The Old Willis Wharf Storehouse

The Old Willis Wharf Storehouse (HM25QW)

Location: Exmore, VA 23350 Northampton County
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Country: United States of America
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N 37° 30.918', W 75° 48.395'

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This historic structure is one of the few remaining old-time storehouses on Virginia's Eastern Shore.

The front part of the building that faces the waterfront dates to the 1840s. It replaced a store that burned in 1837, along with a controversial shipyard. A second floor was added in the early 1900s that included a theater/meeting hall.

Willis Wharf was known as Downings Wharf until 1880. The business was run by the Willis and related Johnson families from 1854 until 1963.

At the beginning of the Civil War, Confederate soldiers were recruited at this site. Later, during the Union occupation, Yankee soldiers searched the area for supplies being smuggled to the South by local blockade runners.

Plans for resorts on the Barrier Islands were formulated by patrons of the store. President Grover Cleveland departed for his vacations at the prestigious Broadwater Club on Hog Island from the Willis Wharf waterfront.

Known as Johnson's Store to local residents, the business served the community, watermen and the Coast Guard. The Post Office was located here.

By the 1980s, the store was converted into a restaurant.
HM NumberHM25QW
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, March 2nd, 2018 at 10:01am PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 428719 N 4152344
Decimal Degrees37.51530000, -75.80658333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 30.918', W 75° 48.395'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 30' 55.08" N, 75° 48' 23.7" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)757
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling South
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 4456 Willis Wharf Rd, Exmore VA 23350, US
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