Down Memory Lane

Aug. 12, 1998

Jacqueline and Steve Soaper’s new Rosebud Cottage on Main Street, Sperryville, evokes images of a more elegant and bygone era — of afternoon tea, lace doilies, and romantic gardens. “I like things that are Victorian or feel Victorian,” explained Jacqueline, noting the delicate china cups and tea sets, antique glassware and other collectibles are selling well. “I also like to find things that are plain that I can do my own thing to,” with decoupage or painted dramatic colors to create unique accent pieces. The couple is always on the lookout for “old, different kinds of things that have a history to them,” added Steve.

As a result, the ten-room “Nina Brown” house and a backyard workshop are filled to overflowing with the Soapers’ acquisitions from years of antique hunting and estate purchases. “I’ve live the life of a gypsy everywhere,” said Jacqueline. “The urge (to have my owns shop) was always there. I just bought and bought, but I never knew what to do with it.” Neighbor Barbara Williams, proprietor of Links and Chains, encouraged her to open Rosebud Cottage. After only the third week the shop already seems a success.

The Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors is considering buying the former Aileen, Inc., industrial property near Flint Hill in hopes of restoring jobs in the county. Other reasons for the possible purchase are to put the property back on the tax rolls and to deal with the pollution problem left by the bankrupt Aileen Corporation.

The county has surplus money in the bank that can be used to finance the settlement, said County Administrator John McCarthy. If a tenant is found for immediate occupancy, then that would help structure the deal, he added.

McCarthy conducted the tour of the cavernous 100,000 square-foot, cinderblock and brick building. The building lies vacant with chains across the two entrances and weeds growing through the asphalt in the parking lot.

McCarthy said that the building would continue to deteriorate unless something is done.

April 15, 1976

Most of the apple crop in Rappahannock County was wiped out this past weekend when a killing frost froze the apple blossoms that were almost in full bloom. According to some estimates, more than 90 percent of the crop was destroyed when temperatures in the area dropped into the low twenties.

H. B. Wood of Woodville, who owns 50 acres of apple orchards, said that “it looks like they are about all gone.” He said the thermometer on his house dropped to 20 degrees. “That was cold enough to get ‘em,” he said.

Wood remarked that the weekend frost was one of the worst that the apple crop has ever suffered. “The kill is the worst that I have ever seen. I’ve heard a lot of people say that, and some of them are older than I am.”

Another Rappahannock orchardist, Ned Johnson, said that his Red Delicious apples suffered the worst damage. “My Red Delicious are wiped out completely; the Staymans will be short and so far it looks as though I’ll have a fair crop of York’s, Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty and old time Winesaps,” he said.

The restoration of Mt. Salem Baptist Church to its original condition was the subject of a meeting late in March in Washington attended by persons interested in the historic building. Mt. Salem, located on Route 626 near Washington, is considered the Mother Church of all Baptists in Rappahannock, established in 1828 and boasting a membership of 225 at that time. It was last active about 1959.

Since then the building has deteriorated physically and vandalism has also contributed to the ailments of the church. Its however, was considered initially sound, after extensive examination, and worth restoring, according to a spokesman.

In addition to private contributions, assistance with restoration funds may be obtained from foundations or from state or federal grants. These possibilities will be investigated by Mrs. George H. Davis Jr. The formation of a non-profit corporation for the restoration has also been discussed. A finance committee composed of Mr. Davis, I. R. Kilby and James Burke was appointed at the meeting which was chaired by the Rev. G. B. Titchennell.