One of Virginia’s landmarks of Federal architecture, Belle Grove was erected in 1794-97 for Maj. Isaac Hite, Jr., a Revolutionary War officer. Hite was married to Nelly Conway Madison, sister of James Madison. During the planning of the house, James Madison wrote Thomas Jefferson requesting assistance. Though Jefferson suggested refinements, the house at Belle Grove is more in the spirit of the Adam-inspired Federal architecture than Jefferson’s Classical Revivalism. This is particularly evident in the interior woodwork which has Adam-style details copied from Pain’s British Palladio (1786). Civil War activity here culminated in the battle of Cedar Creek on October 19, 1864, when Union Gen. Philip Sheridan’s counterattack effectively ended the Valley campaign in favor of the North. Belle Grove served as Union headquarters. A century later, Francis Welles Hunnewell bequeathed the Belle Grove property to the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
The Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park was established in 2002.
[NRHP Listed: 12/19/2002]
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