This historic home in Richmond, Virginia, has records dating back to 1920, but may have been built prior to the turn of the century.

Inscription in Attic Rafters, dtd 1899

Inscription in Attic Rafters, dtd 1899

While research is still being conducted as to the original owners who built the home, it is believed that the house was built before the turn of the century as indicated by initials and date of 1899 inscribed in the attic rafters.   In 1920, Henry S. Taylor, Grandfather of Sarah (Seay) Fisher, purchased the home from the original owners.  It was one of few houses and structures upon dozens of acres of land in this area during this time.  It had a brick built root cellar and a shed for iron works.  The property also had a barn and a windmill that later burned down and was never replaced.   In 1950, the house was unoccupied for almost 4 years until Mr and Mrs Florian (and Julia) Seay, couldn’t bear to see this beautiful home empty and purchased it in 1954.  They took care of the home and refurbished the walls, floors and roof.  Their master bedroom was the largest room on the second floor.  They had two daughters, Jean and Sarah. There were as many as 10-12 family members and relatives that lived in the house at one time with servants living on the third floor of the home.  Sarah and her sister were both married in the home in front of the main living room fireplace. Sarah Fisher and Jean Hall are still living today.  


In 1958, the house was sold to Mr and Mrs Leonard Blackburn. Leonard Blackburn started a church in the home, with sermons preached on the staircase while the congregation sat in the main living room.  It is believed that Mrs Catherine New Blackburn came from a family of wealth, and with the help of the congregation, built the sanctuary and Richmond Baptist Temple next door.  Catherine Blackburn passed away in 1987.  Rev Blackburn remarried to the former Evelyn “Todie” Williams and was married for 20 years before she passed in 2005.  Around the turn of the century, prior to Rev Blackburn’s death, the ministry was passed on to Rev. Frank Gooch and the church became Lighthouse Baptist Church. In September 2006, Rev. Leonard Blackburn died leaving the house in extensive disrepair and much needed rehabilitation. The home was tied up in an estate for several years with title and ownership later held by attorneys until it was sold to Marisse Hammer in early 2016.  The home has received extensive reconstruction and will continue to receive rehabilitation to restore it to its former glory.   The large yellow home on 5606 Staples Mill Rd continues to be a popular landmark in Richmond for those who often travel this busy highway.  This unique property is now the new home of The Richmond Powerhouse.

This beautiful home on Staples Mill Rd was one of very few buildings built on many acres of land over a hundred years ago. Now it is a busy Richmond highway.
— Sarah Fisher


Tour the NEW Powerhouse


The Richmond Powerhouse is open for membership to all women who are small business owners or in professional careers. We believe in diversity, empowerment, achievement and the belief that you can reach your goals and personal fulfillment despite hectic lives. We love your great ideas and your passion for life and we want to encourage more of it through our amazing new facility envisioned just for our members.

You can learn more about us by joining us at one of our member or committee meetings, volunteering at one of our events or making an appointment to take a tour of our facility.  Meeting and event dates vary so please contact us in advance or check our website for tour dates to coordinate your participation. We look forward to meeting you!