Tompkins Cottage, located on Brickbat Road, takes its name from former owner Christopher Tompkins, a mariner, wealthy landowner, and store-owner, who bought the property and structure in 1837.
The cottage has been undergoing reorganization and is incorporating new themes in its displays. The recently-restored coat belonging to Capt. Sally L. Tompkins is featured in the exhibit area honoring her.
Other new items on display in the cottage are enlarged reprints of photographs taken in 1935 by Francis Benjamin Johnston (1865-1952), which are housed at The Library of Congress.
One is of Poplar Grove, which was once part of the extensive holdings of Samuel Williams (1725-1789) and birthplace of Capt. Sally Tompkins. The second is of the Tidemill at Poplar Grove. The present structure replaced the original colonial mill that burned during the Civil War. The mill operated until 1912 and is the only remaining tidemill in Virginia.