Beach Historic House Foundation working to preserve several sites in the city

Posted at 6:13 PM, Sep 05, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-05 21:32:39-04

Virginia Beach, Va. - When Virginia Beach comes to mind, some of us might think of the resorts and tourist attractions along the Oceanfront or the vibrant shops and restaurants at Town Center.

But what you might not know is that Virginia Beach has historic houses, too - houses like the Adam Thoroughgood House that dates back to the 1700s, just one site that the City and the Virginia Beach Historic House Foundation want to preserve and inform more people about.

"To have a history that is certainly worth celebrating, one of the challenges of course, with a community of 430,000 people, is that these historic sites can get lost," said Dr. Stephen Mansfield, board member of the Virginia Beach Historic House Foundation.

Mansfield and the Foundation are taking action to make sure that history isn't lost. And one way they're doing it is by asking the public for their input about the historic homes.  People can go online to the City of Virginia Beach's website through September 30 to answer questions and provide comments to help the Foundation develop a plan.

"These houses were essentially farm properties at one time, and communities have built up around them," said Dr. Mansfield.

The City of Virginia Beach isn't what it used to be when places like the Frances Land House was first built. And with all of the hustle and bustle, the busy streets, and the development all around these historic sites, it can be quite a challenge to remind everyone what the area was all about.

Another challenge is that the sites, like the Lynnhaven House located on Wishart Road, are spread across the city.

"We don't have the advantage of an Olde Towne or a Freemason Street where you have the concentration of historic sites as some of our neighboring communities do," said Dr. Mansfield.

But through public input, the Foundation hopes to find new ways to educate people about the historic landmarks in Virginia Beach - landmarks that have helped the city become what it is today.

You can take action and let the City of Virginia Beach and the Virginia Beach Historic House Foundation know what you think about the historic houses and landmarks. Go to to take part.