The Conyers House is basically two separate houses. The new house was built in 1810, is 17' x 28' and four stories high. The oldest part of the house (the library) was probably built by Hessian mercenaries in 1790 and moved to this location by 1815. It also is four stories high and is 17' x 33'.
The name of the builder of the house is Bartholomew Conyers. He recycled the older house and moved and attached it to his new house by 1815 (according to the deed of the church next door). We thought it would be an easier name than my hyphenated name. Little did we know that journalists would insist on making Conyers possessive. No apostrophe please.
We bought the house in 1979 and moved out here in 1981, one week before our first guests. There was no plumbing in the house, and a very little electricity. Presently, there are nine full bathrooms and a powder room in the entrance hall.
Before we bought in 1979, the house was empty for three years. The former owner bought it on speculation and put in a septic field.
The Conyers House was known as Conyers' Old Store by 1815, Fink's General Store by 1850, and as a hippie commune in the '70's. There are presently many grown-up hippies who still live in Rappahannock County who remember, uh, fun times here. They decorated all the faux bois doors with painted hand prints, most of which we had to paint over. Before the hippies, local people lived here for a few years. The Wright family lived here from 1944 until 1964 (our Uncle Sim's Suite is named for Uncle Sim Wright).
Sandra's Yorkshire born late husband, Norman Cartwright-Brown, has two adult children, Sandra also has two. Norm loved English cars, Lancaster bombers, and old movies. He frequently entertained guests with wonderful stories and returning guests will miss that. In case you are curious, Sandra is neither a Cartwright nor a Brown, but was born Sandra Britomart Stack. Norm came into the marriage with a hyphen.
Sandra's son, Carl Mueller, may look familiar to you because, as an actor, he has appeared in several television spots and various national broadcasts during the past few years.
Sandra does the cooking for the dinners − Norman makes the breakfasts.
Breakfast is served at 9:00 a.m. unless you need to leave earlier. Please discuss your culinary needs with Sandra.
The fireplace in each room is functional, if you light the firelog. We use firelogs because they don't spit and cn safely continue to burn long after the guests have gone to sleep. Notice how shallow the old fireplaces are. Be sure the damper is open and the firelog is at the back of the fireplace.
The Inn at Little Washington is 13 miles from us. Sperryville, which has three restaurants, is 8 miles away. Culpeper is 16 miles away.
We can accommodate experienced and novice riders on the same trail ride. See the Riding page for more details.
The driveway is circular. If it is raining, you might want to park under the porte cohere to unload your passenger(s) and luggage. If both driveway gates are closed, it means a horse is grazing in the yard. Just open the gate and close it again. Don't let the gate touch your clothes − the black paint may stain. Both gates open towards you. The gate on the church side of the house is the easier to manage, even though it means backing into your parking space.
The gardens are designed and maintained by Sandra, who also mows the grounds from time to time.
Sandra started riding in 1982. Adult riders who are rank novices are apt to know less about form and more about function.
Sandra gives cross-country lessons as well as lessons across the road in the field with the jumps.
There are wine glasses in each room. If you need a refrigerator, book a room that has one (Sim's Suite, Helen's Room, The Hill House and The Spring House) or bring your own cooler. There is no charge as long as we are not called up to cool, or open, or serve your wine. If we factor into the picture, there is a $10 corkage fee.
The Hill House and Spring House are best suited for infants whose crying will not disturb any other guests. Toddlers are happiest away from the Main House as well. Older children, who can appreciate the need for inside voices, are welcome in Helen's Room, the Old Attic, or the Sim's Suite.
Dogs are welcome in the Spring House. Please see the Dog page for more information.
Unfortunately, not for overnight guests. We
provide wheelchair accessibility for our
dinner only guests.