The Fairfax County Courthouse
by Ross D. Netherton
Previous Part     1  2  3     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

The proximity and accessibility to Washington, the most magnificent city in the world, together with the splendid natural advantages of Fairfax, must inevitably make the county rich, populous and great.[115]

The heydays of the steam and electric railroads in Northern Virginia were followed in the 1920's by improvement and expansion of the road system.[116] As the number of automobiles increased—and their prevalence was forecast by designation of present Lee Highway as the initial segment of the first transcontinental highway running westward from the zero milestone on the ellipse in Washington—the paving of roads became a major concern of local communities. Both free public highways and toll turnpikes built by subscription and bond issues were undertaken in Fairfax County. Even after the County elected to turn over its roadbuilding to the state under the Byrd Road Act in 1932, the County's leaders continued to have a deep interest in the increased population growth that roads and railroads made possible.

Increased population brought increased needs for various new public services. Shortly after the first State Board of Health was established in Virginia in 1900, the counties of the State established local boards. The Chairman of the Board of County Supervisors automatically became Chairman of the Health Board in this early experiment in public health services.[117] The machinery for raising revenue was made more efficient by redrawing the division of labor between the commissioner of revenue and the county treasurer.

Most far-reaching in the long run, however, was the enactment in 1920 of state legislation giving counties the option of adopting various managerial forms of government if they so desired. Fairfax County exercised this option in 1951 by adopting the County Executive form of government.[118]

Under this form of county government, the Board of Supervisors remained the sole legislative authority of the County, but the executive functions were placed under the supervision of a new officer, the county executive. The county executive, as well as all boards and commissions responsible for special services and administrative functions, were appointed by the Board of Supervisors, and served either for specified terms or at the pleasure of the Board. The Supervisors continued to be elected by the County's voters, each from one of the magisterial districts. This method of election was adopted deliberately as a means of maintaining a balance of political representation of the western and southern parts of the County, which still were rural in their economic and social orientation, and the north, east and central areas of the County, which had been intensively developed as part of the suburbs of Washington and Alexandria.

The involvement of the public in county government was seen in many forms. Service on county boards and commissions was one. Also, as newcomers poured into the county seeking homes, the neighborhoods and communities formed civic organizations or citizens associations to provide means for group action on problems of common concern. Parallel to these groups, others, such as Parent-Teachers Associations, formed to deal with school-related problems which were both inside and outside the scope of governmental services in the field of education.

These forms of citizen involvement in public affairs—prompted partly by the sheer size of the new demands for service and partly because the newcomers to Fairfax County came from areas where wide participation in local government was taken for granted—had a profound effect on the County's historic outlook on public affairs. No longer was it accepted that certain families or individuals held among themselves the privileges, powers and obligations of governing. This tradition, symbolized by the gentlemen justices of colonial times and the nineteenth century, was replaced by a new system where political leadership was established through service in the community and verified by the ability to win in competition at the polls.

The new dimensions of government's role necessitated finding more space for the county's offices. The clerk's office, which historically had been the focal point for the County's continuing administrative functions, ceased to be able to contain all the County's offices as early as the 1920's. An additional building was authorized, but delays in financing and construction postponed its completion until 1934.[119] However, by 1940 this building was so crowded that both its attic and basement had been converted to office space, and many County agencies were using additional rented space in non-County buildings.

Plans were developed in the early-1940's for a major addition to the courthouse building. Delays were encountered, first because of the shortages of materials and manpower during the years of World War II, and then because of problems of funding this work amid other urgent demands for tax revenue. Ultimately, both shortages were relieved, and work was begun on the central block and south wing of the courthouse as they appear today.[120] The jail section and wing containing the clerk's records of land transactions and court proceedings were added to the building in 1956.[121]

As the County's need for space to house its governmental offices continued to grow through the 1960's, some consideration was given to moving the courthouse to a new location.[122] The transformation of Fairfax from a town into a city in 1961 added a complicating factor to this issue for it meant that technically the County had no control over the land on which its seat of government stood. The City of Fairfax, however, was anxious to keep the center of County government in its existing location, and offered to condemn sufficient land for the County's building needs.[123]

The seat of county government remained at Fairfax, but the courthouse square no longer sufficed to contain the complex of buildings involved. By 1969 construction had been completed on a County Governmental Center, later named the Massey Building, to honor Carlton Massey, the first County Executive, who served from 1952 to 1971. A separate building was erected nearby for the County Police Department, and plans were made for other buildings in the future.[124]

Overshadowing the old courthouse tract, the new center of government nevertheless preserves the evidence of the past by continuing use of the original (north) section of the courthouse building and its 1953 addition, all in an architectural style reminiscent of the colonial period in Virginia. The presence of the past combine with a sense of the present and the future to make the Fairfax County Courthouse both a symbol and a functioning seat of a county government which in the year 1976 had been in existence for more than two centuries.


[113] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Industrial and Historical Sketch of Fairfax County, Virginia, (Fairfax: County Board of Supervisors, 1907), p. 5.

[114] Allen W. Moger, "The Rebuilding of the Old Dominion," (Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Columbia University, 1940), pp. 95-96.

[115] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Industrial and Historical Sketch, pp. 5-6.

[116] The campaign to improve Virginia's roads had been waged since the 1890's. See, for example, the rhetoric and argument in favor of road improvements set forth in the Programme of the Virginia Good Roads Convention, (Roanoke: Stone Printing, Co., 1894) held in Richmond in October 1894. As to the effects of the rise of automotive travel, see Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce, Historic, Progressive Fairfax County in Old Virginia, (Alexandria: Newell-Cole, 1928), pp. 20-21, containing a road map of the county's hard-surfaced roads and unimproved roads in 1928.

[117] Porter, County Government, p. 291.

[118] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Annual Report, 1969, p. 6.

[119] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Minute Book, v. 5, 318, William Deming was the architect of this project. As with previous expansions of the clerk's office, the old building was torn down and the bricks re-used in the new building.

[120] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Minute Book, v. 5, 318; v. 9 (1939-40), 501; v. 10 (1941-42), 175; v. 12 (1949-50), 4; v. 18 (1950-51), 497; v. 20 (1953), 519.

[121] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Minute Book, v. 30 (1960), pp. 418-23.

[122] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Minute Book, v. 32, 264-65 notes that Reston offered 50 acres for the use of the courthouse, and Tyson's Corner and the intersection of Routes 495 and 50 also were considered. See also, Ibid., v. 39 (1964), 117.

[123] Fairfax County Deed Book, B-2, pp. 373-376; 503-504. The courthouse commissioners were Charles Little, David Stuart, William Payne, James Wren, and George Minor.

[124] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Minute Book, v. 36, 313; v. 39, 544. On April 7, 1965 the Board of Supervisors voted to construct a new office building and authorize a referendum for a $5,500,000 bond issue for this project. The bonds were approved by the voters, and the building was built on a 35-acre tract belonging to Mary Ambler, which was condemned by the city and then purchased by the county from the condemnor. The architect for the project was William Vosbeck, and the contractor was the Blake Construction Company, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Annual Report, 1968, p. 4.




Among the courthouses built in England's North American colonies, those of Virginia developed characteristics which expressed peculiarly well the prevailing patterns of landholding and manner of conducting local government. Unlike New England, where each small community had its frame meeting house, containing within its walls "all the ideals, political, moral, intellectual and religious of the people who attended,"[125] the seats of county government in colonial Virginia were centrally located in rural settings. A few county courthouses grew into regional centers of commerce, industry and finance; but most remained independent and apart from any surrounding community, and some may still be seen today standing "as solitary sentinels, symbolic of government."[126]

It was also characteristic of Virginia that these courthouses were not single buildings, but were complexes of several structures. The typical courthouse compound was enclosed by a brick wall, inside which were a courthouse, a jail, a clerk's office, and, sometimes, a row or cluster of offices for lawyers. Invariably, also, an inn or ordinary occupied a site within the compound or immediately adjacent to it. This style of courthouse may be found through Virginia, dating from earliest colonial times; and, although many fine courthouses are found in the early architecture of Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, none of these areas developed the design concept of a courthouse compound.

This design concept was used in the courthouses of Fairfax County at Springfield (1742-1752) and Alexandria (1752-1800); and it was followed in the county's third courthouse which was completed in 1800. The courthouse tract was situated near the geographical center of the County, at the intersection of the Little River Turnpike and the old Colchester Road. The tract consisted of four acres, acquired by a deed from Richard Ratcliffe and his wife Serian. Specified in the deed were structures including a courthouse, clerk's office and goal, "... and every other building and Machine necessary ..."—the latter presumably referring to gallows, pillory, stocks, and the like. The May 1798 Fairfax County Court Order Book did specify that the courthouse should be forty-by-thirty feet with a twelve-foot portico, the gaol forty-by-twenty, the clerk's office twenty-by-eighteen and covered with slate or tile, a gaoler's house twenty-four-by-eighteen feet, and that stocks, pillory and whipping post also be provided by letting the entire "... building of the same to the lowest bidder."[127]

In accordance with statutory requirements, space was delineated for the prison bounds. This was done in March 1800, and the area was described in a survey and report of the commissioners, as follows:[128]

In obedience to the order of the worshipful Court of this County, hereunto annexed, we the subscribers in company with Col. William Payne, the Surveyor of this County, proceeded this thirteenth day of March Eighteen Hundred, to lay off ten acres of ground for the prison rules of this County, and have ascertained and bounded the same by the following meets and boundaries, ... including the said four acres, the Court house, Gaol, Clerk's office, the brick Tavern, Kitchen, Stables and store house, and beg leave to report the same with the plat thereof hereunto also annexed.—Given unto our hands and seals:

Thomas Gunnell (Seal) N. Fitzhugh (Seal) T. Ellzey (Seal)

Whether all of the buildings mentioned in this report actually existed at that time may be questioned, since the survey plat shows only the courthouse, clerk's office and jail. As to these three, the plat showed the courthouse situated as at present, with the clerk's office almost directly south a distance of about 300 feet, and the jail about the same distance south, but in back and west of the clerk's office. The plat does not show roads or other features of the platted parcel, but the known position of the courthouse in relation to the turnpike supports the suggestion that the brick tavern referred to was located on the north side of the turnpike, the building later known variously as the Willcoxen Tavern, the Union Tavern and the Fairfax Tavern. The other buildings referred to in the report apparently left no traces, for except through an occasional glimpse of them in old photographs of the courthouse, they are not noted in the records of the court.

