Conner House Brings History to Manassas Park
Manassas Park history is revealed in a small house just around the corner.
While Manassas Park has a lot to offer its residents, there is only one building with historical value. This building is the Conner House, a two-part, two-story building named after owner E.R. Conner, that was built only using materials acquired with Manassas Park’s city limits.
Even the stone from the structure was obtained from one of the two local quarries. The building of the first part of the house occurred sometime from 1800 to 1820. When the house was re-built in 1855, it was known as “Bloom’s” Farm and was much larger. In 1971, Prince William County School Board purchased the biggest part of the land, and the City of Manassas Park purchased the house and the yard. The property in total was about 100 acres.
Not only is the building itself an historical artifact, but the Civil War artifacts may very well be on or around the property as it is believed that it once housed Confederate soldiers. If this is true, that would mean that the farm was the headquarters of the army for the first five months of the army’s existence.
There is even a photo, dated 1862 and taken by Timothy O’Sullivan, was labeled the “Yellow Hospital." There also may be some Indian archeology connected to a property, as an Indian arrowhead was discovered on the property in 1979.
It’s hard to believe that a building that holds such historical significance, and that is the only archeological piece of history in Manassas Park, was in great danger of being demolished during the 1970s. The City of Manassas Park ruled the house as a safety hazard due to its decrepitating structure and its close proximity to Osbourn High School and Didlake School.
Being unoccupied, it was attracting vandals who were playing a part in the deterioration of the property. Before the house could be demolished, historians, residents, and the Manassas Park Woman’s Club stepped in and was given $500 to purchase fencing for the perimeter of the property. This act saved it from being demolished, but restoration funds were still needed, and it appears the Woman’s Club succeeded as the house is still standing.
Conner House has much more history to it other than Civil War history as well, such as being a major county dairy farm. In 1981, the Historic Landmarks Commission of the Commonwealth of Virginia placed the Conner House on the Virginia Landmarks register.
Over the years, this house has had many renovations and many owners, but has been and will remain, the City of Manassas Park’s only and very special historical structure. The Conner House is having more renovation done, and is not currently open to the public.