A Brief History

Or, A Brief Look at a Long History

Well into the 20th century most Americans lived and worked on farms or in small towns much like this one. Few of those places remain much as they were. Waterford, miraculously, is one that has.


A view of Main Street in the 1930s.

Walk with us through time for clues to Waterford’s character and tenacity. It is a story of ordinary people who did extraordinary things. They built a thriving town from wilderness; they endured a long and bloody war that threatened to destroy it; and in good times and bad they held tightly to their vision of a special place.

In 1733 Amos and Mary Janney, members of the Society of Friends (Quakers), traveled south from Bucks County, Pennsylvania, to the wilds of northern Virginia in search of open land and opportunity. They purchased 400 promising acres on the south fork of Catoctin Creek.