Davidson House

VRA Core

Title

Davidson House

Date

1801 1850

Description

In her 1837 will, Mary Gairdner, a free woman of color, bequeathed “my Bay Creole House” to her son Thomas Davidson. Creole houses were usually only one room deep with large galleries to allow a cooling cross-breeze to blow through the house. A keystone over the east doorway bears the inscription August 1838, suggesting that Mary’s son Thomas Davidson embarked on a significant remodeling or reconstruction campaign of her “creole” house. Apparently illiterate, Mary Gairdner signed her will with an “X” rather than with her name. Yet, like a number of free women of color in town, Mary Gairdner was an extensive landowner in Falmouth, owning numerous properties around town.

Location

Rodney Street District

Identifier

B003-S003

Usage

Citation

“Davidson House,” The Falmouth Project, accessed November 26, 2022, http://falmouth.lib.virginia.edu/items/show/873.