Historical Structures & Sites

Belmead Mansion
Built in the mid 1800s, Belmead is located on approximately 1,200 acres of land overlooking the James River. A slave cemetery is located on the premises, but only one grave is marked. Horse lovers from near and far come to Belmead to ride over 20 miles of trails located on the property. Belmead is on the National Register of Historic Places. Call Belmead Stables and Riding Club at 804-598-4907.
Belmead Mansion
St. Emma
Formerly located on the property of Belmead, St. Emma Military Academy opened in 1895. St. Emma was exclusively for African-American men and in 1964 had a peak enrollment of 370 cadets. Mainly due to desegregation, St. Emma closed its doors in 1972. Shortly thereafter, the majestic school was demolished.

St. Francis de Sales
Established in the late 1800s, St. Francis de Sales School for Girls still stands on the property adjoining Belmead Mansion. St. Francis was an exclusive Catholic school for Native and African-American women. St. Francis closed in 1970. A foundation has been established in an effort to restore and reuse the buildings of St. Francis. The 2 majestic castles of Belmead Mansion and St. Francis, located less than a half mile from each other, overlook the historic James River.

Virginia Civil War Sites
Powhatan County has 5 sites that are part of the Virginia Civil War Trails system. Although Powhatan was not the site for any significant battles, the County played a key role during the retreat of Confederate troops, and during the healing process of the nation.

Important Happenings

  • General Richard S. Ewell and his troops split up and crossed the Appomattox River in southern Powhatan in 2 places.
  • Retreating Confederate soldiers passed through the Courthouse area.
  • General Robert E. Lee spent his last bivouac in the Huguenot Springs area after visiting his brother’s Powhatan farm.
  • Huguenot Springs was also home to a Confederate convalescent hospital, where locals volunteered their time and limited resources to care for the wounded soldiers.
Memorial
A memorial remains honoring the 250 soldiers buried in a mass grave nearby. After spending time in Richmond, General Lee stayed at Derwent in Powhatan in the summer of 1865. While there, he encouraged unity and peace “to obliterate the effects of the war.”
The Mill at Fine Creek
A beautiful and enchanting gem, the Mill at Fine Creek has facilities for weddings, banquets, or other special events.
Catering and flowers are also available. On this 10-acre historic property, you will find:
  • Beautiful landscaping
  • Fine Creek itself running over a vast area of solid rock
  • Remnants of an old gristmill
  • Remnants of Fine Creek Manor built in the 1700s, but destroyed by fire in 1928
Fine Creek
More Information
This historic district is on the National Register of Historic Places. Call 804-379-8211 or visit the Mill at Fine Creek website.