IWCHS NewsNotes Volume 1

(as issued by Albert ... to send him an email, Click Here)

The Volume 2 NewsNotes can be found here . . .

 

This list is not complete, mostly because of the missing NewsNotes not being received due to irregularities in the transmission processes. Persons having copies of the missing NewsNotes are requested to forward them to: webmaster@iwchs.com for inclusion in this list ... thanks . . .

The NewsNotes are arranged in numerical order by issuing date

NewsNotes 70 [Apr 27, 2005]
NewsNotes 69 [Apr 24, 2005] NewsNotes 68 [Apr 18, 2005] NewsNotes 67 [Apr 13, 2005]
NewsNotes 66 [Apr 9, 2005] NewsNotes 65 [Apr 1, 2005] NewsNotes 64 [Mar 29, 2005]
NewsNotes 63 [Mar 27, 2005] NewsNotes 62 [Mar 15, 2005] NewsNotes 61 [Mar 11, 2005]
NewsNotes 60 [Mar 9, 2005] NewsNotes 59 [Mar 4, 2005] NewsNotes 58 [Mar 1, 2005]
NewsNotes 57 [Feb 27, 2005] NewsNotes 56 Feb 12, 2005 NewsNotes 55, Feb 12, 2005
NewsNotes 54 [Feb 6, 2005] NewsNotes 53A [Feb 1, 2005] NewsNotes 53 [Jan 29, 2005]
NewsNotes 52 [Jan 26, 2005] NewsNotes 51 [Jan 11, 2004] NewsNotes 50 [Jan 8, 2005]
NewsNotes 49 [Jan 5, 2005] NewsNotes 48 [Jan 1, 2005] NewsNotes 47 [Dec 28, 2004]
NewsNotes 46 [Dec 17, 2004] NewsNotes 45 NewsNotes 44B [Dec 14, 2004]
NewsNotes 44A [Dec 7, 2004] NewsNotes 44 [Dec 7, 2004] NewsNotes 43 [Nov 30, 2004]
NewsNotes 42B [Nov 23, 2004] NewsNotes 42A [Nov 20, 2004] NewsNotes 42 [Nov 28, 2004]
NewsNotes 41A [Nov 12, 2004] NewsNotes 41 [Nov 9, 2004] NewsNotes 40A [Nov 6, 2004]
NewsNotes 40 [Nov 5, 2004] NewsNotes 39 [Oct 29, 2004] NewsNotes 38 [Oct 23, 2004]
NewsNotes 37 [Oct 22, 2004] NewsNotes 36 [Oct 16, 2004] NewsNotes 35
NewsNotes 34 [Oct 8, 2004] NewsNotes 33 [Oct 2, 2004] NewsNotes 32 [Aug 28, 2004]
NewsNotes 31 [Sep 25, 2004] NewsNotes 30 [Aug 17, 2004] NewsNotes 29 [Sep 14, 2004]
NewsNotes 28 [Sep 7, 2004] NewsNotes 27 [Sep 5, 2004] NewsNotes 26 [Aug 26, 2004]
NewsNotes 25 [Aug 21, 2004] NewsNotes 24 [Aug 17, 2004] NewsNotes 23
NewsNotes 22 [Aug 5, 2004] NewsNotes [Jul 16, 2004] NewsNotes [Jul 9, 2004]
NewsNotes [Jul 6, 2004] NewsNotes [Jun 30, 2004] NewsNotes [Jun 29, 2004]
NewsNotes [Jun 2, 2004] NewsNotes [Jun 1, 2004] NewsNotes [May 22, 2004]
NewsNotes 13 NewsNotes 12 NewsNotes 11
NewsNotes 10 NewsNotes 9 NewsNotes 8
NewsNotes 7 NewsNotes 6 NewsNotes 5
NewsNotes 4 NewsNotes 3 NewsNotes 2
NewsNotes 1

NewsNotes 70 [Apr 27, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Happy first anniversary to NewsNotes! We began April 26, 2004, as merely an email guide to the next deployment of the Gravesite Survey Team. Number 70 will be the last issue in "Volume 1" which did not exist until this moment because I just made it up. Next issue will be Vol. 2, No. 1, and so forth. Past (historical) NewsNotes are always available on the Society website at www.iwchs.com due to the diligence of Ernie Powell.

Gravesite Survey Team will meet 10AM tomorrow at the Carrollton Public Library on Brewer's Neck Blvd. If weather does not suit field work, we will stay and continue our effort to record our accomplishments on the DHR forms. If/when this gets boring we have several small sites in the vicinity we can record.

Christian Home Baptist Church Cemetery report is now published and available thanks to datamistress AnneMarie Piland. For copies ask me or Ernie Powell at epowellsr@aol.com.

Jerianne Gardner's "Courthouse Cannon" has now been identified but not yet actually located. It is US manufacture M1906 4.7 inch gun, not a howitzer. A similar piece is displayed on the outside left front corner of the Virginia War Museum in Newport News. Inscription on the breech block is "4.7 INCH GUN MODEL OF 1906."

"Bethlehem Steel" is on the right side of the breech and the muzzle face reads "Watervliet Arsenal 1910 2860 Pounds No. 21 C.M.W." So all of you carry with you the photos we published with NewsNotes 69 and look for similar guns (like in other counties and outside VFW and American Legion Halls) so maybe we can find our cannon and bring her home.

"St. Luke's Village" development of 430 housing units at Benn's Church was approved by the county Board of Supervisors last Thursday despite your Society's opposition to the mercenary use of the name of our county's most historic shrine. A brilliant speech by yours truly was probably to no avail since the St. Luke's Board of Trustees themselves did not object to the commercial misuse of the name they are entrusted with. I also used the occasion to point out the "slightly blasphemous" use of Saint Paul, Saint John and Saint Mathew to identify other places in the development. In any case, your Society took a morally defensible stand against the misuse of county history.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 69 [Apr 24, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite survey today will be at Shiloh Baptist Church on Route 644 aka Fire Tower Road. From Isle of Wight, two miles southwest on Route 258 aka Courthouse Highway, right turn onto Fire Tower and go 2.7 miles west, through Whitley at Route 647 aka Pope Swamp Trail, and the cemetery will be on your left. Numerical address of the church is approximately 8144. This is a smallish (50+ graves) site so we may have time to record some others in the vicinity. If you have not come out for one of our surveys yet this would be a good time to join us and learn how to do it. Weather should be benign if not downright beautiful.

Our President's quest is to locate and restore to its' original site our county's WWI field piece which defended our new courthouse from about 1920 to 1960. Attached, thanks to Dinah Everett, are some photos of it from the Isle of Wight County Museum. It appears to be a 155mm towed howitzer but anyone out there in IWCHS land who can more precisely identify it, knows more about its history, or maybe even where it went or is, please contact Jerianne or me. Restoration of our county's only known modern artillery piece would be a great Society project for 2007. Who knows when we might need fire support! After all, Newport News already has a 260mm cannon in front of the Virginia War Museum and, besides, an arms race would be good for the local economy.  Out of deference and respect for Joe Ferguson, if we can put it back, we will try to aim it not so directly at our Confederate Monument again. What exactly were they thinking back then Joe?

On this same note, Richard MacManus, Supervisor from Smithfield District, has asked the county staff to explore the possibility of borrowing the Nike-Ajax anti-aircraft missile from Hampton's Air Power Park. This would become a display piece at "Nike Park" where 30 of these missiles armed our Nike-Ajax battery "N-75" in Carrollton from 1954 to 1961. This weapon has a longer range than Newport News' cannon, just across the James River, so we would be well on our way to having a decisive military advantage over that Yankee city. Please recall that the entire lower Peninsula, from Fortress Monroe up to the 1862 "Magruder Line" near Williamsburg, remained in enemy hands during the war.

For Patriots' Day next year your Society voted to form a steering committee to explore and develop options and ideas. We have selected Saturday, April 22, 2006, and have already booked the Smithfield Center for a potential largish event like a Clay Jenkinson performance of Theodore Roosevelt/Thomas Jefferson/Meriwether Lewis. So mark your calendar now and be thinking of how you may contribute. Much more on this to follow later.

Regards to all,
Albert

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NewsNotes 68 [Apr 18, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

We will return to Whitehead's Grove Cemetery tomorrow, Wednesday 20 April at 10AM, to finish recording there. Mike Andrews and AnneMarie Piland have already been out there and transcribed close to 100 markers so you two can take a break if you wish and let me and the rest of the crew finish up. If anyone wants to come help please see NewsNotes 67 for precise directions to the cemetery but it's at Whitehead's Baptist Church just north of Wills Corner on Highway 10. You can't miss it. Looks like it will be a nice day to work.

Yankee (and National) "Patriots Day" is today April 19th. On April 18th, 1775, GEN Thomas Gage, Royal Governor of Massachusetts, sent 700 Redcoats from Boston to capture the arms and ammunition stored by the colonists at Concord. Forewarned by Paul Revere's "midnight ride," militia Captain John Parker's company of 70 "minutemen" faced the Brits on April 19th at Lexington Green and someone fired the "shot heard round the world." The rest is history, as they say, and the whole thing ended six years later just across the James River in Yorktown. The Yankees may have started this fight but we Virginians (and a few Frenchmen) finished it.

We Southerners celebrated Smithfield Patriot's Day this past Saturday, April 16th, with a bevy of celebrities in town including George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Richard Henry Lee, George Pickett, LaSalle Corbell and Thomas Jefferson disguised as Clay Jenkinson. The Smithfield Times should give the event some good coverage tomorrow so pick up some extra copies. The weather was perfect and we probably attracted 300-400 tourists into town for the five hour event. Your Society voted to sponsor a similar event next year. Many thanks to the fine supporting cast of all the local costumed reenactors who devoted themselves (and their horse) to highlighting Smithfield's marvelous history.

The Driving Tour Map of historic sites in Isle of Wight County is reaching the design phase. Ground reconnaissance is essentially done. This is Tom Finderson's project but we may be asking some of you for computer design graphic expertise and printing help. The object is to produce a viable guide that we can print or display in several media and go to press by mid 2006.

Restoration of Smithfield's Courthouse Green will really depend on the support of the town. Most folks now are hesitant to eliminate a business space on Main street even if it's for a more noble long-range goal. Property owner Smithfield Foods asked me to put together a quick historical sketch of the property for their consideration. Attached is what I sent in to them.

That's all for now. Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 67 [Apr 13, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF deployment for 10AM Wednesday, 13 April, will be at Whitehead's Grove Baptist Church on Route 10 about 4 miles south of Benn's Church and, coming from the south, 0.2 miles north of Will's Corner. Address is 18366 Benn's Church Blvd (Highway 10/32). Thanks to Pastor Russell Leonard for permission to record. This church was founded in 1845 and moved to its present site in 1877. The church was named for John Whitehead who donated the land for the church.

Archeological Society of Virginia, Nansemond Chapter, will meet Friday, April 15, 6:30p at Dennis' Restaurant, 3356 Western Branch Boulevard in Churchland for dinner and a program. Guest speaker is Ann Brady, Curator, Jamestown/Yorktown Foundation on the topic "The Jamestown Settlement 2007, Exhibitions and Collections." Guests and prospective members are welcome.

Patriots' Day, Saturday, April 16, in Smithfield is shaping up so far as follows:

9a-5p: Smithfield walking tour map available from Tourism Office at 335 Main St..

11a-12:15p: Clay Jenkinson, aka Thomas Jefferson, book signing and discussion at Trinity UMC. $1.00 in advance. Call Nancy Guill at 356-1043.

11a-2p: Isle of Wight Museum Foundation Board display at Trinity UMC

11a-2p: Isle of Wight County Historical Society display at Trinity UMC

11a-5p: Imagine Art revolutionary war art and bronzes display at Trinty UMC and the shop at 207A Main Street

11a-7p: Spaghetti lunch and dinner at Carrollton Ruritan Hall, 14138 Norsworthy Dr. in Carrollton, served by BSA Troop 36. $7.00 at the door.

12p-1p: Lunch at 1752 Smithfield Inn. a la carte menu. Excellent wine selection.

12p-4p: Specialty food tasting drop-in by Smithfield Gourmet Bakery at Mansion House Antiques 120 North Church St.

1p: Doris Gwaltney performs her monologue of LaSalle Corbel's wartime romance with Gen. George Pickett. Mansion on Main. Call Dawn Riddle at 357-0006.

1p-3p: George Washington, aka Kevin Grantz, converses with the public at the APVA owned 1750 Courthouse. Admission free.

1p-3p: Benjamin Franklin, aka William Trevers, continous public interaction in the Isle of Wight County Museum. Admission free

(1p-3p: Tentative, Richard Henry Lee, Virginia Delegate to the Continental Congress of 1776 at a place TBD)

1:30p-2:15p: Book sales and signings by locally renowned author Doris Gwaltney at the Mansion on Main..

3p-3:30p: Gen. George Pickett, aka Joe Ferguson, shares memories of his famous charge at Gettysburg. Mansion on Main.

6p-8p: Jefferson wine tasting by Bon Vivant and french country dinner by the Gourmet Bakery along Hayden's Lane. Call 357-0045 for reservations.

Smithfield Courthouse Green restoration idea has so far elicited no negative reaction by the property owner. Smithfield Times will be doing an article on this in tomorrow's edition. It may take a lot of public and government support as well as a great deal of philanthropic good will on the part of the property owner to really give the concept some legs. Keep your fingers crossed that we may have a small park in the center of town by the 2007 quatracentenary.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 66 [Apr 9, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Next GSSTF field work will be Wednesday, April 13, 10AM at a site TBA. For this coming Sunday, April 10, All hands are expected to turn out for:

Shoal Bay Clean-up third deployment. We made much progress last Sunday but we must give at least one more maximum effort. Please come on out this Sunday, April 10, at 2PM (or earlier if you can) to the 1632 Bay Church and Cemetery site to assist. Bring the usual array of chain saws, rakes and bush axes. If you have not yet assisted us with this project, it is a great opportunity to help restore a colonial church site older than St. Luke's. Our holy grail is the location of the actual foundation area of the church building itself but we must clear a lot of overandundergrowth first. The site is at the northwest intersection of Old Stage Highway and Wrenn's Mill Road.

Local APVA (Preservation Virginia) Branch will hold its annual membership meeting at 4PM, Sunday, April 10, at the 1750 Courthouse in Smithfield. Speaker will be author Barbara Hopper who has published a book on Cabin Point, a principle colonial town in Surry County. If you are a member of the local branch of the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, or if you would like to join, please come. If you promise to sign up for membership, I give you permission to leave the Shoal Bay clean-up project at 3:45PM. Gee, thanks, Albert.

Smithfield Patriots' Day activities for Saturday, April 16th, seems to be expanding daily. Sponsored by the Smithfield Times, we will now also have Benjamin Franklin in the Isle of Wight County Museum from 1-3PM. Mr. Franklin will interact with the public while seated in the main gallery amidst, appropriately, our current kite exhibit. "Poor Richard" will join "Mr. Jefferson" (Clay Jenkinson) and George Washington (Kevin Grantz) for a great Saturday to be in town. Check the Smithfield Times and other daily print media for a complete listing of events.

Medal of Honor (posthumous) recipient Paul R. Smith was recently honored by president Bush at the Wight House. Please click on www.army.mil/medalofhonor to read about the accomplishments of America's first MOH winner in our current war against terrorism.

Smithfield Antiques Center will be closing its doors shortly. Please check out Jim Abicht's selection of history related items before he ceases operations. There is an effort to convince the property owner Smithfield Foods to remove the building on this lot and return this parcel to its original use as the town's colonial "courthouse green." This would restore to the town its most well-known "publick" meeting spot and give Smithfield a beautiful and historic park in the center of town. If you want to help with this project please contact me.

Our own website is still at www.iwchs.com.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 65 [Apr 1, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

No Gravesite Survey for Sunday, April 3rd, because I expect all available hands (and feet) to be at the:

Shoal Bay Cemetery and Church site clean-up tomorrow Saturday, April 2, at 9AM or earlier if you can make it. Bill Somerset will lead the effort. We have already marked many trees for felling and cut-up into burnable-size pieces. Bring your chain saws, bush axes, loppers and lots of energy. Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department will provide BBQ lunch noon-thirtyish (sp?) for all who show up for work. We hope to locate the trace of the 1632 Bay Church foundation. If we are unable to find this site the owner, Shoal Bay, Inc., may have the legal right to move the entire cemetery in order to create an industrial complex. This would not be good for Isle of Wight County history.

