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The Great War: The War to End All Wars

2014 marks the centennial of World War I. To commemorate this event,  ACHS discusses the roles that Charlottesville, Albemarle County, and UVA students and faculty played both before and after the United States entered the war.

On display from the ACHS collection, WWI posters, gas mask, mess kit,shell casings, newsreels, and memorabilia from Base Hospital No. 41(donated by Harry Wilson).  Read letters from soldiers, ambulance drivers, a pilot, and a nurse and a recollection of a Albemarle County solider.

Researched by Caroline Ross and produced by Keri Matthews with panel designed by Rick Bickhart, “The Great War” exhibit is housed in the Exhibit Hall at the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society.

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Letcher Harrison and Allen Thurman photographed with poet Masefield at Mollau in Alsace, Corks and Curls, ACHS Collection


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Armistice Celebration in Charlottesville, ACHS Collection


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Base Hospital No. 41 in St. Denis, France, ACHS Collection


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Soldiers wearing gas masks, ACHS Collection


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American Red Cross nurse aids wounded soldier at Base Hospital No. 41, ACHS Collection

Play Ball!  An Introduction

On display at the Albemarle County Historical Society from April 1, 2000 through May 31, 2000, “Play Ball!” was a colorful exhibit of information, photos, and stories about local baseball presented chronologically. An overview of each decade from the 1880s through the 2000s was surrounded by photos, news clippings and stories of the period. Among these displays were hung color copies of Baseball Cards of local players who had played Major League ball. Pictures of hot dogs stimulated memories of tastes and smells. Two special panels told the story of major league teams holding their spring training at the University. Maps of Albemarle County and Charlottesville were placed so that visitors could pinpoint and describe where they had played ball. Visitors were encouraged to attach comments and add items into the two display cases filled with uniforms, bats, mitts, trophies and pictures. The walls of the exhibition hall were covered with a set of photographs of the fields used by the “Sunday League” teams of 1960s-1970s, images of Walter Johnson’s pitching grips, and recent posters of youngsters playing ball. A prominently displayed American flag reminded viewers this is our national pastime. Quotations from national figures encouraged guests to relate our local history to our national culture.

An exhibition baseball game played April 30, 2000 at Charlottesville High School served as the society’s Spring meeting. Renewing the tradition of “town and gown” confrontation the Charlottesville Blues faced the University of Virginia Club Baseball team. Rich Thurston prepared a baseball quiz that appeared the Daily Progress prior to the opening of the “Play Ball!” exhibit. Bobby Shiflett, a member of the Blues team, won first prize in the baseball quiz competition with Paul Brockman runner-up. Hantzmon Wiebel & Co, McGuire Woods Battle & Boothe LLP, ALC Copies, and the Historical Society membership funded the exhibit and baseball game

Two introductory panels hung on the doors of the exhibition hall included quotations that supported the reasons for the exhibit. Upon entering the hall one could view two foot by four foot high panels describing the tradition of spring training at the University and then proceed, in a counterclockwise fashion around the room, to survey the decades of local baseball history.

“Well—it’s our game; that’s the chief fact in connection with it: America’s game; it has the snap, go, fling of the American atmosphere; it belongs as much to our institutions, fits into them as significantly as our Constitution’s laws; is just as important in the sum total of our historic life.”—Walt Whitman

“Baseball, because of its continuity over the space of America and the time of America, is a place where memory gathers.”—Donald Hall

All panels of information, laminated on red and blue backgrounds, are ready for future display in schools and at other public sites.

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Ghost Signs and Vestige Billboards:  An Introduction

Recently, one of the local alternative weeklies ran an article bemoaning the impending obstruction of the old painted Toxeol sign at the construction site of the new Holsinger building next to the C&O Restaurant on Water Street.

In 1997, the Historical Society mounted an exhibit called “New and Improved: the Art of Local Advertising” to showcase just such “ghost signs.” We have that exhibit archived at the Society.

In 2002, local volunteer Glenn Rebholz made a photographic survey of what he called “vestige billboards ” around town. He presented his findings to the City’s Historic Resources Task Force in 2003, and gave the Historical Society permission to publish them on our website.

The interpretations of the signs (many of which are barely legible) are Glenn’s. Glenn’s original report is on file in the Historical Society’s library

G.I. with a Camera:  Wartime Photographic Memoirs of Clarence M. McClymonds

In early 1945, about seven months after the D-Day invasion, Clarence McClymonds, a 19-year-old son of a mid-western Presbyterian minister, landed in Normandy, France.

Assigned as a radio technician to the 1255th Engineer (Combat) Battalion, the young McClymonds, a camera buff since high school, quickly befriended other photographers in the company. Between them, using Army-issued and “liberated” cameras and darkroom equipment, McClymonds and his friends documented their wartime experiences in England, France, Luxembourg, Germany and Belgium.

The 1255th saw action in the last three campaigns of World War II in Europe, namely the Battle of the Ardennes Forest (“Battle of the Bulge”), the Battle of the Rhineland, and the Battle of Central Germany.

Within months after his return to the States, Staff Sergeant McClymonds, corresponding with his messmates—especially his close friend Tom Irvine, who had been the official battalion photographer during much of the tour of duty—he assembled a photographic memoir of his European tour in two albums.  These two albums contain over 300 images in chronological order, with captions, as well as hand-drawn maps.

The subjects of McClymonds’s photography include everyday barracks life; the battalion’s work re-building bridges and hospitals; local refugees, prisoners of war and displaced persons; war-torn countrysides and cityscapes; and other horrors of war.

Now a retired engineer, McClymonds and his family have been part of the Charlottesville community since the 1980s. As a long-time member of the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society, McClymonds was one of the first of scores of local veterans to volunteer to be interviewed for the Society’s Veterans History Project, part of a national effort being coordinated by the Library of Congress. Working with Society staff, interns and volunteers, McClymonds has given hours of oral history interviews about his wartime life.

The online exhibit includes the original pages as they were laid out and captioned by Mr. McClymonds, as well as the individual images, maps, chronology, and patches and insignia.

On the pages, the original handwritten captions appear.  With the individual images, if any caption appears from the albums as well as excerpts from recent oral history interviews conducted by Historical Society staff, volunteers and interns.  The individual photographs are presented in the same, essentially chronological, order in which they appeared in the books.  Note: in the albums are a number of recent photographs in color and black and white, taken on return visits within the last 20 years.

Included in Mr. McClymonds’s books were several of his own maps that documented the course of the 1255th Engr. (C.) Bn. through England, France, Luxembourg and Germany.  Mr. McClymonds also created a highly detailed chronology of the unit’s actions in Europe during 1945.

Several examples of army patches and unit insignia accompanied Mr. McClymonds work, and are included in this online exhibit.

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2013

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Dolley Madison


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Dr. Oriana Moon


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Confederate Cavalry Solider


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Ebenezer Butterworth


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Benjamin Ficklin


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Dr. Thomas Walker and young Thomas Jefferson


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Velora Carver Thomson


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Violinist, Sarah Butts


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The Trial of Sam McCue


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Ross Thomas, Maplewood Cemetery Guide


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Paul Goodloe McIntire


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Paul Goodloe and Charlotte Virginia McIntire


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Mary Southall Veneble


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Marian Elliot, Maplewood Cemetery Guide


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Letitia Shelby


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Lawrence Linford, Court Square Guide


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Kristi Hagen, Maplewood Cemetery and Court Square Guide


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Marguerite de Crescioli and Clarence Andrew


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Blacksmith Jacob Wimer


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Walker Aylett Hawes


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James Dinsmore


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John West


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Jenna Meeks, Maplewood Cemetery and Court Square Guide


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John Yeargin


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Gillie Jones Marshall


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Barbers of C’Ville


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Sacajawea


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Sgt. Frank Peregoy

A Sunny Southerner:  The Life and Writings of Julia Magruder

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Drawing of Julia Magruder in Book News (1892), published by John Wanamaker.


