The physical and psychological heart of Northern Virginia's hunt country, Middleburg is a compact and fastidious village retaining the qualities of its early years. There are approximately 600 people currently residing in the town established in 1787 by Leven Powell, a Revolutionary War officer and regional Federalist leader. He purchased the land for Middleburg at $2.50 an acre from Joseph Chinn, first cousin to George Washington. The town developed as a coach stop and relay station on Ashby's Gap Turnpike, becoming by mid-century a commercial center for lower Loudoun and upper Fauquier counties. Thus being in the "middle," the village provided the overnight resting stop for travelers making the 70-mile overland journey. The town saw frequent Civil War cavalry action and won a reputation for fierce Confederate loyalty but afterwards it declined in fortune and population.
By the second decade of the 20th century, it assumed a new identity as a social and equestrian center. Middleburg prospered and grew in reputation as the nation's foremost area for fox hunting, Thoroughbred breeding, and horse racing. With its tree-lined streets, brick sidewalks, and harmonious scale, the town has a diverse collection of late 18th- to early 20th-century architectural styles highlighted by early stone and brick structures.
The Middleburg Historic District is located at Rte. 50, and State Rtes. 626 and 776, in Middleburg. A self guided book tour, "Walk with History," is provided at the Pink Box, Middleburg's Visitor Center, located at 12 North Madison St., which is open from 11:00am to 3:00pm daily. Call 540-687-8888 for further information.