These buildings formed a cluster which, if it was not all neatly enclosed within the courthouse fence, at least was immediately adjacent to and integrated with the activities centered in the court. In the first three decades of the nineteenth century, the town of Providence grew up around the courthouse, and by 1835 some 50 dwellings and 200 residents were listed.[129] But the town never eclipsed the courthouse; and, from its commanding position on the gentle hill at the crossroads, the courthouse itself continues to serve as a focal point and symbol of government.

The Clerk's Office. An office for the Clerk of the County Court was mentioned in the survey of the courthouse lot made in March 1800, and was shown on a location south of the courthouse about 200 feet and east of the jail about sixty feet. According to the survey the office was a relatively small building, one or one-and-one-half stories high, with a chimney at the south end and a door opening on the east side. This office was the depository of all important public records in the county, and therefore was a focal point for much of the activity that occurred at the courthouse throughout the year. A news report in the Alexandria Daily Advertiser of February 10, 1806 called for bids for an addition to the clerk's office and repairs on the "public building," all of which should be in accordance with a plan lodged with Col. James Wren, and constructed of brick "covered with slate."[130]

During the next forty years, the functions of the clerk grew in both size and importance as he was called upon to serve both the County court and the circuit court. The need for repairs combined with the need for more space required increasing attention to the old building, until, in 1853, it was determined that a new office building for the clerk must be built. Newman Burke, George W. Hunter, Jr. and Alfred Moss were appointed commissioners to oversee the demolition of the old office building and the construction of a new one.

Fortunately, the commissioners' notice to builders, inviting bids on these jobs, was published in the Alexandria Gazette and Virginia Advertiser of July 15, 1853, and provides a detailed description of the materials and construction to be used. It included the instruction that such of the old materials as could be used in the rebuilding should be so used.

Like the courthouse building, the clerk's office suffered damage and deterioration during the war years of 1861-65. When the courthouse compound became a headquarters for Union army patrols, and civilian government either ceased or moved to a temporary seat elsewhere, care and custody of the clerk's office could not be guaranteed. Many of the record books and files were taken to places of safekeeping in private homes. However, many could not be moved in time to prevent them from being scattered, taken, lost or destroyed as soldiers occupied the office building. When the war ended, the task of re-equipping the office and restoring it to usefulness was a major one.

In 1875, the clerk's office burned and subsequently, a new office building was added to the courthouse complex. It was a two-story brick building, larger than the old clerk's office and located beyond it to the south of the courthouse. It was probably completed by 1881, at which time the board of supervisors was appropriating funds for new furnishings. The architecture of this newest office presented a mixture of three styles. In overall appearance, its square shape, hipped roof and functional design were reminiscent of the eighteenth century buildings of James Wren. The late nineteenth century's preference for exterior decoration was illustrated by a dentiled cornice, a belt of corbelling three courses wide in the brickwork below the cornice, and brick pilasters on each side of the main doorway, topped by scrolls and brackets supporting the pediment. In the center of the building on the second floor, a Palladian-style window was installed, providing a contrast to the design of the other windows. Two courses of corbelling also appeared on the two chimneys located at the back and in the center section of the building. Notwithstanding these exterior decorations, the general design of the office represented a recognition of the needs of office workers and the response of late nineteenth century architects to provide light, air, and functional efficiency in the arrangement of space for offices. Telephone service and electric lights were installed in the clerk's office in 1902.[131]

After 1932, the old clerk's office was demolished. A new office building was erected south of the courthouse in 1934, with labor and materials provided by Federal and Virginia relief funds. This building was demolished when the extensive addition was made to the courthouse, 1951-1954. A new wing was put on the back of the courthouse in 1956 to accommodate the rapidly increasing quantities of archives generated by the business of courts and the clerk's office in a county whose population was growing at an unprecedented rate.[132]

The Jail. As shown in the survey of the courthouse tract, made in March 1800 by the County Surveyor, William Payne, the jail was located on the southwestern corner of the original four-acre tract. No contemporary descriptions or records of the jail have survived, but the survey sketch shows a two-story building with chimneys at each end. Presumably the construction material for the jail was brick, since the other principal buildings in the Fairfax courthouse compound were made of this material.

With regard to the interior arrangement and description of major features, conjecture is also necessary. But, again presumptions may be made that its facilities were the same as others of the time—for example, that the bars used on doors and windows were the flat type (rather than round or other shapes), which were laid across each other to form a lattice and riveted together where they overlapped. Also, in accordance with contemporary custom, it may be presumed that the jailor and his family made their home in the same building with the prisoners, and so attended to their meals and other needs.

Exactly when and how the first jail was constructed at the courthouse site is not entirely clear. Payne's survey in 1800 showed a jail building on the site. Yet only nine years later the Alexandria Daily Advertiser, April 8, 1809, carried an invitation for bids to build a jail at Fairfax Court House. Moreover, although the records of the county court for the next fifty years contain references to repairs and construction work for the jail, they customarily fail to include descriptions of work to be done. Accordingly, little can be gleaned from these sources to aid the architectural history of the courthouse complex.

Along with the other public buildings at the courthouse compound, the jail suffered during the years of war from 1861 to 1865. When civil government ceased to function at the courthouse, competing groups that claimed civil authority in Fairfax County used jail facilities in neighboring Alexandria and Leesburg when the need arose. During the latter years of the war, when Union troops occupied the courthouse, the jail offered its facilities as a storehouse as well as a place of detention for military prisoners. But the Army of the Potomac had little time or incentive to keep the jail in good repair, and so, like the courthouse, it suffered extensively from the war.

During the 1870's, repairs and construction of additions to the original building restored the jail to service. The 1879 G. M. Hopkins Atlas showing the courthouse complex depicts the jail as being larger than the courthouse in size. In 1884, fire destroyed this building, and arrangements had to be made to use the Alexandria city jail until a proper new jail could be constructed for the county.[133]

The new jail was located directly behind (west of) the courthouse, facing onto the Little River Turnpike. Its materials and construction indicate that the original portion was added to on two later occasions. When finally completed, the jail was a two-story T-shaped brick building, with a one-story wooden porch across the full length of the front. In the original section (facing onto the turnpike) the windows have plain wooden pediments. The cornice and chimney tops are corbelled, and there are iron cresting and finials on the ridge of the hipped roof. In the second section, which forms part of the stem of the "T," there are segmental arches over the windows and an ornamental cornice consisting of a course of bricks laid vertically. In the third section, which completes the stem of the "T," the brickwork is laid in Flemish bond (matching the courthouse brickwork in contrast to the common bond of the rest of the jail), and the windows are topped with flat arches. The second and third parts of the building are covered with a gable roof.[134]

In this new jail building, the jailor had living quarters in the front portion, and until 1948 these were used as his residence. The building itself ceased to be used for detention of prisoners shortly after that time, for when the addition to the courthouse was completed in 1956, jail facilities were incorporated into this addition. Since 1956, the old jail building has been used for offices of various county agencies, including the juvenile court and probation office, civil defense office, fire board, police dispatcher, and recreation department.[135]

Associated Buildings and Structures. Certain structures were associated with the courthouse because they were required by statute, and others had their origin in custom and convenience. In 1792, when the legislature of the new state government revised the law relating to organization of the local courts, it reenacted most of the features of the system which had been followed in colonial times. By law all counties had to build and maintain a courthouse, jail, pillory, whipping post, and stocks. This law also required that there be two acres of land around the buildings of the courthouse, and that prison bounds of ten acres should be provided for the "health and exercise of prisoners."[136] A report of a survey of the courthouse tract in March 1800 shows metes and bounds for a four-acre tract within a larger ten-acre area, and states that this land was for the purpose of erecting a courthouse, jail, clerk's office, kitchen, stable, and storehouse plus providing an area to serve as the prison bounds. Additionally, a well was dug a short distance south of the courthouse. Altogether, these comprised the complex of structures associated with the court in the first half of the nineteenth century.

The Tavern. The brick tavern was a substantial building, built on the north side of the Little River Turnpike directly across from the courthouse complex. No detailed description of this building as it appeared in 1800 has been found. It was, at least in later years, a multi-story building which rivalled the courthouse in size, and expanded as the patronage of the circuit-riding judges and their entourages of attorneys and others combined with the regular passage of travellers on the Little River Turnpike to create a prosperous business climate.

