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Carter's Tavern

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c. 1773; c. 1807; 1972–1973 restoration. 15125 River Rd.

Weary travelers on River Road, a leg of the principal nineteenth-century stage route between New York and New Orleans, could stop here for a respite from the toil and hazards of traveling the rough roads of Southside. Initially, the building consisted of a one-and-a-half-story ordinary operated by John Dodson. In 1807, Samuel Carter, who probably built the two-story addition, bought the place and obtained a license to operate an overnight stage stop. After falling into bad condition, the tavern was restored in 1972–1973 at the same time as the house. The original one-and-a-half-story, weatherboarded cottage section has an exterior-end chimney with projecting pents, and the double-pitched roof covers an inset porch with flush siding on the front wall. The two-story, double-pile addition has a side-hall plan reflected in the two exterior-end chimneys. A secondary enclosed stairway leads to the private quarters of the owner. Carter's Tavern is one of the few survivors of Virginia's long chain of stage stops that are fast disappearing.

Writing Credits

Anne Carter Lee


What's Nearby


Anne Carter Lee, "Carter's Tavern", [South Boston, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Virginia vol 2

Buildings of Virginia: Valley, Piedmont, Southside, and Southwest, Anne Carter Lee and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 358-358.

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