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Central Rappahannock
Heritage Center Newsletter
A place that loses its history loses it soul
Volume 7, Issue 4
April 2017
In This Issue

The Heritage Center gladly provides research services.  Please contact the center for rates.
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Message From The Chairman

The Center was honored recently by a visit from Carolyn Rourke, a member of the Fredericksburg Regional Genealogical Society (FRGS) and editor of its quarterly newsletter, Lily Pad.  FRGS serves area residents who are researching personal genealogies and acts as a central repository for regional genealogical resources, of which the Center is one and is referenced on the FRGS Website (  Carolyn interviewed Collection's Manager, John Reifenberg, Facility Manager, Judy Chaimson, Volunteer Coordinator, Donna McCague and I for an article about the Heritage Center: its history and mission, most interesting and unusual collections, its on-line resources and what research services are available at the Center to assist genealogists.  The article will appear in the April edition of Lily Pad.  We are very appreciative of the "shout out" by FRGS, a sister organization for all lovers of history.
You may recall that the Center hosted a New York production company last summer for filming of a segment of "Mysteries At The Museum", a show on  The Travel Channel.  The episode centered on the story of Mildred and Richard Loving of Caroline County and their arrests in 1958 for being an inter racial couple who were married, which was against the law at the time in Virginia.  The Center has the original arrest warrants on loan from Caroline County.  For those who missed the episode when it was originally televised last December, the production company has recently provided the Center with CD's of the episode and they are now in our archives.
The week of April 23-29 is National Volunteer Week, established by President Richard Nixon in 1974 to recognize and celebrate those who give so generously of their time in their communities.  As you know, the Center is staffed entirely by volunteers and our dedicated staff is the primary reason that the Center has continued to grow over the past two decades.  So, a heartfelt thank you to our wonderful group for a job well done!

Meredith Beckett
CRHC Chairman  

Welcome New Members 
Mr. Joseph Boucher 

CRHC memberships support the important work done by the Center.  The Center fills a unique role in the region, the preservation of our people's history, which we make available for research.  We are a 100% all volunteer, non-profit organization.

Please join us as part of the Heritage Center's preservation team!  As a CRHC member, you will be helping to preserve our priceless local history.  Click here to become a member today! 

Thank you for your support,

The Central Rappahannock Heritage Center



While doing research, other items pop up.  Last year the 1916 pocket diary of William F. Liebenow (1882-1949) provided an overview of one man's daily life.  He married (the lady he visited after church and Sunday school).  They had three children, Franklin who established Liebenow's Hardware, Frances a beloved and respected teacher and William, Jr. who joined the Navy during World War II.  William Liebenow, Jr. was assigned to a PT Boat squadron. While in the Philippines, Lt Liebenow participated in the rescue of another young Naval officer, John F. Kennedy.  After World War II, Mr. Liebenow maintained contact with John Kennedy and attended the 1961 presidential inauguration of Kennedy as a special guest.

While reading the obituary of Mr. Liebenow, Sr's mother, another obituary caught my eye.  Malvena "Vena" Crutchfield Young Knox, widow of Samuel G. Knox. Sam Knox was one of the younger sons of Virginia Soutter and Thomas Fitzhugh Knox, Jr. In 2013, the Center, with Historic Fredericksburg Foundation, Inc. published "The Circle Unbroken: The Civil War Letters of the Knox Family of Fredericksburg."  Sam wrote only two of the 117 letters, a young, man with playful attitude, even in war.  After the War, he married Vena and they moved to Cedar Rapids, Iowa where he worked for a relative in the water department. Among Vena's survivors was a daughter, Elizabeth Knox Booth, "a prominent suffragist of the West."  What was this?  Elizabeth graduated from college, taught school and married Sherman Miller Booth, son of a prominent abolitionist.  What would Sam and her Knox grandparents have thought?  Elizabeth got involved in women's issues in Chicago.  In 1913, she guided legislation that gave Illinois women the vote in state and local elections.  Mr. Booth, in partnership with architect Frank Lloyd Wright developed Ravine Bluffs in Glencoe, Illinois, where the Booths lived in a home designed by Wright

Follow the trails, come to the Heritage Center and discover where local history leads.

Beth Daly 
CRHC Member

Newly Acquired Collections

Acquired collections for the month include: 
  • Sketchbooks by a local artist
  • Photograph of 1948 graduating class at Lackland Air Force Base with two local residents in class.
  • Photographs of Caroline County families from 17th and 18th centuries.
  • Book; Here Is The Church; A History of St. Mary Parish
  • Genealogy of the Mullen family, including photographs.
  • Additional Bicentennial letters and newsletters from the CRRL
  •  Photographs of early local mill sites
  •  Annual reports from the city of Fredericksburg, 1915-1979
  • Ferry Farm restoration scrapbook, 1946, includes correspondence
  • Fredericksburg train station scrapbook. 

John Reifenberg
CRHC Collections Manager
2016 Fredericksburg Wall of Honor Nominations

The Fredericksburg Memorials Advisory Commission is seeking nominations for the city Wall of Honor for 2016. Nominees must have made significant contributions to the welfare of the city and the betterment of society, and have died at least a year ago. Nominations may not be made by family members.
Nominations should be made using the Wall of Honor Application on www. and submitted to Tonya Lacey, clerk of the city council. Her email address is [email protected].  The deadline for nominations is May 1.
Can you help identify these photos?

The ribbon cutting of the U.S.N. Supply accounting office at Dahlgren, VA

(click on photo to enlarge)

Please contact Sharon Null at [email protected]

The Circle Unbroken: Civil War Letters of the Knox Family of Fredericksburg

On sale now at the Heritage Center 
$29.70 for members 
$33.00 for non-members 
You can also purchase the book online from the Historic Fredericksburg Foundation
   (click on image to order online)