Built between 1800 and 1825 by Irish immigrant William Irving, Hartwood House began as the center of a 5000 acre plantation stretching from the Rappahannock River to the Warrenton-Fredericksburg Road (now US 17).
During the Civil War, Hartwood House served as a regional headquarters for both Union and Confederate forces after changing hands several times. The large barn on the property was used as a field hospital for Confederate soldiers.
For the next 100 years, the property was used for various residential and commercial purposes until being allowed to deteriorate. In 1972 the Virginia Department of Transportation sought to raze the house and barn to accomodate their efforts to widen US Route 17. Governor Linwood Holton intervened on behalf of the Historic Falmouth Foundation and the Virginia Landmarks Commission to prevent the destruction of the buildings.
In 1983 the main house underwent a massive restoration effort which included raising and fortifying the foundation. The barn was also restored to include several upgrades to its interior.
Today, Hartwood House provides scenic and elegant indoor/outdoor event hosting and catering services for wedding receptions, formal functions and special events.