This plat is part of a school exercise book kept by Joseph Addison Carter (1794-1838) of Lancaster County, VA, while he was a student at the Tusculum Grammer School. The school was operated by Charles Tackett (c.1780-1834) at Tusculum Plantation in Stafford County, which was owned by Dr. Valentine Peyton (1756-1822). In addition to several pages of school exercises, the book includes a decorative frontis with Carter’s multiple signatures, as well as several plats which were part of his surveying exercises. An advertisement in Fredericksburg’s Virginia Herald on 7 November 1810 noted that the school’s curriculum included “Practical Surveying.”
The most interesting of these plats depicts Snowden and Hollywood, two plantations on the north side of the Rappahannock River that belonged to Alexander Morson (1759-1822) and his wife, Ann Casson Alexander (1781-1831). Because Snowden and Hollywood stood below the fall line, it is notable that the image includes two ships sailing up river to the port town of Fredericksburg.