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Chief among the architectural works designed and built by Thomas Jefferson’s workmen is the grand country house of Estouteville, the creation of James Dinsmore, an Irish master builder who had worked for Jefferson at both Monticello and the University of Virginia. The unusually large dwelling, set off by a monumental Tuscan portico on each front, was begun in 1827 and completed in 1830 for John Coles III, member of a family responsible for several of the county’s substantial houses. Working from ancient Roman precedent as interpreted in the books of Andrea Palladio, Dinsmore produced a masterpiece in what may be regarded as America’s first native academic style. With its porticoed facades and lofty interiors, few buildings better meet Jefferson’s ideal of an architecturally refined seat suitable for the young Republic’s landed families or so well conform to the popular image of a patrician southern homestead.  Estouteville is located in the Southern Albemarle Rural Historic District.

Last Updated: February 15, 2024

Many properties listed in the registers are private dwellings and are not open to the public, however many are visible from the public right-of-way. Please be respectful of owner privacy.

VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

For additional information Read

Nomination Form


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Albemarle (County)


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