Preservation Virginia has released its 2018 Most Endangered Historic Places List. Included on this list is the historic Carr-Greer Farmhouse located at the Ivy Creek Natural Area in Albemarle County, Virginia.
The c. 1880 farmhouse, built by emancipated slave and landowner Hugh Carr, is one of the few surviving properties of the once-vibrant late nineteenth-early twentieth century rural African American communities of Union Ridge and Hydraulic Mills. Along with other outbuildings, including a state-of-the-art 1930s era barn constructed by Carr’s son-in-law and agricultural extension agent Conly Greer, a historical agricultural landscape, and a small family cemetery, the Carr-Greer Farmhouse commemorates the little-told history of African American community building, and the struggle for freedom, independence and self-sufficiency during the post-Emancipation period.
Hugh Carr began acquiring land in Albemarle County in 1870, eventually assembling the 107-acre property known as River View Farm. Hugh and Texie Mae Carr raised seven children on this farm, five of whom earned college degrees and went on to become teachers and community leaders. Daughter Mary Carr Greer, who inherited the farm, served as principal of the county’s African American school, called Albemarle Training School. Her husband, Conly Greer, was the county’s first African American extension agent and operated River View Farm as a demonstration and teaching farm for African American farmers. Under Mary and Conly Greer, River View Farm was expanded to 230 acres.
The Ivy Creek Foundation is connecting people to our lands, present and past. Along with Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville, co-owners of the Ivy Creek Natural Area property, we are exploring historical preservation of the Carr-Greer Farmhouse and its smaller outbuildings. We hope to eventually re-open the River View Farm house for the public to experience the history of the area and the Carr-Greer family firsthand.
To view Preservation Virginia’s complete list of 2018 Most Endangered Historic Places: https://preservationvirginia.org/programs/most-endangered