Benjamin Watkins Leigh House

VLR Listing Date


NRHP Listing Date


NRHP Reference Number


John Wickham, original owner of the famous mansion across East Clay Street that later became the Valentine Museum, had this capacious four-bay town house built for his daughter Julia between 1812 and 1816. Julia Wickham Leigh and her husband, Benjamin Watkins Leigh, a Richmond lawyer who served in the U.S. Senate during the Jackson administration, were living there by 1826. The house, an unusually large dwelling for early-19th-century Richmond, was remodeled in the Italianate mode with a bracketed porch and cornice after 1851 when it was sold to Lieutenant Governor John M. Gregory. In 1932, the Benjamin Watkins Leigh House was incorporated into the Sheltering Arms Hospital complex. It is now used for offices by the nearby Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University.

Last Updated: June 2, 2023

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

For additional information Read

Nomination Form


High-Rise for the Elderly

Richmond (Ind. City)


Hermitage Road Warehouse Historic District 2023 Boundary Increase

Richmond (Ind. City)


Shockoe Hill Burying Ground Historic District

Richmond (Ind. City)