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NEWS & EVENTS

Join the Society and the local Berryman Green Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution September 13, 2012 - (2 - 3 p.m.) at the Chastain Theatre

Realizing the Revolution—Art from and about the American Revolution:

John Trumbull -Declaration of Independence     The American Revolution has forever defined us as a nation, and one of the most crucial ways that our forefathers have communicated the importance of this revolution was through art. From the intimate portraits of the first revolutionaries to grand-scale paintings such as George Washington Crossing the Delaware, this talk will dramatically recreate through art the most important events and people of the American Revolution.

    What were the maior artworks? Who were the artisits? Lee Standstead has traveled the breadth of Nort America to personally answer these questions.Come to this illustrated talk to not only see many known and unknown artworks, but also to appreciste these historical masterpieces as art. 231st Anniversary Crossing of the Dan Commemoration

February 16 & 18, 2012

Otho Williams & the 1st Maryland Regiment     Berryman Green Chapter of the Virginia DAR, Dan River Chapter of the Virginia Society, SAR, Halifax County Historical Society, and Halifax County Middle School are co-hosting the 231st Anniversary Commemoration of the Crossing of the Dan (River) in Virginia during the American Revolution and invite you to attend and participate.
    Free public events are planned for Thursday night, February 16th and Saturday morning, February 18th, 2012, at The Prizery, the community and arts center, located at 700 Bruce Street, South Boston, Virginia. (Link to more details and lunch reservation form.)



THOMAS DAY AND COSBY HOUSE TOURS - November 19-20, 2011

Thomas Day      Walk where Thomas Day made his furniture, and into houses where he personally designed and supervised the construction of his expressive and unique architectural elements. Walk around and in the buildings the Cosbys designed, made bricks for, and had their brick masons and carpenters build. The work of both of these artisans was in high demand in the mid-nineteenth century and remains so today throughout Virginia and North Carolina.

     The Halifax County Historical Society in cooperation with the Thomas Day House in Milton, NC is sponsoring tours of the Day museum, five Day houses, and seven Cosby houses and buildings. The “Fall Foliage House Tours” will take place in Halifax County, Virginia, and Milton, NC, on the fall weekend of November 19 and 20. The Thomas Day House/Union Tavern Restoration, Inc. and the Day houses will be open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday, November 19. The Cosby houses and buildings will be open from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Sunday, November 20.

     The Thomas Day House will be free to the public on Saturday, November 19 (at other times there is a charge). For the tours of the Day houses and Cosby houses and buildings there will be a charge of $20 for the two-day event with a one day ticket costing $15 (Tickets purchased at the sites is $25 for two days and $20 for one day). Tickets will be for sale beginning in the middle October at the following locations: Halifax County Chamber of Commerce, Electric Service, The Exchange Store, and Triangle Florist. The house tours are a fund raiser for the Historical Society to help cover publication costs of their upcoming Architectural History of Halifax County.

     For an additional charge of $12.00 a box lunch will be available Saturday at the Oak Tree Tavern on the grounds of the Virginia International Raceway for those who reserve one in advance. Tuesday, November 15, is the cut off date for box lunch reservations. Oak Tree Tavern also known as the plantation house “Southbend” contains Day architectural elements and will be a part of the home tour.

     Saturday, November 19, will feature the architectural elements and furniture of the famous cabinet maker and free person of color, Thomas Day (1801 – 1861). Day ran his very successful shop from 1823 to 1860. The majority of his clientele was composed of the planters, merchants, and professional people along the Dan River basin stretching from Eden, North Carolina to Clarksville, Virginia. Four homes in Halifax County that contain Thomas Day work will be on the tour. A handmade historically accurate reproduction of a nineteenth century cabinet maker’s workbench stocked with period tools will be dedicated at the Thomas Day House/Union Tavern. Cabinet makers will be on hand to demonstrate the use of the workbench and tools.

     Sunday, November 20, will feature the work of the famous house builders and brick manufactures Dabney Cosby, Sr., Dabney Cosby, Jr., and Howard Cosby. Eight buildings will be on the tour including government and professional buildings, a church, and homes that were built by the Cosbys. Their brick architecture will be featured. Home owners and docents will be at each location to explain the history and distinctive elements for each structure. Light refreshments will be served at one of the Sunday tour stops.

