As you look at this structure, note that this is one of the last surviving displays of wealth from early Port Royal. This house was built around 1770, and owned by John Hipkins who was a prosperous merchant and land speculator. His family was well known in the community for 175 years. In 1784, Hipkins became the owner here. Dr. Thomas Coke, renowned English Methodist missionary visited the Hipkins home in 1791. In 1796, Hipkins insured the home for $1,250, the brick storehouse on the corner for $666, and a granary on the lot for $500. The house was 50 feet by 24 feet, one story with a wooden Dutch roof, set back 21 feet from Water Street. The retail store on the corner was 34 feet along Water Street and 21 feet wide, single-storied with brick walls & a wooden roof. Attached to the store was a frame shed 15 feet deep. Between Hipkins’ house and the Grays’ house on adjoining Lot 20 stood a frame shed granary, one story, 28 feet long into the Lot and 16 feet wide.
After her husband’s death in 1804, Elizabeth Hipkins continued to own and occupy Lot 21. In 1805 Mrs. Hipkins moved to a small house, now gone, on Lot 10 in the Town. She lived there until her death in 1829, and was buried beside her husband in King George County.
–About Courtesy of “Hidden Village: Port Royal, Virginia 1744 – 1981″ by Ralph Emmett Fall