Virginia History

01/11/2010 - 9:25am

Stafford County was the southernmost part of the Union occupation of Virginia for much of the Civil War and as such it drew all sorts of characters to its farmlands and creeksides. General Daniel Sickles--described by his contemporaries and historians as a scoundrel, murderer, rapscallion, rogue, and adulterer--took charge of the 2nd Brigade of Hooker's Division, Army of the Potomac. He enjoyed scouting the enemy by hot air balloon and held extravagant parties for his officers while in Stafford.

04/02/2010 - 9:33am

The Pilgrims get the fame for their feast in New England, but two years prior on December 4, 1619, thirty-eight Virginians at Berkeley Hundred celebrated “a day of thanksgiving’ to God as required by their charter:

11/30/2009 - 9:48am

Beautiful photographs show some of Virginia's best-known and lesser-known historic sites and gardens at their most glorious. Most are open to visitors. Some of the houses mentioned include Abram's Delight, Bacon's Castle, Gunston Hall, Kenmore, Maymont, Oatlands, Point of Honor, and Thomas Jefferson's Poplar Forest. Includes a bibliography and index.

11/02/2009 - 3:06pm

From the Central Rappahanock Regional Library

Divided Highways: Building the Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life by Tom Lewis.
The monumental story of the largest engineered structure ever built -- the American interstate highway system -- is told in dramatic text and pictures. This is the companion volume to the PBS documentary series of the same name.

Getting There: The Epic Struggle Between Road and Rail in the American Century by Stephen P. Goddard.
A well-done bit of social history, with its focus on the triumph of the road builders.

11/03/2009 - 3:33pm

From the Central Rappahanock Regional Library

Classic Georgian Style by Henrietta Spencer-Churchill.
A thorough detailing of the landscaping and interior design that defined Georgian style. Includes an overview of the Georgian and Regency periods (1714 to 1830), a glossary, and a design directory of the masters of Georgian style, such as Palladio, Chippendale, and Repton.

Fielding Lewis and the Washington Family: A Chronicle of 18th Century Fredericksburg by Paula S. Felder.
Local historian Paula Felder has researched the Lewis and Washington connections thoroughly and gives an interesting yet scholarly introduction to Kenmore's first family and its more famous relations.

11/22/2010 - 7:55am

The year 2002 celebrated the 250th anniversary of the foundation of "George Washington's Mother Lodge." According to the authors of the new book The History of Freemasonry in Virginia, "Fredericksburg Lodge No. 4 stands out as one of the brightest Lodges in the early history of Freemasonry in Virginia." Since 1752 it has maintained a continuous Masonic presence in Fredericksburg. Many of the town's prominent citizens have been members, and many of its prominent buildings have Masonic cornerstones.

09/09/2014 - 3:01pm

The Central Rappahannock region produced many of the men who led the fight for independence and fashioned the new American nation. Some are remembered, and afforded their due. Some, like John Francis Mercer, are not remembered -- but should be….

11/11/2014 - 5:47pm

There have been newspapers published in Fredericksburg since 1788. (The only gap came in 1862-65, when the city was devastated by war.)  Fredericksburg has been a one-newspaper town – the Free Lance-Star –- since the 1920s, but before that many newspapers were published locally…. 

10/30/2009 - 4:31pm

Freeman Funk was City of Fredericksburg city manager for 23 years - from 1955 until 1978 - and later served five years on City Council, retiring in 1998. After leaving public service in 1978, Mr. Funk was a consulting engineer. His first wife, Frances Gill Funk, is deceased. Mr. Funk and his wife, Mary Frances Blackburn Moore Funk, live on Franklin Street in a house that Mr. Funk built in its entirety. This is the transcript of the first tape in a series beginning May 14 and continuing on May 21, May 28, and ending September 9, 1999.

10/29/2009 - 12:14pm

By Janet Payne

Janet Payne is the retired fine arts coordinator of the Stafford (VA) County Public Schools.

This article originally appeared in the International Review of African American Art, volume 16, number 1, and is reproduced here with the permission of this publication.

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