Montpiler-Lightwell Restaurant Slideshow

Here’s a little slideshow from our trip to Montpiler–home of James Madison. Photography isn’t permitted in the living quarters of the mansion so all you will see here are images from the cellar rooms–kitchens and storage areas–and outside on the magnificent grounds. There are also a few pictures from the visitor center which is entirely separate from the mansion.

After the tour we asked about a good place to eat in in the nearby town of Orange, VA .  A very kind staff member working in the gift shop suggested “The Light Well  Restaurant” on main street in Orange.  The building the restaurant is in is a very old structure–probably dating from the early 1900s and at the back of the main dining area if you look up you’ll see a large opening in the ceiling going another 15 or 20 feet up  like an atrium with windows on three sides. The windows are painted over or covered now but in the past they functioned as a “Light well”–a kind of elaborate skylight. Hence the name of the restaurant.  It occurs to me that in hot weather with the windows open, the well probably drew off hot air  and cooled the building. The food was excellent and the staff very pleasant and professional.

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