Centreville prior to the battle of Bull Run, in 1862

If you love history, you'll love living in Northern Virginia. Around every corner you'll find American History from the colonial era in Old Town Alexandria to the Revolutionary War to the Civil War. Perhaps the most famous battles in the Civil War were fought in Manassas near the creek called Bull Run. This picture shows Centreville in 1862.
Centreville battlefield
Centreville 1862 just prior to the battle of BULL run.

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Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation is a part of Falls Church History

Tinner Hill
Tinner Hill
Come visit Tinner Hill in Falls Church, Virginia. This is where the very first rural chapter of the NAACP was located. African-Americans came here to settle after the Civil War. This land was named after the Tinner Family. The Tinner Hill Site has different events through the year. For more information please contact: Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation 106 Tinner Hill Road Falls Church, VA. 22046 703-241-4109 www.tinnerhill.org

Aubrey NesbittAbout the Author --- Aubrey Nesbitt is a native of Northern Virginia who attended Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a veteran of the US Army and helps his family business by providing informational articles like this one. In addition to photography and blogging, Aubrey provides administrative support for the office.

Cherry Hill Farmhouse in Falls Church VA

Tours at the Cherry Hill Farmhouse are given so you can marvel at this beautiful 18th-19th century home. It was built in 1845 and was a 73 acre farm. After surviving the Civil War this historic home was bought by the City of Falls Church. For more information on tour times please contact: Cherry Hill Farmhouse 312 Park Ave. Falls Church, VA. 22046 703-248-5071

Zipcodes in Falls Church VA

Aubrey NesbittAbout the Author --- Aubrey Nesbitt is a native of Northern Virginia who attended Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a veteran of the US Army and helps his family business by providing informational articles like this one. In addition to photography and blogging, Aubrey provides administrative support for the office.

Fort Scott Park Is a historic site

Fort Scott Park
Fort Scott Park is located south west of Crystal City not far from Pentagon City and Aurora Hills in Arlington VA. Fort Scott Park is one of several parks in Northern Virginia that were part of the defenses of Washington during the civil war.  The sign at the site reads:

Historical Site Defenses of Washington 1861 - 1865 Fort Scott Here stood a detached lunette constructed in May 1861 to guard the south flank of the defenses of Washington and named for General Winfield Scott, then General-in-chief of the army. It was subsequently relegated to an interior position by the construction of defenses of Alexandria about 1 3/4 miles to the West. The fort had a perimeter of 313 yards and emplacements for 8 guns. A remnant portion may be found immediately to the West.

Today, Fort Scott Park is more than 11 and a half acres of family-friendly fun that welcomes toddlers and children. Fort Scott Park features appealing playground equipment like a sandbox, a playhouse, and both baby and regular swings. The park has nice shade and picnic pavilions. The adjacent basketball court is a great place to let dad make some free throws.  The park also has tennis courts and softball fields.
Fort Scott Park playground equipment
Having fun at Fort Scott Park


Fort Scott Park 2800 South Fort Scott Drive, Arlington, VA 22202

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What is a Second Empire style home?

Popular in the Midwest and Northeast, this Victorian style was fashionable for public buildings during Ulysses S. Grant's presidency, but its elaborate, costly detail fell out of favor in the late 1800s for economic reasons. Second empire homes feature windows, molded cornices, and decorative brackets under the eaves. One subtype sports a rectangular tower at the front and center of the structure. There are several examples of this style in Old Town Alexandria, all of which were perhaps built in the post-Civil War growth of government under President Grant. The condos at 900 N. Washington closely follow this design style.
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Alexandria National Cemetery

  The Arlington National Cemetery is recognized around the country and around the world, but nearby is a similar treasure from our nation's heritage: the Alexandria National Cemetery.
flag at Alexandria National Cemetery
The Alexandria National Cemetery is located in the City of Alexandria VA
Arlington National Cemetery was featured in Gardens of Stone and numerous other feature films. This has no doubt added to Arlington's mystique and celebrity. Arlington Cemetery was carved from the farm of Robert E. Lee, a native of Alexandria. This is one of many connections between Arlington and Alexandria National Cemeteries. The five acres of Alexandria National Cemetery are tiny compared to Arlington's 612 acres. Newcomers and those who don't know the history of the area may be surprised to learn that while Alexandria was a colonial era settlement, Arlington is a relatively new creation. (Check out Alexandria's best real estate deal ever!) Alexandria National Cemetery predates the cemetery in Arlington and is in some ways the reason for Arlington's existence. Alexandria National Cemetery was established during the Civil War in 1862 as one of the original 14 national cemeteries. The first four acres of Alexandria National Cemetery were purchased by the US government from what was to be Spring Garden Farm.  By 1870, the United States purchased additional land to bring the cemetery up to its current size. The first burials made in Alexandria National Cemetery were soldiers who died during training for the Civil War. Additionally, some casualties were sick or diseased soldiers from one of the numerous hospitals around Alexandria. The death and destruction wrought by the Civil War exceeded all expectations. It was evident that Alexandria National Cemetery would be woefully short of the needs imposed by the War. By 1864, Alexandria National Cemetery was nearly filled to capacity. In large part, the shortage of space in Alexandria led to the planning, development and construction of Arlington National Cemetery. After the Civil War, improvements were made to the design of Alexandria National Cemetery and by 1871 the cemetery had added a fountain, a cobblestone avenue and graveled walkways. A wrought-iron rostrum, a small pond and a greenhouse were added as well. The primary building on grounds is a brownstone structure---the superintendent’s lodge.  The lodge dating to 1870 is the oldest surviving building on the grounds. The lodge is constructed in a style and with materials popular from the era and perhaps best recognized in the the Smithsonian Institution's "Castle," and the U.S. Capitol floor and rotunda door frames.
Alexandria National Cemetery
Many of the graves at Alexandria National Cemetery date to the Civil War era
Like other national cemeteries, the Alexandria National Cemetery featured a "comfort station" built in 1887. This building is one of only a few such structures to survive to the present day. In 1927, the station significantly altered by adding a dining room and converting the facility into a kitchen/store room and tool-shed/toilet. The entire cemetery is surrounded by a wall of Seneca sandstone with River Blue Stone coping. (This is the same material used to build the superintendent's lodge.) Visitors gain entry by passing through a 12-foot wide ornamental cast-iron gate at the Wilkes Street entrance. In the 1930's the flagpole was added and in 1995 the cemetery was added to the National Register of Historic places. There is no grave locator or kiosk on the grounds and the cemetery only has room for cremated remains and certain relatives of persons already buried at Alexandria National Cemetery. Among other notable persons buried at the Alexandria National Cemetery are several "Buffalo Soldiers"---a nickname for several Cavalry Regiments of the US Army. Several African-American regiments of Buffalo Soldiers were formed during the Civil War to fight alongside the Union Army. Among these were the famed 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry and many United States Colored Troops Regiments.  After the Civil War, the Buffalo Soldiers were established by Congress as the first peacetime all-black regiments in the regular U.S. Army. It is fitting that these soldiers are buried near Alexandria's African American Heritage Park. Together with the African American Heritage Park the Alexandria National Cemetery makes up the eastern boundary of the Carlyle District.