Archive for the 'Page County Top 20 Lists' Category

26
Jan
10

Who has made a difference? Part VI (article for the week of 1/25/10)

The focus this week… farmers of Page County during the 19th century. We only get a snippit of their lives from the census records (agricultural data), but, in this week’s article, I offer-up a sampling of what they engaged in during the years since Page’s founding, through the 1890 census. Livestock seems to be the big feature of the years prior to the Civil War, though I’m pretty sure grain was just as big (it’s just that the census doesn’t offer a good deal to help clarify just how much grain was being produced). Grain certainly shows up in the years after the war, with significant production of Indian corn and wheat. Yet, the stats are just stats. The real focus is on the farmer, his wife, and children and what they had to endure to make the products of the farm a factor in the growth and development of Page County.This is why farmers are in a category unto themselves and should be recognized with those who made a difference in Page County in the 19th century.

Next week… the merchants of the 19th century in Page County.

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19
Jan
10

Who has made a difference? Part V (article for the week of 1/18/10)

Image from a stock certificate of the SVRRThis week, I added another category to the growing list of significant folks of Page County in the 19th century… with the men of the railroad. As I mentioned last week, William Milnes, Jr. was among those men, but at the forefront, there can be no question than Peter Bouck Borst led the way. He was a key element in what became the Shenandoah Valley Railroad, but more importantly, he helped to make sure the railroad came through Page County. Additionally, I think it’s important to remember the county’s railroad men who are left unsung by history. I mentioned one of my great-great grandfathers, John Howard “Blinky” Moore, as one of those men who remain quiet parts of the county’s railroad past, remembered within family circles, but often remaining well outside the fame that graced key figures such as Milnes and Borst.

*Trivia: Who drove the ceremonial “last spike” for the SVRR in Page County? Answer: … coming later this week.

I’ll be posting some old railroad photos here later this week.

12
Jan
10

Who has made a difference? Part IV (article for the week of 1/11/10)

The focus of this week’s article was on a grouping (grouping #5, so far) of iron ore industrialists who truly made the town of Shenandoah a reality; the parties of Daniel Forrer, Samuel Gibbons, Henry Forrer… and William Milnes, Sr., John Milnes, William Milnes, Jr. and Thomas Johns and John Fields. In retrospect, however, while we know the names of these men and what they did, we really know very little about them. As I mention in the article, “In an effort to recognize people who made a difference, I think that’s the difficult part in this entire affair. We know them by name (and often forget most of them), but we know very little about the people themselves. Who were they? It almost seems like a rather tenuous foothold in history. We know them for helping to make a difference, but we know very little about them. All-in-all, it’s a sad void in our understanding of the past. Obviously, we need more contributions of biographical sketches (perhaps a cue for me to do more work in that area).”

05
Jan
10

Who has made a difference? Part III (article for the week of 1/4/10)

After completing last week’s article, I realized that I shifted slightly in my definition of those who made a difference. Specifically, last week, I began writing about those who are influential because of the way they help us to better understand the past, not so much influential in a “progress” sense of influence. Following-up on my discussion of influential African-Americans in the county, this week I began discussing influential women (and much in the same sense of influential in helping us to understand the past). I suppose its the historian in me that’s making me do this. Nonetheless, we need to understand that “influence” is not limited to influence through progress and growth, but influences to us in regard to our understanding of the past. In discussing women, two particular favorites of mine are Cornelia Jane Mathews Jordan (see her first book, Flowers of Hope and Memory, here) and Pauline Carrington Rust Bouve… mostly because of poetry and literature.

Keep in mind, this post is an extension of the print article which is longer than what you see here. Also, discussion about the topics covered in the articles is welcomed and encouraged here…

29
Dec
09

Who has Made a Difference? Part II (article for the week of 12/28/09)

Carrying-on from last weeks Heritage & Heraldry column in the Page News and Courier, I added two more groupings of significant people of Page County, Virginia in the 19th century; 1) African-Americans, and 2) women. I spent most of the time focusing in African-Americans, specifically the contributions made by Bethany Veney (see The Narrative of Bethany Veney: A Slave Woman, here), John M. “Jack” Dougans, Noah Thornton*, Charles Brown, and Andrew Jackson. I also included the names of slaves left to us only because of their rebellion against the “peculiar institution,” including “Captain”, “Martin”, “Dan” and others.

For other stories about the history of African-Americans in Page County in the 19th century, see my blog Too Long Forgotten.

*See the story that I wrote about Noah Thornton in my blog Southern Unionists Chronicles.

29
Dec
09

Who has Made a Difference? (Article for the week of 12/21/09)

This week’s Heritage and Heraldry article in the Page News and Courier focused in developing the top 20 list for contributors in the history of Page County within the county. Unable to leave so many people out of a list of 20 people, I opted to begin a list of groupings of people. The first two groupings in this list were 1) people who founded the town of Luray, and 2) people who helped to establish Page County in 1831.

15
Dec
09

Integrating the Web into the Heritage and Heraldry format (article for the week of 14 Dec. 2009)

This week’s article introduces the use of this blog into the Heritage and Heraldry column in the Page News and Courier. I also begin to present thoughts about Page County’s “Mosts”, historically speaking. To start with, I am asking readers what their thoughts are about the top 20 people of the 19th century. This may break into two lists, those top twenty Page Countians of the 19th century who made some significant contribution/difference in places outside the county, and those top twenty Page Countians of the 19th century who made some significant contribution/difference inside the county.

FYI, in Wikipedia, you can find what amounts to a very short list (so far) of those considered “notable” in Page County. I’m adding more over time. My most recent addition to Wikipedia (and the list) was a biographical sketch of Robert Franklin Leedy.

The floor is open for discussion…