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Virginia Department of Historic Resources

030-5155 The Rectortown Historic District

The Rectortown Historic District
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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

NPS property number 04001267

The Rectortown Historic District recognizes this village that evolved from an 18th-century crossroads into a local rail center during the mid 19th century. The Virginia Assembly established Rectortown in 1772 on land owned by John Rector, making it the oldest town in the county. The town’s growth was stimulated in the 1850s after the Rector family donated land to the Manassas Gap Railroad (now the Norfolk-Southern Railway) to ensure its tracks looped through the town. During the Civil War, Rectortown became the center of “Mosby’s Confederacy,” so called because John S. Mosby and his Rangers wreaked havoc on Union forces in the area. Rectortown also was where Union commander General George B. McClellan received orders from President Abraham Lincoln officially relieving him of duty. During the early 20th century African American landowners settled much of the land in the northern part of the district, eventually building a church, community store, and many dwellings. The district encompasses approximately 115 acres that are historically and visually associated with Rectortown.


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

Updated April 4, 2018