Smithfield's "Patriot Day" is shaping up nicely. Since the town could not get enough support to have "Olden Days" this year, maybe an annual "Patriot Day" would find more support. At least it gets the town back to its golden era of involvement in historic national events like the Revolutionary Era and the War Between the States and away from its' recent focus on swine slaughtering. Following, courtesy of Nancy Guill, are the activities now planned for April 16:

Join Jefferson scholar and author, Clay Jenkinson, host of The Thomas Jefferson Hour public radio show, Sat., April 16th from 11am to 12:15 at Trinity UMC, 201 Cedar St., Smithfield for a lively interactive book discussion and signing of his newest release, Becoming Jefferson's People: Re-inventing the American Republic in the Twenty-First Century. For ages 12 and up. Tickets $1.00. Contact Nancy Guill at 757-356-1043 to reserve your seat.

George Washington visits Smithfield: Re-enactor Kevin Grantz will present Conversations with George Washington sponsored by the APVA at their 1750 courthouse, Main St., with shows at 1, 2 and 3 pm. Admission is free. Contact Bryan Canter for info at 371-1068.

Mansion on Main Bed & Breakfast and Mansion House Art & Antiques will sponsor "open house" festivities from 12:00 - 4:00, including an original Historical Interpretive Reading and Book Signing by local author Doris Gwaltney. Ms. Gwaltney will perform her acclaimed monologue of area Civil War bride Sally Corbel Pickett, wife of Gen. George Edward Picket and then autograph copies of her various books. Additionally, a re-enactor portraying Gen. Pickett will recount Pickett's charge at Gettysburg. While there, enjoy a guided tour of the 1889 Victorian landmark and sample special desserts prepared by the Smithfield Gourmet Bakery and Catering. Contact Dawn Riddle at 757-357-0006 or visit www.mansion-on-main.net or www.mansiongallery.net for information on performance times.

Adding authenticity to the day will be costumed re-enactors (at least one on horseback) roving Main Street.

Shop the many antique and specialty stores of downtown Historic Smithfield.

Pick up a copy of the Smithfield walking tour map at our Tourism office or at the Clay Jenkinson book signing and stroll our beautiful town. Contact tourism at 757-357-5182 or 800-365-9339 and visit the website at www.smithfield-virginia.com because more Patriot Day events will be added!

End a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon at the Smithfield Gourmet Bakery & Catering with a savory French country dinner and a Jefferson wine-tasting by Bon Vivant Wine Shop. Contact Jessica at 757-357-0045 for reservations.

Regards,

Albert

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NewsNotes 64 [Mar 29, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for tomorrow, Wednesday, March 30 will be a return to Chapel Grove UCC west of Windsor on West Blackwater Road. Meet at 10AM (obviously) and not PM as stated in NewsNotes 63. Not a single person called or emailed me to chastise me for my editorial sloppiness. I would like to believe that you did not respond out of kindness to me and not because nobody even noticed it! (NewsNotes goes out to 170 subscribers now.) If we get a good turn out of recorders tomorrow we will be able to finish the Chapel Grove site. Please be thinking of where you might want to go next Sunday and let me know.

Did anyone out there in IWCHS land bid on eBay for the stampless letter posted in 1831 from Smithfield that I told you about on March 20? I think our NewsNotes subscribers would be interested in hearing from anyone who made a bid or if anyone knows who got the letter.

We need all the help we can get on Saturday, April 2 at 9AM for the clean-up of the Shoal Bay Church and cemetery site. This most historic site is 100 yards due west of the intersection of Old Stage Highway (Route 10 Business) and Wrenn's Mill Road (Route 677). The legally accessible easement extends southeast of the site to Wrenn's Mill Road. If the ground is dry you can park in the cleared area at the intersection.

George Washington Visits Smithfield. On 16 April 2005, professional reenactor Kevin Grantz will portray George Washington in the 1750 Courthouse in Smithfield. Kevin Grantz is the president of Virginia Patriots, the group that reenacts the Second Virginia Convention in St John's Church in Richmond every Sunday each year from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Conversations with George Washington will be held at 1:00 PM, 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM. General Washington will comment on his one brief stay in Smithfield and on his relationship with Isle of Wight County Revolutionary War hero, Josiah Parker. Visitors will also have the opportunity to ask questions of General Washington. Admission is FREE on a first-come basis. The event is sponsored by the Isle of Wight Branch of the APVA - Preservation Virginia.

The above note is from Bryan Canter.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 63 [Mar 27, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF Easter Break for tomorrow. Relax, go to church, reflect on our accomplishments since October 2003 and sharpen your pencils for our next foray on Wednesday, March 30th. Meet 10PM again at Chapel Grove UCC at 7366 West Blackwater Road just west of the Town of Windsor. We should be able to finish recording this site and go on to something else Sunday, April 3.

Bay Church Cemetery clean up is Saturday, April 2, at 9AM. Please bring chain saws and bush axes. We have several largish trees left over from Isabel to remove. We have permission for ingress (and also egress, fortunately) from the property owner, Shoal Bay, Inc. This company is a subsidiary of Leibherr-America which is the Western Hemisphere part of Leibherr International, makers of world-class heavy industrial equipment. These Austrian folks own the 600 acres of property which includes the cemetery site. The trustees of Christ Episcopal Church sold the 2 acre Bay Church site in 1970 for $1000! I guess they needed the money. In any case, we need all hands to show up and help clear undergrowth and trees under the direction of Bill Somerset. This is one of the most historic places in our county. It contains the remnants of the 1632 Bay Church (sister parish to 1636 St. Luke's) and the grave of Mallory Todd, the founder of our own world-class Smithfield Ham industry.

Josiah Parker Cemetery site clean-up last Saturday was very successful. Thanks to all who helped. We cleared around the gravesites in preparation for the use of ground-penetrating radar to search for unknown graves. We also cleared an access path along the easement for future use. The effort to clear this site was not widely publicized in order to maintain the security of the site and out of respect for the rights of the property owner.

The Architectural Survey Committee will meet with the contract architectural historian again on Wednesday 30 March. The contractor has proposed to substitute the writing of 4 PIFs (Preliminary Information Forms) for proposed historic districts for Rescue, Battery Park, Walters and Windsor. The PIF is the instrument which requests eligibility status from the Commonwealth Department of Historic Resources for eventual designation as a formal State Historic District. This is a very exciting development and we will keep you informed.

The Driving Tour of Historic Sites in the county is proceeding apace. Most sites have now been located and Tom Finderson hopes to have a draft to present at the next Society meeting on April 17th at Benn's Church. This will be a welcome addition to the county's tourism effort culminating to coincide with the 2007 Jamestown Commemoration.

April 16th "Patriot Day" events in Smithfield are coming together nicely. Not only will "George Washington" and "Thomas Jefferson" be in town but supporting activities will be at the Museum, the Mansion on Main, the Art Center and several shops in the historic district. I will publish a detailed schedule as soon as things come together. In any case, plan to spend the late morning and early afternoon in Smithfield hobnobbing with notable patriot celebrities. For tickets to Clay Jenkinson's book signing and presentation call Nancy Guill at 356-1043. Seating for this particular event is limited.

Your Society will include historic home B&Bs on the website (www.iwchs.com) to give tourists an alternative to staying overnight in more recently constructed accommodations. The 1895 "Mansion on Main" and the 1807 "Foursquare Plantation" house are the first on the list. We hope more historic home owners will open to tourists for 2007.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 62 [Mar 15, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF Survey for tomorrow, Wednesday, 16 March, will be at Chapel Grove United Church of Christ at 7366 West Blackwater Road just west of Windsor. From the 258/460 (aka North Prince Blvd/West Windsor Blvd) intersection in Windsor drive south across the NS doubletrack main line for 0.3 mi and turn right (west) onto West Blackwater Road. Chapel Grove Cemetery is 2.8 miles west on the left (south.) I cannot be there so Ernie and Annemarie please take charge and try to keep Mike and Paul focused. If any other Society members can show up to help record, it would be greatly appreciated.

We have now completed the recording of 70 cemetery sites since October of 2003 with over 12,000 markers recorded. All are not yet published because we could use some keyboard assistance. As you can imagine this is a massive (at least for us!) typing effort. Recall that VDHR estimated we would find 10K-12K sites so we are making archeological history every time we go out. I sent you the new list from Ernie yesterday. Change the "as of " date on the header to read "Update March 13, 2005." If you are missing any of the specific survey reports that you want please contact Ernie directly or go through our new website at www.iwchs.com.

As many of you know, our own county's records are a treasure trove of historical information and documentation. Our records are relatively complete for the last 300 years having been fortuitously rescued in the two most recent wars (1781 and 1864) to ravage Isle of Wight County. Mischelle Canter came across an unusual court order from 5 March 1782 which is basically a complaint against the government for the passage of an act requiring a quota of troops during the revolution. It describes Isle of Wight as a frontier land that has suffered numerous invasions by the enemy and deems this new act as unfair. Mischelle transcribed the document leaving the original spelling and grammar intact. I have attached this for your edification.

Please do not forget that our Society meeting this coming Sunday at 2PM is at the "Mansion on Main" in Smithfield and not at the "Conner" house as originally planned.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 61 [Mar 11, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Important Change: Our Society meeting 2 PM Sunday 20 March will not be at the historic "Conner" house as planned. We will meet instead at the "Mansion on Main" at 36 Main Street in Smithfield. This is the graceful yellow Victorian home (now a B&B) right on the corner at the intersection of Church and Main Streets. Many thanks to society member Dawn Riddle for her hospitality and quick reaction to an emergency plea for a meeting place. We hope to send out postcards announcing this change shortly.

Important Correction: The 1806 "King of all places" historic home in Smithfield is not for sale. The "for sale" signs are actually for the lot(s) surrounding the building. I talked to both Mrs. Wilson, the property owner, and Gene Lowery, the real estate agent, to apologize but was told they actually got several inquiries because of the "ad" in the previous NewsNotes and were able to direct clients to other historic properties in the area which are for sale. Sorry I got all of you IWCHS folks excited about the possibility of owning the "King of all places." I'm told Jeff went right over and offered to trade his own "Parker" house.

Important GSSTF survey: Next Sunday, 13 March, we will meet 2PM at the "Tyler" Cemetery just southeast of Windsor. From the six-way intersection in Windsor (460/603/610) follow Court Street for a few yards south until you cross the NS mainline tracks then a left onto Griffin Street. Drive 0.7 mi. to a right turn onto Tyler Drive. The cemetery is about 0.3 mi. on the right.

Important News: The 1857 Charles Driver Jordan House on Highway 10 just south of Benn's Church is in good condition and very restorable. We had heard there was some damage but only the original fireplace trim and mantels have been removed. If anyone knows where these are we would like to get them back - no questions asked. Otherwise, the house seems structurally solid. Only one outbuilding remains but there is space in the rear of the house to put other restorations or removals. We asked the owners to consider preserving the whole 3 acre "viewshed" extending to the road. Stay tuned to developments on what could possibly be our new Society headquarters building!

Important Information: At the last business meeting the Society voted to mail out the written minutes from each meeting. We hope this will substitute awhile for our lack of having published a newsletter in recent years.

Important event: Mark your calendars for Saturday, April 16th, noonish. We are hoping to have both "Thomas Jefferson" and "George Washington" present in Smithfield for a few hours to talk to the public and do some other things. We are still working out details but at least set the time aside now on your schedule.

That's all the Important stuff I can think of now.

Regards,

Albert

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NewsNotes 60 [Mar 9, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF Special Event for 10AM tomorrow, Wednesday, 9 March will be a search for burial sites at the historic Charles Driver Jordan House. See HHK HIOW page 49 and bring your "pokers." This 1857 "L" shaped structure is similar in layout to Foursquare. This building has the potential for becoming the headquarters for our Society and perhaps the centerpiece for development of that area. From the Routes 10/258/32 intersection at Benn's Church it is the white house about 1/2 mile south on the right (west). Charles Driver Jordan was the son of Samuel Peele Jordan who once owned the "King of all Places" at Red Point. And speaking of which...

The 1806 "King of all Places" is now for sale. Tom Finderson and I noticed this today when we recorded the site as a potential stop on the county driving tour which Tom is working on. The house (see HHK HIOW page 53) is at 1012 Magruder Road in Smithfield just across Cypress Creek from Windsor Castle. The real estate agent is Gene Lowery at 508-3723. Someone in the Society, who is not on a fixed pension like me, should call and make an offer. Jeff, how about you? This house would also make a nice Society headquarters building.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 59 [Mar 4, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Cancellation of clean-up effort at Josiah Parker gravesite scheduled for tomorrow, 5 March, is hereby announced. Please quickly notify anyone you think may not know or who does not receive the IWCHS NewsNotes. Word went out telephonically yesterday. We remain dedicated to the preservation, restoration and memorialization of this most important historic site and will continue to pursue these efforts. Thanks to all of you who had set aside Saturday to help us and especially to Howard Helmer's BSA troop. Stay primed and loaded guys and we hope to use your enthusiasm for local history again soon. Instead of this go to the:

Grand opening of the kite exhibit in the Isle of Wight County Museum, Saturday, 5 March 10A-4P. The museum will be highlighting the reopening of the main gallery and the Sprigg Wing after a short winter hiatus during which Dinah Everett and the museum staff and docents worked expertly and tirelessly to get the museum ready for another great season. Kite kits and refreshments for the first 200 visitors (actually the announcement said "kids" but I'm sure Dinah will let all of us in the over-12 crowd build a kite if we want to) and lots of great local history.

GSSTF deployment continues 2PM Sunday, 6 March, at the Christian Home Baptist Church Cemetery on Longview Drive. We started last Wednesday but the cold and wind drove us off a tad early. If we get a full crew out this Sunday we can easily finish this site and maybe move on to some smaller cemeteries in the area.

Next Society meeting, 2PM, Sunday, 20 March, is now set in the historic 1814 "Conner" House at 11192 Comet Road. Please read ahead in HHK Historic Isle of Wight page 22. Our own Tom Finderson will be the tour guide and we hope to have a short business session after the house tour.

Volunteers are still needed to help the Schoolhouse Museum Oral History Committee to transcribe oral interviews. If you have even a little experience with Microsoft Word and interest in archiving the living history of Isle of Wight County please contact Sandra Lowe 766-8427 or the visitor's center at 357-5182.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 58 [Mar 1, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF marker recording foray for 10AM tomorrow, Wednesday, 2 March, will be at the Christian Home Baptist Church Cemetery in Longview. Meet in the church parking lot 20123 Longview Drive. Across the street is the former site of the Christian Home "Rosenwald" School which was recently moved into Smithfield. The remains of a second school building are still on this site. We finished Mt. Carmel Cemetery last Wednesday and on Sunday the 27th we recorded 3 small sites and investigated 2 other sites.

County Architectural Survey update meeting was held last Wednesday, 23 February 1PM at Boykin's Tavern. Kimble David, the contract architectural historian hired by the county, is doing a really thorough job. Using USGS topo maps she travels every county road and documents buildings of historical and architectural significance. She estimates she has covered about 25-30% of the county so far. The committee was impressed by her eye for structures of interest. I think this effort will have important future results for the county for preservation and historical documentation purposes. Well worth our tax dollars!

Last week's Smithfield Times had an excellent historical piece "Of pilots and planes" by Diana McFarland on the history of the airport near Franklin. Our county's military history is a generally much overlooked subject. The Times' article is a direct result of Jane March's efforts to include the airport building as part of the architectural survey mentioned above. Who could have imagined that Isle of Wight County was temporary home to over 3,700 US Navy Avengers, Helldivers, Hellcats and Bearcats for a short time during WWII. Lordy, Lordy, local history hardly gets any better than this!

Your Society's idea for establishing local history clubs at secondary schools in the county is well on track. We had an organizational meeting Thursday, 17 February, near Melanie Goerger's 4-H office at the Courthouse Complex in Isle of Wight. All four high schools are now represented: Windsor, Smithfield, James River Christian and IOW Academy. Tom Finderson presented many ideas for student projects that would be appropriate at that educational level. These clubs offer exciting opportunities for advocating our county's rich history for the Jamestown 2007 quatracentenary.

Next Society meeting is 2PM, Sunday, March 20th. We hope to meet in another of our county's many historic homes. Mark your calendars. Exact place TBA.

