8 Historic Homes You Are Invited To Explore

David Morgan Homestead

If you’re interested in historic home exploration, generous residents of Marion County are preparing to open their homes, per the season, to just about anyone: interested onlookers, curious passers-by,  admiring architects, desirous designers, etc.

The Holiday Historic Homes Tour offers eight historic homes to explore for this one day— some with live music and some with delicious treats. For an even warmer ambiance than what a centuries-old home naturally offers, most will be decorated for the season.

Here’s how the tour works.

The 22nd Annual Holiday Historic Homes Tour, presented by Marion County Historical Society, will take place Saturday November 26th.  Pre-ordered tickets are $16 and can be purchased through the museum or by mail with a check made payable to MCHS, P.O. Box 1636, Fairmont, WV 26555-1636. Tickets the day of are $18, and you can buy them starting at 9:45 a.m. at the Museum. The tour begins at 10 a.m. and ends at 3 p.m.

This is a self-guided tour so the homes can be explored in any order you choose.


What can you expect on this year’s tour  . . . .


Highgate Carriage House

Highgate Carriage House

Highgate Carriage House – 830 Walnut Avenue, Fairmont

Highgate Carriage House was built ca. 1910-1913 by Fairmont industrialist and financier, James E. Watson, scion of the “father of West Virginia coal industry,” James O. Watson. Designed by Philadelphia architect Horace Trumbauer, the stable and the adjacent mansion remain fine examples of Tudor revival architecture with half-timbering, stucco wall cladding and clay-tiled roofs an academic style based upon late Medieval English prototypes that was common among suburban domestic architecture in the United States in the early-20th century.

The first floor of the two-story, U-shaped carriage house housed horses and living quarters, while the second floor served both as a residence for the servants and a storage area for hay. Attached to the right wing of the carriage house is a one-story chicken house. A courtyard rests in front of the stable’s entryway. To the rear of the building once could be found beautifully landscaped grounds with exotic trees and shrubs, a box garden, a lighted sunken garden with stone conversation benches, a sundial and large bird bath. Also originally located behind the stable was a regulation clay tennis court, which was the site of the Tiffany Cup Championship games. President Taft was a guest of the Watson’s on several occasions.

The main mansion is now Ross Funeral Home. The Carriage House is available to rent for events, parties, receptions and weddings.



Marion County Historical Society Museum

The Marion County Museum (former sheriff’s home) – 210 Adams Street, Fairmont

The theme at the Marion County Sheriff’s Home this year will be a Children’s Christmas.  Linda Jack recently donated her doll collection and antique toys to the Marion County Museum that will be on display for the first time throughout the Museum. The Sheriff’s’ home, connecting jail and County Court House construction began on October 22, 1909 and completed on March 12, 1912.  The residency became the Marion County Museum in 1986.



Altman House

Altman House


Altman House – 510 Mount Vernon Avenue, Fairmont

The Altman House was built on the original Fleming Farm located on what is now Mount Vernon Avenue. The home is located one block from the original Fleming Cemetery with graves dating back to the early 1800s. The home remained in the same family for almost 100 years.






antique clocks

Curiosity Clockworks



Curiosity Clockworks 124 Adams Street, Fairmont

A must see is the restoration of Curiosity Clockworks.  The building has been completely restored as it was in 1914.  It was originally built as a filler store. Now serving an antique clock repair shop, the owners have an entire wall exhibit of antique clocks.






mural at Marion County Courthouse

Marion County Courthouse

David Morgan Homestead – 418 Sugar Lane, Rivesville

The George Pinkney Morgan House was built in the 1840s.  It is the last original Morgan Home standing in the Monongahela Valley.  It has been over 12 years in the restoration of this home by the present owner who was employed in Williamsburg VA. There is a slave entrance and dove coops.  Christmas decorations will be of that time period. Daniel Boone was a frequent visitor to this home.

The house is also referred to as the Pinkney-Morgan House, and is the harrowing site of Morgan’s famous fight against two Native Americans (one of the three paintings in Marion County Courthouse). Morgan was nearly 60 at the time of his victorious scuffle. The legend of the historic battle has been passed down through generations, and is told many ways.



Clayton Meredith House

Clayton Meredith House

The Meredith House – 1312 Pennsylvania Avenue, Fairmont

The Meredith House is a Federal Italianate style two- story wood frame home built prior to 1860 by William Meredith, a manufacturer of lumber as well as a contractor.  He was a Captain commissioned by Governor Pierpont as well as a Justice of the Peace and the first Mayor of Belleview then known as Barnsville.  His son, Judge Winfield Scott Meredith next occupied the house.  He served as a director of the People’s National Bank of Fairmont, a State Senator and a Judge of the Circuit Court of Marion County.



Arthur G Martin

Arthur G Martin


Arthur G. Martin House – 201 Watson Avenue, Fairmont

A.G. Martin Home is and American Arts and Crafts home identified as a commissioned Gustav Stickley House. in WV.  Photos of the home are featured on pages 438, 439 and 440 of the book “Stickley’s Craftsman Homes” by Ray Stubblebine. Arthur G. Martin, Mayor of Fairmont, had the home built as his residence in 1911.



Jolliffe House

Jolliffe House

Jolliffe House – 320 Madison Street, Fairmont

The Marcelle Jolliffe Home was designed by the original owner, Marcelle Jolliffe and his wife.  This is the last residential home in the downtown area and has been in the same family since it was originally built.  The house contains much of the original furnishings and painting. The rose bush beside the home was planted in 1903 when Marcelle Jolliffe was the sheriff.



22nd Historic Holiday Home Tour

22nd Historic Holiday Home Tour


Some courtesy rules to follow. This tour is designed for adults. Respect your host’s’ privacy and possessions and please ask for the owner’s permission to take photographs.  No soliciting of any kind.  Remember that many of our tour locations are privately owned homes.  There may be family emergencies that occur that can affect the availability of the home for the tour.  Information has been provided by the owners.


Which home are you most excited to visit?


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