Life on the Potomac River

PotomacThe Potomac River is 400 miles of beautiful scenery that runs on the east coast starting with Maryland and passing Washington D.C. to its end at the Chesapeake Bay.

Washington Monument
Washington Monument surrounded by cherry blossoms

Passing by some of our nation’s greatest landmarks including The Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, and the Lincoln Memorial. There are many great recreational areas to enjoy along the way. George Washington was a great admirer of the Potomac River. He worked along the river as a surveyor and his home was on the Potomac River.

The Great Falls are where many visitors gather to enjoy the awesome scenery it provides. The water comes down from the Appalachian Highlands to the sands. Visitors can still see some of the remnants of the C & O Canal which was started with George Washington’s vision of connecting the Chesapeake Bay to the Ohio River.

Point Lookout is also widely visited and was home to one of the largest Union POW camps.

The Potomac has much to offer along all 400 miles which include mountains, parks, recreational areas, historic monuments, and homes.

Great FallsIf you’re searching for a home or condo in Northern Virginia with a view of the Potomac, contact Nesbitt Realty.


Recent Listings

Waterfront 1.7-acre home on Occoquan River adjoining 12-acre Cannon Bluff wooded parkland. Quiet & private cul-de-sac lot. Nature lover's paradise! New interior paint & carpet. Granite counter tops. Wood floors in all bedrooms. Vaulted ceiling in large family room w/ built-in bookcases & pellet stove insert for cozy winter evenings. Winter water views from deck and upgraded master suite. [11207 Caisson Ct, Woodbridge, VA]

A rare opportunity awaits the buyer of this stunning residence with breathtaking river and country club views from every room. Brimming with comfortable English country decor, this home is filled with custom upgrades and details throughout. 2BR/2.5 BA,spacious LR, elegant library, & solarium w/ceiling to floor windows capturing magnificent vistas! 2 Gar spaces & 2 premium storage. See AX10255164 [1250 Washington St #510, Alexandria, VA]

Fall in love at first sight! Beautifully appointed/renovated home in pristine condition, filled with tasteful high end upgrades. Spectacular river views offer a serene setting that will please discerning buyers. Sunny solarium w/heated floors, electronic blinds, new windows/doors. Custom kitchen w/white cabinetry, Viking appliances & sumptuous baths. High ceilings & fireplace. [1250 Washington St S #603, Alexandria, VA]

Walls of windows & open floor plan in this waterfront home combine nature's beauty & contemporary details! Multiple decks, patios & flagstone paths add to your enjoyment of the landscaped yard & dock . Kitchen and bathrooms remodeled, au-pair or in-law suite, oversize 2 car garage & cul-de-sac setting in Wessynton. Community boat ramp, pool, tennis [3000 Doeg Indian Ct, Alexandria, VA]

Potomac River Waterfront Lot/Tear-Down, over 1 acre in Fairfax Co. for under $950,000! RARE OPPORTUNITY at this price in a wonderful Mason Neck/Lorton community. Award winning schools. Utilities, driveway, seawall in place. Flat front yard with home sited on apex of property. Approx. 10 mile downriver views & approx. 2 miles across the river! [6101 River Dr, Lorton, VA]

For more information or to set up an appointment call Nesbitt Realty at (703)765-0300.

Murphy’s Irish Pub in Old Town

Murphy's Harp
The harp is over the hearth at Murphy’s

Murphy’s Grand Irish Pub is located in Old Town Alexandria on King Street just a few paces from Washington Street/the George Washington Parkway. Murphy’s serves up Irish classics and pub fare. The prices are reasonable and the food is good.

Murphy’s also has a calendar of events filled with various musical entertainment. Together with Eamon’s and a few other places in Alexandria, Old Town has plenty to warm the Irish heart.

Properties in Old Town Alexandria

$1,175,000: 226 Alfred St N

226 Alfred St N

Beds: 3 / Baths: 2 full, 1 half baths / Living Area: 2,268 sq.ft.

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    Lovingly restored 18th C Federal style semi-det TH with 3 BR 2.5 BA on 3 levels. Grand reception...


$900,000: 1020 Queen St

1020 Queen St

Beds: 4 / Baths: 2 full, 1 half baths / Living Area: 2,430 sq.ft.

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    What a location! Grand sized Old Town gem ~ investor opportunity, selling as is ~ Upper two...


$950,000: 1250 Washington St #510

1250 Washington St #510

Beds: 2 / Baths: 2 full, 1 half baths / Living Area: 1,803 sq.ft.

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    A rare opportunity awaits the buyer of this stunning residence with breathtaking river and...


$450,000: 1250 Washington St S #508

1250 Washington St S #508

Beds: 1 / Baths: 1 full baths / Living Area: 1,068 sq.ft.

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    Elegant pied-a-terre features lovely river/golf course views. Sunny SW exposure and magnificent...


$840,000: 1250 Washington St S #603

1250 Washington St S #603

Beds: 2 / Baths: 2 full baths / Living Area: 1,611 sq.ft.

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    Fall in love at first sight! Beautifully appointed/renovated home in pristine condition, filled...


