THE STORY OF FOR­EST OAKS

Built in 1806 as a side-hall house with a tav­ern, this dwelling be­came a manor af­ter ad­di­tions in 1812 and, sig­nif­i­cantly, in 1916.

Old House Journal - - Ohj - BY REGINA COLE / PHOTOS BY GRIDLEY + GRAVES

A manor built in 1806, 1812, 1916. THE HOUSE PAYS FOR IT­SELF

At the south­ern end of the Shenan­doah Val­ley in west­ern Vir­ginia, Route 11 leads through pic­turesque and ver­dant coun­try­side. Turn onto Hous­ton Tav­ern Lane to see a view that glad­dens the hearts of lovers of old houses: A sub­stan­tial red-brick manor house stands at the apex of a cir­cu­lar drive, com­plete with stepped-back chim­neys at ei­ther end, dorm­ers in the slate roof, and a Fed­eral por­tico with reed­ing and den­til mould­ings. The James River flows be­hind the house and the Blue Ridge is its dra­matic back­drop.

TOP On the stately front of the house, the por­tico re­flects its Fed­eral-pe­riod ori­gins. To the left is the so­lar­ium added in 1916. A bil­liard room oc­cu­pies the op­po­site end of the main floor. The house was first en­larged in 1812; the in­set shows it ca. 1900.

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