St. Peter’s Parish Church (New Kent County, Virginia) is an exceptional example of early 18th-century brick architecture from the Chesapeake Region. It is the oldest church in the state. It was constructed in 1703, with the congregation dating back to 1679. Martha Washington was a member, and some believe that she and George were married in the church.
Eyre Hall (Northampton County, Virginia), a rare vernacular architectural ensemble and rural landscape of the Colonial and early Federal periods, is a significant physical remnant of Chesapeake society, which was economically and socially based on slavery.
Eyre Hall is one of Virginia’s finest and best-preserved colonial homes. Approached by a long, old-fashioned cedar-lined lane, the house overlooks Cherrystone Creek. Thomas Eyre landed at Jamestown in 1622 to take up patented land on the Eastern Shore in 1623. Eyre descendents have owned land in the lower portion of Northampton County continuously for 12 generations. Littleton Eyre (great-grandson of Thomas) purchased the present site of Eyre Hall and in 1760 built the original gambrel-roofed portion.
The gardens are among the oldest in the country, circa 1800. Ancient boxwood and gnarled crape myrtles tower over the traditional swept paths, all enclosed by a wall of brick brought as ballast from England. On the sunny side, English-style mixed borders add color, and opposite is the family graveyard and romantic orangery ruin from 1819.