Oregon Hill is a historic neighborhood nestled amidst some of Richmond’s most prominent landmarks, including the James River, VCU, Hollywood Cemetery, and the Virginia War Memorial. Its boundaries encompass Cary Street to the North, Belvidere Street to the East, the James River to the South, and Cherry Street to the West. Legend has it that the neighborhood earned its name from canal laborers who settled there in the mid-1800s, likening their relocation to Oregon in terms of difficulty and effort.
Oregon Hill, like many of Richmond’s historic neighborhoods, has undergone multiple phases of transformation throughout its history. Its origins trace back to the mid-1700s when it served as the picturesque country home known as “Belvidere” for William Byrd III. As the city of Richmond began to take shape, this land experienced changes. The original home on the property burned down in the 1800s, and as commercial activity along the James River flourished, the land was subdivided and primarily sold to employees of various companies, including The James River and Kanawha Canal Company, Tredegar Iron Works, and Albemarle Paper Company. The City formally annexed the neighborhood in 1867 and acquired the land that now comprises Riverside Park in 1889.
Following the Civil War and the neighborhood’s annexation by the City, Oregon Hill saw the construction of many more row houses and commercial structures. These buildings showcased various architectural styles, including Italianate, Greek Revival, and Carpenter Gothic. The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw the addition of commercial buildings with storefronts, which played a crucial role in supporting the growing residential population. Many of these structures were erected between 1870 and 1910 and continue to be utilized today.
While Oregon Hill is renowned for its commitment to historical preservation, there have been some new construction projects in recent years. One notable example is The Overlook, a collection of townhomes situated at the southern end of the neighborhood, overlooking the James River.
The Overlook project, initiated in the early 2000s, has attracted home buyers seeking to reside in a historic area without the maintenance demands of an antique home. Its excellent proximity to VCU, The Fan, Downtown, and the various recreational opportunities provided by the James River Park System make it an appealing choice.
Despite experiencing numerous transformations over the years, Oregon Hill has cultivated a distinct personality that sets it apart from many surrounding neighborhoods. Here are a few unique experiences to be had in the area:
L’opossum – Winner of multiple awards and subject of many articles in highly reputable publications. Need I say more?
Hollywood Cemetery – I know. I know. It’s a cemetery. But this is not your ordinary cemetery. Perched high above the James River, you’ll find amazing views and beautifully crafted monuments and gravestones.
Virginia War Memorial – This is a place of honor, education and architectural beauty dedicated to Virginians killed during the World, Vietnam and Korea wars as well as more contemporary conflicts such as the war on terror.
Riverside Park / North Bank Trail – The James River Park System and interconnecting trails are a major part of what makes Richmond such a unique city. A hike along the North Bank Trail from Oregon Hill to Maymont is a great way to spend a sunny day.
Oregon Hill Homes for Sale
Phone: +1 804.397.5078
Multiple-time Distinguished Achiever award winner, 2017 Richmond’s Finest Business Professional and a VIrginia Living Magazine Top 50 Realtor. Architecture lover, outdoor enthusiast and a true fan of all things RVA.