The Conservatory as it would have appeared with plants in it.


Mrs. Custis, Mrs. Lee, and the Lee daughters used this sunny room to tender plants. Alternatively called a “conservatory,” “greenhouse,” and “Camellia House,” this room and the flower garden outside were places of responsibility and enjoyment for the ladies of Arlington.

The room was originally a cloister or porch formed by Roman arches on the west and south. Later, it was enclosed and a stove was added to provide warmth for the plants. It appears that the only set of stairs connecting the Conservatory to the rest of the house were the stairs that led into the Office. This is because, as a working greenhouse, the conservatory would not have been used as an entrance or traffic passage.

Arlington House First Floor Floorplan
First Floor
North Slave Quarters Museum Exhibit Miss Judy's Quarters Portico Bath and Water Closet Outer Hall Pantry Inner Hall Dining Room Store Room White Parlor Hunting Hall Conservatory School Room Morning Room Family Parlor Guest Chamber Custis Bedchamber Center Hall Office and Studio Selina Gray's Quarters Summer Kitchen / George Clark's Quarters South Slave Quarters museum exhibit Smokehouse

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Last updated: July 13, 2021

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Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial
700 George Washington Memorial Parkway
c/o Turkey Run Park

McLean, VA 22101


703 235-1530

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