Part Two

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Part One

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Zengxuan Song

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Yvette Parsons

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William Spence Smith

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William Stickle

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W. Ralph Singleton

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Vivian Gordon

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Virginia Scott

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Unidentified Portraits

Please help us to identify the following portraits.  If you know who any of the following may be, please leave us a message in the comments section below.  Many thanks!

Portrait 1:
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Thomas, Suzy & Nathan Lane

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T.L.W. Bailey, Jr.

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Teresa Walker Price

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Susan & Sandra Murray

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Susan & Sandra Murray

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Sheila Hardy

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Satyendra Huja

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Sarah Boyle

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Sara A. Payne

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Sandra Sorenson

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Sandra Levine

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Ruth Charity

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Sally Mead

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Ruth Angress

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Ronald C. Gordon

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Richard Chapin Jones

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Roberts Coles, Jr.

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Randolph White

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Ralph Sampson, Jr.

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Priscilla Little

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Rae Gore

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Paul Toomey

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Paul Garrett

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Paul Gaston

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Otis Updike

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Otelia Coles

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Ora Maupin

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Opal David

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Nincie Currier

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Nathan Johnson

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Nina Garfield

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Nancy Hale Bowers

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Nancy O’Brien

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Nancy (Rudolf) Flint

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Introduction: Frances Brand Collection

Some were indeed “firsts”—first Black mayor of Charlottesville, first woman to be admitted to the University, first woman priest in the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia. But Mrs. Brand was not too literal about whom she considered a “first.” One woman was the first local mother to have a delivery by the Lamaze method. Others were the first in their family, neighborhood or community to accomplish an academic or career goal that, while perhaps not monumental in the Grand Sweep of Things, were nonetheless important milestones for the people involved.

The one consistent criterion seems to have been that these were people that Mrs. Brand had met and befriended in Charlottesville or Albemarle County, people whose strength of character she admired. The first “First” was, in fact, a young, unwed, pregnant immigrant from Colombia. When her father was stabbed while confronting his daughter’s rapist; the young woman supported her family by working as a flagman on a VDOT road crew.

Mrs. Brand was a retired Army major, a widow, a grandmother, a devoted churchwoman, a stalwart civil rights champion and peace activist, and an eccentric who chose in later years to wear purple on every occasion.

After retiring from the military in the 1950s, she used the G.I. Bill to study painting in Mexico City. A multi-lingual, worldwide traveler, Mrs. Brand collected tribal and peasant folk art from many different countries and cultures. She was particularly affected by Mexican folk painting, and, though she was proficient in other styles—notably the American “Ash Can” school of social realism—when she began to paint the “Firsts,” she was already working in a style heavily influenced by Mexican street painters and Catholic iconography. The “Firsts” sometimes overlap stylistically and in subject matter with another series she undertook she called the “Madonna and Child” series.

Like many folk artists, Mrs. Brand chose to work using the materials most readily at hand. She bought cheaply framed, mass-produced pictures from the Roses store downtown, and painted over them using acrylics. She worked rapidly, painting scores of two-foot-by-four-foot portraits in a period of months.

The paintings were first displayed as a collection at the dedication ceremony for the Central Place of the (then) new Downtown Pedestrian Mall in 1976. Since then the “Firsts” have been shown many times around town, and at a gallery in her home that she created before her death. Her grown grandchildren have maintained the house and adjacent galleries as an (unincorporated, certainly non-profit) museum until this day, and have opened the doors to hundreds of visiting groups.

After a large exhibit at the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society in 2004, Mrs. Brand’s paintings were displayed in some of the city’s recreation centers.

Evaluating Mrs. Brand’s work as folk art (hers was the subject of a doctoral dissertation for the Department of Folklore and Folklife at Indiana University by Michele Brannigan in 1998) presents some conceptual challenges. Her paintings were rendered in a consciously “folk” style, but Mrs. Brand was not a member of any stereotypically “folk” group—she was not a member of any ethnic minority or sub-culture, she was not a peasant or a factory worker, and she was certainly not “untutored.” But by the more inclusive, contemporary definitions of folk culture, her work qualifies in important ways as “folk” or “vernacular.” Her work was the creative expression of the traditional values, mores and beliefs of a close-knit (if diverse) community. The paintings served the classic functions of folklore—they instructed the young, they commemorated local acts of valor and determination, and they defined an aesthetic and a collective subject matter that was instantly recognizable as “belonging” to Charlottesville and Albemarle County in the last half of the Twentieth Century.

As Mrs. Brand neared the end of her long life, her vision began to fail her, and the later paintings reveal her growing frailty. Many of her subjects will tell you that some of Mrs. Brand’s paintings were not the most flattering of portraits. Still, even in her last paintings, her love of her subjects comes through, in the eyes, the colors, and the characteristic inclusion of some recognizable object, book, or building that identifies the subject and the thing—the accomplishment, event, or action—of which they were most proud.

Miriam Cooper Walsh

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Mattie Dudley

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Mary Williams Clark

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Mary Williams Clark

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Description and Background

The Society is currently hosting a new exhibit produced by Celebrate250, Charlottesville’s
official 250th anniversary committee, that chronicles the City’s bicentennial observances in 1962.
This new exhibit which will be displayed throughout 2012 at different locations after it leaves
the Society, features the photographic work of Ed Roseberry. Developed under the guidance of
Steven G. Meeks, the material in the display was compiled by Jennifer Slaughter and Lindsey
Gore with design work done by Rick Bickhart.

In 1962 the citizens of Charlottesville enthusiastically devoted vast amounts of energy and
time into celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Charlottesville’s founding. The seven panels
of the exhibit illustrate and explain various aspects of the celebration. The Tourist Center,
completed in 1962, provided a central landmark for promoting Charlottesville. The Bicentennial
Commission took charge of the enormous amount of planning that had to be completed in
order to enact all of the festivities. A significant amount of musical talent was enlisted to
celebrate Charlottesville’s Anniversary throughout the year in a Concert Series. Two societies
were formed with the goal of promoting the celebration: the Order of the Cavaliers and the
Bicentennial Belles. A significant part of the Cavaliers’ duties were to enforce the mandate for
male citizens to grow out their beards, culminating in a burial of Mr. Ray Zor, a razor. One of the
most elaborate parts of the celebration was the pageant encapsulating over 200 years of history
entitled “Let Freedom Ring” that ran during the summer of 1962. The Anniversary Queen
was selected to be crowned at each of these performances by a competition to sell tickets to the
performances. To commemorate the year’s uniqueness, several items were commissioned to be
made as Souvenirs. Looking ahead to future anniversaries, citizens of Charlottesville buried a
Time Capsule to be opened fifty years later for Charlottesville’s 250th Anniversary.