$799,900: 215 Oronoco St

215 Oronoco St

Beds: 3 / Baths: 2 full, 1 half baths / Living Area: n/a

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    Two Level Living! Off St Pkg. STEPS FROM THE POTOMAC RIVER! 4 sts to King St! LOCATION!...


$565,000: 1619b Hunting Creek Dr

1619b Hunting Creek Dr

Beds: 2 / Baths: 2 full baths / Living Area: 1,513 sq.ft.

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    Rarely Available Upper Lever 3 Level TH Condo with gar & covered balcony in popular OTG!...


$504,990: 1210 Queen St #7

1210 Queen St #7

Beds: 1 / Baths: 1 full baths / Living Area: 900 sq.ft.

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    Light-filled, open and bright Penthouse with 3 terraces and sunset views. Ideally located, 1...


$649,900: 1600 Prince St #213

1600 Prince St #213

Beds: 2 / Baths: 2 full baths / Living Area: 1,348 sq.ft.

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    2 blocks to King St. Metro/totally reno 2BR,2BA+Den/large windows full length of condo including...


$615,000: 1407 Prince St

1407 Prince St

Beds: 2 / Baths: 1 full, 1 half baths / Living Area: 1,084 sq.ft.

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    Brick Victorian with old pine floors, wood burning fireplace, washer/dryer upstairs. Partial...


inside Murphy's
Inside the pub, Murphy’s is almost as dark as Guiness beer.

George Washington annual birthday parade in Alexandria in 1932

Old Town 1932
George Washington annual birthday parade in Alexandria in 1932

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Potomac Riverboat Company

cherry blossom
Cherry Blossom sternwheeler

The Potomac Riverboat Company operates several authentic split sternwheelers (also known as riverboats) on the Potomac River near Alexandria VA. They also operate a pair of watertaxis which ferry passengers from the Gaylord/National Harbor to Old Town Alexandria. Unlike most cruise companies in America, the Potomac Riverboat Company does not operate “restaurant boats”. Rather, they use their boats as touring and private party and or charter boats. When a vessel is chartered, whether you have a party of 2 or 200, the boat belongs exclusively to you.

The Potomac Riverboat Company offers a 40-minute narrated Seaport Cruise which plies the waters between two magnificent historic sites — Alexandria (in Virginia) and Georgetown (on the Washington, D.C. side of the river). Passengers are treated to riverborne views of America’s greatest monuments. They also offer a narrated cruise downriver to George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate & Gardens.

Properties in Old Town Alexandria

Why is Old Town Alexandria famous?

Old Town is so-called because it is the oldest part of Alexandria. Old Town was originally laid out in 1749 and is a nationally designated historic district. Many of its 4,000 historic buildings houses, art galleries, antique shops and restaurants. Once the site of the second-largest slave market in the United States, Old Town’s Market Square now contains a large fountain, extensive landscaping and a Saturday morning farmers’ market.

Old Town is known for its illustrious residents and guests. George Washington called it home. Robert E. Lee worshiped at Christ Church and Thomas Jefferson entertained at nearby Gadsby’s Tavern. Old Town Alexandria offer a full menu of dining choices with restaurants ranging from fast-food to white tablecloth. A night on the town can be had at spots such as the Oyster Bar and Club Room at Union Street.

Featured Listings in Old Town Alexandria

President’s Day, in Northern Virginia

Kendall Perkins0074
1940 ,George Washington Birthday Parade on the 1100 block of King St. Alexandria Va.

President’s Day is fast approaching. The holiday of President’s Day occurs on or about the birthday of George Washington, our first President, and resident of Mount Vernon VA.

There are a number of fascinating details in the picture above from 1940. The police uniforms have changed so very much since that day. Although many of the buildings survive, many of the businesses did not. For example folks don’t by Stetson Hats like they used to. Here’s the same location today.

How much do homes in Mount Vernon VA cost?

Across the Potomac River from Washington D.C. lies the city of Alexandria in Northern Virginia. South of Alexandria is Mount Vernon, the location of Mount Vernon Estate, once owned by the famous George Washington himself. Located along the Potomac riverbanks, Mount Vernon is connected to Old Town Alexandria via the George Washington Memorial Parkway and Route 1.

Mount Vernon, George Washington’s estate on the Potomac

You can take the scenic route by going through the Parkway, which has a generous sprinkling of parks and wonderful scenery, including bike trails and lovely waterfront homes, which have differing and unique qualities about them.

Route 1, on the other hand, thrives with activity as a hub of industry and commerce in Alexandria. Amidst all this buzz, are multiple condominium complexes from Route 1’s south end to its north end.

In between these two main roads leading from Old Town to Mount Vernon, you can find a wide scope of differing and unique communities, distinctive to Northern Virginia.

Latest listings of home in Mount Vernon VA



$38 Million Gift From Reynolds Foundation to Support New George Washington Library


Mount Vernon, Virginia — The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation has pledged $38 million to Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington, to construct a new library destined to be the international headquarters for knowledge about America’s most famous founding father.

Construction of the 45,000 square foot facility, which will be named the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington, is expected to begin in early 2011, with a completion date in 2012.  The facility will be tucked into the woods across from Mount Vernon’s conservation complex and within walking distance of the Mansion itself.

