Salona was built on part of the 1719 Thomas Lee 2,862 acre grant known as Langley. During the War of 1812, the estate's owner, the Rev. William Maffitt, reputedly gave refuge to President James Madison as the British burned Washington. Civil War Camp Griffin occupied Salona, then owned by Jacob Smoot, through the winter of 1861/62, the house serving as headquarters for Union General William "Baldy" Smith. A working farm until the Smoot family began selling acreage in 1947, Salona was purchased in stages by Clive and Susan Duval beginning in 1953. The Duval family later arranged for the preservation of the house and property.