After the Civil War, the brick tavern was purchased by Col. H. B. Taylor, who operated it during the 1870's and 1880's. Because of its favorable location near the courthouse, the tavern continued to be frequented by those who had business with the court, and lawyers maintained their offices there. An advertisement in the Fairfax Herald of April 8, 1887 refers to the building as the Union Hotel, and describes it as a three-story brick building with annex, containing about twenty-five rooms, with stable and outbuildings, a two-acre garden and a fine well—"a desirable residence for summer boarders." Later in 1887 the name was changed from Union Hotel to Fairfax Hotel and its management was taken over by James W. Burke.[137]

The hotel continued to be operated until 1932 when it was demolished to clear the site for subsequent construction of a building for the National Bank of Fairfax. The bricks, mantels and doors from the hotel were re-used in construction of the home of Helen Hill and Francis Pickens Miller, called "Pickens Hill." It is located on Chain Bridge Road north of Fairfax, and in recent years has become a major building of the Flint Hill private school complex.

The Well. At the time of construction of the courthouse, a well was dug on the south side of the building. Over the years, pictures show a variety of overhead coverings to shelter the well and its users. The well was a large one, appearing to be four or five feet in diameter at the top, and was surrounded by a raised platform. Standing on this platform, one drew water from the well by a windlass operated by a hand-crank. Later the box on which the windlass was mounted was fitted with a hand pump, and a trough for filling buckets or other containers was placed at the side of the well. This well served the courthouse into the twentieth century, but was closed and capped when the town of Fairfax installed underground water mains. The gazebo-like well structure was moved to Sully.

"Public Comfort Station." Many references to the early privies in use on the courthouse grounds appear in both the court order books and the board of supervisors minute books. As recently as 1931, outside toilets were still in use. In October of that year, "the County Engineer was instructed to make necessary repairs to the public comfort station on the Court House lawn."[138]


Memorials of the Wars. On the lawn in front of the old courthouse stand two monuments to the honored dead of four wars. The John Quincy Marr monument was erected on June 1, 1904, by the Marr Camp, Confederate Veterans, commemorating the first Confederate officer killed in the Civil War. The second monument was erected under the auspices of the Fairfax County Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. On a bronze plaque on one side are listed those Fairfax Countians who gave their lives in World War I and on the other, a plaque listing those who gave their lives in World War II and the Korean conflict.

Two naval cannons stand on either side of the Marr monument, pointed toward the National Bank of Fairfax, formerly the site of the brick tavern. Facing the bank, the cannon on the left is inscribed with an anchor and the following lettering: 12 PDR Boat Howitzer 1856 J.A.D. U.S.N.Y. Washington 757 LBS. 58 PRE No. 45. The cannon on the right has inscriptions which are very worn and indistinct. There is an engraved anchor, but except for a letter here-and-there, the inscription is unreadable.

Plaques and Portraits. Mounted in the inside north entrance hall beside the oldest portion of the courthouse are three plaques. One is a tablet with 160 names of Civil War veterans of Marr Camp, Confederate States of America. The second is a memorial to George Auld (1832-1919), born in Scotland, who "was for many years Chairman of the Board of Supervisors of Fairfax County, Virginia...." The third is a plaque commemorating the building of the first addition to the courthouse, A.D. 1929, W. I. Deming, Architect, and C. H. Brooks, Builder. In the central entrance hall, there is a bronze plaque commemorating the large addition to the courthouse completed in 1954, Robert A. Willgoos and Dwight G. Chase, Architects, and Eugene Simpson and Bro., Contractor. A large mural, painted by Esther L. Stewart in 1954, is hung above the landing of the grand central staircase. It depicts Fairfax County scenes, buildings, and portraits of Lord Fairfax, George Washington, and George Mason.

On the brick floor of the arcaded porch of the first (1800) section of the courthouse, is a National Register plaque (1974 listing) placed by the Fairfax County History Commission in 1976. In the hall inside hangs a plaque from the Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission commemorating the building's placement on the State Register in 1973.

Hanging on the walls of this oldest court chamber are oil portraits of county notables. (See Appendix for biographical listing.)

On the courthouse lawn, a dogwood tree was planted in 1954 dedicated to the firemen of Fairfax County. A small bronze plaque with a poem and the dedication was set in a cement post under the tree, by the Firemen's Auxiliary.

In the wake of its many unresolved historical mysteries, the restored courthouse remains a functional courtroom, as required by the terms authorizing the work. Yet it cannot claim to represent any particular period of Fairfax County's history with full historical or architectural integrity. As now redesigned and rebuilt, the courthouse presents an outward appearance presumably similar to its original form. The interior achieves the pleasant appearance and atmosphere of a working courtroom of the past.


[125] Catherine Fennelly, The New England Village Scene: 1800, (Sturbridge: Old Sturbridge Village, 1955), p. 9.

[126] Sidney Hyman, "Empire of Liberty" in With Heritage So Rich, (New York: Random House, 1966), pp. 5-6.

[127] Fairfax County Deed Book, B-2, pp. 373-377; 503-504.

[128] Fairfax County, Record of Surveys, 1742-1856, p. 93.

[129] Joseph Martin, Gazetteer of Virginia and the District of Columbia, (Charlottesville: Martin, 1835), p. 168.

[130] Fairfax County, Record of Surveys, Section II, p. 93, March 13, 1800.

[131] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Minute Book, #1, pp. 89, 91, 196, 206 (1871-1881).

[132] Interview with Thomas Chapman, Jr., former Clerk of the Circuit Court; Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Minute Book #6, pp. 580-582, August 20, 1934; architectural drawings, 1951-1956, Facilities Management Office.

[133] Fairfax County Court Minute Book, 1882-1885, April Court, 1884, "The County Jail having been destroyed by fire ...," the county court ordered that Alexandria city jail be used until a proper jail could be erected in the county.

[134] Fairfax County Court Minute Book, June Court, 1891.

[135] Interview with Thomas P. Chapman, Jr.

[136] Hening, Statutes, October 1792, XIII, 453-455.

[137] Fairfax Herald, May 13, 1887, notes that Mr. T. R. Sangster has removed his law office to the Fairfax Hotel; The Union Hotel and Fairfax Hotel sometimes have been assumed to be separate buildings. However, identical advertisements of this hotel appeared in the Fairfax Herald on April 8, 1887 and May 6, 1887, the former calling it the Union Hotel, and the latter calling it the Fairfax Hotel. The April 29, 1887 Fairfax Herald reports the rental of the Union Hotel by Burke. By tradition, the hotel building across from the courthouse has been known as the Willcoxen Tavern or just simply "The Tavern."

[138] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Minute Book, #6 p. 139, October 2, 1931.


The Courthouse Plan and Its Architect. The design of the Fairfax County Courthouse followed the Virginia tradition that the seats of civil government should be designed with dignity as well as adequacy for their function.[139] Consequently, the courthouse building, which in other respects was a plain rectangular two-story brick structure, departed from strict utilitarian design with its open arcade on the ground floor front, and its cupola in the center of the roof, serving as a base for the flag pole and housing the bell which was used to announce the convening of court.

The advantages of the two-story building for innovations in design and decoration were even more evident with respect to the interior. Entered through the front door which opened into the arcade, the courtroom gave the same impression of vaulted space that is associated with the nave of a church.[140] The space over the arcade on the second floor was enclosed, and presumably used as the jury room. This room was entered from a balcony located across the front of the building (the back of the court chamber) and along each side of the building. At the front of the chamber (as it appeared in the late nineteenth century) was a raised bench, and directly to the left of the judge's seat was a doorway leading into a pair of rooms used by the Court.

No descriptions of the interior of the courtroom as it appeared in the early part of the nineteenth century have been found; but it is probably that the business of the court was transacted, as it had been since early colonial times, at a large table, centered in the main chamber of the courthouse and spacious enough to seat the justices of the County Court and the sheriff, if the business of the day concerned him. One or more separate tables customarily were provided for the clerk of the court and those of his staff who attended the court session. It was also customary to separate the portion of the courtroom occupied by the Court from that occupied by the public, and this was accomplished by installation of a wooden railing or partition. Fireplaces heated the courtroom chamber and a second-floor fireplace heated the jury room above the open arcade. Details of the plastering and woodwork, the lighting fixtures and other hardware are not known, yet it seems certain they must have been of good taste and design, for their selection was in accordance with a plan prepared by James Wren, the designer of The Falls Church, Christ Church in Alexandria, and probably Pohick Church.

Although James Wren's name appears frequently in the public records of Fairfax County during the eighteenth century, his principal legacy was the architecture he designed and helped to build. In the 1760's references to him are found throughout the Vestry Books of Truro Parish and Fairfax Parish.[141] In 1763 he prepared the plans for construction of The Falls Church, which formed the nucleus of the village which grew up around it. In 1767 he designed the plans for Christ Church in Alexandria. Wren and William Weit were each paid forty shillings in 1769 for plans furnished to the vestry, for Pohick Church.[142] He had, through design of these and other structures, earned a reputation as the foremost builder and designer of buildings in his locality[143]—a reputation attested to by numerous contracts, recorded in the Fairfax County Court Order Books, under which young men were apprenticed to him to learn the "trade sciences or occupation of a Carpenter and Joiner."

According to Melvin Lee Steadman's genealogy of the Wren family,[144] James Wren was born in King George County about 1728, the son of John Wren and Ann Turner Wren. He learned his trade of carpentry and joining there, and about 1755 he moved to Truro Parish, Fairfax County. The first reference to James Wren in the land records of Fairfax County is found in a deed dated June 15, 1756 in which one James Scott conveyed to Wren a tract of 200 acres on which Wren was then living. Ultimately, Wren built a home, now called "Long View," adjacent to the present city of Falls Church, and assembled a substantial plantation, known as "Winter Hill," now within Falls Church City. He also operated, at Winter Hill, "Colo. Wren's Tavern."

