Now home to Poplar Springs Inn, Spa and Manor House Restaurant, Casanova developed in the 1850s at the intersection of Rogue’s Road and the newly laid Warrenton Branch Railroad, a spur of the Orange and Alexandria Railroad. When a switching station was installed, the village, originally called “Three Mile Station,” grew up around it.
The majority of the historic buildings in the town are consider “I” houses, which was one of the most common folk house types across the U.S. The I-house was a common house type in England that was built in the American colonies by English settlers and then moved westward with the colonist. It is called the “I-House” because it was first identified by historians as a dominant house type across Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa. Always one room in depth, with a central door flanked by two bays, and often a rear wing.
One of the few existing buildings is a two-story stone circa 1879 steam-powered mill that made barrel staves for Virginia’s leading tobacco crop. The mill was renovated as a residence in the 1940s.
Casanova lies at the heart of a rich collection of prominent estates in Fauquier associated with Fitzhugh family and other early plantation owners in the County including Melrose and Poplar Springs.
With commercial, industrial, and institutional, and fine residential structures dating from 1879 to 1920, Casanova presents rare image of a small community virtually untouched by modern intrusions.