The Carlyle House was completed in 1753 by the English merchant John Carlyle for his young bride Sarah Fairfax. Two years later the Carlyle House gained a foothold in history when British General Braddock made the mansion his headquarters. Braddock summoned five colonial governors to meet there to plan the early campaigns of the French and Indian War. Their decision to tax the colonists to pay for the war would eventually spark the American Revolution.

On the National Register of Historic Places, Carlyle House has the distinction of being the only 18th-century Palladian-style stone house in Alexandria. The original nails, plaster and stone used to construct the house over 250 years ago are still visible in the house.