Virginia State Seal Virginia Department of Historic Resources

034-0099 Frederick County Poor Farm

Frederick County Poor Farm
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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 06/16/1993

NRHP Listing Date 08/12/1993

NRHP Reference Number 93000823

The concept of the county poorhouse developed in the late-18th-century from popular assumptions about the nature of poverty. As contrasted with the “undeserving poor,” the “deserving poor” were those who could not work because of age, physical disability, or mental condition, thus meriting public assistance. Frederick County built its first structure to serve the “deserving poor” in Winchester in 1793-94. By 1819, it was thought that better care could be provided in a rural, more self-supporting setting. A farm was therefore purchased and the present complex was developed here. With its central block and flanking residential wings, the farm buildings are the oldest and most intact of such public charity complexes in the state. The facility closed in 1947. The property is now in private ownership with the buildings currently being used for storage.

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

Updated: January 27, 2021