Welcome to Southern Sighs
Southern Sighs offers you a refuge from the stress of daily life, the pressures of the job and the multiple obligations that can weigh on the spirit. Here, you can breathe fresh farm air as you relax on the porch and watch the world go by. Usually, such calmness elicits a sigh.
The home was built in 1913 by the Northam family as a plantation for seasonal crops, farm animals and lumber. The Northam family was heavily engaged in the lumber mill industry and shipped their wood, to include Cypress, to Baltimore for shipment around the U.S. and for export. The family home later served as a regional home for boys and then functioned as the Dragon Run Inn for over 25 years. The manse stood vacant for three years until the Budd-Landgraf team purchased the home in 2016 and began massive renovations while remaining true to the original architectural style.
Come join us at Southern Sighs for a slice of serenity.
Our History & Unique Surroundings
Located in the heart of America’s early colonial history, Southern Sighs Inn is on historic Route 17. Also known as the Tidewater Trail, Rt. 17 was one of the first recorded byways in Colonial Americas, and a major route of commerce and war. Route 17 was first documented on the famous map of the Chesapeake Bay created by Captain John Smith in 1612.
The Inn is located in Middlesex County, which played a critical role in both the American Revolution and the War Between the States. Here, and within an easy drive of Southern Sighs, are the historic sites and landmarks that gave birth to our nation and the bloody battles, 100 years later, where brother fought brother during the Civil War.
This part of Virginia was birthplace to founding fathers and civil war icons, as well as leaders in government, agriculture, literature and science. George Washington’s boyhood home is located in nearby historic Stafford County. Robert E. Lee’s birthplace, Stratford Hall, is just over an hour away. Novelist William Styron attended Christchurch School just five miles away. The home of Major Walter Reed -- the US military physician whose team identified the cause of yellow fever – is down the road in historic Gloucester County. It’s important to mention that Virginia has given the country eight presidents and three are from this area, including George Washington.
From Revolutionary war heroes to Medal of Honor winners, our area has historically been, and is today, closely aligned with our military and the brave men and women who continue to guard our shores. Jamestown, the first permanent English-speaking settlement in America, is nearby, along with historic Yorktown, where George Washington defeated the British in 1781 during the Siege of Yorktown. That battle effectively ended the War for Independence. Colonial Williamsburg, which was the capital of the Virginia Colony and Commonwealth of Virginia from 1699 to 1780, is nearby.
In Matthews, Virginia, the last British colonial governor was driven off US soil. Meanwhile, Historic Gloucester and Saluda court houses - which are both still in use - harken back to a time when the early Colonial government stood at the heart of every new and burgeoning town.
This area is also home to America’s historic early plantations. Several are located along Route 5, which roughly parallels the banks of the James River. The Berkley Planation, for example - which was home to the first Thanksgiving in America as well as the Colony’s first official whiskey distillery – is just one of several historic properties along the James River that bear witness to the importance of agriculture from Colonial times to today.
In nearby Urbanna, the French agreed to support the American Revolution, as documented in a treaty signed in the Lansdowne House. Today, Urbana is home of the world famous Urbana Oyster Festival. Now in its 63rd year, this annual fall event attracts thousands to the shores of the Rappahannock River.
Spirits are also high in this part of Virginia, with craft breweries, vineyards and boutique distilleries ready to welcome you to sample their wares. The area is also a mecca for boating and sailing enthusiasts.
Richmond, the capital of the Confederacy during the Civil War, is an hour away.
Whether visiting our area for an oyster roast, or to enjoy our famous Chesapeake Bay crabs, or retrace the steps of our founding fathers, Southern Sighs welcomes you to rest awhile amid your travels and enjoy the stay.