Planning to visit the Mill this weekend? Be sure to look for these seven features while you’re there. You can even download our self-guided tour HERE.
1) The Chapman – Beverley Mill
Originally owned by Jonathan and Nathaniel Chapman, the Mill was constructed around 1742 by slaves who stacked quartzite stone quarried from the mountain above. The Mill was destroyed by fire in 1858 and again during the Civil War. The Beverley family acquired the property shortly after the Civil War and re-established the Mill as a major economic center within the community. After more than 200 years of use, the Mill ceased operations in the mid 20th Century.
When the Manassas Gap Railroad came to Thoroughfare Gap in 1852, the Chapman family gave the company $2000 to ensure that the rail was laid next to the Mill. As a result, the Mill prospered. By 1858 it was raised to a total of seven stories.
The ruins now standing across the railroad from the Mill property once served as the Chapman family home. Meadowland was built in the mid 18th Century. It had two and one half stories, a full basement and fireplaces on each floor. Throughout the 18th and 19th Centuries several outbuildings also stood on the home site.
4) Cabin Sites
Photographs from the late 19th Century indicate that there may have been several small cabins in this area. It is unclear at present when these structures were built or who occupied them. In the coming months, our archaeology crew hopes to examine the area to see what additional information may be found in the earth.
5) Furr House
Built in the late 19th or early 20th Century by the Furr family, a concrete slab is all that remains of the wood frame Furr house today. Photographic evidence suggests that the home may have included one or more smaller, older tenements. Further archaeological study may provide additional information about the history of this home.
6) Mill Store
The Mill store was established by the Furr family in the 1930’s. The store was originally intended as an outlet where Mill owners could sell flour and cornmeal, but it soon expanded to provide other goods. It continued operating as a general store and later a post office long after the Mill closed
7) County Border
In 1759, Fauquier County was formed from a portion of Prince William County. Chapman’s Mill was used as a point to identify the border between the two counties. Today, the Mill still straddles the county line.