3215 Eyre Hall Drive, Cheriton, va 23316
Recently honored as a National Historic Landmark, this acclaimed ancestral property offers a rare picture of colonial plantation life. The key to Eyre Hall’s remarkable preservation lies in its descent through eight generations of the same family. The gambrel-roofed manor was completed in 1758 by Littleton Eyre, who lavished his home with expansive spaces, superlative woodwork and handsome furnishings. Before the end of the century, Littleton’s son and grandson had, in their turn, inherited his masterwork, adding an eastern wing and laying out a grand rear garden. Happily for historians, the three early owners were succeeded by stewards who declined to gild their classic legacy with the passing fancies of later eras.
Today, Eyre Hall visitors are delighted to find that the refined but soft-spoken style of its creators remains wonderfully in place. The past also lives in the garden, where venerable crepe myrtles tower above parterres enclosed by ancient boxwood and set off by colorful mixed borders. On the west, the recently stabilized remaining walls of an early orangery add a hint of romance to the garden scene. Beyond the house and garden, broad stretches of open fields and long views over Cherrystone Creek complete the placid panorama awaiting visitors to this perennial centerpiece of the Eastern Shore tour. H. Furlong Baldwin, owner.