Colonial Williamsburg


Statue of Patrick Henry, Colonial Williamsburg





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Historic first capitol of Virginia, now devoted to colonial America through living history and period architecture.


1. Bruton Parish Church
Built in 1715, the current church was the third Anglican Church for a parish founded in 1660.
2. The Capitol
Reconstructed in 1934, the Capitol originally contained the House of Burgesses, the governor’s council chambers, and the general court.
3. George Wythe House
This brick home was built in 1750 for Wythe, who was a lawyer, teacher of law, and a signer of the Declaration of Independence.
4. Governor’s Palace
Built 1708—20 for the colonial governors of Virginia, it later served as the residence for Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson during their respective terms as governor.
5. Raleigh Tavern
Originally built in 1717 and named after Sir Walter Raleigh, it was rebuilt in 1932; this is where the House of Burgesses met when it was dissolved in 1773.
6. Peyton Randolph House
Originally built in 1715, it was purchased in 1721 by Randolph’s father — who built a second structure — and willed to his son. Peyton Randolph built a middle structure to unify the whole.

But with the British army evacuated [from Philadelphia in 1778] and the Patriots now in charge, Philadelphia Loyalists were doubly vulnerable to censure and punishment for siding with the Crown and for having consorted with the enemy. The Philadelphia Assembly Appointed [Charles Willson] Peale and four others to be Commissioners of Forfeited Estates, and for that the commissioners would receive a 5 percent commission. Peale’s group had extraordinary power to interrogate suspected traitors, break into houses, remove property, and sell off estates. Writs were issued to seize 118 estates ...

Paul Staiti
Of Arms and Artists: The American Revolution Through Painter’s Eyes (2016)