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Chatham Manor, Fredericksburg

(4.7/5 based on 240+ reviews on the web)
Chatham Manor is the Georgian-style home completed in 1771 by farmer and statesman William Fitzhugh, after about 3 years of construction, on the Rappahannock River in Stafford County, Virginia, opposite Fredericksburg. It was for more than a century the center of a large, thriving plantation, and one of the few locations visited both by President George Washington and later President Abraham Lincoln.Chatham also reflected the new country's racial tensions. In January 1805, Chatham's slaves overpowered and whipped their overseer and assistants in a minor slave rebellion. An armed posse of white men quickly gathered. They killed one slave in the attack, and two more died trying to escape capture. Two other slaves were deported, likely to the Caribbean or Louisiana, and Fitzhugh soon sold the property.Five decades later, in 1857, owner Hannah Jones Coalter (the 77-year-old mother of a disabled daughter named Janet), died and attempted to manumit her 93 slaves after making provision both for her daughter and them. Her relatives sued, claiming that after the Dred Scott decision, slaves were legally incapable of choosing whether to remain enslaved or receive their freedom and enough money to establish themselves in another state. While local judges thought the executors should free the slaves per Hannah's intent, a divided Virginia Supreme Court disagreed. Thus, the executors sold Chatham with its slaves to J. Horace Lacy (husband of Hannah's much younger half-sister Betty), although soon one slave was allowed to travel to raise money to buy freedom for herself and her small family, and succeeded.
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32 days in Fredericksburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Richmond, Fredericksburg & Washington DC BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: April, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Virginia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Virginia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 8 days in Virginia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Fredericksburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, teens, kids, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, teens, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 4 days in Fredericksburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in United States BY A USER FROM CANADA April, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: April, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 9 days in Asheville, Myrtle Beach & Fredericksburg BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 19 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Virginia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: April, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 31 days in Continental USA BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Chatham Manor had an important role in the Battle of Fredricksburg. It was a headquarters and a hospital. Clara Barton and Walt Whitman worked in the hospital. Lincoln conferred with his commanders he...  more »
  • I enjoy historic homes. On the outside, it has a very lovely garden and a great view of the Rappahannock River. The inside, well, not so much. Only one room is actually preserved. The rest of the room...  more »
  • If you're going to be in Fredericksburg for a couple of days, please visit Chatham Manor. The grounds are beautiful, and the view of the city is absolutely stunning! The house itself was very nice, al...  more »
Google
  • Beautiful and historice site. I went on a winter morning and virtually had the whole place to myself. The docents seemed a little lonely, so I got a lot of attention and information. It was winter so the gardens weren't in bloom; I definitely need to go back in the warmer months.
  • Amazing views and always nice to take a walk through the beautiful property. I Really wish they would get the funding for keeping up the garden area though. It looks like it has a lot of potential
  • What a great experience to learn even more about history. The staff was very knowledgeable and were immediately welcoming to the kids by offering them little cards with pictures and history information on the back. We enjoy taking the kids to learn about history and when you have staff/volunteers as welcoming as this to kids, it makes them want to learn and pay attention as well. :)
  • Great free history lesson of the Fredericksburg area. Nice view of the river and old town Fredericksburg.
  • Great history "museum". Great Pokemon GO nest!