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Greenway Downs

A Community Since 1942

Pre Civl War and The Dulany Family

THE DULANY FAMILY

In August of 1812 the Dulany manor house in Greenway Downs, called Oak Mount, and its barn played a brief part in local history  when  Captain Thomas Tingey ordered Mordecai Booth to get the gunpowder out of  the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. to keep it out of the hands of the British.  Booth presumably chose the Dulany barn for safe storage of 120 barrels of gunpowder on the first night out of Washington because Captain Tingey's wife, Anne Bladen Dulany Tingey, was related  to Daniel F. Dulany Sr. , the occupant of Oak Mount at the time. 

Fast forward to the start of the Civil War and we find Oak Mount occupied by Colonel Daniel Dulany, son of Daniel Sr . The complicated political tensions in this part of Virginia were very much mirrored in the Dulany family's political turmoil. Colonel Daniel Dulany voted against secession and when the die was cast he chose to serve the Union and serve as aide to Governor Pierpont, an anti-slavery Whig who helped create West Virginia.

The deed to Oak Mount and the surrounding farm was actually owned by Jonathan P. Dulany, brother to Daniel F. Dulany Sr., and uncle to the Colonel.  Jonathan  also owned extensive acreage in Loudoun County and he lived in a real mansion called "Welbourne",  near present day Middleburg. Jonathan allowed his brother Daniel to live at Oak Mount, and upon his death, Daniel's widow and children.

Although both Colonel Daniel Dulany and his Uncle John voted against Virginia secession,  John chose to serve  the Confederacy.

To complicate matters even more,  pro-Union Colonel Daniel Dulaney's son Daniel (this is the 3rd Daniel in the male line, so don't get too confused) chose to serve the Confederacy as well and ran with Colonel Mosby's Rangers, who often hung out at Welbourne in Loudoun County.

There is fascinating account of the young Private Daniel Dulany taking part in a Mosby raid in 1863. The raiders were trying to catch Mr. Pierpont in Franconia one night, but actually ended up capturing Daniel's father instead and sending him to Libby Prison in Richmond. Colonel Dulany was later exchanged in a release agreement for a Confederate Colonel at Fort Monroe. 

Tragically, Private Daniel Dulany was killed in action during a Mosby raid in Herndon, Virginia in 1864. His body was never recovered but his name is on a plaque on the wall outside the Falls Church Community Center.

In 1869, Colonel Daniel Dulany found himself embroiled  in a chancery suit brought against him by his Uncle John over Oak Mount and its 300 acres. The chancery suit is 55 pages long, but it contains a  three-page letter in which Daniel Dulany tries to explain to his Uncle John why he was living at Oak Mount and how he had done his best to protect the property during and after the war.  Since, as Daniel pointed out, Uncle John was known to have quartered Mosby's Rangers at Welbourne, his property and Oak Mount near Falls Church was going to be confiscated and auctioned off. Daniel argued that since he himself was clearly a Unionist, he was trying to prevent this and was offering John different options to save the house and property. You can read for yourself what John Dulany thought of this below.

We also learn from Daniel Dulany's letter that he had applied for monetary compensation from the government for damages done to the house and property during the war, but his claim was denied. In particular, he told Uncle John that the house needed a new roof by winter or the walls would be damaged beyond repair. Apparently, things did not work out and by June of 1869 the farm was insolvent.  Oak Mount and about 109 acres  were sold to Silas B. Tripp, of Duchess, New York. The rest of the acreage was sold off to other buyers.