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“Half a loaf - just poor timing”

Woodlawn & Pope-Leighey House
Ranked #11 of 92 things to do in Alexandria
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Two houses on the property: 1. Woodlawn is a house that was built on George Washington's property for his step-granddaughter Nelly and her husband Lawrence. Starting off as 2,000 acre plantation built in 1800, the house went through a number of interesting owners before becoming the first site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. 2. Frank Lloyd Wright is practically a household name these days, but this small Usonian house was a unique design of his. Originally built in 1940 in Falls Church, VA; this house is a true example of preservation-in-action!
Reviewed April 5, 2012

We've seen a lot of colonial mansions, so we went out for the Frank Lloyd Wright house - good thing. We walked up to the ticket office in the Woodlawn mansion and laughed when we saw the colonial mansion under renovation - plywood over the windows and doors, the grounds not well kept, etc.

Fortunately, the ticket office clerk was out getting coffee - no heat in the building - and the guide who was babysitting the office greeted us. We talked for a while since the next door wasn't for 35 minutes. She noticed my interest in looking into the mansion through an open door to the mansion and walked us around. There was no furniture and a couple walls were in disrepair, but she told us some of the story and enabled us to see the wonderfully different curving stairway in the Main Hall, unusual for a Federal style home. The rear window shutters were open for light and it's filtering into the 1st floor rooms was reminiscent of my imagining of the 18th century.

The clerk returned and the guide left for the Pope-Leighey house across the grounds. We bought out tickets and made our way across. The guide was excellent with a down-to-earth version of the tour speech, answering questions all through her presentation to the seven of us, offering the canned content along with her own thoughts on points and in response to our questions. Some people will say it's just a house, but the thought that went into the design, the features built into it, the purposes for the decisions, and the results are very interesting and get you to thinking about your own home.

The only downside was that the guide had to restart her show three times for people arriving a few moments late. We suggested they take the proceeds from that one tour group and buy a pair of walkie-talkies to communicate over the quarter mile between the house and the ticket office so she will know when there are others coming.

It's worth the 8 mile, 15 minutes drive south on Route 1 out of Alexandria.

2  Thank calm_weather
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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92 - 96 of 100 reviews

Reviewed March 4, 2012

If you follow any information about Frank Lloyd Wright homes you have to visit this place! Very small home to visit but it was so intersting to see how the family lived here. It is a great tour. You can also visit Mount Vernon if you are visiting this area of Alexandria.

Thank murphman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2012

Most people think Woodlawn is nicer than Mount Vernon, and it is. Additionally a Frank Lloyd Wright house was moved on the grounds and you can tour both in one afternoon. The grounds are very nice as well.

1  Thank Fred E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2012

What a great place to see a colonial house and a Frank Lloyd Wright Usonian House. Amazing

Thank SylvansFolly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2011

If you like architecture in general and Frank Lloyd Wright in particular, you must visit the Pope-Leighey House. It is a great Usonian home! The in-depth tour we took was very enjoyable and enlightening, although I'm certain that the basic tour would be great as well. We also enjoyed Woodlawn and had a great docent for that tour, but the hightlight had to be the Pope-Leighey House. It's well worth a visit!

1  Thank pasbuffalo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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