Down Memory Lane for July 9

March 4, 1976

Emergency service at Washington was wiped out Saturday afternoon when the water tanker and ambulance collided on Route 211 at the entrance to the Amissville fire house and carnival grounds. According to Trooper. W. Weatherholtz, Bruce Critzer, driving the tanker attempted to make a left turn when Edward Clark in the ambulance started to pass. The emergency units had been summoned to Amissville to assist with a large field and brush fire. The ambulance with radio was directed to the fire and started to pass the tanker to lead it to the burning area. The tanker had no radio and had no outside rear vision mirror on that side so Critzer did not see Clark passing as he steered the tanker into the Amissville fire house to receive directions.

Lt. D. Craig Welling, USN, was recently awarded a Letter of Commendation from Vice Admiral Joe Williams, Jr., Commander Submarine Force U.S. Atlantic Fleet for superior performance of duties aboard the USS james Madison (SSBN 627) (Blue) from September 1974  to November 1974. He is married to the former Carter Moffett of Washington.

Ten candidates have filed petitions for the five seats on the Washington Town Council, and only incumbent Peter Kramer has filed for mayor. Filing deadline was Tuesday for the election which will be held May 4. Council member incumbents include Dorothy Hawkins, June Jordan and Charlie Jenkins. Others filing are H.T. Updike, C.E. Giles, Jr., Bradford Fisher, Robert Haase, Charles Manson and Dorothy Clater, and Mrs. Virginia Miller, who also files as treasurer. She has held this position for many years. Mrs. Edna Wayland did not seek re-election to the council. She said, “I did not qualify. I will not serve. Eighteen years is enough.”

March 28, 1985

Eugene J. McCarthy — former U.S. Senator, Congressman for 22 years, author of 11 books — came to Rappahannock County “kind of by accident.”

After retiring from the Senate in 1970 he settled in Georgetown. Not happy, however, living full-time in the city he rented a house in Amissville for four consecutive winters. The country house appealed to McCarthy. Finally, “the lady sold it to me,” he said. McCarthy has since relocated to Hawlin Hollow in Woodville where he has lived for five years.

From high atop his perch in Hawlin, McCarthy observes with a keen eye the natural beauty of Rappahannock. His most recent book is “The View From Rappahannock,” a collection of essays.

The Rappahannock Historical Society officially formed in 1965 when a group of people got together and saved the old telephone company office building from being torn down. That effort was just the beginning for the group of people who continue to strive to preserve Rappahannock’s past. The Virginia Telephone and Telegraph office building was special to the group because it had been one of the outbuildings to Avon Hall before the house was moved. The telephone company deeded a corner of their lot to the group and then funds had to be raised so the building could be moved.

The one-time outbuilding/shoe shop/telephone office became the property of the Historical Society after it was moved, and the real work began. It was in very bad shape with holes in the roof, broken windows and rough brick for walls on the inside,” said Virginia Lindstrom. Lindstrom was the president of the Historical Society during the time when the building was being renovated.

Edward Brown has been a rural mail carrier for the Sperryville Post Office for nearly 30 years. In that time, he has never has a reportable accident even after his route increased from 22 to 71 miles a day. A driving record like that is something to be proud of, but as Brown tells of his driving awards he is quick to say that he still makes mistakes. “I have had some people on my route ask me if I can read,” Brown said. Brown is the only rural carrier for the Sperryville Post Office, and he drives his own car to make deliveries. He receives a payment based on his mileage. And after 30 years of driving, what does Brown plan to do when he retires? “I’ve got a little camper, and I want to try to get on the road some,” Brown said.

Sept. 14, 1994

Joy Sloane asked the Board of Supervisors to protect people walking on the county’s roads from dogs at last Wednesday’s meeting.

Mrs. Sloane was attacked by two dogs Sept. 1 when she was walking on Route 612 in Old Hollow. She said she had decided to start a walking program and she took a walking stick her daughter had given her for a Christmas present. She said that the dogs “came shooting from the house and hillside and attacked me. One went for my face, and I used the stick to keep it away. The other bit me above the knee, and the dog that had gone for my face bit me on the leg from the back.” An elderly neighbor heard her screaming and came out and yelled at the dogs and they ran back into a field, she said. She walked to the neighbor’s house and called her husband and dog warden Johnny Ray Pullen. She suggested the county needs a leash law or at least an ordinance that would prohibit unleashed dogs on the county’s roads. The supervisors took no action on Mrs. Sloane’s request.

Sunday afternoon Sam and Wanda Snead hosted at their home, Hillcrest, a birthday party picnic for the Snead family members having birthdays in September. In a revival of an old family tradition, after lunch the first annual handicapped Hillcrest Mixed Doubles Croquet Tournament was held with 20 players participating on three courts. Birthdays were celebrated by Mary Q. Snead, Sharon Snead, Rayner Snead, Libby Snead Hewitt, Betty Snead Lindsay, John Peyton Snead IV, and “Sam Hewitt, four years old son of Rob and Lib Hewitt.

As a taxidermist, Mike Smoot of Amissville preserves the beauty of wild animals forever. He taught himself the art of taxidermy eight years ago using books from the library. Other than some help from the Lee family of Fauquier County, Mr. Smoot is entirely self taught. After practicing for two years, he obtained his taxidermist license from the Virginia Game Commision. Since then, his business had been by word of mouth, which has kept him very busy during hunting season. During the season, he works on his taxidermy two nights a week and half a day on Saturdays. He is careful, though, to allow himself time for hunting too. His full-time job is at Vint Hill as a deputy project manager and director of operations. Most of Mr. Smoot’s customers are residents of the county, and he has been doing 40 to 50 deer heads a year, besides various other animals.