Find updated information and images from contributing photographers below.
Updates: January 2023
We are once again partnering with John Plashal Photo to do mansion tours. Please visit www.johnplashalphoto.com for ticketing and information.
The Foundation is using donations to hire an independent third party preservation firm to evaluate the mansion. We hope that the experts at Sadler and Whitehead can identify the crucial next steps to preventing further destruction. Our goal is to work with the investor owners to continue preservation efforts while the search for a buyer continues.
We are excited to partner with Longwood University students again! We will be collaborating with Dr. Alec Hosterman's Public Relations Campaigns students this semester.
Update: December 2022
The Historic Dunnington Mansion Experience
In December we partnered with John Plashal Photo to offer a first-of-its-kind mansion experience.
The event kicked off with a presentation of the history of this iconic mansion by Jimmy Hurt of the Farmville-Prince Edward Historical Society and Heather Beach of the DMF. This was followed by first hand accounts from the great-grandchildren of Walter and India. They reminisced about life in the mansion during their youth. Following the presentations was a visit to the property for a narrated tour of the mansion.
Update: October 2022
Dunnington Mansion Foundation is partnering with Communication Studies students at Longwood University to create a video for this website! We offer huge thanks to Dr. Ryan Stouffer and his students for this fantastic opportunity!
Photos courtesy of Dr. Alec Hosterman of Longwood.
Update: August 2022
The investors have completed construction of the new roof section.
NEW AUDIO PIECE!!!
Audrey Biringer, a communications studies major at Longwood University has written and produced an amazing audio history of Poplar Hill. Please click HERE to listen to this wonderful piece.
Update: May 2022
Recently the mansion was nominated for Preservation Virginia's Most Endangered Historic Places list!!!
Follow this link to a May 2022 article by the Farmville Herald: https://www.farmvilleherald.com/2022/05/mansion-on-endangered-historic-places-list/
Follow this link to the Preservation Virginia Most Endangered Historic Places or Read the Article Below
Dunnington Mansion, Farmville
Dunnington Mansion, and the surrounding land were part of what was originally known as the Poplar Hill farm. A 4-room house was first built here in the 18th century, but as the property changed owners over the years, the house was expanded. In 1897, the house was greatly enlarged by its then owner, tobacco tycoon Walter Dunnington who added the house’s impressive architectural details and ornate interior woodwork. Other structures were built on the property, but have mostly been demolished. These buildings, however, could prove to contain important archaeological deposits.
The house was bought by developers in 2000 with the intent to make it part of the Manor Golf Course. Unfortunately, those plans went awry during the housing crisis of the early 2000’s. Over the last 20 years the house has been open to the weather and exposed to vandalism. Recently, however, an investment group has purchased the mansion and surrounding acres. They have stabilized the structure and replaced parts of the roof with the intention of selling the house to an appropriate buyer to preserve the mansion.
The Dunnington Mansion Foundation, an organization dedicated to preserving the history of Poplar Hill and the Dunnington mansion, is partnering with the new owners to market Dunnington Mansion to a buyer willing to undertake the restoration of this remarkable piece of Farmville history. To learn more and to support these efforts, see the Dunnington Mansion Foundation.
Update: April 2022
At the end of 2021 the mansion and surrounding 400+ acres was purchased by a group of local investors. In April the Dunnington Mansion Foundation was granted permission to document changes that have been taking place at the property.
Stabilization work has begun to help protect the house and prevent further decay. Entrances to the house have been secured and the work crew is there daily. Brush has been cleared from around the house and the walled garden. This offers a view of the mansion that has not been seen in over a decade. Part of the collapsed porch has also been removed.
The investors plan to sell the mansion and some surrounding land in the near future. Sale will be contingent on the house being renovated and preserved. The Dunnington Mansion Foundation hopes to partner with the future owner allowing them to utilize advantages available for nonprofit organizations.
Donations are still being accepted to help with our administrative costs and to hopefully pass along towards preserving the house!!
Serious inquiries can be sent through this webpage and will be forwarded to the investor group.
Below are images from April 2022