In 1865, Richard B. Lloyd purchased land next to Mount Ida, his brother Johns estate, in North Ridge. Alexandria architect Benjamin F. Price designed Richard Lloyds residence, an Italianate structure. Lloyd was a farmer and a real estate agent whose daughter married Cassius F. Lee, Jr. When the home became the Lees, they named it Belmont Farm, after another Lee family property.
Belmont Farm reached south to what is now Lloyds Lane and in addition to the main house there was a caretakers cottage. The Prosise family later acquired the property and in 1913, sold 15 acres and the main house to Paul Kester, a playwright who had previously owned Woodlawn and then Gunston Hall in Fairfax County. The property was acquired by Alexandria (later Arlington) County to be used as a school until George Mason High opened on Commonwealth Avenue in 1924.
The Lloyd home would remain an educational institution after it was sold for just over $35,000 in June 1924 to the then-new St. Agnes Episcopal School for Girls. The Richard B. Lloyd House was remodeled and enlarged, and the school opened that fall.
The house was used for classrooms and later as dormitories, with a wing added in the late 1920s. In the 1930s, when this photograph of the historic house was taken, new buildings were erected on the campus, and to the south, the Prosise land was divided with the extension of West Windsor Avenue to West Braddock Road.
St. Agnes and the Episcopal school for boys, St. Stephens, merged in the 1990s and the Richard B. Lloyd House at 400 Fontaine Street remains part of the St. Stephens&St. Agnes School.
Out of the Attic is provided by the Office of Historic Alexandria.