Located near the town
of Clifford, Amherst County, Virginia, the original section of the
"Spyglass" style house was built in 1732 by the Rev. Robert Rose and
passed to his son Charles Rose in 1759. In January 1767, Charles Rose
sold the house to George Gillaspie who added on to the house in 1780
by building the west wing consisting of wide board flooring, recessed
windows, a brick basement used as the kitchen featuring a dumb waiter
for sending food directly to the dining room above (a feature also
used by Thomas Jefferson at both Monticello and Poplar Forest). In
the same year George second marries to the widow Mary Faris, 1785, he
sells the house back to Charles Rose who left the house to his
daughters, Sarah Ann and Mildred. They in turn sold the house to
Thomas Aldridge. William Morgan inherited the house in 1823 and sold
it to Richard North in January, 1835. Albert G. Chewing purchased the
house in 1840 and added on the east wing of the house which was noted
for it's different mantel designs in each of the four rooms. Chewing
sold Athlone to Dr. DuPui in January, 1871 and in 1891 the property
was bought by the Rev. Thomas Howell. The property has been in Howell
descendant possession since.
After standing for more
than 260 years and weathering wars and architectural changes, the
house was engulfed in flames in April, 1996 by what was believed to
be an electrical fire and burnt to the ground.
Athlone was built in three sections, using three
different types of architecture.
This view highlights the last portion of the house
built in the 1840's.
Photos and history of Athlone
Plantation generously supplied by Joyce Lesich of Charlottesville,
VA. and the Amherst New Era-Progress July 17, 1986 and April 18,