Virginia State Seal

Virginia Department of Historic Resources

129-5018 Preston House

Preston House
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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

See link(s) below to view additional documentation.

VLR Listing Date 03/16/2005

NRHP Listing Date 05/26/2005

DHR Virginia Board of Historic Resources Easement

NPS property number 05000479; 06000357

The Preston House is a Federal-style mansion built during the first quarter of the 19th century. It is possibly the oldest surviving brick building in what was then Roanoke County (now in the city of Salem), and among the earliest brick buildings in Virginia to the south or west of Fincastle.  The house possesses many hallmarks of the Federal style including Flemish-bond brickwork, gauged brick jack arches over wall openings, and fine interior woodwork. The single-pile, central-passage plan with original rear ell, exterior end chimneys, and decorative brick cornices also make it highly characteristic of domestic architecture in the western Valley of Virginia. The house was probably built for (or perhaps by) John Johnson, shortly after John Cole sold him the acreage in 1821 for $10,000. In 1836, ownership was transferred to William Johnston who held it until his death in 1853. In 1879, the home was sold to Charles I. Preston for a paltry sum of $600. Preston, a former local sheriff, died in 1894, but the house remained occupied by the Preston family until 1946.

The boundaries of the nominated parcel were amended in 2006 to conform to a newly surveyed plat describing the area that the owner of the Preston House then placed under a preservation easement donated to the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.
[VLR Approved 3/8/2006; NRHP Approved 5/3/2006]

2006 Amendment Nomination


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

Updated August 27, 2018