Maggie L. Walker House Exterior
110 ½ E. Leigh Street
Constructed in 1883 by George Boyd, a local African American builder, the Walker home at 110 ½ E. Leigh Street evolved from a modest, five-room Italianate row house to a sprawling 28-room urban Victorian mansion by 1928. The house sat squarely in the center of “Quality Row”- a residential block of African American lawyers, doctors, ministers, and bankers in Jim Crow Richmond’s Jackson Ward, a neighborhood known as the “Harlem of the South” during the first quarter of the 20th Century.
The first two owners of the house were both African American doctors; first Dr. James Ferguson followed by Dr. Robert Jones. Jones commissioned the first round of renovations by expanding the house through the empty half-lot to the west, incorporating an indoor kitchen, and installing new bedrooms upstairs. Dr. Jones used the street-facing first floor addition as his physician’s office. Thus, patients used the recessed entrance for access to the doctor’s office, while the Jones family used the main double-leaf entrance for the residence.
Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site