Historic Barnes House at Montclair Community Library

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by Emma Young | Photos by Delia Engstrom, Only D Photography

A slave, freed through war and proclamation, struggles to earn his deserved place, buys his right to vote, and purchases a home in which to raise his large family. The home is formerly owned by the people who owned him. He has now established himself as their neighbor, and on equal footing as land-owner. An epic story for a summer blockbuster?

No, it’s the true tale of Eppa Barnes, and you’ll find it told this Saturday, February 27, during “hard hat” tours offered by the county’s Historic Preservation Division at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. A donation of $5 is suggested to tour this historic home, built in 1797 in the Tidewater style by the Copen family, and later expanded by Barnes.

The home, originally located in the Independent Hill area of the county, has been moved to its new Montclair address, next to the Montclair Community Library. Donations will support the on-going restoration work and presentation of the home’s history.

Emma Young ([email protected]) is a freelance writer, stay-at-home mother, and Dumfries resident.

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