Down Memory Lane for June 13

March 4, 1976

Emergency service in Little Washington was wiped out Saturday afternoon when a water tanker and ambulance collided on Route 211 at the entrance to the Amissville fire house and carnival grounds.

According to trooper S. 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.

Rappahannock County has been allowed a delay of one year before instituting a full school year kindergarten program in the public school system. This was the result of a hearing in Richmond last week attended by school administrators and some interested patrons and taxpayers with the Virginia State Board of Education.

The Rappahannock County School Board had requested that an enlarged and extended summer school program be allowed to suffice instead of a full-scale kindergarten which would require additional classrooms, teachers and buses. This was denied by the state board, but a year’s reprieve was granted on the issue.

Local educators felt that the year’s delay would enable them to introduce the kindergarten with greater ease since enrollment in the elementary school is declining. This may eliminate the need for more classrooms, teachers and transportation.

School Superintendent O. A. Norton said, “Things in Richmond went about as we expected. He felt the delay was granted with the expectation that by another year we can house a kindergarten in the present elementary building. Enrollment dropped this year and it is anticipated it will drop next year. Nothing which can be foreseen now will change that unless an awful lot of people moved into the county soon.”

July 30, 1997

Marilyn Hoffman, of Woodville, joked that she doesn’t get off the farm that much, but buying a dress that belonged to Princess Diana at Christie’s did get her to Manhattan.

She has had a fascination with Diana since Diana wed Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, in 1981. Marilyn rose at 4 a.m. to watch the royal wedding and has been watching the Princess of Wales ever since.

She saw Diana in person in London. Every year on her birthday, the Queen mother takes a stroll down the street by her home, Clarence House, and Marilyn waited for several hours to wish her a happy birthday.

On her son’s suggestion, Diana decided to clean out her closets by auctioning off 79 of her famous and elegant gowns collected during her marriage to Prince Charles. The money from the auction was donated to the Royal Marsden Hospital Cancer Fund, Aids Crisis Trust, and Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

It cost $2,000 to guarantee admission into the auction. Marilyn Hoffman purchased one of Princess Diana’s dresses for $26,000.

A boisterous and fun-loving group of employers celebrated Faith Mountain’s 20th anniversary at the Washington Fire Hall on Friday, July 25. They enjoyed a two-hour buffet lunch provided by the Country Cafe.

Friday was a time for owners Cheri and Martin Woodard and some of the long-time employees to reflect on the past 20 years and share some of their experiences from past years.

When they began Faith Mountain Herb and Antique Store, the shop consisted of the front two rooms of the Woodard’s home in downtown Sperryville. Today it is extremely successful with sales of $27 million. Faith Mountain is number one nationally among the fast-paced, country craft mail-order businesses.

The story receiving the most applause (and therefore the $100 prize) was told by Charlotte Jenkins. She began working for Cheri and Martin in 1980, making her the employee with the most seniority. She recounted the time when she went out to harvest yarrow and artemisia with Barbara Gore, Fay Atkins, Joyce Ralls and Mazie Clark (her mother who died in an automobile accident in July and had worked for Faith Mountain for many years).

The group drove to the field in an old blue van with no air conditioning. It was a hot day and Charlotte was encouraging the group to hurry up when they heard a rifle shot. She said Mazie called out, “Boy that was close!” The second shot, though, frightened them. Mazie always ready with a wry comment, called out again, “Charlotte, you’re in charge, so get out front!”

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