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Henley House Emerson's Ordinary: At least a 20-foot square building was erected here by 1718 and in 1757 when James Emerson bought it, buildings are enumerated. An insurance policy of 1801 states that the building is "45 foot long wooden tavern with a wood wing, one-story Dutch roof, located to front of Lot 11 with a wood kitchen and smoke house to the rear.” These are still standing with the kitchen added to the main house and are substantially as described at this date. Many families have owned and lived here, but none has altered its appearance. Once the home of Mr. L.J. Henley, then Mr & Mrs. R. Rennolds, it is now being restored by George Jennings III.


Old Clerk's Office: Court records show that in 1808 there was ordered the building of a "Clerk's Office with walls 1 1/2 brick thick, by 32 by 18 feet, roof covered by slate and to have one room 18 by 22 and the other 18 by 10. The office room to have a floor of brick or stone and the other room planked." One year later an additional chimney was ordered, and the records were ordered to be removed to the new Clerk's Office. (They had been kept at Smithfield by the Clerks Lees).


This building ordered erected at Prince and Cross Streets is still standing; it was used as a Clerk's Office until 1848 when that Office was moved into the new Courthouse; it was used as an ordinary, shop, and strap-lined County Jail. In 1926 the late Mrs. Jessie Ball DuPont, while her husband was renovating the Courthouse, had the jail lining removed and the building renovated. Since that time it has been the Essex County Public Library and now is the Essex County Woman's Club headquarters.

Courthouse 1848: This imposing brick structure was erected in 1848 and fronts on Prince Street. It has large columns and semi-columns on the front, two story windows, and almost three foot thick walls. In 1926 the late Alfred I. DuPont renovated the interior and installed a clock steeple as a gift to Essex County citizens. This building not only housed the Court but had a fireproof Clerk's Office and Record Room in the rear where the County records dating from 1686 were stored.

In 1963 a fireproof addition for the Clerk's Office, Record Room, and additional Court Room Offices was added. In 1965 the interior of the Old Court Room was gutted by fire; but, no other part of the building was damaged. In 1965 the interior of the Court Room, clock steeple and roof were restored from architectural drawings of the 1926 renovation.

Debtor's Prison: In 1769 a Court order showed the area around this present building as “prison bounds" which proves that this almost square story and a half building of old brick was erected and in use before this date. In 1809 another Court order concerned the removing of the prisoners from the criminal to the "debtors jail. "

This building attests its great age by the fact that the sand stone door sill has been worn down and curved from the many, many feet that have crossed it. The exact date of its erection can not be proved from the records, as jails were ordered built and abandoned throughout the years. A plat of 1850 shows the Old Clerk's Office and four jails, all fronting on Prince Street, but the location of the Debtor's Prison in the same corner on which it now stands is further proof for this building. It is still County property and is now the Treasurer's Office where taxpayers still pay debts.


Ritchie-Meriwether House: This brick home is located on the corner of Prince and Cross Streets and across from the Old Clerk's Office.

The present building is the western-most of what was once three or more brick buildings, all of which were connected by covered passageways, as a drawing of the structures was found in the Archives of the Virginia State Library. In 1706 Thomas Meriwether purchased 12 one-half acre lots in the Town. He was required to build a finished 20-foot structure on the lots within a year or the title would be escheated. Since he willed his home at his death in 1708, he still owned the land area; and court references soon after this time refer to "Meriwether's Dwelling House commonly called thee Long House on the Great (Prince) Street."


Derieux-Scots Arms Tavern: The Harry Beverley plat of the Town of Tappahannock of 1706 shows on Lot 20 "Coleman's House" as already there at that time, which makes this the oldest house in Town. Robert Spillsbee Coleman's will of 1760 calls this building the "Scots Arm Tavern." An 1801 insurance policy shows this tavern to be "105 feet long, one story in height except for the 24 feet next to the river which is two stories." The present house is in this location, is two stories high with an English basement. It is now the private home of Miss Mary Derieux, whose family has owned and lived here for over 100 years.



Panoramic view of Seal Harbor - photo composition made up of 5 individual shots. Seal Harbor is on the south coast of Mount Desert Island, Acadia National Park, Maine,

Lighthouse on the Gulf Shore Parkway, North Coast of Prince Edward Island, inside the PEI National Park. This light faces the St. Lawrence River.

Standing outside Nureyev's (as in ballet) House on the south-east coast of St. Barthelemy, French West Indies. This view looks south west towards Grand Fond and Ile Coco



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