Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre
12229 Bristow Road, Bristow, VA, USA
www.pwcgov.org/default.aspx?… - (703) 365-7895
Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre Bristow Reviews
Local history at a vanished town May 30, 2011
The Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre preserves the remains of the town that was the Country Seat of Prince William County from 1820 to 1894. Brentsville, Virginia, is a sort of "ghost town" today, though not like those found in the Western states. Prince William County Historic Preservation has been working on restoring the site and its buildings since 2004. Before then, it had largely been forgotten. (There is no longer a Brentsville address, it is part of Bristow today.)
The most prominent structure is the old Prince William County Courthouse, built in 1822. It is built of local brick and red mortar and looks very much like other Virginia county courthouses of the late Colonial and early National periods. Also on the site are the 1822 Gaol, the non-denominational Union Chapel of 1876, and the later Schoolhouse of 1928. Brenstville Tavern exists only as an archaeological dig. The site is excellently interpreted with markers and visitors can learn much about the site and its structures and their functions and fit with local Virginia history.
The Civil War came close to Brentsville in 1863 when Union troops occupied the courthouse grounds during the Battle of Bristow Station. (While they were there, the troops dismantled the brick Clerk's Office.) Before that time, the Prince William Cavalry had been formed on grounds in 1860.
Recommended for its insights into Northern Virginia in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Part of the Daytripping around Virginia travel blog
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