2010

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Entrance to Maplewood Cemetery

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Twilight Tour Group

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The Confederate Cavalryman

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Paul Goodloe McIntire with his daughter, Charlotte Virginia McIntire

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Sarah Ann “Sally” Strickler

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Mayor J. Samuel McCue

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William Meriwether Lewis and Lucy Meriwether Lewis

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Lady Nancy Langhorne Astor

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Thomas Oliver “Ollie” Thacker

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Anna Gardner

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Reverend and Mrs. Frederick Neve

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Director Mendy St. Ours

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ACHS President Steven Meeks greets guests after their tour.

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Spirit Walk Committee Member Robert Tharpe

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Volunteers Clara Belle Wheeler and Edwina St. Rose

2007-2009 Assorted Images

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2009

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Sarah Ann “Sallie” Strickler

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Entrance to Maplewood Cemetery

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Strickler leads a tour

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Thomas Mann and Patsy Randolph

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Rev. Robert Rose

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Benjamin Franklin Ficklin

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John Chaloner

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Maude Coleman Woods

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Fox Hollow Girls

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William Holmes McGuffey

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Banastre Tarleton

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Tarleton addresses the tour

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John Mosby addresses the tour

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John Mosby

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Gen. Alexander “Arch” Vandergrift

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Barbershop Quartet

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Johnny Yeargin

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John Jouett and Mildred Walker

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James Dinsmore

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Dolley Madison

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1829 School Children

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Amelie Rives

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Dr. A. G. L. Van Lear

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Young Thomas Jefferson and Jane Randolph Jefferson

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Texas Jack Omohundro

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Prosecutor Micajah Woods, Judge Morris, Sam McCue, and Defense Attorney John L. Lee

2006

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2005

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14.  2000s and Thank Yous

Only a few of many local stories has been told here. Please add yours to this collection. We hope you continue to enjoy our National Pastime. Play Ball!

“What is my role as Dr. Baseball?.... I decided to put something back into the community that I was fortunate enough over the years to learn about baseball…. My mission really is to see a kid when he walks out of here happy. I don’t care what level he plays; as long as he’s got a little gleam in his eye, that’s it. My ultimate goal is to see kids go on and play collegiate baseball on scholarships and to see a kid have that opportunity…. I don’t think there is a greater game in the world. I don’t think there’s a more American game…. Baseball is kind of like life:  if you work hard at it and train well, good things will happen. Baseball becomes a conduit for kids to reach some of those goals. I’m just a player in that scheme.”—Sam Beale

“If I close my eyes against the sun, all at once I am back at Ebbets Field, a young girl once more in the presence of my father, watching the players of my youth on the grassy field below. There is magic in this moment, for when I open my eyes and see my sons in the place where my father once sat, I feel an invisible bond between our three generations, an anchor of loyalty linking my sons to the grandfather whose face they never saw but whose person they have already come to know through this most timeless of all sports, the game of baseball.”—Doris Kearns Goodwin

The 2000 Exhibit

One display case contained items from the University of Virginia some of which were made available through the efforts of former coach Jim West: General Athletic Association stationery for Baseball Club 1892; Ball used by Virginia Baseball team at 1893 Chicago World’s Fair intercollegiate tournament; U.Va. uniform, c. 1912 ; Fielder’s Glove, c. 1912; Spalding bat, “Black Betsy” model, made sometime in the decade before 1919.  Created to be like the handcrafted hickory bat used by “Shoeless” Joe Jackson; last home plate used at Lambeth Field c. 1971; photos of Coach Jim West in 1971 at Lambeth Field.

A second display case included a shelf of material from Miller School: balls from the undefeated team of 1943 and winning teams of 1948 and 1949; school year book, 1904; team photos from 1910 and 1914; early signed bat.  Other shelves held uniforms from a Little League team sponsored by Monticello Dairy, c. 1950; a Little League trophy from a team sponsored by Odd Fellows Hall, c. 1960; St Anne’s-Belfield School uniform 2000.  The ball pitched by Beth Trader in a win of the Yankees over Dodgers in Babe Ruth League, a 1940s catcher’s mitt (the only thing a boy wanted for a Christmas present), and a Cove Creek Park Baseball T-shirt. The 1970s “target” mitt used by JMU and minor league pitcher Kip Yancey as a boy.  Pictures of Lori Tyler, who in 1972 became the first girl to play in the local Babe Ruth League.

A number of additional images about local baseball can be viewed on the internet. Search within the Holsinger Studio Collection at the University of Virginia Library Special Collections Division, using the keyword “baseball” to see images of early 20th century teams and their fields, as well as the four pictures of the hand of Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson. Local schools and teams post current information and photos on the web. For example, search under Western Albemarle High School Baseball or Charlottesville Blues.


Acknowledgements

The Society would like to thank the creators and organizers of the exhibit, baseball quiz and ball game. Gayle Schulman, the curator, received essential help from Judy Bias, Darrell Gardner, Fred Payne, Arthur Schulman, Bob Shawich, Rich Thurston, and Jim Wootton.

The heart of this exhibit—the personal stories, the family photographs, the research and the artifacts—were contributed by the following: Lindsay Barnes, Jr., Sam Beale, Sue Behrendt, Ray Bell, Carroll Bickers, Joe Bingler, Cyndi Burton, Samuel P. Clarke, Leo Connelly, Jim Copony, H.W. Davis, Sandy DeKay, Linda Franklin, Joe Garland, John Garland, Gladys Gatlin, Edward Gaynor, Bob German, Allan Gianniny, Ed Hase, Peyton Humphrey, Laura James, William Johnson, Margaret Burgess Jones, Layne family, Devon Maness, Wes McCoubrie, Larry Miller, Ivanhoe Nelson, Margaret O’Bryant, Dorothy Palmer, Teresa Price, Carl Proffitt, Ollie Proffitt, Jerry Ratcliffe, Judy Rood, Scottsville Museum, Rev. John T. Spears, Special Collections at U.Va., Sports Promotions at U.Va., Robert Spencer, Blanche Steppe, Alan Swanson, Laura Thomas, the Trader family, the Tyler family, Ken Wallenborn, Jim West, Jennifer Williams, Chuck Wood, and Al Yancey, III. In addition, Ken Wallenborn and The Blue Ridge Connection Barbershop Quartet sang their special version of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” at the opening of the exhibit.

We are indebted to the local businesses that provided equipment, materials and prizes: Cavalier Sports Cards, Charlottesville High School Athletic Department, Downtown Athletic Store, New Dominion Book Shop, Kwik-Kopy, Sloan’s Restaurant, Sneak Reviews Video, Sports Photos of Virginia, and the Young Men’s Shop.

All oral histories collected for the exhibit, together with copies of photographs and written materials, have been added to the Society’s permanent collection. The laminated exhibit panels may be requested for display.

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13.  1990s

Virginia’s Cavaliers won 44 games in 1996, their winningest season ever, and went on to win their only ACC tournament championship.

The University of Virginia Club Baseball team was founded in 1994 by Andrew Schoneman and Jonathon Platt as an entirely student-run organization. Since that time, the team roster has expanded to 28 men playing a 45 game season. The team faces opponents along the East Coast including Penn State, Duke, North Carolina, and Virginia Tech. They are currently the defending champions of the East Coast Club Baseball Tournament.

Younger players in and around Charlottesville found greater opportunities to play on better and better facilities. James Miller, a former player, and Randy Page, a former coach, spearheaded the renovations at the Lane Field home of the Charlottesville Babe Ruth League. Western Albemarle H.S. started improving its field, and St. Anne’s-Belfield began it baseball program, as did Monticello H. S. Large number of boys and girls, from tee-ballers to 15-year olds, played and practiced on the six splendid new fields created by writer John Grisham at Cove Creek Park.

