Historic Structures

Bacons Castle, Surry County, Virginia

Date added: August 29, 2016 Categories: Virginia House Mansion

The fine old brick mansion in the lower part of the County, known as "Bacon's Castle", was built by Arthur Allen, ancestor of the Claremont Aliens, in 1655, It was referred to as "Allen's Brick House".

During Bacon's Rebellion, Major William Bookings, Lieutenant Robert Burgess and Captain Arthur Long, followers of Bacon, seized this house of Allen's and made a fort of it. It was thereafter known as "Bacon's Castle", "Castle" meaning fort.

On the 29th of December, 1676, a fight occurred here between Bacon's followers and men from the British ship "Young Prince" lying in the James River. Captain Robert Morris of the "Young Prince" claims to have carried the fort.

In the County records we find depositions made in 1677, which tell of the seizure of Allen's house and the behavior of the "Rebel Crew" while there.

At the time of the War between the States, "Bacon's Castle" was owned by Colonel John H. Hankins. His son, James D. Hankins, was captain of the Surry Light Artillery, C, S. A. (Reference: Old Surry, by A. W. Bohannan, 1927).

Historic Shrines of Virginia - W. E. Carson:

Bacon's Castle was built by Arthur Allen, who came to Virginia from England in 1648.

The house was built about 1660. Arthur Allen died in 1670, leaving the plantation to his son and heir, Major Arthur Allen.

During Bacon's Rebellion in 1676 the house was seized and fortified and used as a stronghold by a party of Bacon's adherents, commanded by William Roomings and was held for nearly four months.

Major Allen was in sympathy with the royal cause, and for this reason the rebels seized his home, and we find in the records of Surry County, July 3, 1677, that Major Arthur Allen sued Mr. Robert Burgess, "for that during the late most horrid Rebellion he with others did seize and keep garrison in the pit's house neare fower months.

Upon the death of Major Allen in 1710 it passed to his son, Arthur, who died in 1?25, leaving an only son, James, upon whose death it was inherited by his sister, Katherine, wife of Benjamin Cocke.

Historic Virginia Homes and Churches; Robert A. Lancaster, Jr. - 1915:

Major Allen died in 1710, and the estate passed to his son Arthur, who died in 1725s leaving an only son and heir, James, upon whose death it was inherited by his sister3 Katherine, wife of Benjamin Cocke.

In 1802 Allen Cocke left Bacon's Castle to his sister, Mrs. Bradley. After passing through the hands of several other owners it was bought by Mr. William A. Warren, of Surry, who gave it to the present owner, his son, Mr. Charles Walker Warren, as a wedding gift. This seems most fitting, for the bride was Miss Pegram, daughter of Mr. Blair Pegram, of Surry, and is related to the Aliens, Cockes and other former owners of the old "Castle",