Locust Shade in Amissville was built in 1902 by Peyton Anderson, the first person to shed blood in the Civil War.

Miss Louise Anderson helped families who were moved off the mountain to make way for Shenandoah National Park to adapt to a new way of life in the piedmont. Her gardening and canning skills were legendary.

Mammy Sow lived to a ripe old age and size when Miss Anna Wood, her owner, became so fond of her that butchering was out of the question.


Taking its name from a river that begins in the small streams of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Rappahannock County became separate from Culpeper County by an Act of the General Assembly in 1833.

Rappahannock’s economy remains primarily agricultural and it has deliberately preserved its natural resources – rolling hills and valleys, mountains, farmland and spectacular scenic views.


The county is dotted with historical markers and its villages and Town of Washington have significant historical value.  Washington is the County seat. Affectionately called Little Washington to distinguish it from its larger cousin, it was said to have been surveyed and plotted by George Washington in 1749, but there is no known evidence today to back that claim. It was established as a town in 1796. 


The county’s history encompasses early Native American communities, the arrival of settlers who displaced them, and the later divisions of the Civil War.  The county did not avoid the ugliness of slavery, and at least one lynching of a black man was recorded in 1884.

In the early 1900s, two events left their marks:  a devastating tornado in Woodville, and the use of eminent domain to force the eviction of families from their properties in the Blue Ridge mountains in order to create Shenandoah National Park. 


In more recent decades two trends emerged  –  development of small but luxurious estates, many serving as second homes for wealthy inhabitants, and the transition from apple and peach orchards to vineyards and wineries. Though it is no longer operated, Farfelu Vineyard, established in Flint Hill in 1967,  was the first licensed winery in Virginia. 

The Rappahannock Historical Society, located in Washington, maintains historical and genealogical records and welcomes additions to their resources.


Dr. John Boldridge crowns carnival queen Peggy Stringfellow, 1950’s

Scrabble School was one of four Rosenwald schools built for African-American students.

Scrabble School students  with their court in attendance are crowned King and Queen in the annual fundraiser and competition held among Rappahannock’s graded schools.


Appalachian Trail of Tears – Washington City Paper, 1997

Descendants of First Africans in America have ties to Red Oak Mountain  Rappahannock News Dec. 30, 2019

On the Morning Side of the Blue Ridge by Daphne Hutchinson & Theresa Reynolds – Rappahannock County Library

The Resting Rock – Ghosts, Memories, and Folk Tales  by James Russell 

The Scrabble School