For additional information:
Email – qmcgraves@hotmail.com
Call – (434) 822-8967

Write – Halifax County Historical Society (Send checks for tickets and lunch)
PO BOX 601 (reservations to this address) South Boston, VA 24592

Venue: Halifax County
Date: 11/19/2011 – 11/20/2011
Email qmcgraves@hotmail.com

Website www.halifaxcountyhistoricalsociety.org

The 2009 Annual Meeting will be held, Thursday, September 17, at 6 p.m. at the Prizery in South Boston.

Click to go to WebsiteThis will be a dinner meeting with Waite Rawls as the speaker for the evening. Mr. Rawls is Executive Director of the Museum of the Confederacy. The public is invited to attend. Tickets may be purchased by calling Barbara Bass (753-2137), Ginger Gentry (753-2439), Flora Osborne (575-5059), Douglas Powell (476-2483) or stop by Electric Service in South Boston. The cost for the dinner is $13.00 and tickets need to be purchased by Monday, September 14.

S. Waite Rawls III became the Executive Director of The Museum and White House of the Confederacy in 2004. He assumed the position following a long career as an executive in the international investment and commercial banking industry. His parallel career in volunteering for historical and civic organizations includes long-term ongoing engagements as trustee of the Civil War Preservation Trust and the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation and member of the Virginia Military Institute Board of Visitors.

Rawls, a native Southsider from Franklin, graduated from Virginia Military Institute (VMI) in 1970 and recieved his law degree and MBA from the University of Virginia in 1975. Among the positions he held in the banking, investment, and money markets fields were: Managing Director, Chemical Bank, New York; Vice Chairman, Continental Bank, Chicago; Executive Vice President, The Chicago Corporation; and Chief Operating Officer of Ferrell Capital Management, Greenwich, Conn.

He has also been a visiting or adjunct professor at University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business Administration and Illinois Institute of Technology. Rawls has served on many corporate boards and is a past director of the Public Securities Association and Chicago Risk Management Committee; he has also served on the Borrowing Advisory Committee of the U.S. Treasury and the Foreign Exchange Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Rawls has been quoted as saying “The older I get, the more I’ve been saying it’s history that makes my blood run--that’s where my passion is,” he said. Few who meet Waite Rawls can doubt that. His knowledge of Confederate history, just like his personal library of history books, is extensive. As someone devoted to education and the study of history, Rawls has been active on many nonprofit boards.

Virginia was the first state to begin planning for the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. Several other states have introduced legislation creating sesquicentennial commissions, but none have passed to date. Civil War 150, a private, nonprofit organization that aspires to build a consortium of history institutions to coordinate sesquicentennial planning throughout the states, has been chartered in Atlanta. On the federal level, although Congress in 1996 designated the U. S. Civil War Center at Louisiana State University as the flagship institution for planning the sesquicentennial commemoration, funding for the center never materialized. Commission members expressed an interest in working with Congress to ensure that Virginia has a lead role in the national sesquicentennial commemoration.

August 1, 2009, The Prizery, 2 p.m. Book signing by Sam Barnes, coauthor of Booboo’s Hundred Years—Life on Brooklyn Road in Halifax County, Virginia August 2, Brooklyn Tobacco Facory, 2 p.m.

Ruby Barnes was born in 1886 and lived to be over 100 years old. She received the nickname “Booboo” from one of her grandchildren who could not pronounce “Granny Ruby.”

Ruby Barnes was a great storyteller. Fortunately for her family, she lived long enough for them to realize that her wealth of knowledge and wisdom should be recorded.

When she was in her 90s and blind from cataracts, she began making oral history tapes for the family. They were astounded at the details she recalled from her history. This book is a tribute to her amazing mind.

Sam Barnes, a grandson of Ruby Barnes, typed up copies of the tapes for family and friends. Ginger Gentry, a member of the Board of Directors for the Halifax County Historical Society, approached Mr. Barnes asking for permission for the Society to publish a first printing on his grandmother’s memoirs.

The Society is delighted to be able to share with the public another part of our heritage. This book details life in the Brooklyn area during the late 1800s and 1900s.

Sam Barnes, coauthor of the book, will be in the area for two days. Book signings will be held on Saturday, August 1, at 2 p.m. at the Prizery in South Boston and on Sunday, August 2, 2 p.m. and at the Brooklyn Tobacco Factory on River Road from 2-4 p.m. Sunday.

Mr. Barnes will spend approximately twenty minutes on how and why the book came about and then will sign copies. Refreshments will follow. Cost of the book is $20.00.

