From the Washington Post, 10/30/1900, p. 3, c. 4
MISS VAN LEW’S SECRET ROOM.
Attic Chamber Found in Which She Concealed Prisoners from Libby.
Special to the Washington Post.
Richmond, Va., Oct. 26. – The secret chamber in which Miss Lizzie Van Lew concealed in her home the Federal prisoners whom she helped to escape from Libby Prison during the war has just been located in the old Van Lew mansion. It is an attic room, just under the roof, five feet in pitch at the highest point and as dark as a prison cell.
There is a secret door in the wall, barely large enough for a man to get through. The board door fits flush into the wall and shows that it was plastered over so that it could not be detected. The door fastened on the inside. Part of the flooring is still in the small sloping room. It is not believed that Miss Van Lew ever showed the room to anybody.