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12.  1980s

Dennis Womack became head coach of the Cavaliers in 1982, leading UVa to a first-place finish in the ACC in 1985. More and more players were selected in the Major League draft, a pace that accelerated further in the 1990s.

Semi-pro teams, long absent from the region, return in 1985 with the formation of the Virginia Baseball League. The five-team league was organized by Fred Payne and Virginia and Barry McClain of Charlottesville, along with Mike Zitz of Fredericksburg. This year (2000) Charlottesville has two teams in the league; the Blues, one of the original teams, and the Cardinals formed in 1987.

Jackie Jensen, one of the American League’s leading sluggers in the 1950s, who had operated a baseball camp at Fork Union Academy, died suddenly in 1982. He and his wife operated a tree farm in Fluvanna county, and had made many friends in the area.

“Quite a few of the guys if they had the opportunity then that they would have now would have made the major leagues. But we didn’t have the opportunity. I used to be one of the best pitchers around. You didn’t have people come in and look at you.  On July the fourth one time I pitched a ball game for Chestnut Grove on Old Lynchburg Road with Crozet. Went over to Crozet that morning and shut Crozet out and then turned around and came back and pitched for the South Garden Tigers, which team I played with, against Chestnut Grove, the team that I played for that morning, and shut them out in the same day.”—William Johnson

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11.  1970s

Ever since the 1950s teams from different black communities would come together on Sundays to play baseball. With the coming of integration, this tradition ended in the 1970s.

More and more girls played baseball. Laurie Tyler, Julie Layne, and Beth Trader joined teams in the Babe Ruth and Lambeth Leagues.

In 1972, there was a three-way tie for first place in the Virginia Northern District of the High School League, with Albemarle and Lane sharing the honors with Fauquier County. Before they played each other, coaches Arbaugh (A.H.S.) and Bingler (Lane H.S.) agreed that the loser would come to cheer in the final game against Fauquier. Lane won the championship with the Albemarle players and coaches rooting for them.

Lambeth Field closed after 1971. In 1972, Coach Jim West led the baseball team to its first ACC title. At the time, U.Va. had no players on baseball scholarship and only three pitchers to win the three game series.

The community continued to keep track of Mike Cubbage’s baseball career. In one ACC tournament in Durham’s old Bull Durham field, Cubbage hit three home runs onto the roof of an old tobacco warehouse. His major league career began in 1975 with the Texas Rangers. Cubbage now serves as third base coach of the Houston Astros.

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10.  1960s

Jim West became U.Va.s head baseball coach in 1962, a position he would hold through 1980. The University continued to play its home games at old Lambeth Field. Mike Cubbage starred at Lane High School in the late 1960s and was poised to do the same as a shortstop with U.Va.

In 1963, Charlottesville’s American Legion team lost the state title on an umpire’s controversial interference call. And in 1966 Judge George Coles, Steve Stebo, and Frank Neofotis organized the Babe Ruth League for 13-15 year olds, a league that flourishes to this day.

The Charlottesville Hornets, organized by Wilson Cropp, Carl Deane, and Kenny Beale, became part of the semi-pro Valley League. They were called the “Hornets” because their uniforms came from a team with that name in Charlotte, North Carolina. Among the local men who later played on the team were Mike Wolfrey, Mike Cubbage, and Sammy Beale. Coached by Jim West, the Hornets played on a field behind Burley H.S. that had been fenced in by townspeople.

Earlier in the decade, when West was coaching the Shenandoah team of the Valley League, a local black pitcher on his staff integrated the League, not always to enthusiastic audiences.

“In the 1960s, I coached the ‘Braves’, sponsored by J.F. Bell Funeral Home, in the Jackie Robinson League. There were four teams in the league. Robert Wicks coached the ‘Indians’. They were sponsored by the Night and Day Market on Preston Avenue. The Elks sponsored the ‘Yankees’ coached by William Jackson. The other team was the ‘Cubs’.  I’m very proud to have coached men like Frankie Allen, a former Virginia Tech coach, Garwin DeBerry, the football coach at Charlottesville High School, Dr. Benegal Page, Charles Alexander (now known as Alex Zan), and Alphonso Dudley.  In the 1960s the Sunday League was for the ‘old guys’. The ‘Squeeze-Ins’ was the only Charlottesville team in the league. We were a social and an athletic club and were community-oriented.  The club raised money for charities. Other teams in the Sunday League were Covesville, North Garden, South Garden, Wilmingdon (near Palmyra) Avon, Orange, and the Barboursville Giants. The managers worked out the schedule early each summer.”—Rev. John T. Spears

“I grew up on Calhoun Street just off of Locust Avenue. At the time there was a large vacant field across the street from us. Kids seem to be drawn to vacant fields with baseball bats and gloves and that’s what happened to our vacant field and of course this was mainly a male pursuit. It was mostly boys who were drawn to that field, but I was and am very athletic and I wanted to play. My sister was athletic too and there were just the two of us in our family. My father had been athletic so and it didn’t bother him that we were girls. He gave us bats and balls and gloves and we learned to play. So we just naturally sort of bopped over across the street and insinuated ourselves into these games. I’m not entirely sure the guys were thrilled with this, but since we lived across the street they couldn’t very well throw us off the field and they grudgingly let us play. I was about 10 years old…. Once we showed up the first couple of times they just gave up. And also we proved that we could play. Being girls ceased to be an issue.  We played there for just a couple of years. There was a man who also lived across the street, a retired farmer, he had his eye on this field. I don’t think he was too thrilled with us playing on this field. It didn’t belong to him. He sort of had charge of it though. Eventually he took matters into his own hands and plowed up the field and planted it. So, we couldn’t play there any more and that was the end of Calhoun Street baseball.”—Sandy DeKay

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09.  1950s

Adults started to organize baseball for youngsters into the Little Bigger League, Little League and the Jackie Robinson League. Charlottesville’s Little League team won the Eastern Virginia Regional title in 1951, but kids still played pickup softball and hardball games on neighborhood fields. Organized play for 13-15 year olds began in 1958 with the creation of the Lambeth and Lane Leagues. Each league had four teams and played at Carr’s Field (U.Va.‘s Rugby Field) and on the Lane High School field. Charlottesville’s team in the Valley League, “The Chiefs”, drew about 400 spectators a game, not quite enough to keep the team going for more than a few seasons.

The war in Korea altered many playing careers. Just out of high school, Jim West contracted to play with the Cincinnati Reds, but then was drafted. At the end of his time in Korea he played with a military team before 50,000 spectators. After deciding not to return to the pros, West came to U.Va. as a student and, because he was ineligible to play, began a coaching career.

Many other drafted professional players spent some of their service years playing with military teams, facing not only teams from other bases but also some of the best civilian teams. The Virginia Semi-Pro Championship, held each July on Lane field, included many of these fine teams. Major Leaguers on the military teams who played here from 1951-54 included Willie Mays, Art Houtteman, Johnny Antonelli, Tom Poholsky, Danny O’Connell, Sam Calderone, Rod Graber, Vernon Law, Joe Lonnett, Chet Nichols, Jack Thomas, Dick Groat, and Harry Chiti. Chiti was here for two of these tournaments and married a local woman.

In 1952, 12 teams entered the double elimination State Semi-Pro tournament. Acme Visible Records of Crozet was eliminated by Fort Eustis in a 19-0 walloping. Willie Mays and pitcher Chuck Churn homered for Fort Eustis over Lane’s center field fence. In the final, Johnny Antonelli pitched Fort Myer to a win over Fort Eustis. The Fort Myer catcher, Sam Calderone, was the tournament’s most valuable player.

