So many roads crisscross Northern Virginia today and humans travel on them so frequently that we often take our roads and highways for granted. But roads remain a huge piece of our modern infrastructure. When the settlers of Northern Virginia began laying out their communities, their roadways were crucial to the prosperity of this region, often in ways we do not think about today.
Join NOVA Parks and the Mosby Heritage Area Association for a look at Northern Virginia's historic turnpikes. Members of the panel include the following historians:
- Dr. Warren Hofstra, editor of The Great Valley Road of Virginia and author and editor of numerous other works
- Jane Covington, a local historian and historic preservationist
- Mike McDonnell, Fairfax County Park Authority
- Rich Gillespie, MHAA Historian Emeritus and member of the Loudoun Rural Roads Initiative
If the weather permits, the discussion will be followed by a walking tour of the historic road trace of the Old Carolina Road just west of Mt. Zion Church.
This event is free, though donations will be accepted. All proceeds from the Conversations in History series support the educational outreach programs of the Mosby Heritage Area Association and NOVA Parks.
For more information, please call (540) 687-5188.
The First World War left an indelible mark on the modern world, and one hundred years later the reverberations of the conflict are still felt. MHAA has invited a panel of renowned historians to examine the impact of the Great War on the nation and in Virginia. Our program begins with a symposium at the historic Grace Episcopal Church in Berryville, Va and also includes a reception at the historic Clermont Farm. For more information or to register click here
The Mosby Heritage Area Association, NOVA Parks, and the Stuart-Mosby Historical Society are proud and excited to join together to bring a compelling combination of presentations, living historians, and displays that tell the stories of the people, places, and events that unfolded across Northern Virginia during the Civil War. Click here for more information.
Click here for a full list of this year's speakers and topics, as well as registration information. You can find out all about our 21st annual Civil War Conference here.
We all love Virginia! We love our open spaces and we value our history and culture. But the pressures of development are all around us. Learn more about protecting the Virginia we love with this free workshop. Click here for more details and to RSVP.
Cycling on the C&O: A Bicycle Tour of the Canal's Connection to Northern Virginia during the Civil War
Experience the Civil War history of the C&O Canal from the saddle of your bike with a guided tour. Click here for more information and to register today!
Historian Stephanie Walters will discuss the Randolph family feud as well as Edmund Randolph's role in the Continental Congress, his positions in George Washington's Cabinet, and his eventual descent into obscurity. The program will be followed by a tour of Carter Hall. Click here to purchase your tickets.
This award recognizes individuals or organizations in the Heritage Area who have made significant lifetime contributions to the preservation of our historic landscape. The 2017 recipients are the Fauquier-Loudoun Garden Club and the Friends of the Balls Bluff Battlefield.
This event is free, but please reserve your seat by calling (540) 687-6681 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join the Mosby Heritage Area Association for an elegant dinner party at a privately owned historic house. Dinners will be held at the following historic homes, all of which are near Middleburg, Aldie, Leesburg, and Lincoln: Ardarra Farm, Oakland Green, Farhill Farm, Murray Hill, Narrow Gate, and Stoke.
All proceeds made from this dinner benefit the Mosby Heritage Area Association's education programs held throughout the Heritage Area.
Attire for the dinners is cocktail attire. Tickets are $200 per person. Please call (540) 687-6681 to reserve your spot today while tickets are still available.
Hear the stories of Brentsville from the perspective of the people who lived and passed through here during the Civil War. The program will be led by the costumed interpreters of the Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group. The county seat for Prince William County during the Civil War, Brentsville saw soldiers passing through it throughout much of the Civil War. Confederates used the village as a point of mustering point at the beginning of the war before Union soldiers occupied the area from 1862-1865. The community even witnessed a few minor, but deadly battles. Come learn these stories and more as part of a lantern-lit tour of this historic village.
Walking is required. Please dress appropriately. This program is FREE.
For questions, please call (540) 687-5188 or 703-365-7895.
