Thank God we got some much needed rain yesterday afternoon and this morning. Our parched gardens and fields were desperate for it. We still need much more to get the water levels back up but we are thankful for the amounts we received.
Since the garden is thankfully wet this morning I will share some more pictures taken on vacation this summer.
The Colonial Revival Mansion is surrounded by 5,000 acres of land and still operates a working farm.
We saw workers throughout the property on our way into the mansion mowing and baling hay, not doubt for the many beautiful horses that were in the fields. There was also a horse racetrack on the property.
Recorded history of the Oak Ridge Estate begins in the 1730s with the original land grant. The earliest owners were two Bristol merchants, John Harmer (ca. 1710-1791) and Walter King (ca. 1714-1792). As British subjects, their property was confiscated in the American Revolution. Some of their holdings were acquired by Col. William Cabell (1730-1798).
Through the years the Mansion has had several owners and was left vacant for twenty years where it fell into disrepair.
In 1989 the property was purchased by John C. Holland, Sr. of Suffolk, Virginia, who was a salvage yard operator. The Estate is now owned by Mr. Holland's children. In addition to the resident proprietors, Oak Ridge has a small support staff. Since 1990, the Oak Ridge Estate has been under restoration and documentation. Our goal is to understand all aspects of the Estate's history and connections while restoring the property as much as possible to the Thomas Fortune Ryan era.
We were informed by the guide that son, Mr. Holland had passed away in December and his widow was in residence on the top floors of the mansion. One hopes that the restoration will be continued by children.
One area that saddened us was to see the large conservatory that must have been spectacular in its day in such a state. With years of no occupancy and hurricanes the glass was almost all destroyed. They have hopes that this too will be restored one day.
A lizard was in dire peril here. LOL!
A past this fun statue and down the path was a roadway that lead to where once the mansion had its own train station. Visitors and guests of the family back in the day were transported to the carriage house where they then walked the pathway that leads to the main entrance of the mansion.
But there was a huge planting of these frilly poppies.
We were given free pass to walk anywhere around the grounds where the many gravel paths or roadways lead us.
This was a little out of the way side trip that we took on vacation and it turned out to be a gem.
Everyone have a wonderful weekend and….