The Anchorage aka Putnam Villa in Marietta Ohio

The Anchorage Putnam Villa entrance window artThe Anchorage Putnam Villa entrance outsideThe Anchorage Putnam Villa entrance lightingThe Anchorage Putnam Villa chandelierDouglas Putnam got rich by investing in real estate and the first railroad to connect Parkersburg, WV and Marietta, Ohio. He used his money to build a spacious home for his second bride, Eliza Whipple Putnam. The Tuscan-style villa on Putnam Avenue (originally called Putnam Place) took ten years to build and cost $65,000 which was a lot of money in that time. When it was finally completed, Eliza moved in where she shortly died from heart disease at the age of 53.

The Christian Anchorage Nursing Home Putnam Villa

Over the years it has passed from owner to owner. A nursing home used the complex, including the mansion, to house patients. That is when it became known as the Christian Anchorage. It received this name because of its distinctive, anchor-shaped driveway. Even after the nursing home sold it to Marietta Memorial Hospital, who then sold it to the Washington County Historical Society for one dollar, people continued to refer to it as The Anchorage.  

The Christian Anchorage Putnam Villa Travel Paranormal

Another rumor attached to the house is that it was used by the Putnams as a way station on the Underground Railroad. Supposedly a tunnel leads from the subcellar to a steep bank on the Muskingum River, just up from its confluence with the Ohio. This seems unlikely, since such a tunnel would have had to have been pretty long. Also, it’s a widespread misconception that the Underground Railroad really involved a lot of literal underground activity. Mostly slaves were hidden in a back room and fed, clothed, given a place to sleep. Tunnels were very rarely involved.

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Here are some pictures from my visit there. The property is currently in the process of historic preservation.

The Anchorage Putnam Villa stairwayThe Anchorage Putnam Villa stair towerIMG_1031IMG_1030IMG_1027

 

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The General Lewis Inn in Lewisburg, WV

I was a guest at the General Lewis Inn in Lewisburg, WV during one of my many genealogy research trips to Greenbrier County, WV and the surrounding area. This area of West Virginia has always beckoned me and after some research into my family history, I am going to assume that there’s a possibility that it’s because I have deep family roots in the area.

My sixth great grandfather is Capt. William McCoy (founder of McCoy’s Fort- see my previous post on McCoy’s Fort).

My seventh great uncle is Col. Andrew Hamilton and so forth and so on. In my search for family information and history, I took a break to enjoy the beautiful atmosphere of the Historic General Lewis Inn. Here are some pictures from my stay.

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Staying in the General Lewis Inn was like experiencing a step back in time except with modern day bathrooms and free wifi for guests, which is my kind of place. We dined at the Jefferson Dining Room located in the original portion of the inn built in 1834. The dining room had an elegant and peaceful atmosphere. At night, candles were lit and the upscale dining area was absolutely gorgeous with excellent service. During our dinner, we ordered drinks from the Thistle Lounge which was located right beside the dining room. I tried the French Vodka Lemonade which consisted of Basil, vodka, and sparkling lemonade at price of $10 per glass. I also tried the West Virginia Hurricane which consisted of dark rum, white rum, cointreau, orange pomegranate and pineapple juice at a price of $15 per glass. Both were delicious drinks. If I had to choose between the two, I would say the West Virginia Hurricane was my favorite.

After dinner, we walked through town and then enjoyed some front porch sitting on the comfortable rocking chairs before retiring to our rooms for the evening.

The cost is a little on the higher end for being in such a quiet, small town but it is definitely a unique experience. If you arrive earlier in the day, you are able to walk through the Inn and check out the other rooms. Every room is beautifully decorated with antiques and each one has complimentary West Virginia spring water. The Inn does not have an elevator but there are rooms located on the first and second floors available to accommodate everyone.

Since the building is older, you are able to hear people walking up and down the hallways, opening and closing doors. If your room is located near the front desk, you will be able to hear most of whatever is being said in the area. However, it is still relatively peaceful throughout the building, even during “busy” times. The staff was very friendly and helpful and seemed to genuinely care about your comfort which gave the Inn an even more comfortable “home” feel. I plan to return very soon.

If you’re visiting Lewisburg, I highly recommend that you stay at the General Lewis Inn, especially if you are a history lover.

Author:

Cindie Harper

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