Regards to all,

Albert

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IWCHS NewsNotes 57 [Feb 27, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF deployment for today, Sunday, 27 February, will be an ad hoc adventure or possibly a bust. Here is the plan or, rather, lack of it: Meet 2PM in the commuter parking lot next to Rowland Equipment on the corner of Route 10 Bypass and 258 in Smithfield. Bring any suggestions for immediate recording targets and also any site you think might have public access where you personally know the property owner. I will bring a comprehensive list that Jerianne has prepared and we will collectively decide which sites might be feasible for recording today. The reason for operating this way today is to avoid any pre-planned ambush location prepared by anyone who may have been grievously offended by my antics reported in both daily newspapers last Friday. In fact, you might not want to get within the shotgun blast pattern zone around me at all.

Regards to all,

Albert

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IWCHS NewsNotes 56 [Feb 12, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for 10AM, Wednesday, 23 February will be a return to and probable completion of the cemetery at Mount Carmel Church in Walters. From Windsor take 258 (aka Walters Highway) southwest for about six miles to a right turn on Route 614 (aka River Run Trail.) The cemetery is on your left behind the church building. Much thanks to Ernie Powell for tracking down the folks who gave us permission to record.

A Real Museum Job is now available right here in Isle of Wight County. Our local history museum in Smithfield needs a paid assistant. A real job working in the Isle of Wight County Museum. It just doesn't get any better than that! I called them and said I would pay them to work there but they said it didn't work that way. So if you really want to get into the history of our county see the job listings in the Smithfield Times or the County Website or call Jennifer Faust at 357-3191 at the county switchboard for the connection to our Human Resources Dept.

Recording of Campbell's Chapel Cemetery on Sunday 13 February was a real treat in several ways. We had a good turn-out, were able to finish recording the 150+ markers in one session and we got to do a little "archeology." It was obviously a cemetery very much respected by its parent congregation Campbell's Chapel AME Church on Brewer's Neck Blvd. Of particular poignancy was the stone marker mounted on top of the lone steps which once ascended into the original 1883 structure. The inscription recalled the memory of all the parishioners who had once trod these steps. This reflected a great reverence by this congregation for its own history and its departed members. We were also happy to see Rev. Godwin who came out to talk with us. We asked him to provide us with as many names as possible for the many unmarked graves we observed. We will include these in our report.

National Cold War Museum Update will be provided to you separately. I think it is important we follow the development of this effort as an example of what we eventually might want to do with our own "Carrollton/Smithfield Nike-Ajax Missile Site N-75" as perhaps the Virginia Cold War Museum. You will see from all of Francis Gary Powers' work that his leadership is an excellent model for us.

A Reminder to all to check out our new website at www.iwchs.com and give us feedback. Note that the application form to join IWCHS is included. We will be discussing additions to our website today at our 2PM business meeting at Benn's UMC. Did I mention that the meeting is today!

Regards to all,

Albert

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IWCHS NewsNotes 55 [Feb 12, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for 2PM tomorrow, Sunday, 13 February, will be at Campbell's Chapel AME Cemetery on Campbell's Chapel Drive (Route 665). The 100+ grave site is maintained by Campbell's Chapel AME church on Brewer's Neck Blvd in Carrollton. From Benn's Church east on 32/258 (Brewer's Neck Blvd.) 2 miles to the new stoplight and turn right (south) on New Towne Haven Lane. Pass the new Carrollton Elementary School on your right and turn right on Campbell's Chapel Drive. 0.4 miles west you will find the cemetery on both sides of the road.

Don't forget the IWCHS business meeting next Sunday 20 February at 2PM at Benn's UMC, Benn's Church, Virginia. We need to get use to the idea of "Benn's Church, VA" - zip code TBD.) If all the new development occurs here as projected this will probably be our county's third town. The area will include Historic St. Luke's Shrine so it might be "Saint Luke's, VA." If you want to shape our county's future history you might start attending some Planning Commission meetings or at least start a dialog with your Planning Commissioner.

Society Website is now accessible at www.iwchs.com. This is our rough draft and we need all of your input to refine it and make it want we want it to be. Give your comments to any of your Society officers or reply to this email to make sure your input gets considered. Please try to do this next week so we may be able to discuss this at the business meeting next Sunday.

The Concept of Local History Clubs which your Society agreed to support is proceeding apace. That is not really a correct usage, I just like the word "apace." We will have a planning meeting next Thursday, 17 February, in the 4H Office at the County Courthouse Complex. (County government is getting way too complex if you ask me but that is another matter) Following is a rough draft of a mission/purpose statement for these clubs. Please reply to me via this email with any comments/suggestions you might have concerning this statement:

Isle of Wight History 4H Clubs (IWH4HC) are student organizations based in the secondary schools in Isle of Wight County ,Virginia. The purpose is to encourage our youth to learn, study, research and propagate the rich history of our county from pre-historic geologic time through human occupation, European contact and up to its historic present. The objective of IWH4HC is to increase the knowledge of the history of our county among its future citizens in order to strengthen the American ideals of democracy, freedom and equal opportunity for all. Student clubs will be independently organized under the guidelines of their respective schools with a faculty and/or parent sponsor for each club and under the supervision of the school principal or headmaster. Each student club will develop its own programs, goals and objectives. The county 4H extension agent will provide overall centralized coordination within the county and will provide the link to state level resources and relationships with other resources outside of Isle of Wight County. Independent resources available within the county are the IWC Historical Society, APVA Local Branch, IWC Museum Foundation Board, Boykin's Tavern Advisory Committee, St. Luke's Historic Shrine and the (future) IWC Director of Historic Resources.

Please let me hear from you,

Albert

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NewsNotes 54 [Feb 6, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Next Society Meeting is now scheduled for 2PM 20 February at Benn's UMC, Benn's Church, VA. (the USPS insists this historic area is in "Smithfield" but I choose to resist this notion) This will be a business meeting only. Our recent efforts to start our meetings with a presentation followed by a business session were just making the meetings way too long. We may want to have more meetings (monthly?) and alternate between business and entertainment (educational) sessions. This may involve some constitutional/by-laws issues so try to come to the meeting on the 20th to help us resolve these.

Next Gravesite Survey is 10AM Wednesday 9 February. Because this is Ash Wednesday we will limit our survey to sites without markers and just get the GPS readings and photographs. Let's link up at the commuter parking lot adjacent to Rowland Equipment at the 258/10 Bypass intersection in Smithfield and proceed from there. We hope to record the cemetery at The Glebe (1780, see HHK, HIOW, p. 40), the Woolly site in Rushmere, the Civil War site at Linda McNatt's house and maybe some others. Diane and Linda please note this is a change from what we previously discussed.

Next DHR form-fill-in session is 2PM Sunday 6 February (today!) at my house. 12303 Titus Point Lane in "Carrollton" near Nike Park. If you are flying in it's the house with the flag painted on the roof but please approach from the south because my neighbor has bald eagles nesting on her property.

Next opportunity to assist the APVA is now. Your local Preservation Virginia chapter is looking for threatened historic properties in the county to nominate for state-level APVA listing and possible rescue/restoration. "Wolftrap" (HHK, HIOW, p. 91) and the Jordan Home (HHK, HIOW, p. 49) came immediately to my mind but there are most probably others that you know about. Please contact Lanny Hinson at 357-3091 or Bryan Canter at 357-7737 quickly.

Next time to honor Josiah Parker is tentatively scheduled for Saturday 5 March with Sunday 6 March as rain-day (or maybe that's the non-rain day. I mean if it rains on Saturday, we will go on Sunday if it doesn't, of course, rain on Sunday. If it rains on Sunday and not on Saturday it really doesn't matter does it. In any case, you get the picture.) Tom Finderson and Pat Clark are putting together a clean-up crew with equipment and help from Josiah Parker's Masonic Lodge in Williamsburg along with other interested parties. We would hope to clear a significant area around our county's most prominent son's grave as a first step toward protection and memorialization. We will need lots of unskilled but enthusiastic labor so reserve that Saturday on your calendar. More details to follow.

Next chance to clean-up the 1632 Bay Shoal Site is not yet scheduled. Recall our last foray was repelled by a bulwark of impenetrable soybeans. We hope to get this done before Spring planting. Stay tuned, it might be a short notice Saturday event.

Next, regards to all,

Albert

PS: That closing really made no sense at all but I'm reaching for alliterative continuity here folks.

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NewsNotes 53A [Feb 1, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Emmanuel Baptist Church Cemetery tomorrow, Wednesday, Jan. 33rd, at 10AM for Gravesite survey. I have decided we will complete this survey in January so if we do not get enough team members to finish tomorrow we will continue next Sunday, January 37th, so lets have a good showing. February is short enough as it is, let's not make it more so. Looks like it will be decent weather tomorrow for recording. If we get a good turnout we can finish this cemetery. I have attached our GSSTF fact sheet, once again, for the benefit of our new members.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 53 [Jan 29, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

New Membership Application Form is attached. Jeff Stark drafted this first time (as far as I can tell) document for your Society. If you are receiving these email NewsNotes (which are gratis) and feel the slightest trace of guilt about not being a bona-fide (dues paying) member of the Isle of Wight County Historical Society, here is your chance to assuage those pangs of remorse. Just print and fill out the form, enclose a check for the appropriate amount of Yankee Dollars and mail it in. If you do not feel so moved just attend the church of your choice tomorrow and confess your transgression. You will continue to receive the NewsNotes and we will all be comforted by your sincerity and the forgiveness you have received from whatever deity you profess.

GSSTF Team will meet 2PM tomorrow (Sunday, 30 Jan.), weather permitting, at Emmanuel Baptist Church Cemetery. See NewsNotes 51 (11 Jan.) for directions. You do print and archive these valuable publications don't you? We should be able to finish because the team recorded most of it back on 12 Jan. Our Yankee-like weather continues to be our nemesis. Check the forecast. If you think Mischelle Canter would run the risk of chilling her Georgia buns than just stay home and enjoy your fireplace. We will continue to use Mischelle's sensitivity to anything below 70 degrees as our go/no-go barometer for launching into our field work.

Nike Missile Site N-75 Historic District: I met recently with County officials to help design display markers explaining the historical significance of our local Cold War military base. We may eventually have up to four color signs similar to the one in Smithfield for the 1750 courthouse and the one at Fulgham's Ferry (X from Smithfield Station) commemorating the glorious 1864 victory over the invading Yankee forces. This is an important step forward in the county's recognition of the uniqueness of this site and, dare I say it, the preservation of the buildings and the founding of the Virginia Cold War Museum.

APVA Donation: The late Mrs. Helen Haverty King also left $10,000 to the local branch of The Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities. Try to say that several times real fast and you will see why we now say simply "Preservation Virginia." Mrs. King is truly one of the patron saints of our County's history. The APVA acquired the 1750 courthouse in Smithfield in 1937, restored it in 1959 and has maintained it and kept it open for visitors since then. If you are a local person you should also feel quite guilty if you are not an APVA member. For consistency I tried to think of a way to bring the word Yankee into this paragraph but couldn't. Guess I just did.

Historic St. Luke's: Please recall that we are committed to assisting Historic St. Luke's Shrine with their Jamestown 2007 project of recording the markers in the historic cemetery surrounding the church. We will do this sometime this year. This cemetery contains the mortal remains of many local veterans who found themselves on the receiving end of Yankee rifle-musket "minie balls." Several notable Revolutionary War figures are here also but I had to get the word Yankee into this paragraph somehow.

Regards to all,

Albert

PS: Please let me know if "buns" offends you. I promise to never get more risqué than that.

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NewsNotes 52 [Jan 26, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Thanks to all who attended the Society meeting on 16 Jan. at Main Street Baptist Church in Smithfield. This meeting was scheduled to coincide with the relocation of the Christian Home School building into Smithfield but our unusual weather continues to delay the move. Our thanks to Rev. Harrison for his presentation on the Schoolhouse 2007 project. Other items of note from the meeting:

-- Helen Haverty King donated $10,000 to the Society in her will. We wish there were a way to thank her face-to-face but please thank her in your prayers in a sort of soul-to-soul approach. We know she is watching the current guardians of Isle of Wight County's history and hopefully approves our efforts. Don't forget the only real "home" your Society has at the moment is the "Helen Haverty King Room" at Boykin's Tavern. We need to replace the temporary plastic plaque on the door with a permanent bronze one.

-- "St. Luke's Village" was found somewhat offensive historically (if not theologically) to some of us as the name for the proposed commercial housing development adjacent to the Historic Shrine at Benn's Church. Your society voted to speak in opposition to this particular name at the next Board of Supervisors meeting. In the event, the issue was not discussed by the BoS but referred back to the Planning Commission for further review. Our PlanCom had already voted to deny the rezoning request on other grounds. At this time the Board of St. Luke's Historic Shrine does not oppose the name. Your Society will follow this development.

GSSTF Team will meet 10AM, Wednesday January 26 at Carrollton Public Library to continue the Department of Historic Resources documentation of our efforts. If the weather appears salubrious we will meet again this Sunday at 2PM at Emmanuel Baptist Church to complete this survey. Ernie has published (Jan. 19) our report on "historic" Evergreen Cemetery on Cedar Road in Smithfield. If you want these reports and are not getting them as email attachments please let me know.

Historic Architecture Survey Group met Jan 19 at Boykin's Tavern to review the input submitted by the members of the volunteer field survey committee. The company contracted to do the survey seems to be doing a really good job of consolidating our input. We will meet again February 2 to review Department of Historic Resources data from previous surveys on structures that may have been already demolished. Thanks very much to Debbie Sivertson for coordinating this effort for the county.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 51, [February 11, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for tomorrow, Wednesday, January 12 at 10 AM will be at the cemetery next to Emmanuel Baptist Church at 11150 Emmanuel Church Road. From 10/258 intersection in Smithfield, SW on 258 (Courthouse Highway) 1 mile, turn right (NW) onto Waterworks Road (709), 3 miles to Magnet, turn right onto Magnet Drive (680), 0.5 miles to Emmanuel Church Road, turn right and EBC is 300 yards on left. Medium size cemetery. Maybe we can finish in one session if enough recorders show up. See you there!

Good News! - At its' "retreat" (I did not ask them why it wasn't an "advance") last Saturday at Windsor Elementary School, our County Board of Supervisors tasked the county staff to come up with a plan to establish a county Department of Historic Resources for next fiscal year (June 2005?). This new county department would take responsibility for the IOWC Museum, Boykin's Tavern, Fort Boykin and eventually Fort Huger. It is your vice-president's dream that Nike-Ajax Missile Site N-75 will also be included one day. Stay tuned to developments. This is indeed a great leap forward in the county's effort to recognize and capitalize on its own glorious history.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 50 [Jan 8, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

GSSTF (new members see attached) -No survey for Sunday, January 9, 2005. Ernie Powell stay home and type reports. For the rest of us: Special Mission - The county Architectural Survey input is due Monday, January 10th. All available IWCHS members, if you have not already done so, submit your recommendations for architecturally significant structures to your District representative. Please use Sunday afternoon, January 9, to conduct a ground reconnaissance of your Magisterial District to identify candidate structures for the county architectural survey. Then call your District contact person and give him/her the data. See IWCHS NewsNotes 46, Dec. 17, 2004, for the criteria. District reps are: Newport: me at 357-6685, Smithfield: Harry Dashiell at 357-4438, Hardy: Dot Sommerset at 357-0631, Windsor: Marjorie Keeling at 242-4344 and Carrsville: Jane March at 242-3807.

Society Meeting is set for Sunday, January 16, 3PM in the Fellowship Hall of Main Street Baptist Church at 517 Main Street in Smithfield. Reverend Harrison will update us on the progress of the county's "Schoolhouse Project" for the Jamestown 2007 celebration. Business meeting with light refreshments follows. We want to discuss IWCHS projects for 2007. Bring your suggestions. The public, i.e. non-members, is/are always invited.

Formal IWCHS Membership (You receive our mailings and may vote at meetings) accrues to those who send a check each year in one of the following amounts to PO Box 84, Isle of Wight, Virginia 23397: Individual $10, Student $1, Business $25, Club $15, Family $20 or Lifetime $250. If you choose the lifetime deal you must notify us if/when you die. Benefits do not convey to your progeny. If the GSSTF finds your gravemarker we will sue your estate for reimbursement for the cost of each 23 cent stamp we used for mailings after your interment/inurnment/whatever.

Previous Editions of IWCHS NewsNotes are available at no cost upon request. The special "collectible" (collectable?) issues are also still available but at double that price.

Regards to all,

Albert
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NewsNotes 49 [Jan 5, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Society Meeting - Sunday, January 16 at 3PM in Fellowship Hall of Main Street Baptist Church, 517 Main St., Smithfield. Reverend Harrison will be our host and guest speaker on the topic of the Schoolhouse Project for the Jamestown 2007 celebration. Postcard invites will be in the mail shortly.