Conversations in History: "...Frank having subsequently run away..." A Fresh Look at the Frank Wanzer Escape
On Christmas Eve 1855 Frank Wanzer and five other individuals escaped from a farm near Aldie, risking their lives for a chance at freedom. The story became incredibly popular after William Still recounted it in his 1872 book covering stories from the Underground Railroad.
So what happened in one of America's most famous slave escapes, which began in the Mosby Heritage Area? Join NOVA Parks and MHAA for the final installment of the 2017 Conversations in History series as they welcome historian Deborah Brower. Brower will explore this sensational episode in Northern Virginia's history with new research and a fresh eye.
Cost for the program is $10 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets can be purchased at the door. Please dress for the weather.
20th Annual Conference on the Art of Command in the Civil War: The 1862 Maryland Campaign, South Mountain and Harpers
Join noted historians Thomas Clemens, Eric Wittenberg, Dennis Frye, Robert Krick, Ted Alexander, and more for this year's annual Civil War Conference in Middleburg. Friday and Saturday feature lectures by some of the top historians on the 1862 Maryland Campaign, followed by a Sunday bus tour of the South Mountain and Harpers Ferry battlefields.
Partial registration of $225 gets you the Friday and Saturday lectures. Full registration of $450 gives you access to the Friday and Saturday lectures, dinner on Saturday, and the Sunday bus tour. Order your tickets now; there are only a couple of spots left on the bus!
Welcoming Remarks by
The Honorable Phyllis Randall
Chair of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
The Honorable Geary Higgins
Loudoun County Supervisor, Catoctin District
Lee Stone--The Loudoun Rangers: A Union Battalion in Loudoun County
Kevin Grigsby--From Loudoun to Glory: African American Soldiers in the Civil War
Pastor Michelle Thomas--Unknown No Longer: African American Burial Grounds After the Civil War
Bronwen Souders & Lee Lawrence--Faith, Freedom and the Conflict of Slavery
Donna Bohanon--Free Black Communities and People Prior to the Civil War
Donald Cooper--The History of Loudoun's Confederate Statue
Kevin Pawlak--Confederate Soldiers and Civilians: Loudoun During the War
Free and Open to the Public
(Panel discussion will take place at the Oatlands Pavilion. Please wear comfortable walking shoes.)
One of the most famous figures to emerge from the Civil War was John S. Mosby. Operating behind Federal lines in Northern Virginia, Mosby created a legacy that still resounds today. However Mosby was not the only band of guerillas in the area; other bands of soldiers from Virginia and South Carolina also worked in the area. Join historians from Prince William County Historic Preservation Division and the Mosby Heritage Area Association for a special bus tour that will not only visit Mosby sites, but also other guerilla sites in Northern Virginia. Bus departs from Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre. For reservations please call 703-365-7895.
$80 per person (lunch included); reservations are required.
MHAA and NOVA Parks are bringing in noted historian Marie Tyler-McGraw for the next installment of the partnership series of programs, "Conversations in History."
Tyler-McGraw, the author of An African Republic: Black and White Virginians in the Making of Liberia, will speak about local abolitionist and women's right activist Margaret Mercer. Mercer operated a woman's school at Belmont Plantation east of Leesburg. Mercer also staunchly opposed slavery and helped raise funds to colonize and educate African American men and women to Liberia. She even taught her black workers to read and write.
Marie Tyler-McGraw is a public historian and writer in Washington, D.C. who has worked as a historian at the Valentine Museum (Richmond History Center), Richmond, Virginia; the National Endowment for the Humanities, Washington, D.C.; and the Office of Chief Historian, National Park Service, Washington, D.C. She has served as consultant for dozens of public history projects in museums, at historic sites, and in educational institutions across the United States and has lectured widely in the United States, as well as in England, France, Italy, and Spain. A Ph.D. in American Studies from George Washington University, she is the author of three books of Virginia history. Her most recent publication, An African Republic, is joined with the website project sponsored by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and produced by the Virginia Center for Digital History.
The program is $10 for adults and $5 for students. It begins at 7:00 pm at St. David's Episcopal Church and School, formerly the Belmont Chapel and School founded by Mercer.
