Bat­tersea Foun­da­tion hosts Hol­i­day Homes Tour

The sec­ond an­nual tour fea­tures his­toric prop­er­ties and live en­ter­tain­ment

The Progress-Index Weekend - - COMMUNITY - Staff Re­port

PETERS­BURG — Last year’s Peters­burg hol­i­day homes tour to ben­e­fit Bat­tersea Foun­da­tions was such an enor­mous suc­cess they’re do­ing it again this year. The 2nd an­nual His­toric High St. Area Hol­i­day Homes Tour will take place on Sun­day, Dec. 10 from 12-5 p.m. The event will be a scenic walk­ing tour fea­tur­ing eight of Peters­burg’s old­est and most unique homes lo­cated on three streets—High Street, Mar­ket Street, and Peters­burg’s first street, Grove Av­enue—full of his­toric land­marks. Drive a few short miles down the road and visit his­toric Bat­tersea Villa, the ben­e­fi­ciary of this ea­gerly an­tic­i­pated event. De­light in the live mu­sic and cos­tumed reen­ac­tors who will add am­biance and au­then­tic­ity to the hol­i­day at­mos­phere.

Tick­ets are avail­able for $20 now through Dec. 9 at www.Peters­burgHomesTour.com, at any Bat­tersea Event, www. bat­terseafound.org, or at Peters­burg Pick­ers, 110 Guar­an­tee Street in Peters­burg, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fri­days and Satur­days. Tick­ets are $25 the day of the tour and can be pur­chased ex­clu­sively at Ammo Brew­ing, 235 N. Mar­ket Street in Peters­burg from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. About The Homes

The Trapez­ium House: The Trapez­ium House, is a Flem­ish bond brick, Fed­eral style, slate roofed trape­zoid shaped struc­ture. Built in 1816 by Ir­ish im­mi­grant, Charles O’Hara, the home’s unique shape was con­ceived from O’Hara’s West In­dian ser­vant, who be­lieved it was good luck to have no right an­gles in a home. Fur­nished in pe­riod an­tiques, the site serves as an of­fice and art stu­dio for “Buddy” a very ac­com­plished painter. The Trapez­ium House is lo­cated at 244 N. Mar­ket Street and is owned by Judge Oliver Pol­lard.

Mar­ket 406: This Fed­eral brick dwelling, built as a mer­can­tile gro­cery, is a su­perb rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the cur­rent trend of restor­ing prop­er­ties to their past uses as both liv­ing and work­ing space. The own­ers, ex­perts in ar­chi­tec­tural de­sign and re­pur­pos­ing, re­side above their an­tique shop, Mar­ket 406. Their sec­ond-floor apart­ment has many orig­i­nal fea­tures, in­clud­ing fire­places, mold­ing, and ev­i­dence of prior ren­o­va­tions. The roof deck serves as a gate­way to their beau­ti­ful out­door sur­round­ings. Mar­ket 406 is lo­cated at 406 N. Mar­ket Street, was built circa 1810, and is owned by Joan Gar­diner and Kevin Mullis. The Charles Leonard House: The Charles Leonard House, an Ital­ianate, frame man­sion, capped with the orig­i­nal belvedere, was built by A.A. Tray­lor. Pur­chased by English-born hard­ware mer­chant Charles Leonard in the 1890s, the prop­erty boasts eight fire­places and man­tles, orig­i­nal floors, and a dom­i­nate front stair­case. The beau­ti­fully land­scaped grounds fea­ture the orig­i­nal kitchen house which Leonard con­verted to ser­vants’ quar­ters, a Rev­o­lu­tion­ary era stone wall, and the re­mains of a prior 18th cen­tury dwelling, par­tially lo­cated un­der the cur­rent house. The Charles Leonard House is lo­cated at 280 High Street, was built circa 1867, and is owned by Thomas B. III and Brenda K. Red­fern.

