Beaverdam home (Mechanicsville VA)

It was odd finding my great-great-grandfather Catlins home Beaverdam (circa 1801) during the Civil War, nestled in a culdesac in suburbia so well restored it looked like the modern homes surrounding it.

“Beaverdam stands on historic soil. It was the site on which was fought the first of the series of battles around Richmond. The stream, bearing the same name, and which flows through the farm, was said to run red with blood after the battle. In the article by Thomas W. Hooper (Richmond Times-Dispatch, February 3, 1895), he stated, “The last time I stood under the roof was after the battle and all around me were unburied dead, while the house and trees were cut to pieces by cannon and minnie-balls.” Beaverdam was occupied by Ripley”s Brigade of D.H. Hill’s Division, and by Pender’s Brigade of A.P. Hill’s.”



In my youth my Dad would always tell us our Aunt Rea, my grandmothers sister and grand-daughters of William Catlin, was the best he could offer us as a replacement grandmother on his side of the family. This beautiful woman more than made up for our loss with her love  and vibrant spirit. This house on Reedy has wonderful memories for our family where Aunt Rea lived.

Sallie Rebecca Courtney Snellings (Aunt Rea) is the grand-daughter of William Catlin and Rebecca Allen.

Number 2300 is a classic representation of the Richmond Greek Revival town house. With details from the architectual pattern books of Asher Benjamin, its single dormer, simple cornice, heavy lintels, Doric porch, and stone steps with plinths are all hallmarks of the style. Built in 1850 by William Catlin, who owned a brickyard on Cary Street between 24th and 25th, the house was a gift to his third wife, Rebecca. In 1964 the house provided rooms for the newly founded 2300 Club, established to encourage the restoration of the St. John’s district. The club subsequently moved to another address but retained its name.

William Catlin built 2304 in 1845 and lived there before building 2300.

from :  CHURCH HILL The St. John’s Church Historic District (1991)

side view of 2300

looking west on Broad from 2300


7 Responses to “Beaverdam home (Mechanicsville VA)”

  1. 1 The Rev'd Sam Marshall Catlin, Jr.
    July 29, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Thanks for the posting & good pictures of our shared ancestor’s places. I am descended through Rebecca, William’s third wife and the wife he built 2300 Broad for. (The two adjoining town houses were built for the two previous wives.)

    Sam Catlin+

    • 2 O3
      July 30, 2011 at 10:26 am

      Thanks Sam, I have forwarded your comment to cousin in Boston that has been doing family tree.

      • March 28, 2015 at 10:17 am

        I am descended from Harriet Elizabeth Catlin, William and Rebecca’s 3rd child. And also living in the Boston area working on the family tree. My great uncle told a story of visiting his mother-in-law and hearing her stories of the sounds of the Battle of Cold Harbor. She would have been too young to remember Beaver Dam. I have an old picture he took of the house, and just figured out where it is.

  2. 4 Cheryl Yarbro
    January 30, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    Oh my goodness!!! I have been looking for this home for such a long time. I am a great great grand daughter of William and Rebecca. I would very much like to meet you at least on email. Thanks! Cheryl Tucker Yarbro.

    • January 31, 2012 at 12:08 am

      Sent you my email Cheryl. I had to ask some youths getting off a school bus to find the Beaverdam house. I also met a nice Park Ranger while at the park that didn’t even know where it was. Really can’t give you directions but it is near the park. Good Luck!

  3. 6 Eugene Atkinson
    September 17, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    These are great pictures and the stories that go with them is priceless. I lived near this house in Mechanicsville which overlooks Beaverdam Creek where the Battle took place. I have been trying to do some genealogy of the families who have lived at this house. I would love to work with you on the Catlin, Hooper, White, Pollard or Carter family.

    • September 20, 2012 at 8:53 pm

      Hanover County is just beautiful! I hate seeing it being turned into a suburb though. All the info I know I have posted here. One of the last outings with my father was a decade before to see Beaverdam who first took the family to see in the early 1960’s.

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1984 Computer portrait from State Fair

May 2011
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