By all accounts we had a very successful Rappahannock County Civil War Heritage Day last Saturday. The weather was gorgeous and lots of folks attended. Kids of all ages enjoyed the Youth Boot Camps where they got a gentle dose of Civil War-style training using wooden muskets.
Carpenter’s Battery was there to loudly announce the event. Delightful period music was provided throughout the day by the Shenandoah Valley Minstrels accompanied by the South Fork dancers. Col. Mosby (Jimmy Flemming) and his riders were charging on their steeds while gallantly swinging their sabers. The infantry reenactors provided musketry drills and firing demonstrations throughout the day.
A very special treat was the appearance and talk by Ron Maxwell, local resident and Hollywood screenwriter and director of several Civil War-era movies. Another local resident, Art Candenquist, also spoke about the war in this area. Danny Huff sold food with the proceeds going to the Washington Volunteer Fire and Rescue. And Gen. Robert E. Lee (Tex Wells) and Union Gen. John Pope (Neal West) were there to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War in our county.
Special thanks to the committee members who helped put this event together: committee chair Angela Deavers, Laura Overstreet, Jim Massie, Sam Foreback, Brian Taylor, Robert Yowell, Ron Frazier, Art Candenquist, Tom Taylor and David Yowell. Lions Club volunteers Jim Blubaugh and Jim Manwaring are thanked for their help in parking control. We thank the Williams Tree Service for their donation of firewood. Very special thanks to John McCarthy, the county administrator, for making it all possible and by promoting and supporting this event.
Other county employees who made it possible were Sandra Maskas, the Visitors Center manager, who greatly helped with support at the center as well as spending some of her free time to open the site for evening planning meetings. Kudos to Laura Overstreet, the county’s tourism consultant, who expertly coordinated the publicity, and spent many hours of her own time assisting, and Kim Bealle of D&K Design, responsible for the excellent marketing materials and website.
We cannot thank enough the next-door property owner Stan Skowronski, who in large measure permitted the event to take place next to the Visitors Center, and his tenant John Critzer, who spent considerable time clearing the property. A truly great combined Rappahannock County effort with the wonderful county Farm Tour.
Rappahannock County Civil War Sesquicentennial Committee