James Wren served as a justice of the County Court. He was a trustee of the Town of Turberville which in 1798 was laid off on land near the Little Falls of the Potomac but never fulfilled the hopes of its promoters. Following his military service in the Revolutionary War he held various offices in the County government, including that of sheriff and commissioner of the tax. He acquired extensive landholdings in Fairfax and Loudoun Counties. James Wren was married three times; first, in 1753, to Catherine Brent of Overwharton Parish (Aquia Church); next, about 1771-74 to Valinda Wade, and last, to Sarah Jones of Alexandria in 1804. He died in 1815 and was buried at Long View.[145]

The architecture which James Wren created for the courthouse—as well as his churches and the numerous private buildings he designed and built under contract or for his friends—reflect the general level to which that art had advanced in colonial Virginia. The styles were adapted from prototypes in England.[146] Innovations which were made in adapting these styles to American use were, in most instances, attributable to the differences in building materials and the types of skilled labor which were available to the American builder.

The Origin of the Courthouse Design. The architectural design which James Wren selected for the Fairfax County Courthouse utilized several features which already were familiar hallmarks of public buildings in colonial Virginia, and in particular the colonial capitol at Williamsburg—probably the most impressive public building in Virginia at that time. The use of brick as building material, the use of two stories, topped by a cupola, and, most strikingly, the use of arches, all combined to suggest the influence of this capitol building on the courthouse design.[147] The courthouse was far from being a copy of the capitol and Wren added to these familiar features several new ones that made the courthouse an architectural innovation in its own right. When it was completed in 1800, the Fairfax County Courthouse was the first example of a new design which architectural historians have called "the town hall style,"[148] and have traced to English town halls of the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Like the Fairfax County Courthouse, these town halls were two-story brick or stone buildings which presented to their front a gable-end, ground-floor arcade (or piazza) covering the main opening onto the street, an entrance set into the end wall, and, frequently, a cupola. The town halls of Blandford in Dorset (1734), and Amersham in Buckinghamshire (1682) illustrate these features with variations of details.

No documentary evidence has been found to show how James Wren evolved his design for the Fairfax County Courthouse; but it seems probable that he knew of this style that was enjoying current popularity in England, and that John Bogue, the "undertaker" who built the courthouse, was familiar with the methods of constructing such buildings, for Bogue had just come to America from England in 1795.

While the similarity of geometric and structural exterior design strongly suggests that the Fairfax County Courthouse had its architectural ancestry in the English town halls of that period, the analogy is weaker when functions are compared. The courthouse for Fairfax County was designed and used entirely as the seat of local government. The commercial activity that was attracted to the courthouse site on "court days" enjoyed no special privileges or facilities in the building. In contrast, town halls in eighteenth century England often served the dual purpose of providing a facility for transaction of public business and carrying on the commerce of the community. The style of the English town halls provided space in the open arcade of the ground floor to house a farmers' and tradesmen's market, and space in the second floor chamber for the town council to meet and do its work.[149]

The origin of this type of building is not entirely clear. It is difficult to imagine it growing naturally in the political and social climate of the villages which grew up clustered around England's medieval castles and monasteries. At the time when town-and-market halls were common in the central squares of free towns in Italy, Germany and the Low Countries, they were absent in England. Their appearance in England dates from the seventeenth century when town government developed its own identity, and when British political and cultural alliances with the Dutch were established.[150]

Imported to Virginia as a form of courthouse building, this town hall style became a popular prototype for buildings erected in several counties during the first three decades of the nineteenth century. After being introduced in Fairfax County in 1800, this style appears in the Nelson County Courthouse built in 1807, the Caroline County Courthouse built in 1808, the Sussex County Courthouse built 1825-28, and the Madison County Courthouse built 1829-30. Variations in the layout of the interior appeared in the use of the space over the arcade; sometimes it was used for the jury room, and at other times it was used to accommodate a balcony for spectators.[151] After 1824, however, a new style of courthouse building may be seen in the public buildings of Virginia counties. Based on the neo-classical lines of the State Capitol, designed by Thomas Jefferson, there came into being a series of courthouses which were suggestive, if not actual, representations of the seat of state government.[152]

The Courthouse. In its exterior appearance the Fairfax County Courthouse underwent little change during the first century of its service. Indeed, looking at the courthouse square in 1900, it might have seemed that the courthouse was the only building that had not been rebuilt, relocated or significantly expanded. The effects of passing time were more evident in the evolution of the layout and furnishings of the court.

Throughout the first half of the nineteenth century the interior of the courthouse probably remained similar to the layout described in colonial times. Generally the focal point of the court chamber was a long table at which the County Court was seated, flanked by smaller tables where the court's clerks did their work. Customarily, also, a railing across the room separated this space from visitors whose business or curiosity led them to crowd in upon the court and its staff. As long as the gentlemen justices of the court were in reality, as well as name, the governing authority of the County, this arrangement of the courthouse chamber was the most sensible that could be suggested.

As the purely judicial duties were isolated and assigned to the professional judges of the District Court it became customary to renovate the court rooms to install the features which have become associated with litigation—the raised bench of the judge, the jury box, the witness stand, and counsels' tables.

These changing ideas of what a court chamber should look like became established during the first half of the nineteenth century, and were reflected in the courthouses built in Virginia during that period. Therefore, when the Fairfax County Courthouse was restored to service after the Civil War, its interior design resembled that which was customary for judicial chambers.[153]

That the task of renovation and restoration was extensive is indicated by a report in the Alexandria Gazette of October 17, 1862 stating that "The interior of the courthouse of Fairfax County has been entirely destroyed. Nothing remains of the building but the walls and the roof." Moreover, the work of renovation had to be carried out under the double difficulty of shortages of funds and labor that was skilled in cabinetmaking and metalworking. In the end, the restoration of the courthouse was a gradual process in which first one and then another improvement was added. No grand design seems to have been followed or a complete record of accomplishments maintained. Hence, evidence of the courthouse furnishings is seen in such separate notations in the Court Minute Books as follow:

October Court, 1866.

Ordered that the Com. of Public Buildings be instructed to purchase enough green-baise to cover the table in the bar And have it covered before the Circuit Court commenses.[154]

December 11, 1876.

Ordered that the Com'r of Public Buildings have the sawdust removed from the floor of the Courtroom, and have said floor covered with a substantial cocoa matting at the expense of the Court.[155]

December Court, 1882.

... Some person or persons have entered the Court House Building in the night, without authority and have damaged Said building and have greatly annoyed the citizens living nearby by violently ringing the bell. It is therefore ordered by the Court, that such trespass ... will be punished to the full extent of the law.[156]

The bell referred to by the Court was a standard feature of many Virginia courthouses, and was rung to announce the convening of court sessions. In the Fairfax County Courthouse, the bell was hung in a cupola on the roof, and rung with a bell-pull passing through the building's attic to the balcony level of the courtroom.[157]

A major change in the appearance of the courtroom occurred with the installation of wooden benches in the public section of the chamber. Tradition holds that the benches had been pews at one time in Jerusalem Baptist Church located on the Ox Road between Fairfax and Fairfax Station. This church had been built on the site of the old colonial "Payne's Church."

Illustrating the period when gaslights replaced candles, an elaborate brass chandelier fitted for gas illumination has been found in the courthouse attic. It is possibly the fixture which the sheriff was directed at the February 1890 court to purchase, for a price not to exceed $25.00. In about 1902, electric lights were installed.[158]

During the restoration of the courthouse following the Civil War one major alteration of the exterior appearance of the courthouse occurred when the brickwork between the windows on the first and second floors was removed to change the windows into single two-story-long vertical openings. The courthouse windows remained this way until 1968 when renovation of the original section of the courthouse was carried out, and double rows were reestablished as they appeared in photographs taken during the Civil War.

Reportedly, another major refurbishment of the courtroom occurred about 1920. In keeping with the style of that time, the emphasis was on panelling with dark, polished woods, and moderately ornamental carving which achieved an appearance of massiveness and dignity. The judge's bench was located at the west end of the courtroom on a raised platform and behind a heavy wooden balustrade. Against the west wall of the room and behind the judge's bench, wooden panelling covered the space from the southwest corner of the room to a doorway beside the bench which led into smaller chambers in the rear. This panelling was topped with a swan's neck pediment behind the judge's chair. At floor level, beside the judge's bench and behind the balustrade, were the witness stand and clerk's desk.

The jury box was located along the south wall of the room and faced an enclosure where tables for counsel and reporters were placed. These, in turn, were separated from the public seats by a carved wooden balustrade. Seating for the public on the ground floor was provided in two sections of wooden benches—the former church pews referred to earlier—separated by a center aisle. At the rear of this section was another balustrade setting it apart from the open space inside the door to the entrance arcade. The two fireplaces in the corners of the east end of the room were bricked-in and covered with plaster.

On the south wall, a stairway provided access to the balcony over the open portion of the room adjacent to the outer entrance. From the rear of the balcony were doorways into a jury room and small office which occupied the second-floor space over the entrance arcade. Three rows of benches, each raised one step above the one in front, provided additional seating space for visitors in the balcony. The ceiling of the courtroom was sheet metal (tin) with a pattern of ridges arranged in rectangular shapes. Central heating was provided by hot water radiators.

