Virginia State Seal Virginia Department of Historic Resources

012-0004 Canaan (Dromgoole House)

Canaan (Dromgoole House)
Photo credit: Elizabeth Lipford/DHR, 2021

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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 06/17/2021

An excellent example of a Federal period vernacular-style dwelling in Brunswick County, the Dromgoole House was built between 1796 and 1799 for Reverend Edward Dromgoole at his plantation, Canaan. One of America’s early traveling ministers and a friend of Bishop Francis Asbury, Rev. Dromgoole was an influential preacher and organizer who helped spread John Wesley’s Methodist movement in America, leading to the rapid rise of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the 18th and early 19th century. Many traveling clergy and church leaders visited Canaan, most notably Asbury, who John Wesley appointed to serve as the American bishop and considered today the most influential figure in establishing Methodism in America. After Rev. Dromgoole’s death in 1835, his son, George Coke Dromgoole, resided at Canaan until 1847. George Dromgoole represented his region of Virginia, first in the state legislature for 13 years, then in Congress for seven years. A two-story, double-pile, gable-roofed, mortise-and-tenon timber frame dwelling, the Dromgoole House features two front rooms that are a hall and parlor plan, more reminiscent of the colonial period; its rear rooms reflect Federal-style influences—two rooms separated by a center stair passage. A one-room, single-story frame wing was added to the house by 1810. The property also features a Spring House–Workhouse dating to at least 1803, and a family cemetery. In 2020, the United Methodist Church designated Canaan a United States Methodist Historic Site, as the only extant home within the conference that once belonged to an 18th-century circuit rider, and where Methodist class meetings and worship services occurred.


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


Updated: June 17, 2021