As the nation’s first and only center for amassing and disseminating knowledge about Washington, the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington will safeguard Washington’s books and manuscripts, serve as a scholarly retreat, create educational outreach programs on Washington, and provide seminars and training programs with a special focus on Washington’s leadership.

As the longtime chairman of the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, Fred W. Smith has championed a number of projects related to George Washington, including the purchase of the famous Lansdowne portrait of Washington by Gilbert Stuart for the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.  In addition, under Smith’s leadership, the Foundation has supported the construction of a museum and education center at Mount Vernon, a pair of major traveling exhibitions about Washington, and special programs focusing on Washington for students and teachers across the nation.

“I am pleased and humbled that my fellow trustees have approved the award of this grant and the naming opportunity in my honor,” stated Smith.  “It is our hope that this new facility will be a tool that the staff at Mount Vernon and Washington scholars can use to keep his place in American History as not only the Father of our Country but arguably our greatest president of all time.”

The Foundation’s gift is the largest in the history of Mount Vernon, which ranks as the oldest and most visited national preservation project in America.  The Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, which purchased the estate from the Washington family in 1858 and opened it to the public in 1860, is unusual in that it receives no funds from the local, state, or federal governments.

“Fred Smith and the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation have enabled us to remain a leader among historic sites around the globe, without calling upon the government for help,” noted Boyce Ansley, Regent of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association.  “Mount Vernon is a totally different and far more exciting educational experience because of their support.”

The idea for a facility that serves the role of George Washington’s presidential library is not a new one—it has been part of Mount Vernon’s master plan for several years.  Although Washington continues to be one of the most familiar faces in American history, numerous surveys and focus groups have revealed that a majority of Americans—particularly those in younger generations—know little about Washington’s achievements or personality.  Coverage of Washington in many history textbooks has declined to about 10 percent of what it was 50 years ago.  When one state’s high school students were recently asked the question, who was America’s first president, only 26 percent identified “George Washington” as the right answer.

Most American history scholars generally rank Washington as one of the nation’s three most important presidents, along with Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt.  “Few scholars would argue that Washington’s leadership and character still sets the gold standard,” noted James Rees, President of George Washington’s Mount Vernon.  “He remains a very relevant role model, particularly as the nation faces a challenging time in its history.”

Although The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington will house hundreds of manuscripts, books and other documents drafted and owned by Washington, the complete array of Washington’s written works, which number in the tens of thousands, are spread among collectors, both public and private, across America.  But Mount Vernon’s library will bring them all together in a complete digital record of letters to and from Washington, assembled by scholars at the University of Virginia over a period of some 40 years.  All the records related to The Papers of George Washington project will be transferred to the library at Mount Vernon when the last of approximately 90 volumes of letters is edited, roughly 15 years from now.

Until then, the library will provide a secure and environmentally friendly home to 45 books from Washington’s original library, as well as 450 letters and other manuscripts written in his hand.  The collection also includes approximately 1500 additional 18th-century books, as well as thousands of important 19th-century newspapers, manuscripts, and documents.  The bulk of the library stacks will be filled with modern books about Washington and the founding era, which will be made available to a much wider constituency.

Historians and authors will have a far easier time accessing the information in Washington’s writings, and Mount Vernon will more than double its library staff to provide expertise and assistance.  Serious researchers who are drafting articles, papers or books about Washington will be lodged in a convenient guest house adjacent to the Library, equipped with six bedrooms.

Simultaneously, the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association hopes to create a Mount Vernon Press, which will publish new research on Washington, his family and his times, in both printed and digital versions.

A team of education and media experts will also move to the new Library, charged with the task of disseminating the research findings to the largest and most diverse audiences.  To accomplish this goal, the Association will form partnerships with universities, state school systems, patriotic societies, technology firms, movie producers, computer game creators, and others from both the public and private sectors.

The Library will also host small and medium-sized conferences and symposiums focusing primarily on leadership training.  Five meeting spaces will accommodate between 15 and 100 guests, working in tandem with two larger spaces across the street at the Mount Vernon Inn Complex—a Distance Learning Classroom that accommodates 40 participants in a high-tech environment and the Robert H. and Clarice Smith Auditorium with a capacity of 200 guests.

Over a period of three years, the Association is spending nearly $2 million to expand and improve its website technology, and thousands of period artifacts, books, and manuscripts will be included on the site.

The Association has also announced that it has entered the first phase of an $80 million capital campaign, with the commitment from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation providing almost half the goal.  In addition to building the Library and adjacent guest house, funds from the campaign will endow the Library’s operation, underwrite new positions, and create new programs, especially for students and teachers.

“We are pleased to be the lead donor in the Capital Campaign to build and endow the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington,” stated Steven Anderson, President of the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation.  “We believe that this facility will enhance educational outreach from Mount Vernon in much the same way that the Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center expanded the onsite experience for visitors to the historic estate.”

The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation is a national philanthropic organization founded in 1954 by the late media entrepreneur for whom it is named.  Headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, it has committed over $69 million in support of Mount Vernon.

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