In 1929, an addition was constructed on the south side at the rear of the original courthouse, making an L-shaped building. In this process the clerk's office which was built in 1876 was torn down. Harmony of scale, materials and style were maintained between the old and new sections.[159]

Twenty years later, in 1951-56, the courthouse again was expanded by addition of a center block, and another wing identical with the original and first addition segments. At the rear (west side) of these new portions, two wings were added to house, respectively, the records of the clerk's office and a new, larger jail. With the completion of this construction, the old courtroom in the original wing of the building ceased to be used regularly for judicial business. Two large courtrooms and several smaller chambers in the center block of the building provided facilities for hearing cases. The new and larger building also provided space for the offices of the County's elected officials and most of the major boards, commissions and administrative departments which comprised the county's government in the 1950's.[160]

In both exterior and interior appearance, the courthouse additions of 1931 and 1954 were designed to harmonize with the original style James Wren established in 1800. The use of brick, gable-end roof lines, proportioning of the scale of various segments of the building, compatible fenestration and colonial period styles in hardware and painting all contributed to this result. Most influential of all in maintaining this architectural integrity, perhaps, was the use of archways and open arcades at the entrances to the center block and two wings. These open arcades, with their simple, undecorated keystone arches are the distinguishing features of the Fairfax County Courthouse in the 1970's as they were in 1800.


[139] William O'Neal, Architecture in Virginia, (New York: Walker, 1968), p. 17, remarks that "Traditionally, in Virginia buildings housing civil government have been developed beyond the utilitarian. This tradition, of course, has given us not only a remarkable group of eighteenth and nineteenth century courthouses, but, just yesterday, the very beautiful City Hall complex of Norfolk by Vincent King."

[140] University of Virginia Newsletter, (Charlottesville: Institute of Government, University of Virginia), XLIII, No. 11, (July 15, 1967).

[141] A summary of these references is contained in Melvin Steadman, Falls Church by Fence and Fireside, (Falls Church, Va.: Falls Church Public Library, 1964), pp. 463-520.

[142] O'Neal, Virginia Architecture, pp. 127, 133, 143, Minutes of the Vestry, Truro Parish, Virginia, 1732-1785, (Lorton, Va.: Pohick Church, 1974), p. 114.

[143] Steadman, Falls Church, p. 471.

[144] The genealogy and a summary history of the Wren family, both in England and America, is in Steadman, Falls Church, pp. 463-520.

[145] Janice Artemel, "James Wren, Gentleman Joiner," (unpublished manuscript, Falls Church, Va., 1976).

[146] According to Sir Banister Fletcher, A History of Architecture, Rev. ed., (New York: Scribners, 1963), p. 1126, "In general, the architecture of a particular area mirrored that of the homeland of the colonizers or settlers of that area, with modifications occasioned by climate, the types of building material obtainable, and the quality of labour available. Thus, in seventeenth century New England building followed the pattern of English weather-boarded heavy timber-frame prototypes, while in eighteenth century Virginia we find a 'Georgian' architecture often almost indistinguishable from that of eighteenth century England."

[147] Carl Feiss, "Court Houses of Virginia," lecture delivered at the meeting of the Latrobe (Washington) Chapter, Society of Architectural Historians, held at the Arts Club of Washington, November 8, 1968.

[148] Marcus Whiffen, "The Early Courthouses of Virginia," Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, XVIII, No. 1 (March 1959), pp. 2, 5-6.

[149] Thus the term "market hall" is sometimes also used to designate these buildings. At times, the market activities may even overshadow the building's associations with government, as in the case of Blandford, Dorset, where a sign on the building identifies it as the Corn Exchange, without mention of the Council's chamber.

[150] Sir Kenneth Clark, in his book, Civilisation. (New York: Harper & Row, 1969), pp. 194-220, describes the impact of Dutch accomplishments in the arts, and the impact of their influence on such Englishmen as Christopher Wren.

The adoption of the Dutch style of market hall in England may well have been a gradual one, utilizing the already familiar design of the house of a typical town tradesman, which presented to the street a series of arched openings where work was done and wares were displayed during the day. At night these arches were shuttered, and the tradesman had his living quarters on the second floor over his shop. Sir Banister Fletcher, A History of Architecture, (New York: Scribners, 1961), p. 463.

[151] Whiffen, "Early Courthouses," p. 6.

[152] William O'Neal, Architecture in Virginia, (New York: Walker, 1968), pp. 22-25.

[153] Whiffen, "Early Courthouses," p. 3.

[154] Fairfax County Court Minute Book, 1863-1867, p. 484.

[155] Fairfax County Court Minute Book, 1875-1879, p. 162.

[156] Fairfax County Court Minute Book, 1882-1885, p. 34.

[157] Examination of the courthouse attic in July 1967 revealed a bell, complete with mounting and wheel, with the following inscription: "TW & RC SMITH ALEXANDRIA 1844." It has not been determined when this bell was installed in or removed from the cupola. It was rehung in the cupola and rung again in 1976.

[158] Examination of the courthouse attic in July 1967 revealed a brass chandelier with six arms, approximately 24 inches long, fixed to a central hub. Burners at the end of each arm were fitted to hold glass globes or lamp chimneys. Fairfax County Court Minute Book, 1888-1892, p. 216. The end of the gaslight era occurred shortly after 1900, when, according to Thomas Chapman, former Clerk of Circuit Court, electric lights were installed in the clerk's office in 1902 and shortly thereafter in the courtroom.

[159] Interview with Thomas Chapman, former Clerk of Circuit Court.

[160] Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Minute Books, No. 17, p. 4, November 21, 1949; No. 18, pp. 2-9, November 15, 1950, pp. 296-298, May 22, 1951.


Origin of the Restoration Project. After the second addition to the courthouse was completed in 1954, the old courtroom in the original wing of the building ceased to be the focal point of the court's activity. Similarly, it ceased to receive the attention needed to deal with the natural deterioration produced by use and the passage of time. By the early 1960's these effects were evidenced by leaking roofs, unreliable plumbing in the heating system, cracked and crumbling plaster, loosened floors and hardware, and the like. In order to retain its usefulness, the original wing of the courthouse needed substantial renovation.

At this time, an interest in the old courtroom was expressed by the Fairfax County Bar Association and the county's newly formed Historical Landmarks Preservation Commission which together proposed that the work of renovation be done in such a way as to restore the original appearance of the courtroom. The Bar Association formed a Special Committee for Restoration of the Old Court Room under the chairmanship of C. Douglas Adams, Jr., and the assistance of the Board of Supervisors was sought.[161]

In December 1964, the Board appropriated funds for developing a restoration plan. Walter Macomber, a local restoration architect who had done similar work on a number of early Virginia landmarks, was retained to prepare the necessary plans. In March 1966, the Bar Association's Committee reported the completion of this preliminary work to the Board, and successfully secured the latter's approval together with an appropriation of $90,000 for actual construction work. This work was commenced without further delay and was completed in the spring of 1967.[162]

Problems of the Restoration. While the work undertaken in 1965 and 1966 was at the time referred to as a restoration, it was in fact impossible under the circumstances to reproduce with complete accuracy the appearance of the courthouse in 1800. No descriptions of the courtroom or other records of building specifications had been found; nor was any special research in eighteenth century sources undertaken for this purpose. As a result, the work produced a courtroom with idealized colonial-period interior design and furnishings in a building shell with reconstructed floor plan and structural design of the early Federal-period (during which it had initially been built). Numerous difficult problems were faced in this reconstruction, and, for the most part, they were resolved in ways that served primarily to create a room with the atmosphere of Virginia's colonial period, and secondarily to build an authentic replica of the Fairfax courthouse as of any particular historical date.

An initial problem connected with the exterior alterations was that of securing bricks and mortar to match those of the original courthouse. Bricks secured from a manufacturer of specialty bricks turned out to be a close match for the originals which were thought to have been fired from clay dug in Fairfax County.[164] Specially mixed mortar made from sand, lime and white cement also closely simulated the color and texture of the older mortar. Bricks were laid in Flemish bond which matched the courthouse and part of the old jail building.

Using these new materials, broken and crumbling bricks were replaced throughout the building, and the three long windows on both the north and south sides of the courthouse were altered to form two rows of smaller windows, with the space between the first and second-floor rows filled with new brickwork. This change in the fenestration restored the building to its appearance as shown in Civil War photographs of the courthouse. Shutters similar to those shown in the same pictures were added to the windows on both floors.

On the roof, some repairs were needed to restore the slate shingles. In the cupola, wooden louvres were repaired, the cupola was painted, and a weathervane restored to the top. An existing galvanized sheet metal roof was allowed to remain unchanged.

For the inside of the building there were no photographs or drawings of the earlier periods, and reconstruction was influenced largely by physical evidence disclosed as the interior was systematically dismantled down to the building's outer shell. When woodwork, hardware, plaster and flooring were removed, it was found that much of the framing timber was infested by termites, and had to be replaced. In this process numerous signs of earlier workmanship were revealed.

Beneath the existing tin-plate ceiling was a plastered ceiling and remnants of a painted frieze of red, yellow, blue and green. Behind this ceiling were laths laid over hand-hewn oak rafters. A few of the original hand-split laths and hand-made nails remained in this ceiling. In its reconstruction, the ceiling was furred and replastered without any decoration. No lathwork was found on the side walls, and in the reconstruction fresh plaster was applied directly to the bricks.[165]

The flooring which was removed from the central section of the courtroom sloped from the back (east end) of the room toward the judge's bench (at the west end). Beneath this floor was an older floor of brick. It was not determined whether this brick work had been the original floor of the courtroom or whether another wooden floor had overlaid it prior to the one just removed. In its reconstruction, however, the architect specified that a flat floor of polished pine should be laid over the bricks.[166]

In one part of the main floor the older brick work was allowed to remain exposed. This was in the vicinity of the fireplaces in the two corners of the open area at the rear (east end) of the courtroom. These two fireplaces were reopened and restored and their brickwork was extended to form spacious hearthstones.