GSSTF please assemble 10AM, January 5 at Carrollton Public Library to help fill out DHR archeological forms.

For our AOL subscribers, and because I think it needs reiterating, following are history related volunteer opportunities for the new year:

APVA Local Branch needs researchers and proof readers for its project to update for 2007 Col. Morrison's 1907 History of Isle of Wight County. Call Susan Maltby at 365-4707 or me at 357-6685.

Archeological Survey of gravesites in the county. Recorders needed 2PM every Sunday and 10AM every Wednesday. Call Jerianne Gardner at 238-2366 or me.

Docents needed to conduct guided tours of:

- APVA 1750 Courthouse in Smithfield. Contact Brenda Joyner at 365-9794 or Lanny Hinson at 357-3091.

- Boykin's 1780 Tavern in Isle of Wight. Contact Cathy Kurchinsky or anyone at the Isle of Wight Tourism Bureau at 357- 5182.

- Isle of Wight Museum in Smithfield. Contact Diane Hayes or Dinah Everett at the museum at 357-7459.

- St. Luke's 1636 Historic Shrine at Benn's Church. Contact Pam Glanville at the Visitor's Center at 357-3367.

Reenactors for our 1781 Isle of Wight County Militia. Need men-at-arms, camp followers and young recruits. Contact Rob Friar at 357-9250

Schoolhouse 1924 Museum oral history committee needs keyboarders to transcribe oral interviews to hard-copy archival documentation. Call Sandra Lowe at 766-8427 or Diane Spencer-Wooley at 357-5182.

Secondary Schools Local History Clubs need parent and faculty sponsors at WHS, JRCA, IWA and for our homeschoolers. Call Sue Anderson at Boykin's Tavern at 365-9771 or Melanie Georger at 365-6256 or me.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 48 [Jan 1, 2005]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey Team will rendezvous tomorrow Jan. 2, 2PM at Central Hill Baptist Church. If we get a good turnout of recorders as we did last time we should be able to finish. Many thanks to all the SHS students who helped out on Dec. 19. Most of you were added to the IWCHS email list so if this notice gets to you in time please come back out tomorrow.

Name that historic school...quickly! The school board is looking for input from anyone for a name for the building that is currently called Smithfield Middle School. This name will be transferred to the new building adjacent to Smithfield H.S. when it is completed. Unfortunately the deadline for suggestions is this coming Wednesday, Jan. 5. Today's Daily Press, Local News, p C2 lays out the parameters. Go to the school Web site at http://www.iwcs.k12.va.us/. for submission format and rules. Previous names for this building appear to have been: Riverview (1928?), Isle of Wight County Training School (1940?), Westside High School (1969?) and later Smithfield Elementary. This is just based on my reading of HHK. If anyone out there in IWCHS-land knows for sure, I'd appreciate a reply.

AOL Subscribers - As far as I can tell you did not receive NewsNotes 47 "History Resolutions for 2005." All of my AOL addresses bounced back. If this happens with this NewsNotes (48), I will create a separate mailing list just for you AOL folks to see if that works.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 47 [Dec 28, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

History Resolutions for 2005 - Many opportunities are available here in the county for you to volunteer even just several hours per month to contribute your time, energy and talent to the history of Isle of Wight county. The added benefit of volunteering is that you will learn much about the history of your county which will surprise and entertain you. Following, in alpha order, are some of the projects that could use your help:

APVA Local Branch needs researchers and proof readers for its project to update for 2007 Col. Morrison's 1907 History of Isle of Wight County. Call Susan Maltby at 365-4707 or me at 357-6685.

Archeological Survey of gravesites in the county. Recorders needed 2PM every Sunday and 10AM every Wednesday. Call Jerianne Gardner at 238-2366 or me.

Docents needed to conduct guided tours of:

- APVA 1750 Courthouse in Smithfield. Contact Brenda Joyner at 365-9794 or Lanny Hinson at 357-3091.
 

- Boykin's 1780 Tavern in Isle of Wight. Contact Cathy Kurchinsky or anyone at the Isle of Wight Tourism       Bureau at 357- 5182.
 

- Isle of Wight Museum in Smithfield. Contact Diane Hayes or Dinah Everett at the museum at 357-7459.

- St. Luke's 1636 Historic Shrine at Benn's Church. Contact Pam Glanville or Fran Olsen at the Visitor's Center at 357-3367.

Schoolhouse 1924 Museum oral history committee needs keyboarders to transcribe oral interviews to hard-copy archival documentation. Call Sandra Lowe at 766-8427 or Diane Spencer-Wooley at 357-5182.

Secondary Schools Local History Clubs need parent and faculty sponsors at WHS, JRCA, IWA and for our homeschoolers. Call Sue Anderson at Boykin's Tavern at 365-9771 or Melanie Georger at 365-6256 or me.

If you have any other additions to this new-year's resolutions list, reply with details and I will send it out with the next NewsNotes.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all,

Albert

PS: I mistakenly numbered the last NewsNotes (Dec. 17) as "45" instead of 46. Please hand-correct the numeral on your printed copy so future historians will not be confused when they discover these historic documents in your attic and blame you for my error.

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NewsNotes 46 [Dec 17, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for 2PM Sunday, December 19, will be at Central Hill Baptist Church. From Isle of Wight Courthouse 1/2 mile south on 258, turn west on Central Hill Road (637) and drive 2 miles to the intersection with Peanut Drive (649). The church is a few yards down on the left. This is a "medium" size site but we expect some extra help on Sunday so I am optimistic we may be able to complete the recording. Thanks to Marvin Crocker and Pastor Johnson for helping to get permission to record.

If we finish Central Hill Cemetery on Sunday, we will convene again at the Carrollton Public Library 10AM, Wednesday, Dec. 22, to continue the work of documenting our survey data on the forms provided by Virginia Department of Historic Resources. We have the blank forms and the survey data, we just need help in transcribing the information onto the 8 page DHR form. These forms validate all of our efforts as far as the Commonwealth is concerned. We will take a break (gee, thanks, Albert) on Sunday, December 26, to allow team members to spend some quality Christmas time with family. Remember the official (theological) 12 days of Christmas are still Dec. 25 through Jan 5 and have been for 1400 years (Council of Nicea).

APVA Open House is 1-4PM tomorrow, Saturday Dec. 18, at the "Old Courthouse" in Smithfield. The public is invited to view new exhibits, join the APVA and hobnob with members of the local APVA Branch who, at least some of us, will be dressed in period outfits. No, they are not costumes!

Almost concurrently (11A-4P) three authors, two of them local, will be signing and selling copies of their new books at the P.D. Gwaltney House on South Church St. in Smithfield. "Smithfield: The Ham Capital of the World" by Patrick Evans-Hylton is a welcome edition to the "Images of America" Series and our own APVA Board member and CVB PR person extraordinaire Cathy Kurchinsky will present her new children's book "Hurray for the Yoder Barn." The Gwaltney Mansion is now on the market for $2.4 Mil., so if you need a cozy get-away place in a small town, here is your chance to peak in the digs without a pushy real estate agent.

Architectural Survey was launched Tuesday, Dec. 14, from the county meeting room at Boykin's Tavern. Instead of the expected 6-12 months to conduct the initial selection of structures, we have three weeks! Information must be turned in to the contractor NLT January 10th. (Well, at least it's next year!) Anyone may submit a candidate structure but the building should be a minimum 50+ years old. If it's newer and, in your opinion, architecturally significant or interesting, let us know anyway. All 72 homes in HHK's "Historic Isle of Wight" are already on the list. We are looking for others. I hope to have more detailed info to give you in a few days, but for those of you in Newport District, I am your committee member so you may respond directly to this email with any suggestions you have. In addition to homes, consider outbuildings, barns, churches, stores or any other man-(or woman) built structure. Data required are: street name and number, route number, nearest intersecting route and "historic information/location/contact." That's all I have for now. More shortly.

Mister Thomas Jefferson, aka Clay S. Jenkinson, will be at the TCC Roper Performing Arts Center, January 21st at 8PM. A slight discount is available for IWCHS members. This special offer is brought to us by IWCHS member Nancy Guill through her sister Janie who produces "The Thomas Jefferson Hour" on NPR. I will forward to all of you the details of this event in a few minutes.

Next Society Meeting is being considered for January 16, 3PM, place and guest speaker TBA. Please let us know if you have any major conflicts with this date and time.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 44B [Dec 14, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Meet at Carrollton Public Library 10AM, Wednesday, December 15, to begin writing the documentation of our efforts for Virginia Department of Historic Resources validation. Please bring any printed copies of reports that you have. I will bring the DHR forms and USGS topo maps. Carrollton Library is off Brewer's Neck Blvd. (Highway 258) on New Town Haven Road next to the Carrollton Elementary School. Yes, I have the key this time.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 45 [Dec 12, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Take a break from gravesite survey task force activities for tomorrow, Sunday, Dec. 12. Go shopping, hug your spouse (or significant other), stay late after church to help put all the hymnals back in the pew pockets or, for something really special, see next item.

Last day of "Christmas at Boykin's Tavern" celebration is tomorrow Sunday, Dec. 12. At 2PM, students will present the play "Patriots and Loyalists." Our homeschoolers have put a lot of effort into this production so please try to get out to see it. Historic "tavern" tours also still available and mistletoe will be given out to the first 20 guests. No kidding. This connects with the "hug your..." item above.

GSSTF Report for Battery Park Church Cemetery is now published. Please let Ernie know - epowellsr@aol.com - if you are not getting these reports or if you are having trouble printing them. Ernest "Web Wiz" Powell can fix anything puter related. If he helps you with your PC problem and you are rich, just stroke a donation check to IWCHS. Jeff Stark promises to cash your check within the 180 day period it normally takes me to get them to him.

Mail Checks to IWCHS, Box 84, Isle of Wight, Virginia 23397. I check this P. O. box every six months or so. Just kidding. I mean about the six months, not about the check.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 44A [Dec 7, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Whoops - The GSSTF activity scheduled in the Carrollton Public Library for tomorrow, Wednesday, Dec. 8, is postponed. I forgot to pick up the key for our 10AM event and the library does not open until noon. Sorry. I will reschedule this session.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 44 [Dec 7, 2004]

Today is the "Day of Infamy." If anyone knows of any living Pearl Harbor veterans in Isle of Wight County please let me know. IWCHS would be interested in recognizing them in some way.

GSSTF will meet tomorrow, 8 December, 10AM in the Carrollton Public Library on New Towne Haven Road just off Route 258, Brewer's Neck Blvd., next to Carrollton Elementary School. We need to start working on the documentation required by the Department of Historic Resources in order to validate, for state-level archives, the results of our efforts to date. I will bring the forms. Please bring all GSSTF cemetery reports that you have printed so far. If you have not participated in GSSTF activities so far, this would be a good time and place to begin. It will be warm and dry in-door work as contrasted with our sometimes rather uncomfortable field work.

Christmas at Boykin's Tavern this weekend will be a gala event at our county's only historic home open to the public. The "tavern" will be decorated for Christmas in Victorian style and the celebration begins with guided tours at 4:30 PM on Friday, Dec. 10. We will light the Yule log at 5:30PM followed by madrigal singing, cider and ginger cookies. On Saturday from noon to 8PM your Isle of Wight County Militia will present historical interpretations of Colonial and Revolutionary War events that involved Isle of Wight County. Sunday, 1 to 4PM, student docents will present the play "Patriots & Loyalists." There will also be caroling and Colonial era Christmas music. So come on out if you can!

Ragged Island Creek was designated Virginia's first estuarine (tidal) Exceptional Waterway by the State Water Control Board last Thursday, 2 Dec., in Richmond. Your Society was particularly active in this three-year-long nomination process. President Jerianne Gardner was the original "petitioner" and saw the process through to completion. IWCHS contributed the history part (see attached) which helped document the "recreational" criterion for nomination. Congratulations to Jerianne.

Josiah Parker: County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously last Thursday to renew the effort to obtain a grant for the purpose of either purchasing or developing the final resting place of our County's most historically famous son and Revolutionary War hero. Pat Clark and Tom Finderson are coordinating memorialization efforts for the Society in coordination with Debbie Sivertson on County staff.

GSSTF Reports for the "Daniel" cemetery on Cedar Grove Road, "Cropper" site on Bush Creek Circle, "Thomas" cemetery on Bayview Drive, "Channell" family site at the end of Channell Way, Macedonia Church on Smith's Neck Road, "White" site on White Hill Trail, and Collosse Baptist Church Cemetery on Rhodes Road have all now been published. If you are not getting these, please let me or Ernest Powell know so we can correct our email lists. I once again encourage all IWCHS members to print these reports so we have as many hardcopies available as possible.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 43 [Nov 11, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for 10AM tomorrow, Wednesday, Dec. 1, will continue at Mill Swamp Baptist Church. This most interesting cemetery is taking longer than expected primarily, I suspect, because of the lengthy marker inscriptions, although the rest of the team insists that I'm the problem. I guess I talk a lot when I should be recording. Well, somebody has to do PR! Directions to MSBC are in several previous NewsNotes.

Efforts to move forward with State Historic District designation for Nike-Ajax site N-75 (Carrollton/Smithfield) and the establishment of the Virginia Cold War Museum at the site are proceeding apace. Following, for your information, is the latest communiqué from the National Cold War Museum being established at the former Nike Missile base in Lorton, Virginia, just SW of DC. Francis Gary Powers, Jr.'s (I think this is the correct possessive form - any English Majors out there?) efforts to get this museum going are the model for our efforts down here. Obviously he is years ahead of us and we support his efforts completely.

Regards to all,

Albert

Dear Friends and Supporters of the Cold War Museum, My father's book, "Operation Overflight,' which has just been republished after 30 years out of print is now available for $24.95 + $5.00 shipping and handling in the US. Send an email to gpowersjr@coldwar.org and I will be glad to mail off an inscribed copy for your library or for a person on yourgift list.

Cold War Museum Update November 2004

Over the past eight years the Cold War Museum has made great strides in honoring Cold War Veterans and preserving Cold War history. However, the work has just begun and we need to continue our fundraising efforts in order to raise the millions of dollars necessary to build The Cold War Museum andMemorial. I am writing to provide you with a brief update on the Museum's activities and to ask that you consider making a year-end tax-deductible donation to the Cold War Museum's general fund. A donation to our general fund will allow us to continue our efforts to honor Cold War Veterans and preserve Cold War history. If you know of any family members, friends, or colleagues that would like to assist with our efforts, please let them knowthat their support is welcomed. Visit www.coldwar.org for more information.

We are at a critical stage of our development. Earlier this year, the Cold War Museum renewed its affiliation with the Smithsonian Institution. As a result we have pledges of support for artifact loans from Smithsonian Air and Space, American History, National Portrait, and US Postal Museum. The Cold War Museum is working with Fairfax County Park Authority to locate thephysical facility at the former Nike Missile Base in Lorton, Virginia. The Fairfax County Public School System has indicated their interest in partnering with the Museum on educational programs. The Museum is working with the Historical Electronics Museum in Maryland, the International Spy Museum in Washington, DC, and the Florida International Museum to temporarily display artifacts from their collection.

Annually, the Bulgaria, Estonian, Hungarian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Romanian,and Slovakian Embassies co-host a reception to promote the Museum to theInternational community in Washington, DC. The 2003 function was held attheEmbassy of Bulgaria on November 14, 2003 and talks are underway to host the2004 reception at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC. The Museumhas acquired many important Eastern Bloc artifacts, including an EastGermanadmiral's uniform, a Checkpoint Charlie sign, a Stasi prison door and bed,and a piece of the "Iron Curtin" as a result of these receptions.

The mobile exhibit on the U-2 Incident, the "Spies of Washington Tour," andour book signing receptions continue to generate interest and support. Themobile exhibit recently returned from a one-year display at the National Test Site Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada and is now available for display. Please contact the Museum if interested. The educational "Spies of Washington Tour" (www.spytour.com) now includes an optional stop at the International Spy Museum in Washington, DC. Our latest book signing reception took place at the National Archives and featured author John Faheywho wrote, "Licensed to Spy" about his involvement with the United StatesMilitary Liaison Mission (USMLM).

As a result of our efforts former Secretary of the USAF, Tom Reed; Sergei Khrushchev, son of the former Soviet Premier; General Andrew Goodpaster, former Eisenhower aide; Dino Brugioni, renowned photographic interpreter; Joe Lentini, USS Liberty Survivor; and Delegate Dave Albo, who represents the Lorton area, have accepted out invitation to serve on the Museum's Advisory Board of Directors. In addition, the Commonwealth of Virginia recently allocated a $28,000 matching grant for the Cold War Museum. We are grateful to the Springfield VFW (Post 7327) who in response to our matchinggrant campaign donated $20,000 to the Museum. Our Congressman, theHonorable Tom M. Davis, III (11th Virginia), is working to assist the museum at the Federal level. For the fourth year in a row the museum is part of the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC# 7475), which allows Federal government andmilitary employees to donate to the Museum directly through payroll deduction.

