This three-story Georgian structure is the "Great House" at Shirley plantation, an estate on the James River in Charles City County. In 1613 Sir Thomas West, twelfth baron De La Warr, acquired the original plantation lands, which Edward Hill took over in 1638. Shirley plantation is the oldest plantation still in operation in Virginia and the oldest family-owned business in North America. The mansion shown here was constructed between circa 1723 and 1738 and remains largely in its original state. Construction began after Elizabeth Hill—who had inherited the plantation from her father—married John Carter, the eldest son of Robert "King" Carter. Descendants of the Hill Carter family have lived in the house for eleven generations.