A glimpse of the past: April 15, 1965

Excerpts taken from the April 15, 1965 edition of the Rappahannock Record.

Columnist Ross Valentine advocates that Epping Forest, the birthplace of Mary Ball, the mother of George Washington, near Nuttsville in Lancaster County be preserved for posterity as a public historic shrine.

Epping Forest Should Be Shrine

Ross Valentine, a columnist for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, in an article last week expressed astonishment at Epping Forest, the birthplace of Mary Ball, being for sale and not being preserved as a public shrine.

After seeing Epping Forest advertised for sale he called the broker to ask how it was that some historical society or foundation had not acquired the property in order to preserve it as a public shrine.

The broker replied that there had been a movement by descendants of the Washington family in 1958 to have the old home become an historical shrine but that the plan was not successful and the option on the home had been allowed to lapse. 

Valentine said, “That –in Virginia of all places– the birthplace of a woman who bore ‘the Father of Our Country’ should not be a state or national shrine seems incredible.”

Epping Forest in Lancaster County, now owned by Mrs. James D. Jesse, was build by Col. Joseph Ball, father of Mary Ball, about 1690. Except for a wing added in 1842. The frame home appears substantially the same as it did about 275 years ago.

Col. Ball and many other Balls, as evidenced by tombstones, were buried at Epping Forest over a period of many generations. Mrs. Jesse is a direct descendant of Col. Ball.

Mary Ball was born at Epping forest about 1708. After the death of her father in 1711 she moved.

Epping Forest was named after what had been the royal game preserve in Essex, England, which since 1882 has been a 560- acre public park. Valentine asks “shall we be charged with having less concern for the mother of the nation’s first president than the English have for a once royal deer park?”

The historic home was open to the public for a number of years but has been closed since the death of Mr. Jesse several years ago. 

Valentine ends his lengthy column in the Times-dispatch with this paragraph:

“It would seem a patriotic duty of Virginians (by public subscription if need be) to add Epping Forest to the many shrines that enhance the historic luster to the Old Dominion.”

Mrs. Nunn To Appear In Trojan Women

Mrs. Rebecca Tebbs Nunn will portray Athena, the Greek Goddess of war, wisdom, arts and crafts in “The Trojan Women” at Dupont Little Theatre May 7 through May 9. Mrs. Nunn will also be assistant choreographer for the production and will direct all of the dances for the chorus. 

“The Trojan Women” is under the direction of Mrs. Shirley Cadel Williams and will be the final production the the Mary Washington Players this season. 

Texaco Team Chalks Up Win No. 250 Saturday

The Kilmarnock Texacos split a double header here Saturday night and won their 250th game since the were organized in 1957. The local team’s come-from-behind win over Callao in their opener made it number 250. After the game the Texacos celebrated with a cake which had the numbers 250 written on it. The cake was cut by Texaco infielder Douglas “Floogie” Walker who drove in the winning run. 

After winning the first game 6 to 5 the Texacos dropped the nightcap 3 to 1 to the Haynesville Athletics.

Floogie Walker’s line drive single in the last inning drove in the winning run and gave the Texacos a come-from-behind victory over Callao as Herbert Booker Hammack picked up his first win of the year in relief of Kenneth Hanks. Hammack relieved Hanks in the fourth and was superb as he struck out 5 and allowed no runs for the rest of the game. Bobby Fallin slammed the first Texaco round-tripper of 1965 in the fifth frame with no one on base. Both Fallin and Walker collected a pair of safeties to lead the local boys offensively. Leonard Rock was the losing pitcher. 

The Texacos jumped off to en early 1-0 lead in the second game when Floogie Walker scored all the way from first base on a single by Jerry Haislip. It appeared that the one run lead was going to be enough to win the game as John Rice and Haynesville’s Dave Green locked horns in one of the best pitching duels seen here in a long time. A triple by the Haynesville catcher, Joe Thrift, with the bags full in the sixth inning broke open the game, however, and gave the Atlantics a 3 to 1 win. Rice struck out 8 Haynesville batters while Green sent 7 Texacos down swinging. Mike Headley’s back-to-the-plate running catch which ended in a double play was the best defensive play of the game. 

This ad reflects the prices of some common grocery items at Cockrell’s Super Market

Read more from our glimpse of the past series

A glimpse of the past: April 12, 1945

A glimpse of the past: March 9, 1995