Please consider making a donation to the Cold War Museum's general fund. Your gift will help us plan for the new year and the new physical location.Tax-deductible contributions and artifact donations to the Museum willensure that future generations will remember Cold War events and personalities that forever altered our understanding of national security, international relations, and personal sacrifice for one's country. Please help spread the word about the Museum. Together we can make this vision a reality. If you should have any questions, want additional information, or would like to be added to our Cold War Times email newsletter distribution list, please contact:

Francis Gary Powers, Jr.
Founder
The Cold War Museum
P.O. Box 178
Fairfax, VA 22030
P-(703) 273-2381
F-(703) 273-4903
www.coldwar.org
gpowersjr@coldwar.org

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NewsNotes 42 [Nov 28, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, November 28, 2PM will be Mill Swamp Baptist Church again. We were rained out last Wednesday and can hopefully finish up this Sunday if the weather cooperates. Ernie advises of a shorter route to this site from Smithfield: Stay on Mill Swamp Road for about 4 miles and then turn left on Stallings Creek Drive and continue on to the intersection to get back on Mill Swamp Road. This makes a shorter, straighter route because Mill Swamp curves away and adds distance. See you there!

Society Meeting on the 14th was a great success thanks to Roger and Donna Healy's tour of their historic Foursquare Plantation and Roger's expert knowledge of 18th & 19th century building techniques as well as the history of the families who built and owned Foursquare itself. His presentation was so good, in fact, that we had to truncate our actual business meeting and postpone most of the issues until our next regular meeting in January (Date and time TBA.) Especially interesting at Foursquare is the existence of several original 200 year old dependencies (outbuildings) including a smokehouse, dairy and slave quarters. Thanks again Roger!

School Based Local History Club - At the meeting (above) we agreed to support the concept of establishing history clubs at the secondary school level in the county. The idea is to give students in local government and commercial schools (and also homeschoolers) an opportunity to focus on the history of Isle of Wight County. Our Education Coordinator at Boykin's Tavern, Suzanne Anderson, has offered a centrally located site for occasional meetings. At least one club, at Smithfield High, may have their organizational meeting this week. We will be looking to Society members for suggestions for guest speakers and sponsors. Let me hear from you!

"The Courthouses of Isle of Wight County" is an exhibit at Boykin's Tavern and also a brochure researched and compiled by Catherine Cox. She is one of our student docents at the Isle of Wight County Museum. Catherine was awarded a Girl Scout Gold Award for this project. Brochures are available at the Museum and also Boykin's Tavern. Kudos to Catherine Cox for her contribution to the diffusion of our county's history!

And speaking of our Museum, please go to see the newest exhibit on Victorian and vintage dress before December 31st when it closes. A lot of work by our museum staff goes in to putting together these temporary exhibits so you should make it a point to see them while they exist. These temporary exhibits are like butterflies and shooting stars; beautiful but transitory. So view them while you can!

You probably noticed that NewsNotes 42a and 42b preceded this NewsNotes. I will occasionally have to do this to get out quick communiqués for the Gravesite Survey Task Force. As you all know, we deploy twice per week and can always use extra help. You need not bring anything but a desire to record and enhance our county's history. This project also honors our forebears by documenting their genealogy. Great work!

Regards to all,

Albert

PS: This is a rare "exclamation point" edition of NewNotes!

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NewsNotes 42B [Nov 23, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite survey for tomorrow, Wednesday, November 24, 10AM will continue at Mill Swamp Baptist Church Cemetery. If it is not raining and we get sufficient folks to finish the recording we should be able to complete the survey at this site. I have given directions to this site in 3 previous NewsNotes so if you want to help us out and need help getting there just reply to this note.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 42A [Nov 20, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for tomorrow, Sunday, November 21, 2004 at 2PM will be perhaps our final return to Mill Swamp Baptist Church Cemetery. This is a very interesting site with several Civil War markers. We may be able to finish recording tomorrow because this will be our third visit, so come on out if you can. From Smithfield, Cary Street becomes Mill Swamp Road as it passes over Route 10. Just stay on Mill Swamp Road for 12 miles until you see the church on your right after you pass White Hill Trail.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 41A [Nov 12, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Bring a folding chair for yourself for the Society business meeting on the Healy's front porch following the house tour on Sunday, November 14. I forgot to put this item in NewsNotes 41. The front porch of the Foursquare plantation house overlooks one of the most beautiful unspoiled vistas of rural landscape in the county. It was here, in days gone by, that the local huntclub answered the call to the hounds before trotting out to follow the baying pack on the scent of a red fox. Being a closet PeTA person myself, I have never actually participated in such a bloodsport, but you get the picture. Also, horses have always impressed me as being rather large, dangerous and smelly. Roger can fill in the gory details like what happens to the fox if the hounds get to him (her?) first.

Albert

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NewsNotes 41 [Nov 9, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite survey tomorrow, Wednesday, November 10, 10AM will be at Mill Swamp Baptist Church. From Smithfield, Cary Street becomes Mill Swamp Road as it passes over Route 10. Just follow Mill Swamp Road for 12 miles to the intersection with White Hill Trail. The church and cemetery are at this intersection. This is a well-maintained cemetery with many interesting markers. It may take us several visits.

Society meeting is next Sunday, November 14, 3PM at historic Foursquare Plantation. Invitation cards are out. The public is also invited as usual. Beginning with this meeting we hope to revive the tradition of having society meetings at historic places throughout the county. We are open for suggestions and also invitations from society members who actually own some of these places. We know who you are! No gravesite survey this Sunday so we can all turn out for the meeting.

Berry Hill Road Cemeteries - We will interrupt the Mill Swamp effort on Wednesday, November 17, to return to these three sites. Last Sunday we discovered several overlooked markers. Ernie has printed up a special alphabetical list comprising all three cemeteries here: Henry Tynes, Main Street Baptist and Little Zion. We will use this list to double check our recordings to insure completeness. Hope we can also locate the missing section across the road.

Veterans Day - Many special events and activities occur throughout the Hampton Roads area on Thursday. If you do nothing else, try to pause at 11:11AM to recall loved ones who have given their lives for our country. The American Civil War remains our largest national sacrifice with some 600,000 deaths 1861-65.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 40A [Nov 6, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Boykin's Tavern Special Event Today - I forgot to include this in last NewsNotes but today, Saturday, November 6, at 11AM and 2PM, there is a special presentation on "American funeral customs from the colonial period to modern times." This exceptional lecture by a recognized expert, Frank Thornton of Hale Funeral Home in Norfolk, supports our new exhibit upstairs "Death Becomes Us" which portrays funeral practices in late Victorian times. Boykin's Tavern is, of course, our county's only historic home open to the public on a regular basis. This would be a great time to tour the home also.

My apologies for the late (but not too late!) notice,

Albert

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NewsNotes 40 [Nov 5, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, November 7, 2PM should be our final trip to Berry Hill Road. We thought we had finished last Wednesday but the cemetery caretaker told us about another section on the opposite side of the road which we didn't know about. He said, when the new road was built, a number of graves were moved farther east out of the new right-of-way. We may have to hunt for these and do some overgrowth removal so bring your usual array of brush clearing tools. Following this we may go out to the Mill Swamp area to record a 19th century 15 marker family cemetery.

Society Meeting at Foursquare Plantation is all set for 3PM November 14th. This historic home is not only a thriving B&B but was the center of Isle of Wight's formal foxhunt society decades ago. Roger and Donna Healy will tell us all about this. Foursquare is about one mile west on Foursquare Road from the intersection with 258/Courthouse Highway two miles SW of the Route 10 (bypass)/Main Street intersection in Smithfield. Postcard invitations will go out today. All are invited of course, but if you do not get a card it means you have not sent your ten Yankee Dollars to us for formal membership.

Membership in IWCHS accrues to those who send a check each year in one of the following amounts to PO Box 84, Isle of Wight, Virginia 23397: Individual $10, Student $1, Business $25, Club $15.00, Family $20. Or $250 gets you a Life Membership which is a good deal for your descendents. If they don't tell us you are dead we'll probably just keep sending out a postcard and who would ever know? Of course our Gravesite Survey Team will eventually find your marker and we would send your children or grandchildren a whopping dunning notice.

Nike-Ajax Missile Site N-75 (Carrollton/Smithfield) - Efforts to prevent our county government from bulldozing this most completely intact Cold War Anti-Aircraft site in Virginia are gaining momentum. 850 leaflets were distributed to Newport District voters on November 2. If you have not received our tourist brochure on the base, reply to this with your mailing address and I will send you one gratis.

Full-Size Reproduction Colonial Stocks and Pillory will be built by your local APVA branch for use (yes, use, not just display. You may begin threatening your kids now but the punishment implements may not be ready for several months) by tourists and locals. These authentic 18th century public-entertainment machines will be erected in front of the old (1750) courthouse building in Smithfield. We will keep you apprised of developments. APVA members get priority when scheduling family miscreants for corporal punishment so send in your APVA membership quickly: contact Lanny Hinson at 357-3091 or http://www.apva.org/ or APVA Preservation Virginia, 204 West Franklin St., Richmond, VA 23220-5012.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 39 [Oct 29, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, October 31, 2PM will be a return to Berry Hill Road. Enter at the "Henry Tynes" gate, park and receive your recording instructions. This site consists of three separate but contiguous cemeteries: Henry Tynes Memorial, Main Street Baptist and Little Zion. Although the first two are sort of nondescript, the third is in a truly beautiful wooded setting of rolling terrain. We may be looking at 800+ markers when done. Please come on out to help if you can. We will probably continue recording here on Wednesday, November 3, at 10AM.

Bay Church Clean-up is postponed until after harvest. Three stalwarts arrived last Sunday to find the site completely blocked by ripening soybean fields. Ernie will keep an out (exactly how he is able to see in this condition, I do not want to know) and let us know when we may return without tromping any local agricultural products. The inclement weather last Sunday must have played a role in the low turnout of workers since those of you with any common sense stayed home apparently assuming no one would be foolish enough to venture out in that weather. Ha! We fooled you!

Next Society Meeting is now firmly scheduled for Sunday, November 14 at 3PM. Meet at the manor house at historic Foursquare plantation on Foursquare Road (where else?) just southwest of Smithfield. Our hosts, Donna and Roger Healy, will give us a tour of the 1807 home built by one of our county's most famous families, the Woodleys, who had owned the land since 1693. This house is on the National and Virginia Landmarks Registry and, as HHK wrote, ".. was probably the most outstanding plantation (in the county) in the early 19th Century." The name "Foursquare" derives from the original square-mile tract containing exactly 640 acres. We will have our usual business meeting and refreshments on the Healy's front porch following the house tour.

"Death Becomes Us" is the theme of the new display at Boykin's Tavern put together by the Isle of Wight County Museum staff. This one-room funeral arrangement shows how wakes were done in America in the late "Victorian" era. The exhibit builds on a donated traveling funeral display which was used to conduct the "viewing" in private homes. This exhibit is well-done, very instructive and highlights a custom that was common a century or more ago but has disappeared with the advent of modern funeral parlors. This display may only be temporary so get out to our county's only historic home open to the public to see this. Halloween might be the right time to do this!

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 38 [Oct 23, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Bay Church Site clean-up tomorrow - I forgot to ask someone to bring some "Round-Up," or something like it, to inhibit future plant growth. We would also need some kind of sprayer, I guess. I am unfamiliar with pesticide use. Anyone who has been to my house has viewed the disastrous landscaping consequences of not using modern weed-killers. It just never seemed to me to be a fair fight in the humans vs. greenstuffs arena with our use of chemical warfare. I will avert my gaze as some of you joyously use floral WMD on innocent vegetable matter. Could someone also bring a weed-whacker?

Correction - Our gravesite survey for next Wednesday (Oct. 27) at HTMC is obviously 10AM and not PM. Although a nighttime cemetery foray close to Halloween might be interesting. The inscription on the markers might show up even better with a flashlight. We'll think about this for next year - I'm still adjusting to the weed-killer thing.

Addition - One of our IWCHS members reminded me that the USS Monitor Restoration Team includes the Village of Rescue's own Curtiss E. Peterson. Curtiss also restored the damaged VDOT plaque from the old Rescue Bridge so it could be remounted on the new one. We are also still seeking suggestions for an appropriate historical name for this new bridge. My personal favorite is "Mokete Bridge" to honor the local Warrosquoyacke Indian village which was nearby. Our English forebears did treat them rather shabbily.

Caution - Even though a local celebrity figures prominently in the USS Monitor story, it is still no excuse to visit the Mariner's Museum (see NewsNotes 37) on the NORTH side of the James instead of helping us clear the Bay Church site here on the SOUTH side. One must make certain ones' loyalties are not misplaced.

Thanks - To Society member Nancy Guill for two of the above four notes.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 37 [Oct 22, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

At Jerianne Gardner's request, yesterday, your Society presented to the County Board of Supervisors the first annual update on GSSTF accomplishments. According to Ernie Powell's data we have recorded, since October 26, 2003, just short of 10,000 grave markers in 53 cemeteries. We still have several mid-size cemeteries in southern Isle of Wight to do as well as Historic St. Luke's. I told the board we would probably exceed the original Virginia Dept. of Historic Resources estimate of archeological sites in Isle of Wight County by several thousand. I reminded the Board that our efforts are a critical part of their effort to obtain Certified Local Government (CLG) status for the our County.

Assemble 2PM Sunday, October 24 at Bay Church (1632) site for annual clean-up of cemetery and church ruins. This event substitutes for Sunday's Gravesite Survey. Bring brush and grass clearing tools. We'll need lawn mowers (people as well as machines), loppers, scythes, rakes, brooms, chain saws, etc. Bring anything you think we could use to clear a year's natural production of under- and overgrowth. Because of our notice "Volunteers Needed" in Wednesday's Smithfield Times, we may get some fresh sucke-, I mean workers. Bring a friend or relative and don't forget the tools! This historic site, also known as Shoal Bay, contains the mortal remains of Mallory Todd, the "father" of our current local pork-intensive economic success.

Henry Tynes Memorial Cemetery - We will continue to record here on Wednesday, October 27, at 10PM. We need help on this large African-American cemetery!

Isle of Wight Vietnam veterans note that the traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is in Virginia Beach at the oceanfront for a week beginning yesterday, I think. If you have not visited this half-size replica (or the full-size one in DC, of course), I would recommend you go. It is a very moving experience to view the names of those we knew who did not return.

"Wheels of War" : This is the title of the exhibit this weekend at the Virginia War Museum just on the other side of the JRB. If you subtract the width of the James River, this fabulous museum is only 300 yards from Isle of Wight County! Historic military vehicle show beginning 9AM Saturday and Sunday (October 23 & 24). Free event, call 247-8523 for details.

Monitor Party: Please recall that the enemy USS Monitor participated in the assault on one of our county's forts in July 1862. Fort Huger on Lawne's Neck was rudely and precipitously attacked by the James River Blockading Squadron and overrun by vile and predatory Union assault troops forcing the innocent and peace loving Sons of the South to evacuate the Fort. The Mariner's Museum will have an open house (free admission) on Sunday Oct. 24 at 2PM to commemorate the groundbreaking of the new "USS Monitor Center." If you choose to attend this event, your society may consider it a valid excuse for not being at the Shoal Bay (Bay Church) clean-up. It is only in the true spirit of North-South reconciliation that we even make you aware of this competing activity.

Regards to all.

Albert

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NewsNotes 36 [Oct 16, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

This short "NewsNote" is sent to reiterate the info sent earlier in NewsNotes 35. By appending NewsNotes 35 to the Virginia Association of Museums twenty page monthly note I got a lot of flak from your individual email services. I think it did not go through to many of you because, I suspect, your own servers viewed it as spam and rejected it. If you do want to recieve the VAM monthly in the future, please reply to this email and I will develop a separate list. I will send it only to those of you who specifically request it.

