SAFEKEEPING: THE CONSTITUTION WAS HERE
This home on Gleedsville Road has a fascinating story: It is purported to have contained during the 1814 British occupation of Washington some very famous papers in its cellar, including the Articles of Confederation, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. As such, it is a different kind of literary landmark on our list – a literary site commemorating an event rather than an author. It a beautiful piece of property (albeit still a private residence with no-trespassing sign posted near the gates) that is included on the Virginia Landmarks Register for architectural qualities, but mostly for its historic significance.
Unfortunately, as is the case with many landmarks on the Register, the signs posted on the gates of the property feature no text describing why the property has been listed. Historical highway markers spoil passersby with their succinct summaries of events, but plaques commemorating inclusion on the Virginia Landmarks Register do the exact opposite: They can often leave visitors with more questions than answers. How would someone who just chanced upon Rokeby or the Thornton tombstone know why the properties were deemed historically important? Unless they further investigated the sites by questioning property owners or consulting the Register book, they would never know.
Virginia Landmarks Register
May 20, 1975
National Register of Historic Places
May 30, 1976
South of Leesburg