When you think of purple, you might think of fresh, fat grapes. Or the robes of some European royal. Or maybe even the Grimace character from McDonald’s. But chances are you don’t think of it as a color to paint a house.
Don’t tell that to Rhett and Jennifer McDonough. They own a proudly purple house at Ashburn Road and Jenkins Lane in Old Ashburn – and their lavender-tinted home has a remarkable history.
In 1882, Amos Jenkins built the structure as the Ashburn House Hotel. At the time, the hotel could accommodate 23 guests, according to a 1909 issue of the Loudoun Mirror newspaper. Rooms went for $1.25 per day, or $5.50 per week.
The hotel was a popular lodging place for sportsmen who came to the area to fish in Goose Creek as well as tourists who wanted to explore the Loudoun countryside by horse and buggy
“It’s definitely different from all the other houses,” Jennifer McDonough said. “It needed a lot of work. It needs a lot of work still. But it’s a great house, a great neighborhood.
The McDonoughs live in the home with their four school-aged children. The family bought the house in 2015 but didn’t move in until almost two years later after renovations had been finished.
The work included gutting the second floor and knocking out the walls dividing the house’s 10 bedrooms. The former hotel has enough space that each McDonough child has their own bedroom.
To learn what the McDonoughs found hidden behind a fireplace mantle in the home, why people sometimes drive by and honk at them, and to also learn about a second purple home located on Farmwell Road, you can click here and read the rest of the story on the Ashburn Magazine website.
(Photo at top: Astri Wee Photography)