Virginia State Seal Virginia Department of Historic Resources

009-0007 Fancy Farm

Fancy Farm
Photo credit: Calder Loth/DHR, 2008

*Click on image to enlarge.

For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 07/16/1971

NRHP Listing Date 01/07/1972

DHR's Virginia Board of Historic Resources easement

NRHP Reference Number 72001384

Fancy Farm’s five-bay brick mansion with its pedimented gable ends ranks with Virginia’s best examples of late Georgian domestic architecture. The exterior elevation and much of the interior detailing are based on illustrations in William Pain’s Practical Builder, an 18th-century English pattern book. The architecturally elegant parlor is decorated with an elaborate chimneypiece, flanking arches, and Ionic pilasters. The house was built by Andrew Donald, a Scottish merchant, following his purchase of the Bedford County property in 1794. As suggested by its name, Donald’s new residence outshone its more modest neighbors and set a standard for the area. During the Civil War, Fancy Farm was occupied by Union Gen. David Hunter. In 1921 the property was purchased by Sir George Sitwell, 4th Baronet, of the English literary family, for his nephew Capt. Herbert FitzRoy Sitwell. Fancy Farm underwent extensive renovation in the late 1960s.

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

Updated: April 25, 2022