If you are on a Historic Journey of Fredericksburg on a warm spring or summer day, one of the places that you must go is to Chatham Manor. Sitting high while overlooking Downtown Fredericksburg and the Rappahannock River – it is a sight to see.
Built by William Fitzhugh between 1768 and 1771, the stately Georgian Mansion, its buildings and gardens were once part of his large and picturesque plantation.
As you walk towards the home, be sure to stop for a moment and quickly read a little about the history of Chatham Manor. Although I can’t say I am a history buff, the stories of historical places around Fredericksburg intrigue me. If you want to find out a bit more, the National Park Service has a wealth of information about the mansion and the grounds.
Like walking in a secret garden, the brick paths lead you to the entrance of Chatham Manor. Once inside the gates, the gardens and the beauty of the mansion do take your breath away. Roam around and take some time to look around. You can decide to take a tour of the home or you can continue your walk on the grounds – or do both.
It is amazing sight to see all the daffodils in bloom!
As you continue to meander your way around, walk through a pair of iron gates that lead you to the back of the home. Be sure and check out two of the oldest living trees in Fredericksburg. Marled and worn, the trees have been a part of lots of history – another well-kept secret!
From the back gardens you are greeted with what is one the best views of Downtown Fredericksburg – the river, the church steeples, the shops, the homes – it is stunning. Definitely take a pano on your phone!
Hospitality Throughout Chatham
If you have brought your kids along, they will surely want to run around, hide behind the walls, and explore. Check out the giant pineapple statues while you’re exploring. They are gorgeous and I love that in colonial times the pineapple represented a spirit of hospitality that carries significance even into today.
Don’t forget to bring a picnic lunch as there are many shady places to enjoy your meal – or if you prefer to sit at a table, the grounds have picnic tables scattered around.
One other note – Chatham can be a great place for a Date Day with your significant other! Bring a picnic lunch complete with some homemade Coconut Macaroons or head over to the Italian Station after you get done to enjoy coffee and dessert.
If you do venture over to Chatham for a bit, leave a comment below and let me know you enjoyed the most about this historic Fredericksburg site!