Gloucester County Points of Interest
Gloucester County is strategically located in the southeastern portion of Virginia's Middle Peninsula. The county is bounded on the south by the York River, the north by the Piankatank River and the east by Mobjack Bay. Gloucester County's industries have traditionally been associated with the abundant natural resources found in the area. With its advantageous location in the geographic center of the Eastern Seaboard, the county is experiencing an increased diversification in manufacturing activities.
Richmond, the state capital, is 59 miles west and Washington, DC is 153 miles north. The Port of Hampton Roads is 45 miles south. Gloucester County is located within the Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Newport News Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), also known as "Hampton Roads".
Gloucester's Historic Court Circle on Main Street is the oldest living village in Virginia. The 1766 Colonial Courthouse is the oldest courthouse still in use and the 1823 Debtor's Prison is one of only three remaining in the state. The Gloucester Visitors Center, housed in the 1896 Roane building, is open seven days a week for guest tours of the other 19th century buildings. The circle also includes a Civil War Trails designation for the 1862 raids on the Courthouse, the 1893 monument to the Confederate fallen and a monument to James Daniel Gardner, an African American Union Officer and the only Gloucester citizen to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor. Gloucester's deep roots and storied history is celebrated each day through the efforts of many people working to keep the history of the community alive.
Historic Rosewell, arguably one of the finest mansions built in the American colonies, sits on the bank of the York River. It was here that Thomas John Page and Thomas Jefferson began exploring "what lay ahead of the emerging nation in which they would play a role," according to the Rosewell Foundation. Ravaged by a fire in 1916, the ruins are now being stabilized and preserved by the Foundation. Today, the Rosewell ruins feature a visitor's center and a gift shop. It is also available for events.
Three of America's oldest churches (from left to right), Ware (circa 1690), Bethel Baptist, and Abingdon,
have served Episcopal parishes dating back to 1650.
Gloucester Museum of History is located in the Historic Botetourt Building on Main Street, featuring exhibits highlighting life in the community circa 1800s, original Civil War-era oil paintings and artifacts from the Battle of the Hook, the pivotal Revolutionary War military engagement that took place at Gloucester Point and paved the way to American victory at Yorktown. Its original use was an Ordinary and it still stands as one of the largest, a well as one of the few, brick taverns surviving from the Pre-Revolutionary period. Located across from the courthouse green, the Museum is open Monday through Saturday and admission is free. Call (804) 693-1234 for hours and more information.
Restored birthplace of Dr. Walter Reed, "Conquerer of Yellow Fever" is maintained by Association for Preservation of Virginia Antiquities (APVA) and is open during Garden Week and on other special occasions. Groups can arrange tours by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.