Free History


As we are in the "Land of History",  it’s fitting that there are several historic places to explore in Northampton County. We begin with the Historic Court Green in Eastville, home of the oldest continuous court records in the United States. 

Explore more about the "Land of History" by clicking on the links below.  

  • Northampton250 The United States of America’s story starts well before 1776 right here in Northampton County. Don’t be fooled by the beautiful idyllic landscape before you today. These roads, buildings, and waterways are teeming with Revolutionary stories: wartime stories of fierce independence, spies and international smuggling, waterfront battles, divided loyalties, religious discord, political intrigues and protests, even a colorful scandal or two.
  • Custis Tombs at Arlington Plantation along Old Plantation Creek is the historical home site of John Custis II and his grandson John Custis IV.  The Custis name is important because years later, the Custis women married George Washington and Robert E. Lee. 
  • The Barrier Islands Center in Machipongo, Virginia is rich in history of the families who once called the barrier islands home. They had a unique way of life living off the land and water and depending on each other. No one lives on the barrier islands anymore. The islands are now owned and protected by The Nature Conservancy. 
  • Eyre Hall Gardens owned by the Eyre family since 1668. The property is one of the state's best preserved colonial homes with gardens among the oldest in the United States.  The parterre gardens are open to visitors year round. 
  • Cape Charles Museum and Welcome Center  which chronicles the making of this once booming railroad town. Located inside a historic power plant are displays of photos & artifacts depicting the history of Cape Charles, the railroad and ferry service and a large model collection of Chesapeake Bay steamboats. The campus has a collection of rail cars, a locomotive, jetty house and pilot house of the Capt. Edward Richardson Railroad barge.


Historical Places on the Eastern Shore of VA


Other Resources to Explore:

GHOTES: Genealogy and History of the Eastern Shore of VA

Northampton Historic Preservation Society

Eastern Shore Museum Network

Historic Architectural Survey of Northampton County, VA

Virginia Department of Historic Resources

Sunday Historical Blog

Passport in Time: Archaeological Digs

A History of the Virginia House of Delegates: Commemorating the First and Oldest Continuous English-Speaking Representative Legislative Assembly in the Western Hemisphere

Encyclopedia Virginia:  Authoritative and user-friendly resource on the history and culture of Virginia. A project of Virginia Humanities in partnership with the Library of Virginia.

Earliest & Most Interesting Eastern Shore Settlers: Blog 

The Countryside Transformed: The Eastern Shore of Virginia, the Pennsylvania Railroad, and the Creation of a Modern Landscape Essay

The Countryside Transformed Digital Archive of maps, photographs, manuscripts, newspapers, public documents, and other media