiliated college was established in 1775. It is the oldest private charter college in the South. Patrick Henry, who helped obtain the charter from the General Assembly in 1783, and James Madison were among the college’s first trustees. Student companies were formed here during the Revolutionary War and the Civil War.

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Montpelier – Montpelier Station
www.montpelier.org (540) 672-2728 Montpelier was the lifelong home of James Madison, “Father of the Constitution,” and his wife, Dolley Madison, who inspired the title “First Lady.” Here, America’s fourth president first imagined the Constitution—researching and organizing his thoughts about the ideal principles for representative democracy. Visitors to Montpelier can tour the recently restored mansion; explore the outbuildings, cemeteries, gardens, Temple, and active archaeology sites; and hike the trails in the Landmark Forest.
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tHe JoHn M arsHall House – Richmond
www.preservationvirginia.org/marshall (804) 648-7998 This large, two-story brick house in the heart of Richmond’s fashionable “Court End” district was home to John Marshall and his family from 1790 until his death in 1835. Since that time, the house — now operated by Preservation Virginia — has undergone remarkably few changes. The U.S. Supreme Court’s fourth chief justice, Marshall served in the American Revolution under General George Washington at Valley Forge — an experience that motivated his vision for a strong central government.
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HanoVer taVern – Hanover
www.hanovertavern.org (804) 537-5050 Located directly across the road from Hanover Courthouse, this late-18th-century tavern is among the largest and best-preserved in Virginia. Patrick Henry and his wife lived here for a time after their house at Pine Slash burned in 1757. George Washington, British Lieutenant General Lord Charles Cornwallis, and the Marquis de Lafayette visited the tavern.

r ed Hill – Brookneal
www.redhill.org (800) 514-7463 Patrick Henry retired to Red Hill after 25 years in Virginia’s legislature and five years as governor. Henry died on June 6, 1799, and was buried here. The main house has been reconstructed on its original site, and seven historic buildings, including his law office, remain standing. The house also includes a substantial collection of Patrick Henry memorabilia.

Revolution
HERITAGE TRAIL
Richmond Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau 401 N. 3rd Street Richmond, VA 23219 (804) 783-7450

Road to

www.VisitRichmondVa.com

©2013 Road to ReVoLutIon HeRItage tRaIL BRoCHuRe desIgn By CommunICatIon desIgn InC., RICHmond, Va.

www.virginia.org

RICHMOND

Area of enlargement on reverse side

www.roadtorevolution.com

Road to

independence

Currier & Ives, ca. 1876, Library of Virginia

Virginia Tourism Corporation 901 E. Byrd Street Richmond, VA 23219 (800) VISITVA

ThE RoAD To AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE was a long one, built on determination and sacrifice. The ideals of the American Revolution—embodied in the Declaration of Independence—continued to evolve even after the nation’s birth. The foundations of religious liberty were laid early, beginning with the First Great Awakening in the 1720s and stretching to the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom in 1786, followed by adoption of the First Amendment five years later. Personal liberties and political equality, both cornerstones of the Revolution, did not spread to all citizens for years. Women and individuals of African descent, for example, did not begin fully benefiting from the promise of the Declaration of Independence until as late as the 20th century. The fight to uphold these ideals resurfaces still today. The path to political independence—the struggle to separate the colonies from the British Empire—began long before the first shots were fired at Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775. As John Adams later wrote: “The revolution was effected before the War for Independence commenced. The revolution was in the minds and Patrick Henry (standing, foreground) delivering his “Give hearts of the people.” Adams believed the seeds me liberty or give me death!” speech at the Second Virginia of revolution were planted at least a decade before, Convention at St. John’s Church, Richmond, March 23, 1775. as issues of security, taxation, representation, and political authority stirred American opposition. Independence—proclaimed on July 4, 1776, and completed in 1783—came only after significant sacrifice in blood and suffering. Thus, the road to the American Revolution, and the accompanying revolution inside the people, was protracted and arduous, extending into the modern era. This brochure will guide you as you walk this road and encounter its many Patrick Henry’s spectacles can be found at the Virginia Historical Society in Richmond. signs and footmarks around Virginia.

war for independence
After the gunfire began in 1775, most of the fighting over separation from the mother country took place in the northern colonies, especially Pennsylvania and New York. Later, however, the theater of operations moved south, culminating in battles in the Carolinas and Virginia. Assistance from French land and naval forces was a major reason for victory in the concluding Battle of Yorktown in 1781. Intense war-weariness in Great Britain combined with the colonists’ persistence helped finally secure American independence with the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

political independence
Even as residents of the colonies began to oppose the British policies that affected them, these colonists at first carefully avoided challenging King George III directly, instead accusing his ministers and Parliament of injustice. Eventually, however, the king himself became the focus of dissent as the colonies marched slowly toward separation from Britain. Several Virginians played major roles in the progression from opposition to revolution.

St. John’s Church

patrick Henry, “Orator of the Revolution” and a Virginia governor, spurred Virginia to prepare a defense against the Crown with his “Liberty or Death” speech at St. John’s Church in Richmond on March 23, 1775. You can visit 10 sites related to Henry’s life, including Red Hill, his home in Charlotte County. tHoMas Jefferson, third president of the United States, authored both the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. A self-taught architect, Jefferson designed his beloved home, Monticello, as well as nearby University of Virginia.

