Cherry Hill Farmhouse
Cherry Hill Farmhouse was built in 1845 by William H. Harvey. During the Civil War, the farm was occupied by William H. Blaisdale, a market farmer. The house was purchased by Joseph Riley in 1873. Judge Riley founded movement for public schools in Falls Church and also worked to have the town incorporated in 1875. He was an uncle of the popular poet James Whitcomb Riley, who reputedly wrote a poem about visits to Cherry Hill. Judge Riley's son, Joseph Harvey Riley was a note Ornithologist with the Smithsonian. The Riley descendents donated the property to the City of Falls Church and it is now run as a museum and is available for rent.
Mount Hope (The Duncan House)
Mount Hope is one of the most historic houses still standing in the City of Falls Church. It is comprised of two houses joined together; the one and a half story clapboard farmhouse was built sometime in the 1830's. During the 1850's the house was occupied by Amzie Coe and his family (who named the property Mount Hope), and the house was used as the first meeting place for the Presbyterian Church and was also the first mail stop in the City of Falls Church. This structure is the oldest residential structure remaining in the city. Amzie Coe died in 1867 and the house and 96 acres were sold to Captain William A. Duncan and his wife Susan Vansant Duncan of Alexandria, Virginia. They added a three story Gothic Revival addition to the Coe farmhouse. Captain Duncan referred to the house as a mansion, and at one time the property was assessed for more than Gunston Hall. Before moving the Falls Church, Captain Duncan was the Deputy Marshall for the Eastern District of Virginia and escorted Jefferson Davis to the courthouse in Richmond for his hearing in 1867. He was a prominent member of the community who often spoke at public functions and served as the mayor from 1881 -1882. Mount Hope is privately owned, but is open to the public for special events.
Other Structures Around the City
The City of Falls Church has approximately 90 structures still standing from 1837 - 1910. The Victorian Society at Falls Church has developed a walking map with descriptions and locations of the properties. The walking map is free, and is available at Cherry Hill Farmhouse or by contacting Midge Wang at (703)534-8394.