Historic Homes & Places of Interest

Historic Homes

Admission to the historic homes below is included with purchase of a Norfolk Garden Tour ticket.

THE HUNTER HOUSE VICTORIAN MUSEUM, 240 West Freemason St. In 1894, Boston architect W.P. Wentworth designed a new Richardsonian Romanesque townhouse for James Wilson Hunter Sr., a banker and prominent Norfolk merchant, wife Lizzie and children James Wilson Hunter, Jr., Harriett Cornelia and Eloise Dexter. In the 1960s, Eloise, the last surviving family member, requested that her estate be used in part to establish a museum, preserving the home’s architecture, furnishings and decorative arts. Rich in architectural details, the museum displays the family’s collections, including an unusual Inglenook, a Renaissance Revival bedchamber suite, a nursery of Victorian playthings, stained-glass windows and an elaborately embroidered crazy quilt. Lavish period reproduction floor and wall coverings and drapery treatments complement the collection. There is also a collection of 20th century medical memorabilia that belonged to Dr. James Wilson Hunter, Jr. Open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

THE MOSES MYERS HOUSE, 331 Bank St. Norfolk 23510. Owned and maintained by the Chrysler Museum of Art. Built in 1792 for a prominent Norfolk resident, this structure is a fine example of Federal-style architecture. The house contains nearly 70 percent of its firstgeneration furnishings, including the Gilbert Stuart portraits of Mr. Myers and his wife, Eliza. Much of the family’s cut glass, furniture, silver, and china are on display. The house was home to five generations of the Myers family before it was sold in 1931 to become a privately operated museum. The Garden Club of Virginia renovated the gardens in 2002 to reflect historically accurate late-18th-century garden design. The Moses Myers House is regularly open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Home will be open on the day of the Garden Tour.  Admission is free. Call (757) 333-1087 for information or to schedule a tour.

NORFOLK HISTORY MUSEUM at the Willoughby-Baylor House, 601 East Freemason St., Norfolk 23510. Owned and maintained by the Chrysler Museum of Art. It was built in 1794 by Captain William Willoughby, a descendant of English immigrant Capt. Thomas Willoughby I, who was the recipient of a 1636 royal grant of 200 acres—50 of which would become the town of Norfolk in 1682. The house remained in the family until 1890 when it was sold. It subsequently fell into decline and was slated for demolition until it was bought and restored by the Norfolk Historic Foundation in 1964. The current exhibition showcases various aspects of Norfolk’s architectural, commercial, maritime, and military history through objects from the collections of the Chrysler Museum, other institutions, and private citizens. The garden, designed by Siska Aurand Landscape Architects, was installed in 1991 and represents the most current understanding of colonial gardens at that point. The recent addition of an oyster-shell paving is appropriate to the period. The Norfolk History Museum at the Willoughby-Baylor House is regularly open Friday, Saturday and Sunday noon to 4 p.m. Home will be open on the day of the Garden Tour.  Admission is free. Call (757) 333-1087 for information or to schedule a tour.

Other Places of Interest

1 Memorial Place, Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., (757) 664-6200

Described by the Wall Street Journal as one of the top twenty museums in the country, the newly renovated Chrysler is home to one of America’s premier permanent collections with over 35,000 pieces spanning more than 5,000 years of history. Its 62 Galleries highlight many of the world’s greatest artists and one of the finest glass collections in United States.  The glass studio offers free demonstrations at 12 noon in its hot shop building.

macarthur-museumMACARTHUR MUSEUM
198 Bank Street, Norfolk 23510
Admission is free.
Open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily.

General Douglas MacArthur’s bigger than life-sized statue welcomes visitors to his final resting place. This museum and research center is dedicated to preserving and presenting the story of his life and paying tribute to the millions of men and women who served with General MacArthur in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. The museum garden, canopied with shade trees, is a reflective and peaceful spot to end your tour.