JaMes M adison, “Father of the Constitution” and fourth U.S. president, was the author of the Virginia Plan and the best-prepared delegate at the Constitutional Convention. He secured the Constitution’s ratification by explaining its underlying political theory, enumerated in the Federalist Papers, and by introducing a Bill of Rights in the first Congress. As president, Madison successfully led the country through the War of 1812, a major test of national sovereignty and executive power.

Gunston Hall

GeorGe M ason, a Virginia leader of the Revolution, was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention in 1787 but refused to sign the document because, in his opinion, it lacked sufficient guarantees to secure the rights and freedom of individual citizens. After ratification, the first 10 constitutional amendments (the Bill of Rights) were adopted. These were based on Mason’s Virginia Declaration of Rights, which he drafted in 1776. Mason’s home, Gunston Hall, is in Northern Virginia’s Fairfax County. r icHard Henry lee and francis liGHtfoot lee, whose boyhood home, Stratford Hall, stands in the state’s Northern Neck, were the only two brothers to sign the Declaration of Independence. A cousin, Revolutionary War hero Henry “Light-Horse Harry” Lee, also lived at Stratford Hall, and his son, Confederate General Robert E. Lee, was born there. JaMes Monroe, a soldier in the Revolutionary War and the fifth U.S. president, is best known for the doctrine that bears his name. The Monroe Doctrine of 1823, often described as the cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy, declared that the Americas should be free from further European colonization and influence. Monroe’s Charlottesville home, Ash Lawn–Highland, is within three miles of that of his friend and legal mentor, Thomas Jefferson.

GeorGe wasHinGton, the first U.S. president, commanded the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War, and he continued to lead and train the American army despite repeated defeats in New York and New Jersey. Eventually, his and his troops’ perseverance wore down British resolve. The scene of his greatest triumph, Yorktown, as well as his home, Mount Vernon, are both in Virginia, along with a National Park Service monument marking his birthplace (in the Northern Neck) and his childhood home, Ferry Farm (in Fredericksburg). M arquis de l afayette and coMte de rocHaMBeau, two of the many Frenchmen who joined the fight for American independence, served in Virginia toward the end of the war. Lafayette fought at several sites, including Petersburg and Yorktown, and camped with his troops for two weeks at Wilton, Lafayette southeast of Richmond. On the way to Yorktown, Rochambeau and his army marched through Hanover Court House, where a trace of the original road that he used is still visible.

The John Marshall House

JoHn M arsHall, a Revolutionary War veteran, was the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1801 until his death in 1835. Known as the “Definer of the Constitution,” he established and defended the independence of the judiciary. His home, the John Marshall House, is in Richmond.
Monticello

Road to

libeRty

personal liBerty
The ideals of the Revolution, embodied in the Declaration’s ringing phrase “all men are created equal,” prompted some to question whether the new country could live up to these principles. Could a person believe in personal liberty yet hold other human beings in involuntary bondage? Could the rights guaranteed to all men be denied to women? These and other questions tore at the consciences of citizens for the next century and beyond. a nna M aria l ane, a New Englander who followed her husband into the Continental Army, fought as a soldier and was wounded at the Battle of Germantown, Pennsylvania, on October 3, 1777. She and her husband eventually settled in Richmond, where he served in the Public Guard based in the Bell Tower in Capitol Square. She served as a nurse, and when she became too feeble to continue her duties, the Commonwealth awarded her a pension. Today, a state highway marker just off the Square—where the Bell Tower still stands—tells Lane’s story.

r eliGious liBerty
The struggle for religious liberty traces back to the earliest settlements in the northern British colonies in the 17th century. Dissenters from the Church of England—including Methodists, Baptists, Quakers, and Presbyterians—also settled in Virginia and fought to exercise their beliefs in the face of official opposition, even imprisonment. They finally succeeded in 1786, when the General Assembly passed Thomas Jefferson’s Statute for Religious Freedom, later constituting one of the five freedoms enunciated in the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights.

saMuel daVies, though not the only fearless advocate of religious liberty before the Revolution, epitomized this ideal. A traveling Presbyterian minister based at Polegreen Church in Hanover County (north of Richmond) between 1748 and 1759, he sought to educate slaves so that they might read as well as listen to Scripture, advocated for the separation of church and state, and spoke out for freedom of conscience. He also served as president of present-day Princeton University from 1759 to 1761.

Polegreen Church “ghost frame” outlines the church atop its original foundation.

JaMes l afayette was born as James, the slave of Revolutionary official William Armistead. He volunteered to spy on the British in Yorktown for Marquis de Lafayette. After the war, Marquis de Lafayette wrote a testimonial to his spy’s service. When James was freed by an act of the General Assembly, the former slave took Lafayette as his surname. In 1824, when the French Lafayette returned to the United States for a grand tour, the two Lafayettes were reunited at Yorktown. James Lafayette’s story is told both on a state highway marker at the New Kent County Courthouse east of Richmond (near his birthplace) and at Yorktown, the scene of his spying.
Bell Tower, Capitol Square

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