Dod­son’s Tav­ern: Dod­son’s Tav­ern, a frame clap­board Fed­eral/mod­i­fied late Geor­gian home was a fa­vorite of last year’s tour. Im­pec­ca­bly land­scaped and fur­nished in rare early Amer­i­can and prim­i­tive an­tiques, the site was fre­quented by many dig­ni­taries in­clud­ing Robert E. Lee, Mar­quis de Lafayette, and Aaron Burr. Owned by the Dod­son/Pe­gram fam­i­lies for the first 180 years, de­sign fea­tures in­clude a large hearth in the orig­i­nal win­ter kitchen in the English base­ment and the de­tached sum­mer kitchen con­verted to a guest house. Dod­son’s Tav­ern is lo­cated at 311 High Street, was built circa 1789, and is owned by Bob and Bobbi Kennedy.

545 High Street: This stately, clap­board Fed­eral house, is steeped in Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War her­itage, as one of the own­ers Eras­mus Gill, served as a Cap­tain in the Con­ti­nen­tal Army un­der Ge­orge Washington, and the other, Ge­orge Hay, was the spe­cial pros­e­cu­tor for Amer­ica’s first trea­son

trial against Aaron Burr. The house fea­tures a huge stair­case, and is fur­nished in a homey com­fort­able man­ner. The own­ers en­joy bask­ing on one of two rear decks, over­look­ing the mas­sive back­yard that’s teem­ing with na­tive birds of ev­ery va­ri­ety. 545 High Street was built circa 1785 and is owned by Scott and Yvonne Fla­herty. The Baird-Ram­baut-LeMoine

House: The Baird-Ram­baut-LeMoine House was con­structed of beaded heart pine by John Baird, who lived next door, for his daugh­ter. The orig­i­nal one and a half story colo­nial house, with cor­ner fire­places and an King of Prus­sia black mar­ble fire­place, sports an 1810 Fed­eral ad­di­tion with a dec­o­ra­tive plas­ter ceil­ing and carved arches in the liv­ing room. The house was ex­ten­sively ren­o­vated in 2000 and is filled with fam­ily fa­vorites. The

Baird-Ram­baut-LeMoine House is lo­cated at 410 Grove Av­enue, was built circa 1783, and is owned by Dou­glas and Marie Vargo. Ad­di­tion to The Baird-Ram­baut-LeMoine House: Nes­tled be­hind two of John Baird’s former prop­er­ties, this charm­ing dwelling was orig­i­nally con­structed as a kitchen house by Baird. It was ex­panded into a home around 1908 and ren­o­vated in 2008. Cozy warmth de­scribes this charm­ing cot­tage­like abode, with a large wood-burn­ing fire­place, ex­posed beams, and stone walls. The ad­di­tion to The Baird-Ram­baut-LeMoine House is lo­cated by 416 Grove Av­enue, was built circa 1807, and is owned by Cherry Turner.

514 Grove Av­enue: Ren­o­vated in 2008, this sin­gle-fam­ily home was once two prop­er­ties, 514 and 516 Grove Av­enue, with liv­ing quar­ters in 516 and a mer­can­tile store in 514. The two-story Tide­wa­ter Ver­nac­u­lar de­sign is con­structed of bead wood and shiplap sid­ing with a cedar shin­gle roof. The house re­tains an orig­i­nal stair­case and has an orig­i­nal Peters­burg man­tle in the liv­ing room. The orig­i­nal kitchen house for 516 was com­pletely re­built from the foun­da­tion up. The prop­erty is breath­tak­ing in­side and out. 514 Grove Av­enue was built circa 1834 and is owned by Walt and Roberta Pur­cell.

The Bat­tersea Villa: Bat­tersea is a sub­stan­tial stuc­coed brick house lo­cated north of Up­per Ap­po­mat­tox Street in the city of Peters­burg, near the south bank of the Ap­po­mat­tox River. Even though the 37+ acre prop­erty is bor­dered by a 19th-cen­tury neigh­bor­hood and a light in­dus­trial area, it still re­tains its his­toric ru­ral char­ac­ter. The house was built in 1768 by Colonel John Banis­ter, the first Mayor of Peters­burg and a signer of the Ar­ti­cles of Con­fed­er­a­tion. Bat­tersea was de­signed and built as a sym­met­ri­cal five-part An­glo-Pal­la­dian house fea­tur­ing a two-story cen­tral block, one-story wings that act as hy­phens, and one-and-a-half story end pavil­ions. One-story columned por­ti­cos mark

the en­trances on the front, back, and sides of the house. The plan of the in­te­rior re­flects the five-part mass­ing of the ex­te­rior, pre­sent­ing a sym­met­ri­cal sin­gle-pile plan with rooms ex­tend­ing to ei­ther side of the cen­tral block. The de­signer of the house is un­known.

