Backstory and Context
In the mid-1700s, George Nixson and his family came in possession of a large plot of land in Leesburg, Virginia. In 1777, Nixson built the first structure on the property, which was a stone gristmill. Nixson would go on to build a stone miller’s house a stable on the property in 1787. During these decades, the Woodburn estate was highly sufficient farm for the Leesburg area. Woodburn would continue to be a home and working farm for the Nixson family well into the 1800s. Between 1825 and 1850, a large brick house was built on the property, as well as a large brick barn. By this point in Woodburn’s lifespan, the property had surpassed the status of a farm, and had become a full-scale plantation.
The farm would continue to stay in the Nixson family for some time, and at unspecified points in time, it switched hands in the 1900s. In the 1950s, it was purchased by Mr. and Mrs. W. Hugh Peal. On September 21st, 1976, it was designated on the Virginia Landmark Register, and on December 12th, 1976, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Recently, a farm manager’s house was added to the Woodburn property, and this addition was put up and designated on the Virginia Landmarks Register on March 10th, 2008.