“Don’t get me wrong, I like to hit. But there’s nothing like getting out there in the outfield, running after a ball and throwing somebody out trying to take that extra base. That’s real fun.”—Willie Mays

Willie Mays was drafted into the Army after his rookie year with the New York Giants. When he played here in 1952 with Fort Eustis he was still a rising star. Fielders sometimes leave their gloves on the field when they come in to bat; one local center fielder, who played against Mays, recalls with delight how he picked up Mays’s glove and tossed it to him during these exchanges. People remember the long balls he hit, a last-minute catch he made to double up a runner, and his off-hour visits to watch Little League player.

Joe Hicks played for Meriwether Lewis when it was a high school, at U.Va., and with the Charlottesville Chiefs of the Valley League during summers. Gus Tebell, UVa Coach and manager of the Chiefs, had played pro baseball, basketball, and football.

A 1953 letter to the sports department of the Daily Progress told a story about Joe Hicks while playing in Madisonville, Kentucky. He tripled (he was batting around .350) with the bases loaded, and on the first pitch to the next batter, when the ball got away from the catcher, he broke for home. Hicks slid into home head first and the umpire, moving up closer to the play spiked his hand! The injury didn’t stop him from moving up to the majors. “It will be pretty tough to break into an outfield of Minnie Minoso, Sam Mele and Jim Rivera.” He joined the Chicago White Sox for two years then played elsewhere for three more years in the majors. He finally returned home and worked with the Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department. Joe continues to umpire baseball games around the region.

       


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08.  1940s

“Every member of our baseball team at West Point became a general:  this proves the value of team sports for the military.”—Omar Bradley

“Not making the baseball team at West Point was one of the greatest disappointments of my life.”—Dwight David Eisenhower

“At Venable school Miss Atkins, who taught geography, was sort of the athletic director. Miss Atkins hired the coaches [usually University students], found the money to pay them, and tried to find transportation. She egged you on, cheered, and she knew sports. My father encouraged us. Many times he hauled us to Stony Point and Miller School.  I belonged to the classiest among the sand lot teams. The Avengers were something else. The only team to have a uniform. Of course it was only a yellow silk cap. We also had a pep song… taken from the Pepsi Cola song it went something like this:  ‘Avenger-cola hits the spot, Nine good players, boy, they’re hot, Up we step with a home run, Park Plaza on the run!’  To this day one of the longest hit baseballs I’ve ever seen was hit by Gordon Stouffer when he was 12 years old at Venable field. He knocked it over the left field fence and hit it into the top of the tree…. I was the ‘hind catcher,’ that’s what we called them back in those days…. One Christmas (1940) all I wanted was a catcher’s mitt and I got it. From then on I was catcher for all sorts of teams. All opponents on the sand lot teams borrowed my glove…. When the University played on Lambeth Field, Mac Wade and I would apply for bat boy for the visiting team. In payment they gave us old baseballs or broken bats. I’d take them home to my father. He’d glue them, put screws in them, wrap them with special string, glue and then shellac them. That bat was as good as new. We had a bunch of Louisville sluggers.”—Ken Wallenborn

In England during 1943 soldiers from our region serving in the 116th Infantry Regiment, 29th Division prepared for the invasion of Nazi-occupied Europe.

Pickup games of baseball played during spare moments on makeshift diamonds evolved into unit teams and divisional challenges. In September 1943 the 116th’s “Infantry Blues” represented the ground forces in the European Theater of Operations (ETO) World Series at the 8th Air Force Headquarters in London. Carl “Chubby” Proffitt played first base. The single game elimination involved twenty teams representing all branches of American forces in England. The 116th won the tournament, finishing the year with a perfect record of 33-0.

On June 6, 1944 the 116th was the first to land on Omaha Beach.

During the war years children played on sand lots and school fields. The Charlottesville Athletics led the Tri-County League. After the war, interest in baseball soared.

Jim Roberts was a leader for the Athletics, whose players included “Happy” Durham, Hickey Wood, Percy Payne, Pete McCann, “Nipper” Chisholm, Lewis “Dootie” Wingfield, ‘Cotton’ Houghston and Walter Smith.

The Lane High School team played under lights on their field. In 1948, for $10, you could buy a season ticket for 16 home games to be played by Coach Gus Tebell’s Virginia Cavaliers (Tebell coached U.Va. for 24 years, from 1931 until 1955).

The American Legion’s Junior Baseball team in 1948 included Jimmy Tyler, Billy Shipp, Johnny Breeden, Tommy Theodose, Lacy Huffman, Bob Thraves, Richard Wells, Dick Bain, Woodrow Burkhead, George Spencer, Eddie Wyant, Bud Thomas, Sammy Morris, and William Barksdale, with Todd Mooney as Manager and George Gilmer, Jr. as the athletic officer of the Post.

The Daily Progress would report scores and standings of area semi-pro and minor leagues, including those of the Western Virginia League, Valley League, Blue Ridge League, Piedmont League, Southern Association, Virginia League, and Carolina League.

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07.  1930s

“My early neighborhood was called Fifeville which ran near Ridge Street…. We used to play lots of baseball. The pasture doubled as a baseball/football field. We also had a golf course, which we kept up. Some people felt the pasture provided the best ‘greens’ though, because the cows ate the grass…. The people in the neighborhood were particularly interested in sports. Boys my age kept track of all the baseball and football players. People were poor and didn’t have the best kind of baseball equipment—broken bats were often taped together…. Areas just outside our neighborhood that were important were Ridge Street and Belmont. This is because there was competition between the neighborhoods in respect to sports.”—Francis Fife

“In the late 30s we used to play in Fife’s Cow Pasture (sometimes we used dried pats for bases) or further up the street in Brook’s pasture. This was where Buford School is now. There was a hill between King and Grove on Spring Street where we played softball. The Church had wire protecting the windows. The rule was if you had a ball you were on the team!”—Joe Bingler

“Where the city yard is now [off 4th street], was known as ‘Harrison’s Field.’ We used to sleigh ride there and also play football and baseball. We did the same things all other kids did. We improvised things.”—William C. Jackson

“At first, the Meade Avenue field where the Charlottesville Athletics played was a bare bones operation. Then there was a board fence with paid advertisements on it. They had uniforms when it was an up-and-coming team. A married couple had a concession stand. I think they had an ice-cream parlor downtown. There were regular bleachers; families came to games. Some of the players were Jeff Burgess, Pete Crowe, and Lewis Marion.”—Margaret Burgess Jones

“The Athletics played at Meade Avenue Ball Park near where the park is now on Meade Ave. Most of the people who played there were local. Jake Burgess was usually the manager of the team. You could pay 10 or 15 cents to get into the ball game or if you caught a fly ball that popped out of the field and brought it back you got free admission into the game. If you didn’t like that we could climb in a set of maple trees and look over the fence into center field and watch the ball game.”—Allan Gianniny

“Kelley’s All Stars was a family team. Everyone was related—brothers and cousins. They played all over the state and against teams that came in from Washington, Maryland and West Virginia. LeRoy was the booking agent and Charlie Jones the Manager. Some members of the family spelled the name with an ‘e’ and others without. The family roots were in Kellytown off Preston Avenue. Of course the girls in the family could play, but just at gatherings—not on the team.”—Dorothy Palmer

1)  Kelley’s Allstars

In 1930, the American Legion brought its national junior baseball regional championship to Charlottesville because of its central location and “the many fine and inspiring points of historic interest located here.” Workmen graded a new diamond in the northwest corner of Lambeth Field for the young players. Teams from Manchester New Hampshire to Tampa Florida arrived on special trains with their families and fans. President Hoover was invited to attend. Nick Altrock and Al Schacht, famous comedians of the Washington Senators, entertained the crowds.

The Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department was founded in November of 1933, and sponsored activities in McIntire, Belmont and Washington Parks. In those days there were seven small high schools scattered around Albemarle County. It was an adventure to play at some of them. At Stony Point H.S. the main road ran through the outfield, while Broadus Wood and Red Hill used soapstone home plates. After a while no one dared to slide home for fear of breaking a leg.

Local baseball teams of the 1930s included Kelley’s All Stars, S&R Silk Mills, Alberene, the Charlottesville Cardinals, and the Charlottesville Athletic Club. The Athletics’ home field was on Meade Avenue, but at least once they played a double-header with Alberene on Caddy Diamond, an unknown location. The Cardinals used Timberlake’s field off of Route 20 South. Kelley’s All Stars played at home on the Wine Cellar field and traveled throughout Virginia and into Maryland. According to Joseph Carey in the Charlottesville-Albemarle Tribune (1950), All Star Manager Charlie Jones also organized the “old Meadow Brook Club,” while some of the greatest locals played for the Elks Team in 1929-30.

Two great local baseball stars began their careers in the 1930s. Pete Crowe tried out for the majors but didn’t make it, while Happy Durham chose to stay in Charlottesville to remain “Happy”. Chubby Proffitt remembers,  “He was always the most even tempered player on the field. He never raised his voice. If he didn’t like a call he’d just turn away and hit the next ball out of the park.”

2)  Bud Thomas

Luther Baxter “Bud” Thomas, a native of Faber, lives near North Garden. During his seven years pitching in the majors he faced greats like Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Ben Chapman and Joe DiMaggio. With Bud on the mound for the Philadelphia Athletics on April 23, 1939, Connie Mack went to talk to the pitcher. With two runs scored, one man on base and two outs, Mack wanted the man at bat, a rookie just up from the minors, to strike out. “Connie Mack told me I had better not throw him a fast ball, that he killed fast balls. I threw him a slow ball, but he hit it out anyway.”  (The 420 foot line drive was Ted Williams’ first major-league homerun. ) “Ted Williams was the best hitter I ever saw, but Joe DiMaggio was the best all around player I ever saw. He could do everything. He could hit and run and throw.”

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06.  1920s

“In the early 1920s over at the University, where Scott Stadium is now, there were barracks left over from World War I. They were set up to house soldiers learning how to drive and repair military trucks. On an empty corner near some faculty houses, some of us set up a diamond. It was visible from my grandparent’s house, ‘Montebello’. We ran around it for a couple of years. My brother, Morris Fontaine Moran, Mann ‘Doc’ Page, Lowndes Thomas and I played together. Thornton Hall is there now.”—Charles ‘Chick’ Moran

“In these times players would use Memorial Gymnasium [built in 1924], one of the largest gymnasiums in the East to change clothes before and after games at Lambeth Field. After putting on the uniforms it was necessary for the players to walk down across the field the tennis courts are now on, cross over Ivy Road (Rt. 250 West), on down the soccer field, go through the tunnel under the C&O railroad track, walk up on wooden steps and onto Lambeth Field. The concrete seats handled several thousand fans and on the opposite side of the field bleachers were set up for about two or three thousand more. Capacity crowds were about 8,000 fans with a few hundred standers. For a while low-income fans saw the games while sitting on and along the C&O railroad tracks. After several near misses by the trains Captain Mac [McCauley] had to keep the tracks clear, along with directing traffic before and after the games.”—Joe Eddins

“All of the Yancey children were very active in athletics at Midway High School. Al Jr. was quite a baseball player. He was offered a professional contract, but he didn’t go…. In those days baseball was a very rough sport and he was only 18 years old…. His parents went to Washington and brought him home because ‘nice’ young men don’t play for the Washington Senators…. Daddy used to tell me that they used to close all of the businesses in Charlottesville, and everybody would go up to Lambeth Field and that’s where all the big games were. They would play the United States Marine Corps team. Everybody would go to the baseball games.  Al Jr. played for the semi-pro Pepsi-Cola team that was sponsored by Mr. Jessup.”—Charlotte Yancey Humphries and Albert S. Yancey III
Albemarle Weaving Company Baseball Team

The 1919 World Series between the Chicago White Sox and the Cincinnati Reds ended in scandal and disgrace when it became known that several of the Chicago players had sold out to gamblers. Chick Gandil, who instigated throwing the Series, played for a time for Washington and was with the Senators when they had spring training in Charlottesville from 1913-15.

Partly in response to the Black Sox scandal, a new system of overseeing athletics with reduced student control was established at the University. Earle “Greasy” Neale was hired to coach both football and baseball. University students like Al Yancey could still play with semi-pro teams during the summer, but only if the students went unpaid.

Disenchantment with baseball following the 1919 scandal was short-lived, and enthusiasm for the sport continued to grow. Local residents could listen each evening to Pittsburgh radio station KDKA, which broadcast the day’s baseball scores every evening at 6:00 and again at 6:55.

The sport flourished in local schools, civic groups, and factories. Within a year of establishing business in the city, the Albemarle Weaving Company had organized a baseball team to oppose others such as the Woolen Mills team. Semi-pro teams, like the Cardinals, also competed.

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05.  1910s

“If I had my life to live over again, I would do exactly as I have done. I would welcome an opportunity to play big league baseball. The old game has bestowed upon me a far wider reputation than I would ever have gained by holding test tubes over Bunsen burners in a chemical laboratory.”—Eppa Rixey

Eppa Rixey,  who earned a U.Va. degree in Chemistry in 1912, was elected to baseball’s Hall of Fame in 1963. In his major league career he won 266 games, the most by a National League southpaw before Warren Spahn, despite pitching only for weak teams.

Rixey pitched for U.Va. during a period in which the Washington team regularly held spring training here, and it is clear that Washington hoped to sign Rixey to a major league contract. But Charles Rigler, a National League umpire who coached U.Va. from 1910-1912 (he took a Law School class in Public Speaking on the side), steered Rixey to the NL Phillies. Rigler and Rixey were to split a $2,000 bonus once the contract was signed, but organized baseball officials frowned on umpires acting as scouts, and the deal was off.

The intimate connection between professionals and collegians, nurtured in the 1890s, grew stronger in the 1910s. Jack Ryan of the Senators succeeded Rigler as coach of the U.Va. squad, and students besides Rixey who went on to play professional ball included Doug Neff and Harry “Jack” Spratt. 

In the city, new corporations promoted sporting events aimed at paying audiences. The Monticello Baseball Association (whose officers were Joel M. Cochran, J. Anderson Chisholm, T. B. Behrendt, and E. C. McCarty) planned to sponsor events in baseball, football, golf, and polo and to hire players for their teams. Local silent movie theaters like the Jefferson featured baseball films such as “Home Run Baker’s Double.”

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04.  1900s

Lambeth Field, by all accounts a splendid place to play baseball and, despite its hard benches, a good place to watch it, was opened in 1902. Close to the streetcar terminus and to Fayerweather Gymnasium, and accommodating large crowds, it would remain a principal venue for local baseball until 1972.

