Bear’s Den Rural Historic District—named for a distinctive out-cropping of rock visible on the western slope of the Blue Ridge Mountains— is situated along the boundary of Clarke and Loudoun counties. The district features sophisticated residences and vacation homes, stone walls, and a scattering of farmhouses, many of which also are of stone construction. Located along this mountainous area that overlooks the Shenandoah Valley to the west and the Piedmont to the east, the district attracted wealthy people, political leaders, as well as writers and musicians during the period from 1890 through the mid-20th century, during the ascendance of Washington, D.C., as a growing political and social hub. The district’s early roots date principally from 1874 when the first train of the Washington, Ohio and Western Railroad reached the community of Round Hill, although farmers who recognized the agricultural potential of the area settled there earlier, as evidenced by several antebellum cabins. Once well-heeled Washington-area residents discovered the cool climate and spectacular scenery of the district, they arrived to build summer homes and ultimately define the district’s character as it appears today.
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
DHR has secured permanent legal protection for over 700 historic places - including 15,000 acres of battlefield lands
DHR has stimulated more than $4.2 billion dollars in private investments related to historic tax credit incentives, revitalizing communities of all sizes throughout Virginia
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