Gravesite Survey for tomorrow, Sunday, October 17, will be at four small family sites in the Carrollton area. Meet 2PM at 14445 Bayview Drive off Sugar Hill Road. This is across from Jerianne Gardner's house and down the lane on the right. Thanks to Charlie Jett for permission to record. We will convoy from here to the three other sites nearby in Newport District. Roland Lewis did the reconnaissance and helped me get permission from all property owners to record the markers.Thank you Roland. For Wednesday's survey (10AM, October 20) meet again at Henry Tynes Memorial Cemetery on Berry Hill Road between the two packing plants.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 34 [Oct 8, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, October 10, 2PM will be at Henry Tynes Memorial Cemetery (HTMC) on Berry Hill Road. This is the road that connects Route 10 with the Bypass and runs between the two packing plants just north of Smithfield. If we get a good turn-out of recorders we can probably finish this medium-size site (200+ markers) in just a few sessions so plan to return to HTMC again on Wednesday, October 13, at 10AM. This site is actually three contiguous cemeteries under different ownership. Thanks to Burdett Edwards for permission to record. Note: I have attached our GSSTF fact sheet for those of you new to NewsNotes.

Virginia Association of Museums has given us permission to forward their Monthly E-News to everyone on the IWCHS NewsNotes list. This is a very informative publication of statewide historical activities. Unless you do not want to get this on a monthly basis I will forward the October, 2004, issue next week. Let me know by reply to this NewsNotes if you do not want to receive this. My recommendation would be to look at it next week and them let me know if its too much input for you.

Researcher Needed (Paid) to assist a Texas resident with some Isle of Wight County based genealogy. The families to be researched are the Pooles, Stantons and Halls. If you could help with this (did I mention it is a paid effort?) please contact Dee McNosky at dtmcnosky@aol.com or (H) 817-656-3727, (C) 817-320-4060 or via USPS at 5108 Pleasant Run Road, Colleyville, TX 76034. Dee is on our NewsNotes list and did I mention that she is willing to pay someone to do this?

Researchers Needed (Unpaid) to assist your local chapter of the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities (try saying that in one breath and you will know why we now call ourselves just "Preservation Virginia") in putting together an update of the APVA Jamestown Exposition booklet on the history of "Isle of Wight County 1608-1907." (did I mention this is an unpaid effort?) APVA has persuaded a local nationally-renowned author to write the text but she needs our help with the research. Basically, we need people to document our county's history 1908-2006 so the author can tie it together. I have a list of usual volunteer suspects (you know who you are!) so if you do not step up to the plate to do this research I will be forced to volunteer you. Did I mention that no one will be paying you for this?

Nike-Ajax Missile Site N-75 - I am thinking about putting together a reunion of US Army Nike-Ajax Veterans for August of 2005 at Nike Park. The date will coincide with the first successful test of the Soviet Union's A-Bomb in 1949 which is generally accepted as the historical start-point of the 40 year Cold War. With County approval, the reunion would be at our beautifully preserved (so far) missile base in Carrollton and would lend support to the concept of developing a Virginia Cold War Museum at the site. Please reply to this note with your thoughts on the feasibility of this and if you will help.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 33 [Oct 2, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Cable Recovery - We were unsuccessful in recovering a piece of the Nike-Ajax Missile Battery Area Control Cable (BACC) from Titus Creek last Wednesday primarily because I neglected to check the tidal charts before I scheduled the event. Thanks to Bill Cook and Alan Nogiec for coming out to help. Unfortunately, the section of cable we were after was 3 feet underwater! All the rest of the BACC is 3-5 feet underground and would be much more difficult to get. I will reschedule this archeological project after I consult some NOAA tide data, my almanac or the moon.

Gravesite Survey - One final (hopefully) check of Ivy Hill Cemetery again Sunday, October 3, 2PM. During the last visit we discovered some non-recorded markers and ran out of time to finish. Let's turn out in-force for this operation so Ernie can complete the data input. The more folks who show up, the quicker it will go. Thanks.

Next IWCHS Meeting - Mark your calendar for Sunday, November 14 at 3PM. We are attempting to have our meeting in one of the county's historic homes. Stay tuned and reserve the date/time.

History on TV - History channel will rerun the history of American firefighting for Fire Prevention Week: 3-8 October. Check local listing.

Boykin's Tavern - Don't forget the Master Gardner presentation today 10A-2P at this very historic home. Tour guides will be there to walk you through 250 years of the history of this building. Not only was it the home of several generations of one of Isle of Wight County's most renowned families but the county militia also mustered here during the American Revolution. The "tavern" era of the home was the center of county activity after 1800 when our court was moved from Smithfield to the area next door. This is a great opportunity to visit Boykin's Tavern if you have not taken the full tour.

That's all for now,

Albert

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NewsNotes 32 [Sep 28, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Artifact Recovery Mission - Instead of our usual gravesite survey tomorrow, Wednesday, 29 Sept., let's do some different kind of archeology. Meet 10AM at the boat ramp SW of Jones Creek Convenience Center on Smith's Neck Road. We will attempt to recover a length of the original Battery Area Control Cable (BACC) which connected the Nike-Ajax Missile launch site on Jones Creek (now "Nike Park") with the radars and computers on Titus Creek (now Jone's Creek Convenience Center). The section of BACC that we recover will be for the upcoming Cold War exhibit at Isle of Wight County Museum. Bring hack-saws, bolt cutters, boots (it's in the mud!) and wear old clothes.

Historic Boykin's Tavern - We still need docents to help with tours and other projects. Call Suzanne Anderson at 357-6604 if you can devote even a few hours per month. Sue is our new Education Coordinator. Hope you saw the excellent cover story about Boykin's Tavern "Polishing a Gem" by Shirley Brinkley in Sunday's 'Virginian Pilot insert "The Sun." Next program at "BT" is Saturday Oct. 2. with a Master Gardner presentation at 10AM by Nancy Franklin followed by sales of perennials by Heirloom Botanica.

Architectural Survey - We met yesterday (Monday, 27 Sept) in Isle of Wight with representatives from Virginia Department of Historic Resources for an initial presentation on the upcoming survey. Bids on the contract for the survey are due in Richmond NLT Oct 15 and DHR expects to meet with us again in mid-November to present specific details of our (volunteer) involvement. DHR will survey 150 properties with 135 at the "reconnaissance" (general) level and 15 at the "intensive" (detail) level. Of these 150, a minimum of 10 will be in the Town of Windsor. Please recall that Smithfield has already done this architectural Survey. NewsNotes will keep you informed of developments,

Archeological Survey - At the same meeting (above), representatives from the College of William and Mary also presented the status of their efforts on the survey to which our GSSTF efforts contribute. Results of this professional survey will be published early next year. Samples of our GSSTF reports will be included as well as map data on the sites we have completed to date. We told DHR that we were at least a year away from completion of our part of the survey.

Regards for now,

Albert

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NewsNotes 31 [Sep 25, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Countywide Architectural Survey - A reminder to all about the meeting Monday, 27 September, at 7PM in the circuit courtroom in the Courthouse Complex at Isle of Wight. We will learn the parameters, guidelines and requirements for this upcoming survey as well as opportunities for volunteer help.

And speaking of volunteers, the county plan for the selection of a company to do the Phase I Archeological Survey at Boykin's Tavern is shaping up. When the digging starts, the professional archeologists could probably use some local volunteers to help with menial and labor-intensive chores like hauling buckets of earth from the hole to the sifter. This project is our county government's only Jamestown 2007 project. (St. Luke's and Smithfield have other independent projects) I will keep you tuned to developments.

Gravesite Survey Task Force for Sunday, 26 September, 2PM: We finished Ivy Hill last Wednesday but we must double-check our work. We had so many different recorders at different times over an extended period for this large and rambling cemetery that we now must do a once-over sweep to confirm our data. Ernie Powell will provide alphabetical lists and we will start at one end for a complete walk-thru. Please come out for this. The cemetery has 1000+ sort-of-randomly-placed markers and will require some effort. We will also concurrently double-check our work at Macedonia on Smith's Neck but we'll need most folks at Ivy Hill.

Advanced Genealogy Seminar will be conducted 9:30A-4:00P,Saturday 16 October, by Dr. Paul Drake at the Rawls Library, 22511 Main St. in Courtland. Topics will be: courthouse records, mapping, deeds and local records. Cost is only $5 and bring your own lunch and drink. Coffee provided. Please pre-register with Bruce Saunders at 757-562-4403 or, preferably, at bs4403@charter.net.

Fulgham Family - Smithfield Times and Virginian Pilot both just covered the recent efforts of this famous former Isle of Wight County family to establish a museum/library here. The Fulghams arrived here in 1634 and the family was prominent at county and state level for almost 200 years. But, alas, today we know them only from cemetery markers, the "Fulgham Bridge" over Jones Creek and "Fulgham's Ferry" at Cypress Creek. We applaud and support this family's efforts to rekindle their historic ties with Isle of Wight County. All society members should familiarize themselves with the Fulgham's contributions to our county's history. HHK is an excellent source.

1677 Treaty - Many of you read the 21 September Daily Press coverage of the efforts of the Mattaponi Indians to invoke their 29 May 1677 treaty with Charles II to prevent modern encroachment on their lands by the City of Newport News. This treaty guaranteed that the English (that's us!) would respect a three mile buffer zone around Indian villages. Our local Nansemonds also signed this treaty and they are the current cultural ancestors of Isle of Wight's Warrosquoyackes. If we can get someone to follow up on this we might be able to use this 327 year-old legal document to help preserve and protect our Mokete (Warrosquoyacke) Village site here on Smith's Neck. Would some legal-type out there in IWCHS-land like to pick up this ball and run with it?

That's all for now folks,

Albert

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NewsNotes 30 [Sep 17, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, Sept. 19, 2PM will still be at Ivy Hill. We have missed two sessions now because of rain. If Sunday is clear, which it may very well not be, than we should be able to finish up. If Ivan or Jeanne, or whomever, gives us rain again (still?) on Sunday, we will return to Ivy Hill on Wednesday the 22nd. It's good Ivy Hill is such a pleasant and interesting place so returning there is never boring.

Architectural Survey "kick off" meeting will be Monday, Sept. 27 at 7PM in the Circuit Court Room at the County Courthouse Complex in Isle of Wight. All are invited to hear a Virginia Department of Historic Resources representative present an overview of this important upcoming effort. An update on the Archeological Assessment Project will also be given. I think you all realize that our Gravesite Survey Task Force recordings are an integral and crucial part of this project. We will probably be asked to present to DHR the results of our efforts so far. POC is our history devotee at the county seat: Debbie Sivertson at 357-3191

Your very own county militia will be at Henricus Historical Park in Chesterfield County Saturday, Sept 18, with Sunday the 19th as a rain date. Isle of Wight County Militia re-enactors will be portraying Virginia State Navy sailors of the American Revolutionary War. Henricus is the site of the failed English attempt in 1611 to establish a better capital site than Jamestown. This is a fascinating place which also overlooks "Dutch Gap" site of the failed 1864 Union attempt to reroute the James River around Confederate shore batteries which blocked the way to Richmond. Lots of interesting "could-have-been" history here if you need a place to take the family this weekend since the Isle of Wight County Fair was cancelled. Henricus Park is about 85 miles WNW from Smithfield up Route 10 toward Petersburg. In Chesterfield County, look for the signs on Route 10 for Henricus Historical Park. It is less than one mile before you reach I-95. Turn right onto Old Stage Road and then another right onto Coxendale Road which leads into the park. Call me at 357-6685 for more info or just to complain about the short notice.

Iwo Jima Flag Raiser John Bradley's son will be at Broad Street Books in Portsmouth this Saturday (Sept. 18) at 5PM for a book signing. The address is 359 Broad Street, tel # 397-8900. Do not call them to complain about this short notice. James Bradley wrote "Flags of our Fathers" after his dad passed away. It is one of the most engaging books I've read. James tells the life-stories of his dad and the five other marines photographed by Joe Rosenthal as they raised the flag over Mount Suribachi. Just meeting James Bradley should be a treat for any of you ex-USMC guys in the Society. You may complain that this is not Isle of Wight County history, but Bradley's book is truly excellent.

Call Jerianne Gardner, your Society President, at 238-2366 with any other complaints.

 It's late, I'm tired, regards to all,

 Albert

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NewsNotes 29 [Sep 14, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Wednesday, Sept. 15, 10AM will be Ivy Hill again. We are just about done here. If no rain and a good turn-out of recorders we should finish. If some of you new members would like to come out. This is an interesting and beautiful place and, except for the dying-piggy cries, is well worth the drive. Please come out and help if you can. Your Gravesite Survey Task Force (GSSTF) has now recorded over 7000 markers in 48 cemeteries in the county.

New Members - Six new email members are included in this communiqué. These folks signed up at our meeting last Sunday. Please remember that these NewsNotes are gratis but official membership in IWCHS only obtains when Jeff Stark receives your ten Yankee dollars for the year. Each of you will also get several NewsNotes back-editions soon. We voted to no longer accept Confederate money although we were making a small fortune selling the authentic notes on eBay. (We had to stop accepting CSA currency when several of you ran out of the real stuff and tried to pass off some recent carpetbagger forgeries for your annual dues.)

Nike-Ajax Site N-75 - Look for some coverage in this week's(?) Smithfield Times. Your Society voted to continue to pursue Historic District designation for the 1954 anti-aircraft missile base buildings at Nike Park. We are actively seeking US Army artifacts from the 1953-1962 Nike-Ajax Cold War period for display in the Isle of Wight Museum. Please let me know if you have a lead on anything.

Society Meeting 12 September at Benn's UMC was well attended. John V. Quarstein, Director of Historic Resources for Newport News, gave us a dynamic presentation on "The first year of the American Civil War in Hampton Roads." He also helped us formulate a way-ahead for preserving, interpreting and promoting our county's premier Civil War artifact: Fort Huger at Harden's Bluff. More to follow on this in subsequent NewsNotes. We also reactivated the logo committee to come up with an appropriate emblem for our Society. The county would not let us borrow their logo. Committee chair is Theresa Johnson. We also made some changes to our by-laws. We will let you know details of 12 Sept. meeting actions in future NewNotes. Next Society meeting is 3PM, November 14 (Columbus Day) at a place TBD.

Shoal's Bay (Old Bay Church) Cemetery - Mark your calendars for 2PM Sunday October 24. IWCHS will conduct its annual (except we missed last year) clean-up, manicure and maintenance of our county's most historic (1632?) small burial ground. We will need mowers, chain sawers and lots of workers. I will remind you of this later.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 28 [Sep 7, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Ivy Hill Cemetery - Meet here again tomorrow, Wednesday, 8 Sep. 10AM to continue to record. No progress last Sunday because of rain. The remnants of Hurricane Frances are now here, so tomorrow may be rainy also. Please recall last NewsNotes warning about the swine-squeals. If you really wish to avoid the reality of what makes Smithfield the "Ham Capital of the World" then best stay home. Otherwise, Ivy Hill is a perfectly delightful place, as cemeteries go.

No Gravesite Survey for Sunday, 12 September. Triple conflict of interest. You should be at our meeting at 3PM at Benns Church to hear the fabulous John Quarstein wax eloquently on the local depredations of vile Yankees during the "late unpleasantness." You can then drive quickly (but carefully) into town to hear the APVA special presentation at the 1750 Courthouse in Smithfield at 4PM.

Smithfield Walking Tour - Please go to http://www.historicsmithfield.org/ to view Bryan Canter's wonderful on-line presentation of historic Smithfield. No plastic dancing piggies here! Good work Bryan. Now we need Bryan to develop an on-line "Driving Tour" of the historic homes and sites outside of town. All note this a purely volunteer effort by Bryan.

Speaking of Websites - Go to http://www.iwight.gov.uk/ to view our British sister-county's website. This site provides a fascinating insight into our own historic origins. Go to "links" and then to "history" to see that they have not forgotten their off-spring way over here in the colonies.

Isle of Wight Museum is putting together a display highlighting our county's historic Nike-Ajax Missile Site from the Cold War. I will be asking for help from some of you in collecting artifacts. This may substitute for one of our Gravesite Surveys in the near future. Please stay tuned.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 27 [Sep 5, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey - Meet at Ivy Hill in Smithfield again tomorrow, Sunday, 5 Sept. at 2PM. If enough people turn out we will be able to finish recording this very interesting and locally notable cemetery. For those of you who have helped record on the Wednesdays we have been at Ivy Hill, I think Sundays are free of the piggy death squeals. This wonderfully reverent place unfortunately abuts the "killing floor" of one of our packing plants and weekdays are not for the squeamish. Since I am a bacon connoisseur myself, I suppressed PETA-like impulses to rush over and rescue a pre-porkchop pet. C'est la vie.