U.Va. and it rivals would play at Lambeth Field, but so would community-based teams and visiting professionals. Commencement at the University in 1908 included a contest between students and faculty. One feature of the game was the umpiring of Professor William H. Echols. In a close decision he tossed a coin to see whether or not a man was safe. The faculty won both the toss and the game.

Local teams played at a number of fields, including the Wine Cellar diamond (now the site of the Albemarle County Office building) and a downtown field described by the local newspaper as “on the site formerly occupied by the Walter and Vandegrift shop.”

Company-sponsored teams played each other. For a game in 1906, which cost 15 cents to attend, the Daily Progress announced “Dr. Rea and Jones will do the twirling for the Michie Company team while Dr. Rogers will be in the box for the Businessmen.”

The Charlottesville Base Ball Association, Inc. was formed in 1908 to promote play by the city team against the best opponents in Virginia and nearby states. The association’s officers included James B. Wood, R.W. Holsinger, R.T. Martin and J.H. Montague.

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03.  1890s

“The old field to the west of Dawson’s Row…was so hard that it covered the ball with ‘wings’ and planed off all the surplus flesh from the player who had the temerity to slide for a base…. The Northern trip [in 1890] was thoroughly unsatisfactory. We had not then learned how to take care of our players, and the management did not hesitate to work any man until he was practically unfit to play…. The baseball team of ‘91 was one of the best in our athletic history, but I have always considered it an ‘accidental’ team in that we happened to have that year a number of magnificent athletes who played an exceedingly strong game, training or no training…. That season witnessed the advent of ‘Cap’ Smith, probably the best first baseman any college has had during the fifteen years under discussion [1889-1904]....  The baseball nine of ‘93 was another team that had a particularly good record…. The trip to Chicago, where we played during the World’s Fair, is the incident in that team’s career which has attracted most attention, but the earnest, unflagging work all through the season, and the fact that the men went into training in February and kept it up until July, are the things that appeal to me as the greatest evidence of the stamina of the players…. R.D. Anderson took charge of [managing] the baseball team in 1891 and 1893…. That trip to Chicago in 1893 was undoubtedly a great advertisement for the University in athletic circles. The trip was due primarily to the enterprise and energy of ‘Dick’ Anderson.” —Murray M. McGuire

In 1890 the student managers of U.Va.‘s baseball team, encouraged by a faculty more tolerant of student athletics, got John Powell, the former Richmond professional, to spend two pre-season weeks in Charlottesville coaching them. At the same time they arranged, through Powell’s former teammate Billy Nash (at that time an infielder on “King” Kelly’s Boston Players League team) to bring his club to Charlottesville as part of their spring training.

Major league teams would hold spring training at the University, playing exhibition games with the collegians, during 15 seasons from 1890 until 1916.

Early in the decade, Dr. William A. Lambeth was appointed by the University to be in charge of Physical Culture. A $100,000 bequest made possible the construction of a new gymnasium, Fayerweather Hall, which opened in 1894. U.Va.‘s baseball team, one of the better collegiate teams of that period, finished second to Yale in a tournament held in Chicago in the summer of 1893, during the course of the World’s Fair. R.D. Anderson managed the 1893 team, and Murray M. McGuire starred on it.

Baseball was popular in town, too. In June 1898 about 30 local enthusiasts formed an Athletic Association in order to organize a baseball club. They planned to play on the athletic field of the University and to face teams in the Valley League.

One Charlottesville player—Dave Wills, son of a local druggist and a U.Va. student—signed to play first base with the Louisville Colonels during the 1899 season, where he was a teammate of the great Honus Wagner. The Daily Progress hoped that Dave Wills would show as much “brains” in playing as he did in drawing up his contract. Wills stipulated that Louisville could not sell, exchange, or release him during the season, and that he was to receive his entire salary whether he played or not.

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02.  1880s

“Baseball is the very symbol, the outward and visible expression of the drive and push and rush and struggle of the raging, tearing, booming nineteenth century.” —Mark Twain

“To an Athlete Dying Young”

The time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the market-place;
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.

To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.

Smart lad, to slip betimes away
From fields where glory does not stay,
And early though the laurel grows
It withers quicker than the rose.

Eyes the shady night has shut
Cannot see the record cut,
And silence sounds no worse than cheers
After earth has stopped the ears:

Now you will not swell the rout
Of lads that wore their honors out,
Runners whom renown outran
And the name died before the man.

So set, before its echoes fade,
The fleet foot on the sill of shade,
And hold to the low lintel up
The still-defended challenge-cup,

And round that early-laureled head
Will flock to gaze the strengthless dead,
And find unwithered on its curls
The garland briefer than a girl’s.

—A. E. Housman

Hitting a ball with a bat, the essence of baseball, is an ancient pastime. It became our national pastime after the Civil War. In 1867 a U.Va. student publication referred to the baseball club and commented about “the enthusiasm which this game inspires in many of its followers. Indeed there seems to be some who have in the shortest time, come to regard proficiency in the game as the very ultimatum [sic] of all their hopes and dreams.”

Baseball “Nines” from the residential areas of the Lawn, Ranges, Carr’s Hill and Dawson’s Row competed against each other.

In 1872 the “Monticello Base-ball Club” took train and stagecoach to compete against Washington and Lee. When W&L returned the visit, games were probably played on a field near the cemetery just west of Dawson’s Row and within sight of the Montebello estate.

In May 1878 the University students gasped when W&L’s pitcher threw balls that went crooked. Stunned by the curve ball, student interest in baseball declined until 1882 when a re-established University team defeated a town nine 13-7. Nineteen-year-old Charley Ferguson (pictured below) pitched for Charlottesville.

As the University student population approached 400, energetic students in 1888 formed the General Athletic Association. The baseball team management expanded the schedule, fenced in the field in order to charge admission, and challenged a “picked nine” from the town to a season-opening game. J. Lipop pitched for Charlottesville, while former Mayor and UVa alumnus, Samuel Woods, played in right field. U.Va. won this and all seven of the other games on its schedule.

   

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01.  Spring Training

1)  “King” Kelly and his Boston team of the rebellious Players League came to Charlottesville in March 1890 to prepare for the upcoming baseball season. Accompanied by Boston sportswriters who filed daily reports, the team stayed at a local hotel near the Union Station, played exhibition games with the talented U.Va. squad, and enjoyed what the city and University had to offer.

The Players League folded at the end of the 1890 season, but many of Kelly’s players were back in Charlottesville in 1891, this time for spring training with the Boston team of the American Association. In 1892, the Boston National League team (the NL was now the only surviving major league) took spring training in Charlottesville.  For fifteen of the years between 1890 and 1916 major league teams would be here for spring training, usually spending about two weeks. Of those who appeared here,  eleven wound up in the Hall of Fame: Dan Brouthers, Jimmy Collins, Hugh Duffy, Clark Griffith, Billy Hamilton, Walter Johnson, “King” Kelly, “Kid” Nichols, Amos Rusie, Frank Selee, and U.Va.‘s own Eppa Rixey.

In 1901, the first year of the American League, the Boston Red Sox came to town for spring training. Led by Jimmy Collins, they would finish second in the league. The great Cy Young, who would win 33 games for them that year, unfortunately chose not to train with his team in Charlottesville.

