Scented Geraniums Were Stars in Victorian Bouquets

By Barbara Crookshanks Scented geraniums' modest flowers are almost invisible among the big blossoms of their flamboyant cousins...but their fragrant leaves made them the secret stars of Victorian Valentine bouquets. "Once no bouquet was deemed complete without a bit of this fragrant foliage," wrote Louise Beebe Wilder in her 1932 classic, The Fragrant Path. She suggested…
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Virginiana Stories

By Dan Enos The Virginiana Room, also known as VR, is located on the lower level of the Fredericksburg Branch on Caroline Street. It is a bright and comfortable space where researchers, local and regional history buffs, genealogists, and plain old curious browsers can access books, maps, local government documents & publications, family records, and a few…
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About Anno

Mitsumasa Anno grew up in a traditional, beautiful Japanese village named Tsuwano, far away from any bustling city. Although he and his family lived near the sea, the mountains all around kept Anno from experiencing its vastness until he was older. When he was a child, he drew pictures of things he could see and also…
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Board Game Nights

Board games have a surprisingly long history and have been a main form of entertainment until recently (see the links at the bottom of the post). Some ancient games include senet, the Royal Game of Ur, Go, Mancala, chess, and checkers. With television, video games, and the internet available, board games often take a back seat to…
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Sea Witch

By Kari Patrick In Sea Witch, Sarah Henning brings to life an unexpected fairy tale retelling that focuses on the villain’s background rather than that of the original protagonist. Over a century ago, Hans Christian Andersen wrote his classic, “The Little Mermaid.” As the years passed and Disney brought their version of the story to…
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Song for a Whale

By Annie Brulatour Iris understands being surrounded by people who don’t understand you. She’s the only Deaf kid in her school and keeps running into issues with other students and teachers. Her parents are great but don’t understand her love of electronics - specifically repairing antique radios. Her grandfather, also Deaf, is the one person…
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Hello Lighthouse

Hello!...Hello!...Hello! A lighthouse stands on a rocky coast, beaming out a message to passing ships. While modern lighthouses are automated, that wasn’t always the case. Sophie Blackall’s Caldecott-winning Hello Lighthouse shows the life of a lighthouse keeper throughout the years. It explores his duties within the lighthouse and the ships that provide his only connection to…
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The Weddings of Five Famous Virginia Brides

By Barbara Crookshanks These five brides from three centuries left distinctive imprints on Virginia history. One was a humble serving girl; another was an Indian princess. The other brides were a mother, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter whose marriages would place them at the forefront of national affairs. For each, their weddings were times of celebration. The…
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