"'The Rebels is running over our Parents': Recruiting Virginia Unionists into the Potomac Home Brigade"
In the spring of 1861 Francis Thomas, former governor of Maryland, put out a call for the creation of a “Home Brigade” to defend western Maryland from rebel incursions. Three regiments of infantry and one of cavalry were raised, and these men spent much of the war guarding the vital transportation networks that ran through Maryland and West Virginia. Their war was primarily a guerilla war, though occasionally the Home Brigade would be called into more active service when Confederates crossed the Potomac. From the beginning the Home Brigade was also a refuge for numerous Virginia Unionists driven from their homes.
MHAA Public Programs Coordinator Travis Shaw will examine these Virginians in Union service by exploring the recruiting of these refugees, their motivations, and their combat experiences.
This program is part of the joint MHAA-NOVA Parks "Conversations in History" series. Admission fees are $10 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets can be purchased at the door.
The Mosby Heritage Area Association is bringing its Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group to Clarke County on Saturday August 19 for another of its popular Legends by Lanternlight programs. Historic Clermont Farm, an 18th century structure, will serve as the program's backdrop.
A young George Washington surveyed Clermont Farm in 1750. Structures on the property date to as early as 1755, and have undergone many alterations in the previous centuries. Members of the McCormick family owned Clermont Farm from 1819 to 2004, when the site became deeded to the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.
Saturday evening's program will focus on the Civil War in Clarke County, particularly stories relevant to Clermont's experience in the years immediately before, during, and after the war. Costumed interpreters of the Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group will share the horrors and triumphs of Clarke County's Civil War, from Mosby's Rangers to interactions between Union soldiers and Berryville's citizens, and more.
The August 19 program will begin at 7:30 pm. Admission is $15 for adults and $8 for students. Please bring walking shoes and dress appropriately for the weather. The Clermont Foundation will host the event and will provide refreshments served from the 1777 kitchen.
Clermont Farm is located at 801 East Main St, Berryville, VA 22611.
Our program begins at the 200 year old Goose Creek Meetinghouse with Dr. Glenn Crothers, author of Quakers Living in the Lion’s Mouth, The Society of Friends in Northern Virginia, 1730-1865. Dr. Crothers will speak on the topic of Northern Virginia Quakers, abolitionism, and the Underground Railroad. Eric Larson from the Loudoun County Courthouse will also be on hand with copies of County court documents, including papers found on fugitive bondsman ‘Harry’ which led to the 1828 arrest of Quaker Yardley Taylor. Also on display will be copies of the 1849 court documents from the arrest of prominent Quaker Samuel Janney.
Following Dr. Crothers’ talk we will tour ‘Springdale,’ the home of Samuel and Elizabeth Janney. Known as a “loyalfighter for the mistreated,” Janney operated a girls boarding school at Springdale in the decades leading up to the Civil War. The home was also long rumored to be a stop on the Underground Railroad and during the war it saw use as ahospital for men on both sides. In more recent times Springdale has become a popular Bed and Breakfast.
Directly across from the meeting house is theGoose Creek burial ground, where Yardley Taylor, Samuel Janney, and other Quakersactive in the abolitionist movement are buried. Participants will also have the opportunity to visit the 1815 Oakdale schoolhouse, a one-room school that served the Quaker and African-American communities in Lincoln.
Refreshments will be available following the house tour.
Tickets are $30 for MHAA members and $40 for non-members and can be purchased below or by calling (540) 687-6681.
This program will explore the history of the Aldie area. It begins at Institute Farm, once home to the Loudoun Agricultural and Chemical Institute. This school was the first of its kind in Virginia and was at the cutting edge of the agricultural revolution of the 19th century. After the closure of the school the farm became home to the National Beagle Club and remains at the epicenter of American beagling to this day.
The program continues a short distance away at the Furr Farm, along the historic Snickersville Turnpike. Home to one of Mosby's Rangers, the farm saw extensive action during the Battle of Aldie in June, 1863. A monument to the 1st Massachusetts Cavalry stands as a testament to the blood shed on this ground. Today the farm complex has been lovingly restored to its nineteenth century appearance.
Historians at each site will cover a variety of topics relating to the Civil War, agricultural history, historic preservation, and more!