The corner fireplaces showed signs of a three-stage evolution. They were originally used as open fireplaces. Holes in the brickwork above them suggested, however, that at some later time the open fireplaces were replaced by wood-burning or coal-burning stoves standing on the brick hearths with their stovepipes fitted into the chimneys. Finally, when the stoves were replaced by central heating and hot water radiators, the entire fireplace wall was sealed with brick and plastered over. In their restoration the corner fireplaces were reopened and refurbished as they were thought to have appeared in their original condition.

As the side walls were cleared of plaster, they showed signs of staircases from the ground level the balcony along the north as well as the south side of the courtroom. Thus when the stairs along the south wall were replaced, a similar set of stairs was built and installed on the north side of the courtroom. No dates for the original installation or removal of these staircases were determined, and it was presumed that the dual staircases were part of the original design of the courthouse.

A more difficult puzzle was presented by a series of holes in the outer wall aligned at the level of the balcony and about the size used for beams. Speculation by the architect suggested that these holes might have been intended for use in extending the balcony along three sides of the courtroom instead of merely along the back end, or in covering the entire room and creating a full second story for the courthouse. No determination of their use was made, and they were disregarded in the reconstruction of the courtroom.

Still another mystery which was not solved in the restoration concerned the two chimneys located in the corners at the west end of the old courtroom. No fireplaces or hearthstones were found in the courtroom floor, and when the interior was dismantled it was discovered that the chimneys rested on beams above the courtroom ceiling. These chimneys were not utilized in reconstructing the courtroom, and the only suggestion offered was that they probably had been connected by long pipes to stoves in the room below.[167]

Two doors in the west wall of the courtroom on either side of the judge's bench presented a further problem since they were not part of the original 1800 building, but had been part of the addition built in 1929. One of these doors led into a set of judge's chambers and the other (in one corner) opened into a corridor leading to the main portion of the addition running south from the old courthouse. In the restoration these doors were retained, but fitted inconspicuously into the panelling behind the judge's bench. Above the doors, the architect restored two windows which he felt had been part of the original building.[168]

Restoration of the judge's bench brought still more difficulties to maintaining the original design of the courtroom. As plaster was removed from the wall behind the judge's bench, the bricks showed marks of an arch. The judge's bench which ultimately was constructed and installed at the west end of the courtroom was, like the other woodwork, created by the architect "according to patterns used in colonial times."[169]

Other details of the interior were handled the same way. Hardware used by the architect was all new, but used old designs. Since the original colors used in the interior were not determined, the architect used white and gray shades of paint similar to those in colonial buildings. From the ceiling in the center of the courtroom were hung chandeliers found in the courthouse attic. While not of "colonial" design, they were used because they were considered appropriate due to former association with the courthouse. And, as noted earlier, the pews which possibly had been obtained from the Jerusalem Baptist Church were retained in the restored courtroom.[170]

General Setting and Building Site. The original Fairfax County courthouse today comprises the north end section of the courthouse building. Together with its immediately adjacent grounds, the present courthouse complex occupies almost the entire four-acre tract which was the original site. This tract still forms a square near the center of the City of Fairfax, at the intersections of two main roads, Routes 236 (Little River Turnpike) and 123 (Chain Bridge Road). The general setting is gently rolling terrain, and the courthouse site is on a slightly higher elevation than the surrounding area, with stone retaining walls on the two sides facing the turnpike and road. On the west side of the courthouse building is a parking lot occupying approximately two acres. The twelve-story county office building (Massey Building) completed in 1969 is located approximately 200 yards south and west of the courthouse.

The Exterior

Overall Dimensions. The restored, original courthouse building is a plain rectangle, 61 feet long by 32 feet wide. It is oriented with the long sides facing north and south, with the main entrance at the east end of the building. A portico extends across the entire east end of the building, covering an area 12 by 32 feet. The height of the building at the gable ends is 32 feet; and the height of the eaves from the ground is 21 feet.

Foundations. As originally built, the courthouse rested on brick foundation walls, anchored at the corners in brick piers, with a crawl space of approximately 1-1/2 to 2 feet in height beneath all but the front (east) quarter of the floor space. Additional brick bases, approximately 18 inches square and resting on the ground, were located in the crawl space beneath the two columns supporting the courthouse balcony. In the late nineteenth century, a partial basement was dug beneath the central section of the courtroom.[171]

As reconstructed, the exterior foundation walls were pointed up and repaired, and were strengthened by the addition of several new footings. Across the back (west end) of the building, the crawl space was deepened to a uniform 3 feet, and four 12 x 12 inch brick piers were placed on concrete footings. In the center section of the courthouse, the basement walls were extended 1 foot to carry the joists of the new floor, the outside entrance was closed up, and a new staircase for the interior entrance was built at the south end of the basement. Next to the basement toward the front (east end) of the building, another crawl space (measuring 8-1/2 x 25-1/2 feet) was deepened to a uniform 3 feet, and a new wall was built on the east side, extending the full width of the building. This new wall was 8 inches thick, and constructed of cinder block and brick, anchored with 16 x 16 x 12 inch concrete footings. Beneath both crawl spaces and the basement a 3-inch thick concrete slab was laid. The crawl space did not extend to the front exterior wall of the building. A space of 13 x 30 feet across the front of the building, consisting of the area beneath the open entrance foyer of the courtroom, originally had been covered only by a layer of bricks resting on the bare ground. As reconstructed, this brick was taken up and re-laid on a 4-inch thick slab of concrete which had been poured on a base of 4 inches of crushed stone covered by polyethylene film.

Walls. The exterior walls of the courthouse are constructed of red brick, with new bricks specially selected during the 1967 restoration to match the remaining original materials, and laid in Flemish bond, 1-1/2 feet thick. Across the front of the building, the portico is entered through a series of arches supporting the second-floor front section of the building. The three arches across the front of the building are 7 feet wide and 11 feet high at the center of the arch. The arches at the north and south ends of the portico are 6-1/2 feet wide by 11 feet high. The brick columns supporting the arches are 1-1/2 feet square. The arches and columns are plain except for white marble keystones and white marble slabs, 6 inches thick, placed at the foot of each arch and serving as bases for the columns.

Chimneys. All five of the chimneys which the courthouse had in the early nineteenth century were retained in the reconstruction. The two chimneys on each of the north and south sides stand at points which correspond to the four corners of the courtroom, and rise 11-1/2 feet above the roofline at the eaves. In the center of the table end at the front of the building, the fifth chimney stands, extending 5 feet above the ridge of the roof. All five chimneys are corbelled with two courses of brick at the top, and with a single course of brick 1-1/2 feet below the chimney top. All of the chimneys measure 2 feet by 1 foot 9 inches.

Doors and Windows. In the 1967 reconstruction of the courthouse, the fenestration was changed to resemble the appearance of the building in about 1861. Accordingly the three tall (14-1/2 foot) existing windows on the north and south sides of the building were converted into two sets of smaller windows, one above the other, and regularly spaced along the sides of the courtroom. In the upper row, a fourth window was located over the arch in the portico, and serves the rooms in the second-floor chamber at the front of the building. The chamber also has two windows on the front of the building.

The upper row windows are of a double-hung sash design, with 12 over 8 panes (9 inches x 10-3/4 inches) set in wooden frames and sills. Overall dimensions of these windows are 4 x 5-1/2 feet. The three windows on the lower level are slightly larger—4 feet x 6 feet 9 inches, and have 12 over 12 panes. Both rows of windows are shuttered; those of the upper row are louvred, and those in the lower row have solid panels.[172]

On the ground level at the front of the building, the main doorway of the courthouse is located in the center of the wall, and flanked by one window on each side. The door is panelled, and 8-1/2 x 4-1/2 feet in size.

In the reconstruction, new window sashes and a new door were installed, but the existing jambs were used wherever possible. All shutters, glazing materials and hardware used in the reconstruction were new.

Roof. The original roof of the courthouse was covered with slate shingles, and the reconstruction of the building merely applied repairs to these shingles as needed. Little of the slate which remained in 1967 was thought to have dated from the original construction, however, because of the extensive repairs and renovations carried out after the Civil War.

Cupola. The cupola, located at the ridge of the roof, 9-1/2 feet from the gable end at the front, was part of the original design of the courthouse and houses a bell once used to announce the convening of the court sessions. The cupola was constructed of white pine, and consists of a square box in which is mounted an octagonal compartment with louvred sides. Topping the panelled portion of the cupola is an onion-shaped dome, culminating in a ball which, according to photographs over the years, served as a base for a weathervane or flagpole. In reconstruction, a weathervane found in the courthouse attic was installed on the cupola's top. The roofing of the cupola dome is sheet metal.

Ornamentation. The overall appearance of the courthouse is plain, and, with the possible exception of the cupola, there is only one feature which shows the intention to combine ornamentation with functionalism in the architectural design. This feature is a round "fan window" framed by a circle of bricks in the center of the gable end of the building's front wall. The lower half of this window consists of four pie-shaped wooden panels. The upper half of the window consists of louvres.

The Interior

Foyer. The double doors in the center of the portico at the east end of the courthouse open inward into a foyer at the rear of the courtroom. This area is 29 feet long, the full width of the building. The width of the area varies, however, because of the fireplaces across each of the front corners and the curving rear edge of the central (or spectator) portion of the courtroom. At its narrowest point in front of the double doors the foyer is 10 feet 4 inches wide, and at its widest points on either end of the room, it is 12 feet wide. The foyer space is entirely open, with flooring composed of bricks (8 x 3-1/2 inches) varying in color from deep red to charcoal gray. These bricks are laid with three-quarter inch seams and white mortar.

