Cabell’s Mill

Cabell's Mill, Walney Road, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

Cabell’s Mill, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

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Cabell’s Mill

Cabell’s Mill, known at different times as Triplett’s Mill, Caple’s Mill, Pittman’s Mill and Middlegate, was included in the estate purchased by David and Ellanor C. Lawrence in 1935.  In fulfillment of their wish that the land be set aside as a community park, David Lawrence, founder of the magazine U.S. News and World Report, donated the property to the Fairfax County Park Authority in 1971 in memory of his wife.

Cabell's Mill, Walney Road, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

Cabell’s Mill, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

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It is believed that the mill was built as early as 1769 but no later then the early 1800s. The mill was powered by water of Big Rocky Run.  Originally used to grind grain into flour for local farmers, Cabell’s Mill was also used to grind sumac for the tanning industry.  Harvey Nichols, the last mill owner, operated a grist mill here until 1916.  The mill wheel, originally placed at the east end of the building, and the milling machinery were removed during the 1940’s.

Cabell's Mill, Walney Road, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

Cabell’s Mill, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

–  Click on the image to enlarge or purchase  –

Located in the wooded acres of what is now Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, Cabell’s Mill has long been a unique setting for social occasions.   David and Ellanor C. Lawrence transformed the old mill into a guest house and hosted many Washington notables, including Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt.   The interior, offering a spacious room with hardwood floors, deep window sills and a working fireplace, has been modernized and the exterior renovated to provide a historic building facility for public use.

Middlegate Complex, Cabell's Mill, Walney Road, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

Middlegate Complex, Cabell’s Mill, Centreville, Fairfax County, Virginia

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Middlegate served as the miller’s house and was probably built in the early 1800s.  Middlegate is currently used for park administration and maintenance offices, a caretaker’s apartment and a maintenance shop. It is closed to the public.

6 Comments

  1. Andrew Marston
    Twitter:

    Cool history! Thanks for the background. I like to know about the photos I see. 🙂

  2. nice series of shots Mark, great processing and looks like a great place to explore!

  3. Nice series of images and back story Mark. Looks like a cool place to explore.

  4. This is beyond wonderful, Mark. Love the rich details in that brickwork, and the wonderful beauty of the houses surroundings here. What a great post, I really enjoyed it a lot!

  5. That is quite an impressive manor!! great post – photos and writeup. Always nice stopping by the blog to get a lesson in history 🙂

  6. Man, what a beautiful place. You captured all the rich details of the stonework and created some great compositions. Nice job, Mark.

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