Patrick Wood and Holly Chatham's living room contains all the things they love most. (Courtesy of Patrick Wood and Holly Chatham)

Patrick Wood and Holly Chatham own a historic home in Old Town Alexandria that was completed when James Madison was president. Wood told us what they love about their living room:

In the room, we’re surrounded by the things we love: On the right are old and loved books that have been longtime companions to us; on the left Holly’s beautiful piano, which represents the large part music has played in our lives; and behind us on the left wall the painting Holly commissioned to celebrate the completion of my PhD. And of course, the three windows face the lovely townhouses of Old Town, a place where we very much enjoy living.

The living room's three windows face other townhouses in Old Town Alexandria.

We were looking for a place with space for Holly’s piano, and this particular room came with some unexpected historic charm. The room has space for the piano because it’s wide for a home in Old Town: We have three windows across the front, and our main entry door is not on the front of the house but off a charming brick alleyway on the side of the house. It turns out that this is itself a neat piece of history. Ours is the oldest house on our block — 1810 at the latest, and parts date back to 1790 or earlier. The alley is where, way back when, horses would be led behind the house. It all adds to the charm and uniqueness of living in Old Town.

In this new ongoing feature, we ask homeowners what they love most about their home. If you’d like to share your story, please send a photo of the room/feature you love (preferably with you in the photo, too) and 200 to 250 words describing the space and why you love it to:

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