The fireplaces in the corners at each end of the foyer have square (2 foot-8 inch) openings, with brick lining and a 5 inch facing surrounding the opening and painted flat black. The fireplaces are entirely framed with plain architraves and friezes, and are topped with simple mantels. Each fireplace measures 3 feet 11 inches wide by 4 feet 3 inches high.

Along the walls of the foyer, panelled wainscotting, painted white, is installed. Because of the unevenness of the floor, the height of this wainscotting varies from 4 feet 2 inches to 4 feet 3 inches. Its panels are of varying width, from 3 to 6 inches, and are beaded. At the base of the wainscotting is a 5-inch baseboard.

Above the wainscotting, the walls and ceiling are finished in plain plaster with walls painted mauve and the ceiling white. Lighting needs are minimal because of four outside windows located in the foyer, and because of light received from the central section of the courtroom. On each side of the double door and at each end of the foyer lanterns are mounted on the wall. These fixtures are of the type commonly used as carriage gate or guardhouse lanterns, and are 9 x 6-1/2 x 5 inches, with glass panels on three sides set in dark metal frames. The tops are of curved metal designed to shield the lanterns from the wind. Inside the lanterns, light comes from a single candle-shaped light bulb, set inside a small hurricane lamp chimney.

The hardware on the double door consists of a box lock with the brass knob polished and the lock-box and keeper painted flat black. At the top and bottom of the door black metal shot bolts of designs commonly found in eighteenth century buildings are installed.

Central Section. Space for the seating of spectators is provided in the central section of the courtroom. The floor level of this section is raised 7-3/4 inches above the floor of the foyer, and free-standing wainscotting of the same style and height as are around the foyer walls separate the foyer from the central section. The floor of this section is constructed of 5-1/4 inch dark-stained pine boards.

Entry into this section is along two aisles at the sides, running between the spectator seats in the center of the room and the balcony staircases set against the walls on the north and south sides of the room. Spectator seating is provided in five rows of benches of pine, with natural finish on the seats and back rests, white painted sides and bases, and natural cherry moldings along the top of the back rests and arms. Along the base at the front of each bench, is a 6 inch strip painted black. The back of the back rest is painted white down to a point 6 inches above the floor, where a foot rest of dark-stained pine is installed, and below this the base is painted black.

The five rows of benches in the center section are curved, generally following the arc of the edge of the raised flooring, and measure 17 feet 9 inches from end to end. Each bench seats about twelve people.

The walls of the center section are painted mauve, and the ceiling is white. There are no lighting fixtures in this section of the courtroom. At the rear of the central section, two lightly stained solid oak pillars support the balcony.

Staircases. Staircases to the balcony are located along the north and south walls of the central section. The initial plans for reconstruction of the courtroom in 1967 called for only one staircase, on the south wall. The decision to add a staircase on the north side came during the reconstruction when evidence of an earlier staircase on that side was revealed as the plaster was removed. From this it was conjectured that the courthouse of the early nineteenth century had had two staircases, but that one had been abandoned in reconstructing the building after the Civil War.

The present stairways each have 18 steps with 8 inch risers and treads 2 feet 11 inches wide by 10 inches deep. They form a single flight, open style stairs, with no brackets and plain balusters, 1 inch square, painted white and supporting a cherry handrail. Newel posts at the top and foot of the stairway have turned shafts with cube bases and capitals. A flat sphere of solid wood tops the capital of the newel post.

Beneath the staircase on the north side of the building is a closet, and on the south side is a stairway leading into the basement. The doors to this closet and stairway are made of vertical beaded boards similar to the wainscotting, each equipped with two "H" hinges of black metal having a pebble finish and black metal box locks with small polished brass doorknobs.

Balcony. The courtroom balcony contains three rows of wooden benches similar to those on the ground floor, except that they are straight instead of curved. The rows are arranged so the two rear benches are on daises raised 9 inches above the one in front. Solid-panelled free-standing wainscotting is set along the back of the rearmost bench. The first two rows of benches are 17 feet 7-3/4 inches long, while the rear bench is 22 feet long, allowing space at each end for the steps of the raised dais.

In front of these benches, across the full width of the balcony between the two staircases, is a railing of plain white spokes (matching the balusters of the staircase) and a plain cherry handrail 2 feet 11 inches in height.

The ceiling of the balcony is painted flat white and the walls are mauve. White beaded board wainscotting standing 3 inches high is around the sides and rear wall of the balcony similar to that on the ground level. Three recessed lights provide light for the balcony.

Jury Room. At the rear of the balcony an aisle 3 feet wide runs the full width of the building, allowing passage behind the rows of balcony benches and access to the jury room through doors near each end of the aisle. The jury room uses the space above the first-floor portico, an area 12 x 19 feet. The doors to the room are 2 feet 10 inches by 6 feet 10 inches, with 4 panels. Doors and frames are painted white, with brass doorknobs and modern locks set in the doors. The wall between the jury room and balcony is a new stud partition which is finished with white plaster, as is the ceiling. Lighting is provided by 3 recessed lights set in the ceiling and equally spaced. The walls of the room have a 3-inch baseboard, but no wainscotting.

Centered in the exterior (east) wall of the room is a fireplace, reopened in the 1967 reconstruction. This fireplace measures 4 feet 6-1/2 inches by 4 feet 7-3/4 inches, and is framed with a plain white architrave and mantel. A hearth of brick extends 18 inches out from the fireplace. Opposite the fireplace is a 12 by 18 inch plastered masonry pier extended up from the exterior wall at the rear of the portico on the first floor below. In the ceiling next to the pier is located a 30 by 36 inch opening into the attic, with a ladder built into the partition wall immediately below.

Bench, Bar and Jury Box. Across the front of the courtroom is a railing separating the judges bench, jury box, and space for counsel tables from the central section of the courtroom. This railing, similar to those of the staircases and balcony, stands 2 feet 8-1/2 inches high. Gates 3 feet wide and mounted on double spring hinges are placed in the railing at the head of each side aisle in the central section. Each gate has an S-curve wooden support built into it for added support.

The enclosure formed by the railing or bar is raised 7-1/2 inches above the floor level of the central section, and is floored with yellow pine, tongue-and-groove, 3-inch wide flooring. In the center of this enclosure, against the west wall of the courtroom is the judge's bench, flanked on its right by the witness stand. The bench itself is relatively small, measuring 6 feet 5 inches across and 4 feet 7 inches from back to front. Three steps on each side permit access from both directions, and have balustrades on the front side similar to the railings and other balustrades in the courtroom.

On the wall behind the judge's bench, there are two, high 12-over-8 pane windows, backed by closed, full-louvred shutters. Behind the shutters is the solid plaster wall of the present courthouse's main corridor. Between and below these windows is a wooden raised-panel screen serving as a back for the judge's bench. Two 6-panelled sections at each end of this screen are flanked by fluted pilasters with modified capitals supporting a plain entablature. Between these sections are 3 panels, the two on either end being composed of 3 tiers of panels edged with fluted pilasters. The center element of this panel consists of two large raised rectangular panels topped by a semi-circular louvred wooden fan design, then a round keystone arch, the whole portion of the composition topped by a high monumental pediment. At its center point, the height of this composition is 8 feet 6 inches.

This ornamental panelling also covers the space where doorways previously had been cut for passage between the courtroom and other portions of the courthouse as they were built from 1930 onward. Prior to the 1967 reconstruction, a doorway in the west wall was located on the judge's left side as he sat on the bench. As presently reconstructed, this doorway has been closed and covered by panelling, but a new door was cut through on the judge's right-hand side, and the inside of the door is constructed and fitted so as to serve as the end piece of the ornamental woodwork behind the judge's bench.

The jury box is in the southwest corner of the courtroom. Across the front of the box is a panelled solid railing, standing 2 feet 8 inches from the floor of the west end of the courtroom. The jury box contains 2 rows of benches, each raised an 8-inch step above the one in front. The front row is 9 feet 3 inches long, with aisles 18 inches wide at each end allowing passage from the second row to the front, and openings in the railing. Not having this function of access, the back row of the jury benches is 14 feet 1 inch in length. Benches in the jury box are designed and constructed similar to those of the balcony.

The witness box is located between the judge's bench and the jury box. This box is constructed of solid wooden screen, painted white and topped with a cherry handrail. The screen forming the back of the box is plain; the screen at the front is in the shape of half of an octagon, and the face of each element contains a single recessed panel similar to those on the front of the judge's bench. The side of the witness box facing the jury is open to allow entry into the box, and the side next to the judge's bench is formed by the side of that fixture. The flooring of the box is made of 3-inch wide, yellow pine boards, finished naturally, and the flooring is raised one step (7-1/2 inches) from the courtroom floor. The dimensions of the box are 2 feet 10 inches across and 3 feet 8 inches from back to front.

Illumination of the area of the bench and jury box is provided by a variety of fixtures. On the wall at the rear of the jury box two carriage gate or guardhouse lanterns are attached. Opposite these, on the wall at the north side of the room, two other, similar lanterns are located. In the ceiling above the area enclosed by the bar, 10 recessed lights are installed in two rows of 4 lights across the front and rear sections, and a pair are located equidistant between these rows. Hanging from the ceiling over the central area are chandeliers which were found in the attic of the courthouse during the 1967 reconstruction, and refurbished and wired for electric lights. The lighting fixtures consist of six 24-inch arms, made of hollow brass tubing, extending out from a central hub. The hub, in the shape of a cup and decorated with a series of radial ridges, is on the lower end of a 38-inch hollow brass shaft, equipped at the top with a hook for suspension from the ceiling. As installed in the courthouse, each chandelier hangs from a fixture in the ceiling by a metal chain approximately 5 feet long. At the end of each arm of the chandelier are plain disc-shaped bases (3 inches in diameter) which holds one candle-shaped electric socket and a glass hurricane lamp chimney.