Bat­tersea is one of the ear­li­est and finest sur­viv­ing ex­am­ples of a five-part, Robert Mor­ris-style Pal­la­dian house form in the United States, and is the ear­li­est sur­viv­ing, fully de­vel­oped ex­am­ple of this house type in Vir­ginia. Bat­tersea rep­re­sents a re­fined and orig­i­nal syn­the­sis of ideas from An­drea Pal­la­dio and Robert Mor­ris, copy­ing nei­ther but rein­ter­pret­ing ideas from both to meet 18th-cen­tury Amer­i­can needs. The five-part house form was a ba­sic man­i­fes­ta­tion of Pal­la­di­an­ism in both Bri­tain and Amer­ica, which en­joyed popularity in the United States dur­ing the 18th and early-19th cen­turies. To­day, Bat­tersea is a rare and un­usu­ally so­phis­ti­cated sur­vival of this form. Some of the finest early nine­teenth cen­tury Clas­si­cally-in­spired ar­chi­tec­tural de­tail­ing re­sulted–dis­tinc­tive in its pe­riod ex­pres­sion and crafts­man­ship–within the frame­work of the Pal­la­dian form. The later work shows a rare un­der­stand­ing of the deriva­tion of the Pal­la­dian form and a clear in­ten­tion to work within the pa­ram­e­ters of this style. Bat­tersea is there­fore el­i­gi­ble for na­tional sig­nif­i­cance un­der Cri­te­rion C in the area of ar­chi­tec­ture. The Bat­tersea Villa is lo­cated at 1289 Up­per Ap­po­mat­tox Lane and was built circa 1768.

UK na­tive and res­i­dent Phil Lewis painted and do­nated the de­light­ful ren­di­tions of the homes on tour. The eight paint­ings of the homes will be on dis­play at Ammo Brew­ing, 235 N. Mar­ket Street dur­ing the tour. Live en­ter­tain­ment for the event in­cludes cos­tumed reen­ac­tors, flutist Iris Schwartz, the Dale Tray­lor Band, and more. Tour guide­lines, in­clud­ing park­ing in­for­ma­tion and what to bring, can be found at www.Peters­burgHomesTour.com. –Bat­tersea Foun­da­tion is a non-profit or­ga­ni­za­tion in Peters­burg, Vir­ginia. The Foun­da­tion’s mis­sion is to pre­serve His­toric Bat­tersea and of­fer ed­u­ca­tional, artis­tic and cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ences that in­form, en­rich and in­spire the pub­lic. The events held at Bat­tersea of­fer the per­fect op­por­tu­nity to con­tinue mov­ing for­ward ful­fill­ing this mis­sion. His­toric Bat­tersea is an 18th cen­tury Pal­la­dian Villa lo­cated on the Ap­po­mat­tox River in Peters­burg’s west end. The Villa was built in 1768 by Col. John Banis­ter, the first Mayor of Peters­burg, a Rev­o­lu­tion­ary del­e­gate, a Con­gress­man and a signer of the Ar­ti­cles of Con­fed­er­a­tion. Bat­tersea is an ex­cel­lent ex­am­ple of Pal­la­dian style ar­chi­tec­ture, re­ceiv­ing na­tional at­ten­tion for its beauty and im­por­tance.

244 N. Mar­ket Street, Peters­burg, VA; The Trapez­ium House; Judge Oliver Pol­lard.

280 High Street, Peters­burg, VA; The Charles Leonard House; Thomas B. III and Brenda K. Red­fern.

406 N. Mar­ket Street, Peters­burg, VA; Mar­ket 406; Joan Gar­diner and Kevin Mullis

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