Hanover County is part of the Richmond metropolitan area, located about 12 miles north of Richmond and 90 miles south of Washington DC. It is serviced by the major byways of I-95 and I-295, as well as the Richmond International Airport. Hanover County is the home of Ashland, an incorporated town, which continues to serve as a major railroad depot. With a population of 86,000, Hanover offers the conveniences of suburban living with a strong rural influence.
Hanover is home to many of the area’s most beautiful horse farms, both large equestrian facilities and smaller, family-operated farmettes, or mini-farms, many of which provide lessons and competition opportunities. Hanover’s farm country also produces high quality livestock and the internationally renowned Hanover Tomato. Hanover’s charming rural atmosphere has also appealed to owners of many beautiful country estates.
Hanover’s history can be traced back to the colonial period. It was officially formed in 1720, and has been home to many of the nation’s influential figures, including Patrick Henry, Dolley Madison, and Henry Clay. Hanover was also home to several influential Civil War battles, including The Seven Days Battle; Cold Harbor, and North Anna as well as numerous smaller battles and skirmishes.
Early plantations and historical architecture can still be visited today at many of Hanover’s historic estates, including Totomoi Plantation and the Edmund Ruffin Plantation. The manor house of Totomoi Plantation dates back to the 1790s and has privately owned by the same family since the 18th century. Edmund Ruffin was one of the most influential figures in Southern politics in the Civil War era, as well as prominent tobacco farmer in Chesapeake. His large plantation is maintained today by his descendents.