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VA 287

German immigrants came to northwestern Loudoun County via Pennsylvania and Maryland beginning in 1733, and this immigration continued over the course of the eighteenth century. The ethnic enclave in and around Lovettsville was known simply as the German Settlement. Throughout much of its early history the settlement was characterized by dispersed farmsteads. In the early nineteenth century the village of Lovettsville (originally Thrasher's Corner) developed around the post office, and the town became the center of far northwestern Loudoun. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Lovettsville became something of a suburb for Brunswick, Maryland. Many residents of the community worked in the massive railroad yards across the Potomac River, and many of the frame residences in town are from this era. In more recent years, Washington, D.C.–area commuters have made their homes in the community. The result is that new subdivisions are rapidly replacing farms within the expanded town limits.

The Lovettsville Museum (Potterfield Meat Shop) (1890; Pennsylvania Avenue at Church Street) is a frame structure that once served as a meat processing facility for a retail outlet in Brunswick, Maryland. The Lovettsville Historical Society converted the building into an impressive local history museum.

Willard Hall (1820; Pennsylvania Avenue at Light Street), a brick structure, has the distinction of being one of the oldest residences in town and is similar to Federal-era brick residences in Waterford. The Wenner House (c. 1820; Pennsylvania Avenue) is characteristic of many of the early log buildings in the German Settlement. It received a weatherboard exterior early in its history, but its original configuration is still apparent: a double-pen (two log boxes side by side), one-and-one-half-story log house with a porch. St. James' United Church of Christ (Reformed Church) (c. 1901; Broad Way at Church Street) is a modest Gothic Revival church. In relocating from the 1733 church site south of town, the congregation took the economical as well as commemorative step of reusing bricks from its early nineteenth-century church for this new in-town building.

South of town off Virginia 287 is New Jerusalem Lutheran Church and Cemetery (church, 1868; tower, 1904; Church Lane), the fourth church on the site, which was settled in 1765. The present building, raised on a high basement, is nominally Greek Revival. A large, round-arched Venetian Gothic tower was added to change the appearance of the church from a “dingy colored barn to a beautiful and churchly edifice,” as recorded by the pastor of that era. Adjacent is the Lovettsville Union Cemetery, created when the church cemeteries filled up. The highlights of the cemetery are the cast iron gate and fence facing Church Lane and the gazebo with stamped metal ornamental panels, wire brackets, and built-in seats.

Writing Credits

Richard Guy Wilson et al.


What's Nearby


Richard Guy Wilson et al., "Lovettsville", [Lovettsville, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Virginia: Tidewater and Piedmont, Richard Guy Wilson and contributors. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002, 104-105.

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