Mountain Road Walking Tour
136 Mountain Road, Colonial Revival House
This Colonial Revival - Queen Anne house was built in 1912. It stands on the site of an 18th century house, and was originally a Victorian home, but was renovated to Colonial Revival in the 20th century.
Its spacious lawn retains a number of trees planted as a part of the dwelling's original landscape.
Next door, behind the rock wall, is a carriage way leading to Magnolia Hill, also an 1840 house built by Dabney Cosby for the Bouldin family.
(Kenneth Cook newspaper clipping - date unknown.)
Three generations of bank presidents have lived in the Wirt Shapard home across from the Methodist Church on Mountain Road, but the Shapard family brought it out of its ugly duckling existence and into the home of gentle beauty it is now.
The Shapards bought the house some four years age from Frank Lacy, and have made many improvements to it. They tore off a one-story concrete porch and added the columns the house now has, put shutters at all the windows, and added a flagstone terrace in the rear.
The boxwood walk, Mrs. Shapard's pride and joy, is a relic of an older home on this lot. She plans to add more boxwood around the house, to maintain the simplicity of the yard with its grass and huge trees.
The first house on this lot was built by Richard Edmondson and his wife, Mrs. Susan Chastain Edmondson, parents of the late Major Henry Archer Edmondson.
The Richard Edmondsons rented the house to Mr. and Mrs. James Clay and Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Johnson, grandparents of Mrs. Russell Hughes and Miss Patty Johnson.
Later, the house was rented to James Medley, clerk of the county in 1878, and during this time the house burned down, leaving only the yard and the beautiful boxwood walk.
The present house was built by Mr. Watt Leigh, who lived there with the Edward Lacys, who later bought the house.
Leigh, Lacy, and the present owner, W. Wirt Shapard, were all presidents of the Bank of Halifax.
Shapard is a former president of the Virginia Banker's Association, and a former member of the board of the Virginia State Chamber of Commerce.
The Shapards lived two doors down the street from their present home, and Mrs. Shapard said, "We always had our eye on this place. We loved it ever since it has been here."
The 12-room home compares with houses in the "fan-district" in Richmond of a similar period, offering more broad space and light than could be possible in a city house.
The Shapards have redone the interior of the house, using light colored wall paper to heighten the effect of light and space.
Mrs. Shapard has had many pieces of furniture made for their home by Clark's Furniture Shop, but her husband is proud of his antique swinging panel bed, a massive piece of furniture in his bedroom.
The thing most remembered about the house is the beautiful front hallway, with its graceful curved stairway and its feeling of space and light.
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