The Halifax County Historical Society is grateful to Sam Barnes for allowing it to publish the first printing. All proceeds will benefit future projects of the Society.

Following the signing weekend, the book will be available in South Boston at The Prizery and the Peddler’s Market, in Halifax at Toot’s Creek Antiques, or by contacting Barbara Bass at 434-753-2137.
Link to War Bonds WAR BONDS
Thursday October 19th & Friday the 20th

The Songs & Letters of WWII


Tickets are $20.00 each. Play is at 8 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at Chastain theatre. Tickets may be purchased at Triangle Florist in Halifax and at the Prizery in South Boston. They may be purchased by mail. Check payable to the Halifax County Historical Society, P. O. Box 601, South Boston, etc. Be sure to specify the day (Thursday or Friday) It is open seating.
February 21, 2006

Speaker Dr. Sandra Treadway, Deputy Director of the Library of Virginia,
will speak on Virginia Women in History at The Prizery in South Boston. .

February 10 & 11, 2006

The 225th Anniversary of the Crossing of the Dan. In the Southern Campaign Morgan's retreat, which began at Cowpens, became a race after the Council of War at Guilford Court House on 9 February, 1781. The race ended with the successful Crossing of the Dan at Boyd's and Irvine's ferries on the 13th and 14th of that month.

• • • See news stories, photos, video, and hear the VFH radio broadcast
of the Crossing of the Dan 225th Anniversary Celebration here.


Febuary 7 - 27, 2005 Don't Grieve After Me - The Black Experience in Virginia, 1619 - 2001

This traveling exhibit is a photo essay update of the path-breaking exhibition originally produced in 1984-86 by Hampton University Museum in cooperation with the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities. The exhibit, sponsored by the Halifax County Historical Society, will be located in The Prizery lobby.
May 8, 2004

Saturday, May 8, at 2 p.m. the Society will present a program by the Honorable Frank Slayton, who will give a talk on special events during the Revolutionary War. The program will be held in the church in Providence during the Noland Day celebration.
(Click here for full story.)

The Society's Executive Committee has approved the naming of a special window at The Prizery in memory of W. Carroll Headspeath, local historian and author of the Crossing of the Dan. This window is located on the second floor overlooking the Dan River near the crossing site and will be surrounded by a permanent exhibit depicting the crossing. Doug Powell is head of an adhoc committee planning the exhibit.

March 10, 2004

The guest speaker, Kim Chen, during a joint meeting of the Halifax Woman's Club and the Halifax County Historical Society, Chen shared insight into the county's inventory of historical structures as well as possible avenues to save existing but endangered buildings. (Click here for full story.)

January 7, 2004 Gazette-Virginian

Halifax County's Past — Halifax County native and historian Faye Royster Tuck is the author of a book entitled, "Yesterday - Gone Forever," a collection of articles chronicling the persons, institutions and events throughout Halifax County's past. (Click here for full story.)


March 2003

The director of the Patrick Henry Memorial Foundation, Dr. Jon Kukla, is scheduled to present a lecture April 10 at 7 p.m. in the historic Halifax Court House. This will be open to the public with a book signing immediately afterwards.

Dr. Kukla’s lecture will draw upon his narrative history, A Wilderness So Immense: The Louisiana Purchase and the Destiny of America, published by Alfred A. Knopf in April 2003.

The Louisiana Purchase: Then and Now

On the first anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase, the American historian David Ramsay proclaimed that along with “the establishment of independence, and of our present constitution . . . the acquisition of Louisiana, is the greatest political blessing ever conferred on these states.” A century and a half later, on the 150th anniversary, Bernard DeVoto echoed Ramsay’s perspective. The Pulitzer Prize–winning historian and editor of Harper’s magazine concluded that “no event in all American history — not the Civil War, nor the Declaration of Independence, nor even the signing of the Constitution — was more important.” Just fifty years ago, DeVoto also contended that the peaceful transfer of 883,072 square miles of territory from Spain, to France, to the United States 1803 was “still too momentous to be understood.” On the eve of the 200th anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase (and with 400th anniversaries of Jamestown Island and Plymouth Rock not far in the future), perhaps now we can appreciate the long-term human consequences of the Louisiana Purchase more clearly.

