Original Information from Volume 5 of the Gravestone Books
The Lindsay Family Cemetery is about 100 yards to the northwest of “Laurel Hill,” which stands just outside the southern fence of the Lorton Reformatory. The house and cemetery lie on reformatory land and the cemetery cannot be approached without an escort from the prison.
Laurel Hill may be accessed on foot from Lorton Road down a paved road marked by two brick pillars along Lorton Road. The road to the house is asphalt covering an old brick road. A low brick wall along the road can be seen as one approaches the house and brickwork encloses the remnants of what must have been a lovely garden to the rear of the house. According to Cpl. James Rhinehart, a reformatory employee, the bricks were made on the prison grounds and the brickwork completed by prisoners many years ago.
According to The Lindsays of America: A Genealogical Narra-tive and Family Record, by Margaret Isabella Lindsay (1889) and a 1972 Historic American Buildings Survey Inventory, Laurel Hill was the home of Major William Lindsay, son of Robert and Susanna Lindsay of “The Mount” in the Dunn Loring area of Falls Church (see Volume III). William Lindsay married Ann Calvert of Culpepper County in about 1766. Ann was a descendant of Cecil Calvert, Lord Baltimore of Maryland. Serving with the Virginia Militia in the Revolutionary War, Major Lindsay was severely wounded while under General Nathaniel Green’s command at the battle of Guilford Courthouse in May 1781. He died in 1792.
The Lindsay Family Cemetery lies at the base of the reformatory’s No. 9 Guard Tower. The two grave markers are surrounded by a low pipe fence supported with brick pillars at each corner. In 1937, a Works Progress Administration of Virginia Inventory described Laurel Hill’s house, garden and cemetery. The inventory reported that the Daughters of the American Revolution had recently placed a gravestone in the cemetery in honor of William Lindsay. “There are numerous other graves here,” according to the WPA inventory, “. . . but there is nothing to distinguish them.” A small bronze marker supported by a metal rod in a concrete base marks the grave of Ann Lindsay and was erected by the D.A.R. sometime after the 1937 report. The cemetery was also surveyed in 1990 and 1998.
In 1937, the house was the home of Colonel Peake, superintendent of the reformatory. The 1972 inventory describes Laurel Hill as an employees’ residence and guest house for the prison. As late as 1988, Mary Hostetler Oakey, author of Journey from the Gallows, wrote that “[p]lans have been underway in recent years to restore ‘Laurel Hill’ by the Department of Corrections.” A 7 November 1996 article about a community clean-up day at Laurel Hill mentioned planned renovations of the historic house. But today, the dilapidated wood frame house at Laurel Hill has fallen into ruin.
The military marker standing in the Lindsay Family Cemetery is inscribed:
The bronze marker placed in the Lindsay Family Cemetery reads:
Wife of a
Ann C. Lindsay
No Updates from Volume 6 of the Gravestone Books
Dates of Revolutionary War.