Erin Shades Farm
Demolished circa 1977
This house, dating back to around 1907, was built by Courtland Nuckols to give his large family a much needed, bigger home. It was the home of Mr. Grayson Norwood Nuckols, Jr., an active member of the Henrico County Historical Society, from birth until 1977. The house was also used, at one point, as an official United States Post Office. It is also interesting to note that there was yet another house predating the one pictured. The broad-spread tree near the bottom right corner once had its’ branches over an old, poorly-constructed house built in the mid-1800’s.
In the late 1970’s, plans were drawn up for the development of the Innsbrook Corporate Center, which was to be built on the Erin Shades Farm property, among other large parcels of land. Although the house was razed, most all of the large elm trees that lined the driveway to the house (now alongside Cox Road) remain intact. To be precise, Cox Road runs along the same path as the right driveway, and The Shoppes At Innsbrook now sit where the house was. In the top left corner now would be the AmeriSuites and Hilton hotels.
Old Johnson Homeplace
This two-story wood frame house was similar in nature to many houses built in the mid to late 1800’s, in terms of design and construction materials. This house sat on a wooded tract of land facing Pouncey Tract Road, near the Shady Grove Estates subdivision. It was the predessessor of a newer home built by the Johnson family, former owners of adjacent H.W. Johnson Store, now rennovated as Best Cleaners.
The house was demolished in 2001 citing concerns of trespassers, vandals, etc. The site of the house remains undeveloped, as with most of the surrounding Pouncey Tract Road corridor. The giant oak trees remain untouched, and it almost appears as if the house was never there.
Here’s a prime example of a typical, modest, late 19th century farmhouse. This house was located on Shady Grove Road near its’ intersection with Old Nuckols Road. The gigantic oak tree which overshadowed the house had grown so large that a portion of the porch was cut away and even so, the trunk was still growing into the side and roof. This tree was probably one of the largest oak trees in the West End of Henrico County.
There was also a red barn and large shed behind the house. This property, along with several other surrounding plots of land, was sold to Ryan Development Corporation for the development of the Hampshire, Hampshire South, and Estates of Hampshire subdivisions. The house, shed, and barn were all demolished, and unfortunately (not to mention unnecessarily), the monumental oak tree was taken down as well. The pictures to the right were taken only two weeks before the structures were razed.
This house, built by Vivian Wade in 1912, was the home of his daughter Lynne Williamson and her husband for decades. There was no electricity or running water in the house for the first few years, and Lynne said originally you could feel the wind coming through big openings in the wallboards. The house even had an outhouse in the back!
Lynne has long outlived her husband by more than a quarter century and is now in her early nineties. Her and her siblings sold the property on which the house sits back in the 1970’s. The first phase of the Shady Grove Family YMCA was constructed on a portion of the property in 1999, yet Lynne held a life lease on a small piece of land surrounding her house.
ynne is a spry woman for her age who is very independent and even gardened and cut her own grass. However, because of her deteriorating health, she now resides in a local nursing home.
After Lynne moved out, the YMCA was in the midst of expanding. The original plan was to fix up the structure and use it as a maintainance building, but YMCA staff decided to demolish it because recent vandalism would have made it very costly to refurbish the house. A new shelter for camps and activities was recently constructed on the land where the house sat, and a tree planting ceremony in honor of Lynne was held adjacent to it.
This house, at the intersection of Nuckols and Shady Grove roads near Wyndham, was one of the last 200+ year old houses to be lost in the Far West End. This house was originally constructed as a small log cabin in 1791, making it one of the oldest houses in the western portion of the county (Ironically, the oldest existing house in the county, the Locust Grove house off of North Gayton Road, was built and originally owned by the Nuckols Family).
The house was expanded and modernized over the years, and the remnants of an old stone kitchen building could still be seen out back. To see proof of this, you could look to the roof and see two chimnies, one in the center of the roof, from the original portion of the house.
There was also supposedly a slave house that sat beside the kitchen. There is a family cemetary to the right of the house with about five stones, two of children who died very young. Also, unmarked slave graves are located to the left. After the land was sold to the Catholic Diocies of Richmond for the purpose of a Catholic High School, they turned around a year later for undisclosed reasons and sold the land to local real estate and house building giant Wilton Development Company. Fearing the historic house would be demolished, the Henrico County Historical Society stepped in and were able to purchase the house for one dollar.
The newer additions to the house were removed to expose the original log cabin portion within, and then each piece of wood was carefully taken off and numbered to be reassembled in New Kent County, Virginia.
A unique wooden spiral staircase was included with the portion of the house to be reassembled. The remaining portion of the house has now been demolished, and construction is now underway on a new subdivision called Covington.