Thursday, February 28, 2019

Old Bellhaven, Virginia #virginiapioneersnet #genealogy


Map of Alexandria 1752In March of 1752 a committee reporting to the House of Burgess rejected the proposition from the Town of Alexandria to change the name of that town to Bellhaven. There had been much talk about this, and for long the town at Hunting Creek was the only designation. The town was first built on part of a land patent of the Alexander family, and was named Alexandria. The Alexander family, which was both numerous and important (the head of the clan bearing the title Lord Stirling). Prior to that time, George Washington dated some letters Bellehaven. Within a year, a village had become a town with the market place located exactly in the middle. The first courthouse of frame was built on the east side of lot No. 43, at the intersection of Cameron and Fairfax Streets. South of the Town House on Fairfax stood the jail, stocks, and whipping post for the use of those who failed to keep the law. Directly behind these buildings the market square, or green, occupied all of lot No. 44. Here the town militia drilled, here were held the carnivals, and public gatherings, and here was the larder of Alexandria. To this day the market square caters to the appetites of hungry townsmen. Across Royal Street, facing the square, stood the City Tavern or Coffee House; southward on the same side of the street was the Royal George, after the Revolution called George Tavern. Already substantial wharves and warehouses appeared along the water front, and private houses and stores were beginning to fill the empty lots. In June 1754, the trustees ordered that various lots not built upon be put up at auction and sold to the highest bidder. They were in earnest about this dereliction on the part of purchasers, and seven lots were forfeited at this time. Among those paying such a penalty was the half brother of George Washington, Augustine.  ,. . . more . . .

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