Refreshments are included. Tickets can be purchased below--$30 for MHAA members and $40 for non-members. Please purchase your tickets below or by calling (540) 687-6681.
Join MHAA and NOVA Parks on a driving tour of the Aldie, Middleburg, and Upperville Cavalry Battlefields, the second largest cavalry fight on the North American continent fought as Union and Confederate armies moved north ultimately to Gettysburg from June 17-21, 1863. While many people often speed in their cars past many of the sites where the battles took place, take some time to slow down and explore these unique and preserved historic sites with the education staff of MHAA and NOVA Parks. Sites that will be visited include the 1st Massachusetts Cavalry Monument, Mount Defiance, and the Goose Creek Bridge, among others.
The tour will begin at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 17 at the historic Aldie Mill, 39401 John Mosby Highway, Aldie, VA, 20105. Due to limited parking at several sites, attendees will need to carpool with each other along the tour.
Reservations are required for this event. There will be no payments accepted at the start of the program.
There are limited seats available, so purchase your tickets now. Tickets are $20 per person and can be purchased below.
For more information, please email email@example.com, or call (540) 687-5188.
MHAA and NOVA Parks are partnering to bring in historian Dan Welch for the next installment of the Conversations in History series.
Dan Welch, a park ranger at Gettysburg National Military Park, is the co-author of The Last Road North: A Guide to the Gettysburg Campaign, 1863. Utilizing his familiarity with the Gettysburg Campaign, Dan will talk about sites and stories in the Mosby Heritage Area relative to the Union and Confederate armies' northward marches ultimately to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
The program will be held at historic Mt. Zion Church, itself a piece of the Gettysburg Campaign, at 3:00 p.m. Mt. Zion Church is at 40309 John Mosby Highway, Aldie, VA 20105.
Tickets can be purchased at the door and are $10 for adults and $5 for students. For more information, call (540) 687-5188.
Whether you are a descendant of one of Mosby's Rangers or not, come to this year's Descendant Reunion, being held at the Middleburg Academy on June 10-11, 2017. Saturday will feature several speakers and programs, mixed in with lunch and a showing of several episodes of the 1957 television show Gray Ghost, accompanied by the commentary of several Mosby historians.
There will also be a reception at the Caleb Rector House, MHAA headquarters and birthplace of the 43rd Battalion of Virginia Cavalry on June 10, 1863. Participants are also invited to an evening program at Mount Zion Church, 40309 John Mosby Highway, Aldie, VA, a site very familiar to Mosby and his men.
Sunday's program kicks off at 10:00 a.m. at the Caleb Rector House, 1461 Atoka Road, Marshall, VA 20115. It will feature a car caravan tour of several Mosby sites not usually open to the public, including Mosby safehouses Highfield and Belle Grove, followed by a tour of Mount Bleak at Sky Meadows State Park. The tour will conclude by lunchtime.
Tickets can be purchased below for the program. Attending the Reunion itself on Saturday and the reception at the Caleb Rector House costs $50 per person; $15 will be charged for the Mt. Zion Church evening program (if you wish to come); and the caravan tour's cost on Sunday is $10 per person. If attending the event, the Mt. Zion Church and caravan tour parts of the program are optional.
Call (540) 687-6681 for more information or to register.
Hoping to deal a crushing blow to the Patriot cause, British forces began a large invasion of Virginia in 1781. British and American forces converged on the state from many different directions, including a force of Continental soldiers who, on their way south, trekked through Loudoun and Fauquier counties under the command of Anthony Wayne.
Incredibly, the route of Wayne's march can still be followed today, and some of the landscape and buildings that his column passed by retain their 18th century character. Join historian Dr. John Maass as he recites stories from Wayne's march to the interior of Virginia, and leads us along Wayne's route. Some of the tour stops include Haymarket, Greenwich, Crockett Park, Elk Run Church, and more.