Starting at New Orleans in 1803, five million Americans along the Atlantic seaboard began an encounter with diversity — with urban Catholics, Creoles, French, Spanish, Africans, West Indians, and Native Americans — that has been sustained by geographic expansion and immigration throughout the past two centuries. Ramsay and DeVoto couldn’t yet see it, but perhaps the Louisiana Purchase was a turning-point at our halfway mark toward an inclusive national history. Looking back from the year 2003, we can marvel at who we have become — the very antithesis of John Winthrop’s Boston or Thomas Jefferson’s yeoman republic — and wonder what the next two centuries have in store.


A Note About The Author

A native of small-town Wisconsin, Jon Kukla accepted his B.A. from Carthage College (1970) and his M.A. (1971) and Ph.D. (1980) from the University of Toronto. In Richmond, Virginia, from 1973 through 1990, he directed historical research and publishing at the Library of Virginia and dabbled in documentary editing, historic preservation, and archaeology. He spent the next decade in the French Quarter, as director of the Historic New Orleans Collection from 1992 to 1998, adding museum exhibits, television, and historic building renovation to his bag of tricks. He returned to the Old Dominion in 2000 as director of the Patrick Henry Memorial Foundation. His books, articles, and reviews include “Order and Chaos in Early America” in the American Historical Review (1985) and The Bill of Rights: A Lively Heritage (1987). Mr. Kukla currently resides at several hundred yards from Patrick Henry’s grave at Red Hill plantation with his cat, Talleyrand, and Jennifer’s rabbit.


Publishers Weekly, February 24, 2003

A WILDERNESS SO IMMENSE: The Louisiana Purchase and the Destiny of America
Jon Kukla. Knopf, $30 (352p) ISBN 0-375-40812-6

Until a better one comes along, which is unlikely, this is now the book to read of the growing crop of works on the Louisiana Purchase in this bicentennial year. It differs from Charles Cerami's bracing Jefferson's Great Gamble (Forecasts, Jan. 27) by its deeper foundation of scholarly knowledge, from Roger Kennedy's overstriving Mr. Jefferson's Lost Cause (Forecasts, Feb. 3) by being less idiosyncratic.

Kukla (coauthor of Patrick Henry) offers up a splendid, beautifully written narrative focused tightly on the complex historic origins of the Purchase and on the diplomacy that pulled it off. Necessarily, his tale takes in the whole world, including the aspirations of Napoleon’s failed forays into the Western Hemisphere and his resulting need for cash. But Kukla stays firmly on this side of the Atlantic. Jefferson takes center stage, but his Federalist opponents, whose sometimes disunionist machinations kept matters complex, are in the wings.

Kukla's portraits of the principal diplomats--Robert Livingston and James Monroe on the American side; Talleyrand, François de Barbé-Marbois and Napoleon on the French--deftly illuminate the crucial mix of personality, circumstance and skill that made the United States a continental nation so early in its existence.

Unlike many other historians, Kukla favors none of the story's characters but evenhandedly gives all their due. The book lacks only a grand theme to match its grand subject--what most contemporaries and all historians since have judged to be one of the most significant events in the nation's history. Nevertheless, this judicious, aptly illustrated work will gratify all its readers. Rarely does a work of history combine grace of writing with such broad authority. (April.)

February 2003

The Halifax County Historical Society reorganized in 2002. The first order of business was to plan two programs for the community.

Dr. James Robertson, noted Civil War scholar, present two lectures for the society. The first was held May 14, 2002, at St. John's Church in Halifax and second, was held during a breakfast at Berry Hill Plantation May 15, 2002. Dr. Robertson shared his knowledge of the Civil War and details on his newly published book, Standing Like A Stone Wall. Many of his books were made available for purchase at both presentations.

The second program was presented October 27, 2002, by Gordon Lohr, Director of the APVA Historic Property Revolving Fund, and Jack Zehmer, Director of the state Department of Historic Resources Capital Regional Office, Halifax County's historic properties are among its most valuable resources. The program discussed strategies for saving, preserving, and capitalizing on these assets.

Jack Zehmer, before joining the Department of Historic Resources, was the executive director of the Historic Richmond Foundation, where he directed the real estate and advocacy programs. A native of Dinwiddie County, he received his bachelor and master's degrees from the University of Virginia.

Gordon Lohr is a well-known realtor and antique appraiser from the Richmond area. The APVA of which he is the director, purchases publicly significant historic Virginia properties that are endangered.

All of the society programs are open to the public. It is the intent of the society to have two major programs each year and welcomes suggestions from the membership.

Back To The Halifax County Historical Society Home Page Site compliments of Halifax WebWorX. September 1, 2012