St. Peter's Church in New Kent
New Kent is a tiny unofficial town in eastern Virginia, with a population of under 250.

It was established in 1654 and named for the county of Kent in England. Today, it consists of a few homes and historic church.

People Born in New Kent

Martha Washington

New Kent in People's Lives

Martha Washington: I was born here in 1731, on my parent's Chestnut Grove plantation just outside this town. I was the eldest daughter of a wealthy plantation owner from England. My mother was of English, Welsh, and French heritage. I grew up here with all of my brothers and sisters, in the mansion house on this sprawling, beautiful riverside estate. I had a feminine education, and grew into a refined Southern belle. In 1750, at the age of 18, I married a wealthy planter over twice my age, and moved to his own property, the White House plantation, a few miles upriver. I had four children, but none of them survived past young adulthood. In 1757, when I was 25, my husband died, leaving everything to me and making me a wealthy widow. An intelligent and quick-witted woman, I deftly managed and controlled the five plantations that I now owned, even personally corresponding with London tobacco merchants to bargain for the best price. These were happy years at the White House plantation, which I made my own. I enjoyed my newfound wealth, success, freedom and independence, but was sometimes lonely. I was courted by George Washington here, and at the same time was courted by another Virginia planter far wealthier than George. In 1759, at the age of 27, I married George here, in a grand wedding, to which I wore purple silk shoes. George and I spent our honeymoon here at the White House for 3 weeks before moving to his own Mount Vernon estate, where we planned to make our home. Decades later, the name of our White House plantation would inspire the naming of the future presidential White House.

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