Toll Plaza Building - As most are now aware (the event got wide local media coverage) our little American-bond brick, curved plate-glass window, architecturally unique (in the county), potential state historic landmark and nostalgic little toll plaza building, which used to be at the south foot of the James River Bridge, is now history, so to speak. VDOT contractors demolished the structure last week despite valiant efforts by your Society and other civic groups to save it. We did manage to acquire the thousand-pound wall safe which kept our toll money secure for many years. C'est la historie.

Quarterly Meeting - Your Society will have its quarterly business meeting Sunday, September 12, 3PM in the Fellowship Hall of Benn's United Methodist Church, 14571 Benn's Church Boulevard, Isle of Wight County. Benn's UMC is just south of St. Luke's Historic Shrine on Route 10. Our guest speaker is the dynamic Mr. John Quarstein, Director of Historic Resources for the City of Newport News. His topic will be something about the War Between the States here in Isle of Wight. We will discuss some business after the presentation. I will send out an agenda to you early next week. Vive la compagnie.

"First Invasion" - This History Channel series about America's Second War of Independence (War of 1812) will air beginning next Sunday, 12 Sept. at 9PM local. Check your TV guide in case this changes. Although this may not be in the TV show, remember we Isle of Wighters furnished the local militia Commander, and the successful defender of Norfolk, Major General Robert Barraud Taylor of Smithfield. The Isle of Wight Militia also participated in the glorious American victory over the invading British at the Battle of Craney Island. If Francis Scott Key had lived in Portsmouth instead of Baltimore he could have written his famous poem about "...the rockets red glare..." a year earlier here in Hampton Roads. C'est la guerre.

New Society Members - A reminder that these email "NewsNotes" are sent gratis to all. Actual IWCHS membership accrues only to those who send a $5USD check to our treasurer Jeff Stark at IWCHS, Box 84, Isle of Wight, Virginia 23397 or IWCHS Box 121, Smithfield, VA 23431. We are maintaining our schizophrenic two USPS addresses until we reach amicable consensus on where we want our mail sent. Or maybe we will just compromise and have everything mailed to Isle of Wight, England. Vive la compromis.

Au revoir,

Albert

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NewsNotes 26 [Aug 26, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Ivy Hill Cemetery - We continued recording here yesterday (25 Aug.) with a good team turn-out. This is a large cemetery with lots of interesting inscriptions. We will meet here again Sunday 2PM (29 Aug.) and also Wednesday 10AM (1 Sep.) unless you hear from me otherwise. For those of you who have not yet come out for a survey, please help with this one. In my opinion, Ivy Hill is second only to Old St. Luke's (which we have not done yet) in terms of local interest, variety and quality of markers. We will supply all materials needed. You only need to be able to read and write English. Actually, all you have to do is accurately copy what is inscribed on the marker even if you can't read it. We have had to copy Latin, French and German inscriptions! So if you have not yet come out for one of our surveys, this would be a good time.

Windsor Castle - Hope you all saw Patrick Lynch's excellent article in Monday's (23 Aug.) Virginian Pilot, Hampton Roads section: "Slate-covered grave found in Smithfield." This was originally a Daily Press piece. For those of you new to NewsNotes, this was a discovery made by your Society's Gravesite Survey Task Force (see attached). Thanks to Anne Betts Hooper, property owner, for permission to record.

Nike-Ajax Site N-75 - The 12 month moratorium imposed by the Isle of Wight Board of Supervisors on perusing Historic District designation will expire shortly. Please let me know if you want to help me pursue the dream of establishing the Virginia Cold War Museum in Carrollton at the best preserved Cold War anti-aircraft missile base in Virginia.

18th Century Punishment - Did you read Sabine Hirschauer's excellent update (Daily Press, 30 July) on the APVA quest to erect a stocks and pillory near the 1750 courthouse in Smithfield? APVA Board member Kathy Kurchinski is heading up this project and is making good progress. The singular obstacle, up to now, was lack of historical documentation that one actually existed. Your Society's Corresponding Secretary, Mischelle Canter, diligently poring through the records at our new (1800) courthouse complex, discovered this entry for May 6, 1773: "...ordered that George Purdie and Arthur Smith gentlemen do let to the lowest undertaker the building (of) a stocks, pillory, and whipping post in this county." Way to go Mischelle! Now we have to find out exactly where it was. Courthouse Green?

Regards to all

Albert

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NewsNotes 25 [Aug 21, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Evergreen Cemetery - We finished our survey here last Wed., 18 Aug. Thanks to Mike A., Paul H. and Ernie, of course. In addition to the CSA markers there are a number of metal white crosses with no names. Someone must know whom these crosses mark. Could somebody (Jeff S.? Joe F.? Scott S.?) contact the SCV folks and find out if they know? It would be great to include this data in our GSSTF report on Evergreen.

Ivy Hill Cemetery - By popular demand, this is our next survey target. It may take several campaigns. We'll start tomorrow, Sunday, 22Aug. at 2PM. Cemetery is in Smithfield on North Church Street (Route 10 "Business" - not the By-Pass!) just over the Pagan River Bridge on the left coming out of town and just past the Packing Plants on the right coming into town. This cemetery, started in 1886, contains several local CW vets. See HHK "...Notes..." page 182.

Isle of Wight County Militia 1781/1812 - The "Compass" Section of the Virginian Pilot for Thursday Aug 19, has a really nice three page (including the cover) color spread of your militia reenactors' activities, starring Rob Friar, at Fort Norfolk. Isle of Wight County Militia can always use recruits if you are interested in "hands-on" participatory history. Call Commander Friar at 357-9250 or reply to this NewsNote with a USPS address and I will send you information on how you can be a true, active patriot and help defend your county against past British (and Hessian!) incursions as we did at Mackie's Mill in 1781 and Craney Island in 1813.

"Training Burn" Building on Country Way - I was notified only Thursday of a house in Battery Park to be burned today, Saturday, by Smithfield Volunteer Fire Department for training and demolition. I did not have time to notify any of you so I went to the house and, with the owner's permission, did one of our standard historic document/photo searches of the premises. It was a small, new (1960?) place and nothing of import was found. Our advance notification system by all county Fire Chiefs of such opportunities is still in place but this particular house became available on short notice with a quick burn request.

September 12 IWCHS Meeting - We have an unavoidable partial conflict with our local APVA branch meeting on Sept. 12. IWCHS meeting was scheduled for 2PM and APVA meeting is 4PM so we thought members could attend both. But, we (IWCHS) had to move our start time to 3PM to accommodate our guest speaker. So it is still possible for members of both groups to hear both presentations except for the IWCHS members who must stay for the business part of our meeting. IWCHS meeting will be in Fellowship Hall of Benn's UMC at Benn's Church and APVA meeting will be at the 1750 Courthouse building on Main Street in Smithfield.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 24 [Aug 17, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey - Team will reconvene tomorrow, Wed. 18 Aug., 10AM at Evergreen Cemetery in Smithfield. See NewsNotes 23 for directions. We started last Sunday during ex-hurricane "Charley" but the notes we took all got soaked by driving rain and ruined by flying debris so we'll have to start over. I guess the Tornado Warning for the area kept several of you away. People, if we are going to complete this project within any reasonable amount of time, we must persevere! Also, If anyone knows anything, or knows anyone who might know anything, about the unmarked graves in Evergreen please bring the info. Several CSA graves are in Evergreen too.

Christopher Kemper Harvey - Early 1900s concrete-block architect who lived in Smithfield and built several(?) of his ground-breaking, so to speak, homes in town got excellent press yesterday, Monday, Aug. 16, in the Virginian Pilot's "Hampton Roads" section, page B3. Thanks to Society member and reporter extraordinaire Linda McNatt for the research and writing. Now we need all of you to go out and find other C. K. Harvey concrete-block homes in the area, besides 221 Cary Street.

Ragged Island - Your Society presented its position supporting the designation "Virginia Exceptional Waterway" for Ragged Island Creek at a State Water Control Board public hearing in Suffolk yesterday, August 16. The criterion "exceptional recreational opportunities" is enhanced by the presence of three Civil War coast defense artillery fortifications on Ragged Island and indications of several Indian sites. The only written eye-witness account of the world-renowned battle of Hampton Roads (CSS Virginia vs. USS Monitor) that was not done by either a combatant ship crew member or someone on shore was published by BG R. E. Colson in 1885. To view the battle more closely, he bravely launched his row-skiff from Ragged Island! Thanks to BG Colson for making Isle of Wight County's own Ragged Island world famous and to Tom Finderson for the summary presentation to the Water Control Board.

Society Meeting - Mark your calendar. September 12 at 3PM. We are negotiating with Benn's UMC at Intersection Route 10/32 (Benn's Church), near St. Luke's Historic Shrine, for the use of their Fellowship Hall. We save the $100 rent by having a Society member who is also a congregant of the Church.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes 22 [Aug 5, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society,

GSSTF - We completed the survey at Battery Park Baptist Church Cemetery last Sunday, 1 August. Ernie is now working up the report. It should go out to all soon. There are several new addresses on our IWCHS list so you may be receiving a GSSTF report for the first time. These are lengthy with color photos. I encourage you to print these for yourself so we have as many of these documents as possible in circulation, so to speak. Your Society may eventually print selected copies for sale, but that project is months, if not years, in the future. Next survey will be Wednesday, August 11 at 10AM, location TBA.

Building Document Search - Sunday, August 8, 2PM, we will meet at the now abandoned ca. 1880(?) Minga (pronounced "Mingee") Farm House. From the intersection of Route 17 (Carrollton Blvd) and Smith's Neck Road (Routes 669/665) 3.4 miles NW toward Rescue. Turn left on Minga Lane and slowly drive the very rough dirt road 0.4 miles to the Victorian era house at the end of the lane. Thanks to Ralph Wilkerson, property owner and Nike-Ajax (Site N-75, 1958) Missile Launch Specialist, for permission to search. Bring flashlights and prybars.

Josiah Parker Homestead and Gravesite - Tom Finderson and Pat Clark met on site recently with Parker Family descendent, county representative and the property owner to discuss plans for outlining the area to be cleared around the gravesite. Plans for fencing and memorial marker(s) still TBD. Thanks Tom and Pat for leading this effort.

Windsor Castle - Smithfield Planning Commission will meet Tuesday August 10 7PM at Smithfield Commons to hear development plans for the Jericho Planning Area which encompasses Windsor Castle. Please go to Bryan Canter's website at hhtp://webpages.charter.net/canterb/Windsor_Castle/ for details of this massive development which may forever change the historic character of the Town of Smithfield. Our local APVA branch has already published in the Smithfield Times (28 July) their official position and your Society is now working on a similar effort to be presented at the August 10 meeting.

Historic Boykin's Tavern - Docents needed. If you can volunteer even a few hours per month to conduct tours of our county's most historic home, please contact Sue Anderson, education coordinator, at 357-6604 or anyone at the Convention and Visitors Bureau on Main Street in Smithfield. This is a great way to learn details of Isle of Wight County history.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jul 23, 2004]

To Isle of Wight County Historical Society,

GSSTF - We completed Collosse Baptist Church last Sunday. This coming Sunday, July 25, 2PM, meet at Battery Park Cemetery in Battery Park (duh!). From Smithfield, follow Battery Park Road (Route 704) 2 1/2 miles to the sharp (slow down!) left curve. The cemetery is in front of you. Thanks to Pastor Alan Hogge of Battery Park Baptist Church for permission to record. I will be with you in spirit only. (Your Isle of Wight County Militia, 1812 accoutrements this time, is assembling at Fort Norfolk in case the Redcoats try again.)

1 Aug. IWCHS meeting, NOT! - Sorry about the false starts on this. Your VP is having trouble reading the fine print in our by-laws. The meeting is also not 5 Sept. as disseminated to some. So pencil-in Sunday 12 Sept. 2PM on your calendar for your next Society meeting. I'll let you know when this changes too.

Wyatt Bible - Mischelle is near completion on the transcription of our 1817 "find." She has also agreed to be the point-of-contact for the many inquiries we have received from Wyatt descendents. Thanks Mischelle.

Millstone for Boykin's Tavern - The Boykin's Tavern (1762?) Advisory Committee is looking for a millstone to display at the tavern. An actual 18th or early 19th century locally used millstone would be perfect! We all know there are a lot of these still out there in the county. So if you have one you are not currently using, let us know. Good quality sliced white bread is now readily available at most groceries in the county, so donating your old millstone could save you a lot of work and enhance our display at Boykin's Tavern. Let me know or contact Cathy Kurchinski at the Convention and Visitor's Bureau - 357-5182.

Smith Sherwood Ledger on eBay - I think we lost this. The last bid I heard was in the $480 range which was way above what any of us were prepared for. If any of you out there in IWCHS-Land can find out who bought the ledger, it would be great to get a photocopy for us.

JRB Toll Plaza Building - We may have lost this battle too. It is a shame to lose this unique structure on the eve of starting the county's first official Architectural Survey. I had to promise the Board of Supervisors last night that I would not lie down in front of the bulldozers to keep our little building from being demolished. Our local magistrate told me that a civil disobedience conviction would probably force me to resign from the various county committees that I have been appointed to. Next stop: Nike Park! (Saving the most well-preserved cold war anti-aircraft missile base in Virginia might well be worth some jail time.)

County-Wide Architectural Survey - We have not formally started this effort yet but if any of you would like to help let me know. It will be a team effort like the Gravesite Survey Task Force. The Stephenson Family in Murfreesboro, NC, is helping me put together some initial documentation on Clerestory (1820-1840) houses in the county and also ca. 1900 Christopher Kemper Harvey concrete block structures in Smithfield. We seem to have Victorians and Colonials aplenty, but these other buildings may be more architecturally significant than our more well-known "historic" homes.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jul 16, 2004]

Isle of Wight County Historical Society,

Collosse redux - Gravesite Survey Task Force will reconvene Sunday (18 July) 2PM at Collosse Baptist Church Cemetery for a short activity. We need to double check some items. I tried to find an appropriate verse from Paul's Epistle to the Colossians to motivate our return. Any suggestions Bryan?

Can the refreshments committee bring something? Thanks to GSSTF junior members Tiffany Baggett and Katie Cook for helping out last Wednesday.

Historic St. Luke's Church - HSLC has asked GSSTF to commit to completing the recording of Old St. Luke's Cemetery by 2007. They want to submit this as an official Quatracentennial "Legacy" project for St. Luke's. I told them 2007 was way too late. We will finish it by 2005. Mike Andrews has already done most of the work but, since HSLC wants a digital photo of each marker, we will need to restart this project using Mike's work as the basis. Should go much quicker than starting from scratch.

Old IWC Courthouse in Smithfield - APVA is still seeking docents to help with daily (1-4P) tours at Smithfield's first and most historic building. This is a great learning experience and you get to meet lots of friendly Yankee and local tourists to encourage them to spend money in town. Call Lanny/Dianne Hinson at 357-3091 or Brenda Joyner at 357-3350. You do not have to have an18th century outfit for this duty.

Windsor Castle - Bryan Canter has an excellent piece in the last Smithfield Times. He makes a strong legal and moral case for basically preserving this historic property mostly as-is and keeping development within guidelines already agreed to through community consensus. The proper development of the Windsor Castle site will have to be accomplished by Town of Smithfield citizens. This is your historic town and only you can keep it from being destroyed or "Disneyfied" by avarice.

JRB Toll Plaza Building - The clock is ticking. VDOT said maybe two weeks until demolition. I still need volunteers to link arms around it when the backhoe shows up. We reduced our request for delay of demolition from 12 to 6 months but VDOT is still listening more to the editor of the Smithfield Times who advised VDOT to "bulldoze the building, and do it quickly" (ST May 19, 2004) before the various citizen's groups can act. Thanks a lot Smithfield Times.

Next IWCHS Meeting - Sunday, 1 August, is our next quarterly get-together. Speaker will be Brian Howard from the 2nd Virginia Militia Regiment who will regale us with the story of Isle of Wight County in the War of 1812, America's "Second War of Independence." We might change the meeting time from 2 to 5 PM to deconflict with GSSTF activity. Place still TBD. Please stay tuned.

Fort Norfolk Archaeological Survey - Thanks to all who responded to the call. City of Norfolk has agreed to an archeological assessment of the site where we think the Isle of Wight County Militia was encamped 1812-1814. Our troops were led by Smithfield (we think) native Major General Robert Barraud Taylor who commanded all of the Virginia Militia forces in the area and is the hero of the victory over the marauding British at Craney Island in 1813.

