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Central Rappahannock
Heritage Center Newsletter
A place that loses its history loses it soul
Volume 6, Issue 11
November 2016
In This Issue

The Heritage Center gladly provides research services.  Please contact the center for rates.
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4:00 p.m., the first Saturday of each month, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. or by appointment
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Message From The Chairman

The 6th Annual Rappahannock Repast was held on Sunday, October 2, on a beautiful day at lovely Braehead Manor.  Innkeeper Mary Windsor Cline and event coordinator Deborah Johnson could not have been kinder or more accommodating in helping the Repast committee with the fundraiser, ensuring a successful event.  And thanks to our generous event sponsors, all of the expenses were covered by their donations so the Center was able to keep 100% of the proceeds from ticket sales.  The net for the event was $7,907.34 and the money will be used to continue the Center's mission of preserving the documentary history of the region.  Many thanks to all who sponsored, donated and purchased tickets to the Repast!
On November 4, the movie Loving will premier in select theaters in the United States, followed by an expanded release throughout the country. The movie is based on the true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple from Caroline County, who were married in Washington, D.C. in 1958.  Virginia's anti-miscegenation statute, The Racial Integrity Act of 1924, prohibited marriage between people classified as "white" and "colored".  They were subsequently arrested in their home in Central Point, VA, tried and sentenced to prison, with the sentence suspended if the couple left the state. The couple ultimately sued Virginia and, in 1967, the landmark civil rights case Loving vs. Virginia was heard before the United States Supreme Court.  The unanimous decision by the Court invalidated laws prohibiting interracial marriages.
The Heritage Center has in its archives the original Caroline County court documents pertaining to the Loving case.  The movie was filmed in Virginia and footage was shot at the Caroline County courthouse.
Loving will be the first theatrical film to screen at the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D. C.
Meredith Beckett
CRHC Chairman  

Welcome New Members  
Mr. Samuel Perry

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

Your Vote Counts
Come visit the Heritage Center and see the history of local political campaigns and elections.  There are photographs, campaign posters and bumper stickers.  The Center also has Fredericksburg poll books going back to the early 1900s, when only men could vote.  Women got the right to vote in 1920 when the 19th Amendment was ratified.  In those poll books, names were separated by "white" and "colored."

When women became eligible to vote, many registered immediately.  Within six weeks of the Amendment's ratification, 22 of the 36 charter members of the Washington- Lewis Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, had signed up.  Since some of these 36 women lived outside Fredericksburg, the total number may have been higher.  The Daily Star kept track of the new voters.  On September 20, 1920, the Star published the names of the 186 women newly registered to vote, three days later, the total had grown to 214.

When Fredericksburg voters (white men) were considering secession in 1861, a vote was held on May 23, 1861.  Voters had to state publically whether to stay or leave the Union.  Eighty-year old Judge John Tayloe Lomax sadly lamented that it was a day he had hoped he would never see.

According to John Hennessy, Chief Historian at the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, at least 24 presidents, from George Washington to Barack Obama have come to Fredericksburg.  Abraham Lincoln made five visits to the area during the Civil War.

President Gerald Ford visits Fredericksburg

Lest anyone think his or her vote isn't important, consider this.  In 1985, Stafford County candidates for Board of Supervisors, Rebecca Reed and Al Fagan were in a tight race for the Falmouth District.  Mr. Fagan led by one vote.  One ballot was disputed and declared as void; it could not be counted.  This created a tie. Lots were drawn and Mrs. Reed won.

Please come visit us at The Center and don't forget to vote on Tuesday, November 8.
Beth Daly 
CRHC Member

Newly Acquired Collections
Acquired collections for the month include:
  • A copy of the 1938 Fredericksburg City Directory
  • A 1972 plat of the Cedar Run subdivision, which is located near Spotsylvania Battlefield within Fredericksburg/Spotsylvania National Military Park
  • A photograph of Harry Byrd; a proclamation honoring Alma Leitch; and a 1937 Fredericksburg HS commencement program
  • A 1957 issue of the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography; Tylers Quarterly Historical and Genealogical Magazine
  • Ladies Memorial Association photographs
  • Progress Magazine-Fall/Winter 1989 with a MW Hospital report
  • Interfaith Community Center minutes and articles
  • Bound volumes of the Free Lance Star now spanning from January 1933 to December 1969
Many people may feel that their potential donations are "not important enough" or not appropriate for preservation.   Our goal is to preserve the entire history and legacy of the Central Rappahannock Region, so almost every donation offered to us has found a home at the Center.  Bring yours in soon!

John Reifenberg
CRHC Collections Manager
Can you help identify these photos?
Perry Collection

Update! The man in the bow tie is Samuel E. Perry. The trucks are backed up to the post office loading dock from which the sorted mail was placed in the trucks. Samuel E. Perry retired as Superintendent of Mails for the Fredericksburg Post Office. Thank you Samuel E. Perry, Jr.! 
(Click on photo to enlarge.)

Perry Collection

Unidentified photo from the Samuel E. Perry Collection. October 5, 1970 Fredericksburg Fire House Dedication.
(Click on photo to enlarge.)

Please e-mail Diane Ballman at
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)