The house at Mountain Grove shares, with a number of other Piedmont dwellings, a tripartite Palladian scheme, an architectural format which was derived from 18th-century English pattern books. Situated in the scenic Green Mountain area of southern Albemarle County, the house was built in 1803-4 for Benjamin Harris, an Albemarle County soldier and magistrate. Although its proportions and detailing are somewhat provincial, the house is reminiscent of Jefferson’s earliest designs for Monticello and reflects the sophistication of its builder in abandoning the usual Georgian rectangular plan for a more distinctive scheme. Of special interest is Mountain Grove’s untouched interior woodwork, important for preserving its early painted folk decoration consisting of graining on the wainscoting, and an overmantel painted with marbleizing, tassels, swags, and stippling, and two sets of stairs with turned balusters.
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