Dixie Jute Manufacturing Company - This was the 1860(?) building now removed from the above mentioned site. I thought you all would be interested in Joe Ferguson's "Dixie Jute material story" possibly making more IOWC connections to this site. Joe writes: As an old ex- "company man" of Smithfield's premier industry up until a few years ago, I can tell you a neat possible connection between this jute material, and the town of Smithfield. I used to buy jute twine for my plant (V.W. Joyner Co.), to tie around the hocks of the long-shanked Smithfield ham hocks to hang them in the smokehouse. We even had a special way the twine had to be wrapped and knotted, to prevent it from slipping off the wet, slippery hocks during the long months hanging in the smokehouse and aging room. Looks like thick, brown yarn. Don't know that this Dixie was the same factory it came from or not, but thought folks might find the jute material connection of interest. It is probably still used in Smithfield today.

That's all for now.

Regards,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jul 9, 2004]

For Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

Gravesite Survey for Sunday, July 11, 2PM will be at Collosse Baptist Church, 6361 Rhodes Drive. It is actually two cemeteries, one on each side of the road. Take 258 southwest thru Windsor. About 5 miles on left is Collosse Road, less than one mile down on left is Rhodes Drive. The Church is on the left. Thanks to the Pastor's wife and the Chairman of the Collosse Cemetery Committee for permission to record.

Mischelle is now transcribing the pertinent pages of our "Wyatt" bible so we can begin to respond to the many inquiries generated by the news coverage of our "find." I received two more today. The IOWC Museum Curator will turn this Bible over to us for proper disposition. We can discuss this at our 1 August meeting.

Several of you responded to the call for action to persuade the City of Norfolk to take an interest IOWC history by conducting the archeological survey at Fort Norfolk where our militia was camped in the war of 1812. No commitment yet from Norfolk but we are pushing hard. I think the City is worried that if something significant is found it may delay construction of their new Harbor's Edge development.

Lots of public discussion lately about the development of Windsor Castle in Smithfield. This is arguably the town's most historic building, competing perhaps only with the Courthouse on Main St. The APVA and your Society are struggling with how to approach the pending sale and future development of the property. The Smithfield Times covers the action pretty well. Think about whether or not the IWCHS should take a position on this at our next meeting.

The JRB toll plaza building has now been cleared of asbestos. It should be ready for repair and occupancy by new tenants. Possible co-tenants could be Va. State Police, IOW Sheriff, VDOT, VMRC, Game and Inland Fisheries, Carrollton Library book drop, James River Assoc., Chesapeake Bay Foundation, DEQ and a radio relay site between IOW and the peninsula. If anyone out there has more ideas, let me know. Feel free to pull over carefully and tour the building. I put up the yellow tape so just duck under. VDOT still plans to demolish the building this summer.

To formally join the IWCHS send $5 to PO Box 84, Isle of Wight, VA 23397. Please include your USPS and email addresses.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jul 6, 2004]

To: Isle of Wight County (VA) Historical Society

Have included the (VA) above because these IWCHS NewsNotes now also go to several people in Isle of Wight County, England. I suppose there is no real chance of confusion, but just to be clear... After all, we did fight an eight year long Revolutionary War for the privilege of not being forced to associate with them. Maybe its time to let bygones be bygones. Note: This only applies to enemies more then 200 years hitherto. The more recent unpleasantness, which paused in 1865, will take a little longer to forgive, let alone forget.

No gravesite survey for tomorrow, Wednesday, July 7. This is all Ernie's fault. He is still trying to catch up on data entry from past excursions. I hope to have us back out in the field by next Sunday, July 11.

The ACM (Asbestos Containing Material) has now been removed from "our" James River Bridge Toll Plaza Building. This unique 1954(?) structure seems to still be in very good condition although it is now minus all windows and doors. Am still trying to find out from VDOT the exact date of demolition so we can decide if we want to surround it with our bodies. Remember, when it comes to historic preservation, I like to paraphrase Barry Goldwater: "Extremism in the defense of history is no vice." Will keep you informed of developments.

Some of your Society members have been active in the past week in an Isle of Wight County history issue in the City of Norfolk. The area behind the historic (ca. 1810) Fort Norfolk is now being cleared of an early 20th century factory building. This was the encampment site of the Isle of Wight County Militia Company and other local units called up in 1812 as part of the 2d Virginia Militia Regiment to defend Norfolk against a British attack. We are trying to persuade the City of Norfolk to conduct an archeological survey before the planned new construction on the same site commences. We would hope to recover artifacts from Isle of Wight County Militia troops from the 1812 to 1814 period. Your own Isle of Wight County Militia helped repel the Redcoats at the Battle of Craney Island in 1813. Your soldiers saw the "rocket's red glare" of British Congreve missiles a full year before Francis Scott Key made them famous when these rockets were used again at Fort McHenry. Will keep you abreast of these developments also.

Actually, since we didn't make peace with England again until 1815, and, since they did burn our president's mansion in 1814 (forcing us to paint it white to cover the smudges), maybe we do need to wait a little longer before coddling up to the folks in the other Isle Of Wight County. Maybe they should make the first overtures since we may have wanted our President to live in The Gray House. Or maybe not.

Regards,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jun 30, 2004]

To: Mischelle & Bryan Canter; Stark, Jeff; Jerianne Gardner

Cc: Joe Ferguson

Subject: IWCHS NewsNotes

Ladies and Gentlemen,

My unofficial IWCHS NewsNotes now go out to 108 email addressees. Many of these recipients are not dues-paid members. For the past 8 months I have received only positive feedback on the contents of my email notes.

My last communiqué, however, did offend one person to the extent that they want to resign from the Society. It was my semi-serious call for civil disobedience to "lie down in front of the bulldozers" or maybe my characterization of VDOT as "evil" that was "over the top" according this person.

I checked our latest roster and cannot find the person's name so I'm not sure if they are a dues-paying member or just do not want to get my email NewsNotes.

You all know that these communiqués started only as a means of coordinating the activities of the GSSTF and have subsequently morphed into a semi-official Newsletter for the Society.

I think you all also know that the only real criticism of our Society, at least that I have heard, is that we no longer formally publish the Newsletter that we used to. I have assumed, rightly or wrongly, that my IWCHS NewsNotes had filled this void.

I will work personally with the aforementioned individual to explain that my writing style is meant to be entertaining as well as informative and is not always to be taken 100% seriously. This particular person is someone I know and respect and I was completely taken aback by the reaction.

The purpose of this note is to solicit any comments you might have on all of the above but also to propose formally to the executive committee that we ask Mischelle to begin mailing out hard copies of these IWCHS NewsNotes to those who not receive them by email.

Maybe Mischelle should white-out the word "evil" before she sends out the last note.

Please let me know what you think about all this.

Albert

PS: I have sent as "Bcc" a copy of this note to the person who wants to resign.

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NewsNotes [Jun 29, 2004]

To: Isle of Wight County Historical Society

Apologies for the hiatus in communiqués. A nearby lightning strike zapped my PC and I just recently got it unbroke.

I hope everyone is now aware of the death of our Society President's mom. Geneva Meade Johnson passed away peacefully at Riverside Hospital on Sunday, June 13. The sympathy and condolences of the whole Society are extended to Jerianne Gardner and her family.

The dedication of the Helen Haverty King Room at Boykin's Tavern on Saturday, June 12, went very well. Thanks to Dianne Spencer-Wooley and the Boykin's Tavern Advisory Committee for providing delicious refreshments. Bill Laine gave a heartfelt and personal remembrance soliloquy on his long association with Mrs. King. Sara Wright brought in display items relative to Mrs. King's long dedication to our county's history and Jeff Stark and Mischelle Canter unveiled our plaque on the door of the room. This plaque is only temporary until we agree on text for the permanent memorial marker.

We had a really excellent experience with Roger Healy on Sunday, June 13, at his 1807 "Foursquare" historic home. Roger is truly an expert on 18/19th cent. building construction techniques and tools. He gave us a professionally delivered class in methods, wood, joinings and erection of colonial structures. We did not even have to do much heavy lifting to assist him with restoration of his dairy dependency. We also recorded the site of three supposed slave graves on the property. Thanks to Roger for a great event.

IWCHS has a new mailing address: PO Box 84, Isle of Wight, VA. 23397. Mail will still be picked up at our old PO Box in Smithfield for several months. We changed our address to reflect a broader historical orientation which focuses more on the entire county than just its Northern area. Besides, "North" connotes far more than just a compass direction in this here part of the country. We thought ya'll would like this. It should not disrupt the flow of Yankee tourist dollars.

The Smithfield Inn (1752) was just added to the National Park Service National Registry of Historic Places. It is also a great place to eat and is managed by the daughter of our local APVA chapter Director Lanny Hinson.

Document search of the "burn" building at Williams Auto Mart on Route 17 was done Tuesday, June 15, instead of the following day as previously announced. A county bureaucratic snafu caused the Fire Dept. to have to raze it earlier than scheduled. The 1940s era building was searched thoroughly and nothing of historic note was found.

Hope many of you were able to watch the HGTV presentation on the restoration of Jeff Stark's (our treasurer!) Dr. Parker home. We will try to give you advance notice on future reruns of the show.

The County was recently contacted by the Fulgham Family who have deep historic roots here in Isle of Wight. They are interested in building a library here in honor of their family's history. We are working with them to find an appropriate site. They rejected the idea of restoring and using the Jordan House on the Turner Property but we hope to convince them that maybe Fort Huger is the proper venue. Debbie Sivertson, assistant to the county administrator, has the ball on this action.

Lots of recent activity on the movement of the 1924 Christian Home (Rosenwald) School from its historic location in Longview onto a back lot in the Town of Smithfield. Its equally historic companion structure will probably be unceremoniously burned. It's a shame to remove such a landmark from its rural cultural setting simply to make it more accessible to tourists. I am convinced this misguided effort will be regretted far into the future. The Disneyfication of Historic Smithfield will have begun. All please note that opposition to the relocation of this historic African-American structure is mine and not an official position of the IWCHS. I firmly believe we dishonor the memory of our forebears when we remove the buildings in which they made history.

We will take a break from gravesite surveys for another week to allow Ernie time to catch up on his data entry.

Congressman Randy Forbes recently took an interest in the concept of a Cold War Museum at Nike Park. County Parks Director Alan Nogeic and I took the Congressman's aide on a tour of the former Nike-Ajax missile site last Friday, June 25. We will have to wait and see if anything develops.

I assume you all saw the recent newspaper coverage we received in our efforts to preserve and re-use the old toll plaza building at the foot of the James River Bridge. We are only asking VDOT for a one year delay in demolition to find some suitable tenants who can use it productively. We may have to lie down in front of the bulldozers on this one. I'll need some volunteers who can stand a few days in Sheriff Phelp's lock-up after we are arrested for trespassing, inciting to riot and causing a civil disturbance. Our local Magistrate told me these would be the charges. At the very minimum we may be able to give the evil, wasteful and arrogant VDOT a few public relations headaches.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes [Jun 2, 2004]

To: Isle of Wight County Historical Society

We must return to Beaver Dam Baptist Church this Sunday, June 6, 2PM to complete our cemetery survey. We did not get much done today because of low volunteer turnout. My rough estimate of number of recorders at BDBC today was approximately midway between 0 and 2, but I may have miscounted. Let's all turn out Sunday to finish this job! Thanks.

Attached is what will be inscribed on the plaque for the door of the HHK Room at Boykin's Tavern which we will dedicate Saturday, June 12, at 2PM. Wording must be finalized Thursday, June 3, so let me know if you have any recommended changes. Bill Laine will be our guest speaker. Thanks Bill.

Roger Healey, owner of Foursquare (1807), has offered us a chance to assist in the restoration of the 150 year old dairy dependency on the Foursquare property. He only needs help replacing the two collar beams which are 4x8x16 and HEAVY. This should be quick work and Roger will let us tour the historic home (see HHK Historic Isle of Wight, p. 38). This will require some of our younger crew members (Scott?) so let me know if you are interested. We might plan this for Sunday, June 13. What do you think? Thanks Roger.

Remember we have a document search of a "burn" building for Wednesday, June 16. Also, Jerianne Gardner is working on getting us permission to search the 1857 Charles Driver Jordan House (see HHK Historic Isle of Wight, p. 49). This is not a burn building but may have to be relocated to make way for the new Benn's Church intersection. Thanks Jerianne.

More good news from Department of Historic Resources. The 1779 Henry Saunder's House (see HHK HIoW, p.75) has just received National Historic Registry as well as Virginia Landmark designation. Kudos to the owner, Dr. Hollowell, for making this happen. Thanks Doc.

Hope to see you all Sunday!

Thanks Albert

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NewsNotes [Jun 1, 2004]

To: Isle of Wight County Historical Society

Subject: IWCHS NEWS

Isle of Wight County Historical Society News

Saturday June 12 2PM is the dedication of the Helen Haverty King Room at Boykin's Tavern. Please plan to attend. We will also have a preview of the new video to be shown to visitors at the IWC Museum and a display of the sample county documents we recovered from above the Registrar's Office. Light snacks will be provided by the Boykin's Tavern Advisory Committee. A short IWCHS Executive Cmte. meeting will follow the dedication.

Cemetery survey for 10AM Wednesday June 2 will be back to Beaver Dam Baptist Church just off Highway 58 between Carrsville and Franklin. Let's try to get max number of recorders out there so we can finish the job! Please come on out if you have not participated yet.

Don't forget to do something special next Sunday the 60th anniversary of the Normandy Landings. If nothing else, just go find someone from "the greatest generation" and shake his/her hand. You will be hard pressed to find someone from the WWII generation who did not contribute to the victory over Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan in one way or another.

Kudos to Society members Tom Finderson and Pat Clark for leading the recently successful effort to achieve Virginia Landmark designation and National Historic Registry for the Colonel Josiah Parker gravesite. Good work guys!

APVA could still use more tour guide docents for the Old Courthouse in Smithfield during the week. Three hours per week or month is all we ask. Call Dianne or Lanny Hinson at 357-3091, Brenda Joyner at 869-7968 or me at 357-6685. Excellent opportunity to learn county history, contribute to its dissemination and meet lots of friendly tourists.

Regards to all,

Albert

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NewsNotes [May 22, 2004]

To: Isle of Wight County Historical Society

Subject: Cemetery Survey/Old St. Luke's/HHK Room/etc.

For Isle of Wight County Historical Society:

At the request of several of you I have begun to "Bcc" the address list. This is for security and brevity. We have over 100 addressees on our IWCHS email list. There is no charge for getting these notes but if you feel a little guilty about getting all this great Isle of Wight County history stuff for free, you might mail your $5 annual dues to Jeff Stark, Treasurer, IWCHS, PO Box 121, Smithfield, VA 23431. This will get you our USPS mailings too.

Cemetery Survey for tomorrow, 23 May, 2PM, will be at the cemetery across from Beaver Dam Baptist Church just off Hwy 58 between Carrsville and Franklin. The address is 3593 Carrsville Hwy (Route 58) but the church and cemetery are on Beaver Dam Road just off Hwy 58. I do not know where the actual beaver dam is. We can ask about that when we get there. Tomorrow is the church's annual Memorial Day so there may be lots of parishioners in amongst us. I told the pastor this was fine with us because at least they will appreciate our efforts and we may pick up some recruits. Thanks to Pastor Richard Peerey for permission to record this cemetery. I think this is also Phillip Bradshaw's church. He is the Supervisor who represents Carrsville Magisterial district and has been very supportive of our efforts.

Several of you asked for info on the ADC street map books which I extolled in a previous note. These are available for $11.95 + Governor Warner's cut at most local petrol stops. The title is "Suffolk & Isle of Wight." Or contact: ADC The Map People, 6440 General Green Way, Alexandria. VA 22312-2447. Phone 1-800-ADC-MAPS. www.adcmap.com ISBN 0-87530-395-1

Old St. Luke's Church needs volunteer docent guides for June. Duty tour is 930A-4P Tuesday thru Saturday, but they only need you to sign up for a few days if you can. They will train you. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about St. Luke's and will be great fun for us history-minded types. Openings are for June 1-5, 8-12, and 22-26. Call Pam Glanville at (W)357-3367 or (H)357-6719 or Cami Brooks at 357-6889 ASAP to get your first choice of volunteer days. They may even be able to pay you! I plan to pick up a few days myself.

The Boykin's Tavern Advisory Cmte. approved Saturday, 12 June, at 2PM for our dedication of the Helen Haverty King Room. Mark your calendar and plan to be there.

We moved the sample 1920-1950 County records, which we found hidden above the Registrar's Office, into the "HHK" Room. We will display these for the 12 June dedication.

We will have another "burn building" to search on Wednesday 16 June at 10PM. Details to follow. Mark your calendar.

Regards to all,

Albert

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