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Keswick in Powhatan County is situated on part of a 1500-acre land grant made to Charles Clarke in the early 1700s. Clarke was married to Marianne Salle, member of one of the area’s original Huguenot families. The present plantation house, an imposing H-shaped dwelling, was built ca. 1800 by Maj. John Clarke (1766-1844), one of Charles Clarke’s four sons and founder of the Bellona Arsenal. Echoing the H-shaped Tuckahoe directly across the James River, Clarke’s house survives with few modifications and preserves finely detailed woodwork. On the grounds is a collection of brick outbuildings among which is an enigmatic circular structure with a conical roof and central chimney. The complex has much to show about the physical layout and social organization of a Virginia plantation. With its riverside setting and broad level fields, Keswick remains a working farm and preserves its gentle agrarian ambience.

Last Updated: March 29, 2024

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

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