Keep up with the Joneses …

Or at least Jones Mill, on Saturday afternoon, September 24 at from 4:30 to 7:00, when Historic Shepherdstown Commission and Museum holds its fall fund raiser on the grounds of the Thomas Swearingen House at the Jones Mill Historic District. Come out and spend an afternoon on the front lawn, with food, refreshments and live music.

The property is the site of the first mill in what is now the State of West Virginia. In 1734, two years before Thomas Shepherd came to the area, Josiah Jones had built a mill on Rocky Marsh Run. The original mill building is long gone, perhaps destroyed in a fire in 1811, but the foundation and the half-mile-long mill run and tale races remain. The current mill structure dates from the turn of the 19th Century and is said to have generated electricity for the nearby town of Scrabble through the early 1950’s.

Thomas Swearingen acquired the mill in 1748. He or his oldest son, also named Thomas, built a three-bay, two-story stone house near the mill around 1760. The first Thomas is well known in the history of Shepherdstown for having established a ferry across the Potomac in 1755 near the current James Rumsey Bridge, and for getting more votes than George Washington for a seat in the Virginia House of Burgesses in 1757. Son Thomas was a major in the Revolutionary War.

The three-bay, two-story house is built of local stone and was grand in its time and place. The east chimney, which extends only half way out, is somewhat unique. The woodwork and moldings inside the house are original.

Come out and enjoy a taste of history and good food with old and new friends.

The Jones Mill Historic District and the Thomas Swearingen House are located on Dam 4 Road in the town of Scrabble.