The Hidden History of Stafford County Virginia

There is no doubt that our nation's capital is one of the most popular destinations for tourists around the world. The majesty of Washington, DC attracts everyone interested in American history, and each year crowds flock to all of the popular landmarks: the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, the Smithsonian Institution, and others. Here is where history was made, and where laws continue to be made.Yet, you may not realize that Washington DC only tells part of the story of our nation's birth.

Settled in the heart of the Mid-Atlantic region, the nation's capital is surrounded by two states that hosted quite a bit of action in colonial times. Virginia, in particular, was home to a number of legendary events that shaped our nation, and when tourists take a side step to Stafford County (only 25 miles from DC), they will find a wealth of attractions to supplement their history lessons.Perhaps you heard the story in school of how George Washington chopped down a cherry tree and "could not tell a lie" when questioned about it. Did you know that event is believed to have occurred in Stafford County? In Fredericksburg, the land that held the childhood home of our nation's first president is marked, and guests may stroll the ground and view the current progress on the search for Washington's original childhood home.The nearby Ferry Farm is also a place rich with Washingtonian history, as the president spent a number of formative years here.

Guests can view the wildlife currently in residence and learn more about the nation's early history and how Washington grew to become an important figure in these times.Stafford County was affected, too, by the Civil War, and at the White Oak Civil War Museum visitors will learn of the area's role during that tumultuous time. Maps are also available to create a driving tour of noted spots in the county where skirmishes took place between the Blue and the Gray. Lastly, Civil War enthusiasts can visit Chatham, a stately home that once served as Union headquarters, where Clara Barton tended to wounded soldiers.

In Stafford County, American history lives on in the landmarks, museums, and historical homes. Anyone planning a trip to Washington, DC would benefit from a side trip to this part of Northern Virginia. The Stafford County Department of Economic Development at http://www. offers free brochures to all who are interested in learning more about our nation's history.


Kathryn Lively ( is a freelance writer who writes travel articles for a number of organizations, including the Stafford County Department of Economic Development at http://www. Source:


By: Kathryn Lively

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