Basement. A small basement measuring 11 feet in width lies across the center section of the courthouse. An interior entrance to this basement is provided by a staircase located at its south end. This stairway, 3 feet 6 inches wide with 7-3/4 inch risers, has 10 steps, and is not panelled or painted. At the present time, the basement is used to house heating and air conditioning equipment.

Small windows are located at both the north and south ends of the basement. Approximately square, these windows measure 2 feet 2 inches by 2 feet 9 inches, with 3-over-2 panes (6 by 12 inches). Both have sills composed of a single slab of stone 2 inches thick. Both also are below ground level, and open into brick-lined spaces for light and air dug out by the wall's foundations. The space for the window on the north side of the building measures 4 feet 1 inch by 3 feet 3 inches. On the south side of the building, however, the dug-out space measures 7 feet 8 inches by 2 feet 9 inches and suggests that this was, at an earlier date, the point where an outside entrance to the basement was located. This is corroborated by markings on the inside of the basement wall which show that a doorway in the north end of the basement has been bricked up, and also that a second window similar to the existing one has been closed up with bricks, leaving the sill slab in place. From the basement, galvanized steel ducts covered with insulating material are run through the crawl spaces beneath the courtroom floor to outlets and intakes for circulation of air. These openings are located in the sills of the recessed windows of the courtroom and in the bases of the benches for spectators and jurors, and are covered with steel grilles painted to blend with the fixtures in which they are set.


[161] Other members of the Special Committee were Edward D. Gasson, James Keith, John T. Hazel, Jr.; W. Franklin Gooding, Assistant Clerk of the Courts; Senior Circuit Judge Paul E. Brown; and Bayard Evans, Chairman of the Fairfax Historical Landmarks Preservation Commission.

[162] The cost of restoration was originally estimated at $74,488, exclusive of architect's fee, which was to be 12 per cent of the total cost. Ultimately, the cost of the work was slightly in excess of $84,500, including the architect's fee, according to the architect's records; Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Minute Book #45, pp. 192, 301, 406; Cost Sheet, Walter M. Macomber.

[163] The building contractor for this work was E. L. Daniels.

[164] Interview with Thomas Chapman, former Clerk of the Circuit Court.

[165] The frieze was disregarded because it was not considered part of the original courtroom interior, and no drawings, photographs or descriptions of it were preserved.

[166] The sloping floor which was replaced was not dated, but probably was installed when the courthouse was renovated following the Civil War.

[167] On this matter the following statement in the Northern Virginia Sun, January 8, 1966, 1, is of interest: "Anyone familiar with the old courthouse will have noticed that it has five chimneys. The two closest to the bench are resting on wood above the ceiling, Macomber discovered. This, he said 'confused' him. He thinks that they probably were connected by long pipes to stoves in the courtroom. Yet he is not sure. It appears to Macomber that they were added at some later time, but he will not know until he examines them more closely during the restoration. If ... [there] are post-1800 andirons [in these fireplaces], out they will go in the restoration."

In an interview on March 2, 1970, however, Macomber stated he felt that these chimneys had been connected to stoves after the fireplaces which they served were blocked up.

[168] The architect expressed the opinion that the addition to the west end of the courthouse dated from about 1900; Northern Virginia Sun, January 8, 1966, 1. However, no documentary evidence from the county records supports this date; Fairfax County Free Press, August 25, 1966.

[169] Transcript of interview with Walter Macomber, March 2, 1970. As to the arch marks, Mr. Macomber said: "On the front wall I found a semi-circle deeply incised in the brick wall. I concluded there had been an original arched design there and I reproduced such an arch as it might have looked based on my studies of colonial architecture."

[170] Transcript of interview with Walter Macomber, March 2, 1970, contains the following:

Question: Do you know what the original color of the room was?

Macomber: No. But since most of the buildings of that period were either white or light gray, I used these colors.

Question: Was any of the original ironwork left?

Macomber: No. The ones installed are new but made from old designs used in the colonial period.

Question: Where did the old chandeliers you installed in the ceiling come from?

Macomber: They were discovered in storage. They are not colonial, but since they were probably used at some time I thought it appropriate to use them.

Question: Where did you get your ideas for the woodwork?

Macomber: I created it according to patterns used in colonial times. The benches were brought in after the Civil War and had come from the Payne [Jerusalem] Baptist Church. I thought it appropriate to use them.

[171] Fairfax County Free Press, August 25, 1966; The basement measured 11 x 25-1/2 feet and was located across the midsection of the building. At the north end of the basement a stairway led to an outside entrance, and at the south end another stairway provided interior access. The basement was lined with 8-inch thick brick walls, and was divided into two rooms of approximately equal size connected by a doorway 2-1/2 feet wide.

[172] Prior to the reconstruction of the courthouse in 1967, the shutters at the windows on the first floor of the front of the building were louvred in the top half and solid panel in the lower half. In the reconstruction, these shutters were replaced using shutters with solid panels.




Sources: Frederick Johnston, Memorials of Old Virginia Clerks; Fairfax County Court Order Books.

Catesby Cocke 1742-46 John Graham 1746-52 Peter Wagener 1752-72 Peter Wagener, Jr. 1772-98 George Deneale 1798-1801 William Moss 1801-33 F. D. Richardson, pro tem 1833-35 Thomas Moss 1835-39 Alfred Moss, pro tem Oct.-Nov., 1839 S. M. Ball 1839-52 Alfred Moss 1852-61 Henry T. Brooks (military) 1861-65 W. B. Gooding (military) 1865-66 William M. Fitzhugh (military) 1866-67 F. D. Richardson, pro tem 1866-69 D. F. Dulany (military) 1869-70 F. D. Richardson 1870-80 F. W. Richardson, pro tem 1880-81 F. W. Richardson 1881-87 W. E. Graham 1887-1903 F. W. Richardson 1904-35 John M. Whalen 1936-45 Thomas P. Chapman, Jr. 1945-67 W. Franklin Gooding 1967-75 James E. Hoofnagle 1976-




Lists Compiled By E. Sprouse, P. Howe, V. Peters, A. Lewis, and N. Netherton.

(Because of missing books and records, this listing is incomplete.)

First Commission for Fairfax County, 1742

William Fairfax John Colvill Richard Osborne Jeremiah Bronaugh Lewis Elzey William Payne Thomas Pearson John Minor William Henry Terrett John Gregg Gerard Alexander Edward Barry Daniel Jennings Thomas Arbuthnot

(1742-1748 Fairfax County Court Order Books are missing.)


John Minor William H. Terrett Daniel Jennings John Carlyle William Ramsay Charles Broadwater Daniel McCarty John Colvill Moses Linton Lewis Ellzey William Payne Richard Osborn George W. Fairfax Anthony Russell Joseph Watkins George Mason Jeremiah Bronaugh Thomas, sixth Lord Fairfax Chief Justice Stephen Lewis


John West Lawrence Washington Catesby Cocke


Fielding Turner


Thomas Colvill


Hugh West


John West, Jr. Sampson Turley Sampson Darrell James Hamilton Oneas Campbell


Henry Gunnell


John Hunter Robert Adam William Bronaugh William Payne, Jr.


Bryan Fairfax Townshend Dade Benjamin Grayson Edward Blackburn Lee Massey William Adams


Hector Ross


George William Fairfax William Ellzey John West George Mason Daniel McCarty John Carlyle William Ramsay Charles Broadwater Thomas Colvill dead John West, Junior Bryan Fairfax Sampson Dorrell Sher. Townshend Dade Quo: Henry Gunnell


Marmaduke Beckwith Robert Adam John Hunter dead Richard Sanford Wm. Payne Benjamin Grayson William Adams Edward Blackburn Hector Ross & Alexander Henderson Gent. George William Fairfax Lewis Ellzey John West George Mason Daniel McCarty John Carlyle Wm. Ramsay Charles Broadwater John West, Junr Bryan Fairfax Sampson Dorrell Quo: Townshend Dade Henry Gunnell Wm. Adams George Washington & Daniel French Gent:


George W Fairfax Lewis Ellzey John West George Mason Daniel McCarty John Carlyle Wm. Ramsey Charles Broadwater John West Junior Bryan Fairfax Sampson Darrel Townshend Dade Quorum Henry Gunnell Marmaduke Beckwith Robert Adam Richard Sanford Wm. Payne Benjamin Grayson dead Wm. Adams Hector Ross Alexander Henderson George Washington Daniel French & Edward Payne Gent:


John West George Mason Daniel McCarty John Carlyle William Ramsay Charles Broadwater John West Junr Bryan Fairfax Sampson Darrell Quor. Henry Gunnell Robert Adam William Payne William Adams Hector Ross Alexander Henderson George Washington and Edward Payne Gent.

(1774-1782 Fairfax County Court Order Books are missing.)


John Gibson George Gilpin Richard Chichester Robert McCrea Charles Little James Hendricks Josiah Watson Henry Darne Thomas Lewis Robert T. Hooe


James Wren David Stuart David Arell Charles Alexander


William Deneale John Moss


George Minor William Herbert


Roger West Richard Conway Thomas Gunnell John Fitzgerald William Brown Benjamin Dulany Thomas Pollard James Waugh John Potts

Previous Part     1  2  3     Next Part
Home - Random Browse