Evy and I moved from Northern Virginia in 1983 and began what is now Frederick House. When we purchased the Young-Womack house we planned to improve Womack House for our residence and use Young House for storage, but we had no plans to open a guest house. After purchasing Bowers House, we conceived the idea of a small hotel with European traditions. We opened in 1984 with six rooms and launched our adventure with a small hotel, expanding our Shenandoah Valley accommodations over the years as adjacent properties became available. Until 1997 we also owned Crown Jewelers on Beverley Street. After acquiring Patrick House and Cochran House from Mary Baldwin College in 1995 and opening these properties, with 23 total rooms, it was time to sell Crown Jewelers and continue our adventure working together every day. Our last purchase was a building on Augusta Street that now has two furnished apartments for short or extended stays. This purchase gave us 25 rooms in Downtown Staunton, VA, a goal we had from the beginning.
The buildings at Frederick House have had many lives including, doctors' offices, clothing and shoe shops, knitting shop, boarding house, dormitory, college class rooms or offices, silent picture shows, fine dining, delicatessen, design studio, auto repair, office supply, book store, Chamber of Commerce, Retail Merchants Association, and stable. The Bowers family kept a cow in the lower level of Bowers House. Esteemed Staunton Architect, T.J. Collins was involved with two of our buildings, Patrick House and the Augusta Street building. Ask to see the photograph of Patrick House before it was redesigned by T.J. Collins, which is displayed in Chumley's Tearoom where we serve breakfast.
Although neither of us has seen a ghost at Frederick House, there is evidence of paranormal presence. Let us know if you see any of our historic residents.
In the Cochran family, there were seven daughters who went to Mary Baldwin College. Page Womack's niece married a fraternity brother of Joe. George McGovern and Twila Tharp have stayed at Frederick House. Page Womack liked room 15 because of the sun from the bay window. She could not afford to keep the heat on during cold winter days, so she stayed warm by the bay window. Dr. Crawford drove a long-nosed Buick that he parked in Womack 18. John McLear kept his car in Womack 18 when his watch repair shop was across Frederick Street. The first x-ray in Staunton was in Young House. A beauty parlor was in Bowers 21.