The Joseph Maphis Home

Location: One and one half miles southwest of Saumsville on Route 652.

Built: unknown


30 Sep 1789: Andrew Correll (Cassell) and Elizabeth, his wife, sold to Martin Miley, for the sum of 400 pounds, a certain tract of land lying on waters of McNeeses Run, being a moiety (sic) of a tract granted to Palser Counts by deed from the Proprietor's Office of the Northern Neck, dated Sept. 1, 1776. Deed Book G, Page 409

Probated 8 Sep 1828: Martin Miley bequeaths to his son-in-law George Maphis, Jr., and his wife, Magdalene, the plantation whereon he now lives, during their natural lives ----- then said plantation is bequeathed to their children, their heirs and assigns forever. Made Sept. 8, 1825. Will Book O, page 405.

19 Jan 1895: At January term, 1890 Chancery Cause of Lorentz & Ritter vs: Joseph Maphis, etc. (Joseph Maphis being the son of George Maphis, Jr.) (Foreclosed under mortgage). Deed made Jan. 19, 1895. William T. Williams, Special Commissioner, and P.W. Magruder trustee, sold to J.L. Wisman, the farm on which the said Joseph Maphis now resided, on McNeeses Run, containing 204 acres. It being the same land that was devised by Martin Miley to George Maphis and wife, Magdalene, and then to their children. Joseph maphis having purchased the interest of the other children. Deed Book 42, page 389

5 Jan 1907: J.L. Wisman and Virginia C. Wisman, his wife, convey to Jeremiah Kibler, for the sum of $5500. Deed Book 66, page 321

Physical Description

This home is attractively located on a slight elevation with a fine view of Shaver's Gap in North Mountain as a background. A large lawn surrounds the house with old trees scattered about. McNeeses Run flows at the foot of the hill where there is a good spring of water with old log spring house over it. This building is also used as a wash house, and has a broad squatty chimney with brick top.

A graveyard is on a distant hill on the place, and is now (1937) overgrown with young locusts, and no fence around it.

Historical Significance

The bricks for this house were burnt on the place; the clay hole still remains.

McNeeses Run, also known as Layman's Run, is a branch of Pugh's Run, and an old road, now Route 676, follows this branch and passes through Shaver's Gap in the mountain. This road was once used as the mail route to Van Buren Furnace.

There is a tradition that George Maphis had money buried on this place. He told his wife that he had buried it, but would not disclose the place, as his mind became weakened, but he made many trips toward the mountain. Digging has been done at different times and places on the home, but no money has ever been found, except a few coins beneath the house, where a trap door opened in the floor.

A story is told that when the wing to this house was being built at a later date than the main part of the house, attention was called to the fact that the window frames were not straight. Whereupon a workman replied that the reason might be because of the still-house across the road where there was a barrel of good apple brandy, and it had a spigot in it and a cup beside it, and the men made frequent trips across the road.

Source: Virginia W.P.A. Historical Inventory Project, 1937

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Created October 17 2001