This program will be conducted in a car caravan; carpooling is highly encouraged. Bottled water will be provided along the route, but please bring your own lunch. There will be a stop for a picnic lunch. The program will begin at 9:00 a.m. at the Church of Our Saviour Oatlands, 20340 James Monroe Highway, Leesburg, VA. The tour will conclude at Elk Run Church by 3:00 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased below and are $30 for MHAA members and $40 for the general public. For more information or to order tickets, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (540) 687-5188.
Halfway between Winchester and Alexandria along the busy Ashby's Gap Turnpike, the Civil War was no stranger to Middleburg. Armies passed through town, soldiers fought around it, slaves ran from it, and the town became the unofficial epicenter of Mosby's Confederacy.
Join the costumed interpreters of the Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group for a lantern-lit walking tour of historic downtown Middleburg. See the places where the Civil War played out in the town's historic landscape, and hear about the town's dreadful experience in the time immediately before, during, and after the Civil War.
The walking tour will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Middleburg Baptist Church, 209 East Federal Street, Middleburg, VA. Please dress for the weather; appropriate walking shoes are suggested.
Tickets can only be purchased at the door of the program, and they are $10 for adults and $5 for students. For more information, email email@example.com or call (540) 687-5188.
MHAA, in partnership with NOVA Parks and Morven Park, are bringing together a unique look at Virginia as it was on the verge of the United States entering World War I. On the night of April 6, the centennial anniversary of America's entry into the war, come hear Jana Shafagoj, Director of Preservation and Education at Morven Park, speak about Governor Westmoreland Davis and Virginia's role in the First World War. Some World War I era artifacts from the collections of Morven Park will also be on display.
The program will be held at Morven Park inside it's Stone Barn, located at the Coach House Complex, 17195 Southern Planter Lane, Leesburg, VA 20176. Those attending the program should park in the main lot and walk to the Stone Barn. Comfortable shoes and appropriate dress for the weather are recommended for the walk to the program's location from the parking lot.
This program is free and open to the public; donations will be accepted. For questions or more information, call (540) 687-5188 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amanda Virginia "Tee" Edmonds kept a diary in the years leading up to and covering the Civil War. She lived in Paris, Fauquier, County, Virginia, in an area strategically important to both the Union and Confederate armies. Her brothers rode with the Virginia cavalry as well as Mosby's 43rd Battalion. A new edition of the diary, edited by Lee Lawrence, gives us an intimate, eyewitness account of America's most brutal war.
Please join us for an insider's discussion of Amanda Edmonds and her war experience, including a visit to Belle Grove, the Edmonds's home and a safe house for Mosby's Rangers. Lee will speak about some of the notable passages from the diary, and share photographs from the Edmonds/Chappelear family. She will discuss the fate of some of the Civil War soldiers and cavalrymen mentioned in Amanda's writing.
Learn about the famed Mosby Rendezvous Site, J.E.B. Stuart encampment, and June 21, 1863, cavalry battle at Rector's Crossroads while helping us clean up the terrain. Refreshments will be served. Dress for outside work with good boots and gloves. Bring a rake if you can. Reservations: (540) 687-6681.
Meeting at Caleb Rector House, 1461 Atoka Road, opposite the Atoka Store. (NOTE: 1461 Atoka Road has a navigation address of "Marshall VA" even though Marshall is 10 miles away!)
Our sixth annual tour, always a big hit, on the historic streets of Leesburg. About two hours long; bring water, dress warmly, wear good walking shoes. Restrooms will be available. Cosponsored by the Thomas Balch Library of History and Genealogy.
Mosby Heritage Area Association Historian Emeritus Richard Gillespie will lead the tour.
Commemorate the 200th anniversary of James Monroe's inauguration as President of the United States. Monroe served as President from 1817 to 1825. He is locally known as Loudoun County's resident President.
The program will be held at Church of Our Saviour Oatlands followed by a reception at James Monroe's Loudoun County home, Oak Hill.
Speakers at the symposium include Scott Harris, Executive Director of the James Monroe Museum and Memorial Library; Dan Preston, Editor of the James Monroe Papers; Sara Bon-Harper, Executive Director of James Monroe's Highland; and, Gordon Kray, sculptor of the James Monroe Statue in Williamsburg.
