This colonial plantation house is the house in which we now live, as though it had been built and expanded as just described. One important item we learned during our research is that there was no standard “cookie cutter” design; each property owner might have used the center passage plan but also applied individual tastes to the design, furnishing, and decoration. The layout of a house had to be arranged to divide daily activities to meet the needs of that individual family. Therefore, each family might have a different arrangement of rooms because each family was different. In addition, each house has to fill and meet the social needs of the family as it moved up and through society. The house and its furnishings had to meet the social requirements expected of the family. The family’s house and possessions, more than anything else, indicated where that family stood in society and the public rooms where guests were entertained mattered most. We followed the same philosophy, keeping within the historical context as best we could, given modern building codes and construction methods.
Drive up our country lane and you step back in time; almost as though it were the 18th century. All utilities are buried and not visible. Geothermal heating and cooling eliminate the need for noisy exterior compressors. The house is completely surrounded by woods; no other houses are visible.
Gracefield Hall™ is a historically accurate representation of a colonial Chesapeake plantation house. In the 18th century, plantations were remote and many miles apart; roads were bad and impassable most of the year. Travelers would have been invited to spend the night, refresh, and enjoy a hearty breakfast before continuing their journey. We offer the same friendliness and hospitality today.