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Spotsylvania County Virginia



Spotsylvania County Administrative Offices are located at 9104 Courthouse Road, Spotsylvania VA 22553; phone: 540-507-7010.

The Spotsylvania Court House Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. Selected text, below, was adapted from a copy of the original nomination document. [1] Adaptation copyright © 2013, The Gombach Group.

Spotsylvania County was formed from Essex, King and Queen, and King William counties in 1720 and named for one of Virginia's foremast colonial governors, Alexander Spotswood. The original site of the county seat was Germanna, Spotswood's settlement in present-day Orange County. From 1732-1778, the county seat was at Fredericksburg. In 1779, the courthouse was located about 2 1/2 miles southwest of the present courthouse site on land deeded to the county in 1779 and remained there until 1840. The only building of the late 18th-century complex to survive is the ca. 1781 jail. Located to the southwest of the present courthouse, the jail was dismantled and moved brick by brick from its original location to its present site in 1839.

One of the county's most distinctive crossroads is the present intersection of Route 208 and Route 613, where a substantial ordinary has stood since the late 18th century. A detailed map of the county drawn in 1819-20 by John Wood shows this tavern or hotel as "Alsop's Tavern" which undoubtedly served travelers on the public road from Richmond to Fredericksburg. County tax records indicate that Samuel Alsop was granted an ordinary operator's license in 1813 and continued to operate the tavern along with a retail store until 1838. Prior to 1810, and possibly as early as 1799, John Herndon owned and operated the ordinary.

  1. Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission Staff, Spotsylvania Court House Historic District, Spotsylvania County, Virginia, nomination document, 1983, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.
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