Formerly the Fauquier County jail, the original four-cell jail was built in 1808. In 1823, a larger stone jail was built just to the rear of the older structure and the 1808 jail was then converted into a house for the jailor.
The rear structure contains original cells as well as an exercise yard, which was also used as a hanging yard; hangings took place in the yard until 1896. This is one of the most perfectly preserved old jails in Virginia, and operated as a jail until 1966. The Old Jail is located next to the Old Courthouse built in 1890, which is copied after the Parthenon in Athens.
Today, the Old Jail is the home of the Fauquier Historical Society and the county historical museum. Museum exhibits include the original jail structures along with a collection of artifacts and items representing the history of Fauquier County's Native Americans, revolutionary era, Civil War era and Colonel John S. Mosby plus early industry, toys and more.