The Home of Robert E. Lee - About Arlington House
More than 650,000 people visit Arlington House annually. Sitting high atop the ridgeline in Arlington, Virginia, overlooking the Potomac River and directly across from the United States Capitol, Arlington House is one of the most visible sights in Washington D.C. Built between 1802-1818, Arlington House originally was home to the family of George Washington Parke Custis, adopted grandson of our nation’s first president, George Washington.
George Washington The house later became home to the family of one of the most famous Confederate Civil War Generals, Robert E. Lee. Arlington House stands guard over Arlington Robert E. Lee National Cemetery, which was established on the grounds of the 1,100 acre Arlington House estate. Wayne Parks leans against his great-grandfather’s grave marker in Arlington National Cemetery.
Park’s great-grandfather was one of the slaves from Mount Vernon that helped build Arlington House. He also lived in and around what is now the cemetery after being freed from servitude to the Lee family. “I was sitting on this wall gazing out over the cemetery and all of a sudden I got it,” Parks said. “Our DNA is intrinsically intertwined in this property, integrated in this property. The spirits of my ancestors continue to exist here in this property, so I find like my grandfather, I now come here for strength, I come here to commune with them.”