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Abraham Heiston House

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c. 1790. End of Stagecoach Ln., off Bixlers Ferry Rd.
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Virginia Department of Historic Resources)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)

Rhenish immigrants in the Shenandoah Valley built houses that lasted for perhaps one generation before beginning to change their highly distinctive forms. This two-story house is an example of a late-eighteenth-century change. Its outward appearance and plan closely resemble a substantial Pennsylvania and Virginia Ernhaus (hall-kitchen house). Front and rear doors open directly into the kitchen, or Küche, while the windows beside them lighted a square parlor (Stube) and narrow rear bedchamber (Kammer). Here, chimneys were built into the gable ends providing fireplaces for both principal first-floor rooms, rather than having a central stack serving a fireplace in the Küche and a stove in the Stube. Below the Küche is a vaulted cellar originally accessible directly from the room above and from outside where the hill drops away from the house.

Writing Credits

Anne Carter Lee


What's Nearby


Anne Carter Lee, "Abraham Heiston House", [Luray, 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, 82-82.

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