Brent Town and Bristow

Brent Town and Bristow (HM2NAO)

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N 38° 43.95', W 77° 32.712'

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Early Settlements

George Brent, an English Catholic and member of the Virginia House of Burgesses, joined with English merchants Robert Bristow, Richard Foote, and Nicholas Hayward in 1687 to purchase 30,000 acres here. They bought the tract from the Fairfax Proprietary, which owned most of modern Northern Virginia. Because Catholicism was illegal, Hayward obtained exemption from King James II so that the "Brent Town Tract" could be a sanctuary for Catholics moving to Virginia.

A 1737 plat of the tract named 39 households. During the Revolutionary War, the Commonwealth of Virginia confiscated Robert Bristow's 7,500-acre tract when an act authorized the seizure of land owned by Loyalists. A map drawn in 1824 showed 54 properties, including the town of Brentsville, in the former Bristow tract. Some of the earliest settlements in Prince William and Fauquier Counties, and the roads that linked them, were part of the Brent Town area.

Throughout its history, the name of the Bristow community has been spelled more than one way. At first it was spelled Bristow after Robert Bristow, but by the 1850s it was commonly rendered "Bristoe." The railroad and mail service were extended here in the 1850s. Envelopes addressed in cursive handwriting to Bristoe often resembled "Bristol," the name of a town three hundred miles southwest of here. The Board



on Geographic Names decided on Bristow as the official spelling in 1906.
Details
HM NumberHM2NAO
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Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Sunday, December 1st, 2019 at 7:02am PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 278763 N 4290168
Decimal Degrees38.73250000, -77.54520000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 43.95', W 77° 32.712'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 43' 57" N, 77° 32' 42.72" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near , ,
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