Lloyd Diehl Schaeffer, 83, a retired Northern Virginia businessman who used to own historic Carlyle House, died of cancer Wednesday at Sibley Memorial Hospital.

In 1941, he purchased the Carlyle Apartments and historic Carlyle House in Alexandria. He partly restored the house before selling it to the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority in 1970, and donated the house's antiques to the authority.

Carlyle House was originally built as a fort to shelter Alexandria settlers from Indians. It was here that George Washington was commissioned a major in the army under Gen. Edward Braddock during the Seven Years War. The house was the scene of a 1755 meeting of royal governors who recommended that a tax be levied on the colonies to help pay the costs of the Seven Years War.

Mr. Schaeffer was a native of Westminster, Md., and came to Washington in 1923. He owned and operated landfill and earth-moving firms, and during the 1930s founded and operated coal, brick, paving and fence companies, as well as the Fairfax Asphalt Co. He retired in the late 1960s.

He was a Mason, a member of the Sons of the American Revolution, and had belonged to the Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church for 50 years.

During World War I, Mr. Schaeffer served with the air service of the French army, and was wounded in action. His decorations included the Croix de Guerre with palms, the French Military Medal, and the Purple Heart.

He is survived by his wife, the former Helen Ott, of the home in Washington; a son, Robert S., of Potomac; a sister, Lela Mowen, of Chatman, N.J., and three grandchildren.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the American Cancer Society.