Tickets are $110 for each MHAA member, and $125 for the general public. Your registration includes lunch at Church of Our Saviour Oatlands and refreshments at Oak Hill. Purchase your tickets below or by calling (540) 687-6681.
Hear the stories of Rector's Crossroads (modern-day Atoka) from the perspective of the people who lived and passed through here during the Civil War. The program will be led by the costumed interpreters of the Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group.
Rector's Crossroads saw soldiers passing through it throughout much of the Civil War. Mosby's Rangers used the crossroads village as a point of rendezvous for approximately half of their raids during the conflict, and it was also here that Mosby officially formed his command. Come learn these stories and more as part of a lantern-lit tour of this historic village.
Walking is required. Please dress appropriately. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and can be purchased at the door.
For questions, please call (540) 687-5188.
Come hear inspiring young historians debate the Turning Points of the Civil War and other topics in the historic 1832 Unison Methodist Church, a hospital for Union soldiers in the fall of 1862 and bearer of Civil War soldier graffiti.
The panel of historians includes:
Bill Backus, Site Manager, Bristoe Station Battlefield; co-author of A Want of Vigilance: The Bristoe Station Campaign, October 9-19, 1863
Kevin Pawlak, Director of Education, Mosby Heritage Area Association; author of Shepherdstown in the Civil War: One Vast Confederate Hospital
Ryan Quint, Park Historian, Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park; author of Determined to Stand and Fight: The Battle of Monocacy, July 9, 1864
Dan Welch, Park Ranger, Gettysburg National Military Park; co-author of The Last Road North: A Guide to the Gettysburg Campaign, 1863
These young historians, scholars, and authors are members of the group Emerging Civil War, and they provide fresh perspectives on the Civil War, 152 years after the fact. They offer up-and-coming opinions, fresh eyes, and new research on topics that have held our interest for generations. Come connect with these young historians in this interactive panel discussion - you may even learn something new yourself!
Tickets are $15 per person. The historians will have their books for sale. To register online, click below, or call (540) 687-5188 to reserve your spot today.
There are dozens of Revolutionary War sites and markers in the eastern United States, and Virginia has a number, particularly at Yorktown. It comes as a surprise to some to cross the Potomac and come into the first major town, Leesburg, and see a proud sculpture of a Revolutionary War soldier heading off to join Washington, with his young son and wife clinging on for those last few precious moments before he departs. Were their battles or skirmishes here in Loudoun County, Virginia? Why haven’t I heard of them?
At the beginning of the American Revolution in 1775, Loudoun was the Southern Back Country—the new America, a recently settled area close to the frontier that had more than doubled in population in the previous decade. It was a land of immigrants, some seven different religions, of all social classes and all sizes of farms. Some had come from Tidewater, some from Pennsylvania, some directly from Europe or Africa. It was a land of the enslaved, indentured servants, and of the free. Relatively speaking, it was a land of opportunity. What made Loudoun contribute more men to the American Revolution than any other county in Virginia, which then stretched from the crashing Atlantic to the mighty Mississippi? What places still exist on the Loudoun landscape for citizens and visitors that still harken back and tell us the tale of that time?
Join in an intimate conversation with the Mosby Heritage Area Association featuring young historian Doug Breton as he shares stories and places from Loudoun's Revolutionary War Era landscape. Breton interned with the Mosby Heritage Area Association during the summer of 2016, zeroing in on the Revolutionary time period in the region. A Loudoun Valley High School grad, Breton is finishing his studies in his final semester at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg before heading on to graduate school in history.
The program will begin at 6:00 p.m., though refreshments will be served beginning at 5:30 p.m. The Great Room at the Middleburg Montessori School will serve as the setting for this unique look at Loudoun's history. There will be no charge for admission, but donations will be graciously accepted. Participants in the program will receive a copy of Breton's driving tour of American Revolution sites in Loudoun County. Call (540) 687-5188 for more information or send an email to email@example.com.
This award recognizes individuals in the Heritage Area who have made significant lifetime contributions to the preservation of our historic landscape. The Mosby Heritage Area Educator of the Year will also be awarded at this ceremony.
This event is free, but please reserve your seat by calling (540) 687-6681.