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Grove Hill

Fincastle, Botetourt County, Virginia

Completed in 1804, for General James Breckinridge (1763-1833) and his wife Ann Cary Selden (1771-1843). Their 26-room manor stood on a plantation of 3,385-acres and was widely regarded to be one of the most elegant in the region, bearing a resemblance to the still extant Berkeley Plantation. Attached to the main house was a 2-story brick kitchen wing and behind that were further offices and stables, also in brick. U.S. Secretary of State Henry Clay (1777-1852) was a frequent visitor here, and supposedly so too was Breckinridge's great friend, Thomas Jefferson. The house was occupied by the General's grandson when it was destroyed by fire in 1909, which left just one outbuilding standing. In 1915, the handmade bricks were taken from the ruin and used to construct Mallow in New York, dubbed "the most perfect country home in America".

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References

Grove Hill, Historical Society of Western Virginia, from an article by Frances J. Niederer for the DAR magazine 1961;