2)  Teams that held Spring Training or played exhibition games at the University of Virginia:
—1890 Boston Reds; Players League; Mike “King” Kelly, Mgr.
—1891 Boston Reds; American Association; Arthur Irwin, Mgr.
—1892 Boston; National League; Frank Selee, Mgr.
—1893 Boston; National League; Frank Selee, Mgr.
—1895 New York; National League; George Davis, Mgr.
—1896 Boston; National League; Frank Selee, Mgr.
—1899 Boston; National League; Frank Selee, Mgr.
—1901 Boston; American League; Jimmy Collins, Mgr.
—1905 Washington; American League; Jake Stahl, Mgr.
—1906 Washington; American League; Jake Stahl, Mgr.
—1907 Buffalo; Eastern League,  trained. (Game against Virginia rained out.)
—1908 Toronto; Eastern League Champions, trained.
—1910 Toronto; Eastern League, trained.
—1911 Philadelphia Athletics to play exhibition game but hail storm canceled.
—1912 Montreal; International League, trained.
—1912 Washington; American League; Clark Griffith, Mgr.
—1913 Montreal; International League, trained
—1913 Washington; American League; Clark Griffith Mgr.
—1914 Washington; American League; Clark Griffith, Mgr.
—1915 Washington; American League; Clark Griffith, Mgr.
—1916 Washington; American League; Clark Griffith, Mgr.

3)  1905 and 1906 under Jake Stahl, and from 1912-1916 under Clark Griffith, the Washington Senators (usually called The Nationals in those days) had spring training in Charlottesville. The great Walter Johnson was the main attraction on the 1912-1916 teams.

During their spring visits to Charlottesville the Senators would usually stay at a fraternity house vacated by the students living there, would train indoors at Fayerweather Gym, and would practice and play at the fine new facility called Lambeth Field.

In UVa’s first exhibition game with the Senators in 1905, the Cavaliers pulled a triple play. On March 18, 1905,  The Washington Post reported that Frank Jackson, “a colored lad who hangs out around the University gym,” was recruited for an intra-squad game. He got one of his team’s seven hits, and made two of its six errors

4)  Trips to Monticello
(Quotes from newspaper accounts, 1905-1916):

During the Washington team’s first Sunday in Virginia in 1905 the players took a complimentary tally-ho drive to Monticello. “To say that the boys enjoyed the trip up the mountain is expressing it mildly. The ride back was exhilarating and full of excitement. The pace set by the four horses coming down the steepest part of the mountain was rapid.”

In 1914 several players tried to visit Monticello. Buggies and four-seated rigs were hired but all were disappointed when, after they had struggled through mud, they learned that the former home of Thomas Jefferson was not open on Sundays.

In the following two years groups hired automobiles to try to get through the mud. Finally, in 1916, some of the team visited inside Jefferson’s home. Through the courtesy of Thomas L. Rhodes, caretaker of Monticello, team members Walter Johnson, George McBride, John Henry, Clyde Milan and several of their friends roamed at will through the house. The visit was arranged by Donald Stevens, a local automobile dealer. The tourists were shown the room in which Thomas Jefferson died, and the “famous malachite table.” They were shown a little board extending from the wall in Jefferson’s study and told he penned a portion of the Declaration of Independence on it. Mr Rhodes entertained the players with tales of the life of Jefferson, and gave the players what they called “the most enjoyable afternoon they had ever spent at Charlottesville.”

Teams stayed in Charlottesville at Wright’s Hotel (later called the Clermont) near the Union Station during their visits from 1891-1906. Clark Griffith’s Washington teams of 1912-1916 stayed at boarding houses, and at vacated fraternity houses on Chancellor Street. Mrs. Samuel Saunders prepared all the players’ meals. In 1914 Manager Griffith ordered 50 pounds of beef, butter and bottled water to be shipped from Washington to the training camp. The Washington Post reported “Manager Griffith is on the lookout for a barrel of apples known as the Albemarle pippin. He believed that apples taken just before bedtime are of great medicinal value. Each player is to receive two just before he retires for the night. Of course, Griff doesn’t like them himself.”

Players hiked and jogged through fields as part of their training regimes. In 1916 some of the Washington players took a five-mile walk along the railroad track. Muskrat and mink trails were discovered. Three players formed the “Bentley-Shaw-Rice Fur Company” and sold shares to raise funds to buy traps. Five fur skins were shipped to Washington to be turned into a hat for the trainer’s little girl and into gloves for Griffith.

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08.  Saloons, Local Option, and the Coming of Prohibition

Located in proximity to the Union Railroad Station and a block from the Opera House on the 600 block of West Main Street, the Gleason Hotel attracted a large clientele.

Connected to the Gleason Hotel was a bar that included a pool hall and a ten-pin alley, run by German immigrant, Caroline Hase. Such a combination of vices became illegal in 1907, when the Local Option precluded “any form of entertainment whatsoever in connection with a dealership in intoxicating liquors.”

W.S. Wilkins Fine Wine Rooms sold jugs of wine in their front room behind which was the bar for white patrons and behind that was a bar for African-Americans “equally fine and commodious” according to the Daily Progress.  But when the 1907 local option required that “the entire interior of any bar has to be visible from the sidewalk,” Wilkins could not continue his allegedly separate but equal facility.

Customers from the surrounding counties came to Charlottesville on Saturdays to enjoy a day full of shopping and entertainment.  When 15 local bars closed down in 1907, the lights of town dimmed earlier, and business slowed down for many local merchants.

Cochran’s grocery store had to paint over this sign in 1907 and move its wine and liquor sales operation to Orange County where it was still legal.  But Charlottesville patrons could still mail order their liquor from Joel M. Cochran & Co. of Orange, Virginia.  “All orders for Wine and Liquors are shipped the same day as received, with no marks thereon to denote contents,” the business advertised in the Daily Progress of September 12, 1907.

In 1907, when it became illegal to sell alcoholic beverages at restaurants, the Log Cabin Bar and Restaurant could not make it as a restaurant alone and was forced to close down.  The building at 419 East Market Street was torn down in 1909.

Mr. F.G. Hicks sold his bar at 501 East Main Street to C.N. Bolser in the winter of 1907.  By summer of 1907, Mr. Bolser, though of “sterling character . . . pluck and energy” (quote from the Daily Progress), with a “fine stock of foreign and domestic wines” was forced to close down when the local option passed.

Grocers, such as L.O. Gianniny,  could continue to sell alcoholic beverages so long as they were given a doctor’s prescription.

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Gleason Hotel

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Bar in the Gleason Hotel

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Wilkins & Co.‘s Fine Wine Rooms

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Log Cabin Bar and Restaurant

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Carolyn Hase

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Cochran’s Twentieth Century Grocery Emporium

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L. O. Gianniny


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F. G. Hicks


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Saloon-keeper C. N. Bolser


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Postcards of downtown Charlotttesville, day


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Postcards of downtown Charlotttesville, night

07.  Adolph Russow and the Monticello Wine Company

Born in Lauenburg, Germany in 1851, Adolph Russow, after receiving a liberal education and pursuing graduate studies in Germany, came to the United States in 1868. After a period of operating streetcars in New York City, Russow moved to Virginia. In 1872 he purchased Red Hills at Proffit in Albemarle County. On this farm of 307.5 acres, he established Bellevue Vineyards, which sold grapes to the Monticello Wine Company, founded in 1873. The following year the wine company chose Russow to be the supervisor of its wine cellar.

The Monticello Wine Company was created as a cooperative to encourage and provide a consistent market for Albemarle’s grape growers. Many of Charlottesville’s most prominent citizens took stock in the company. In the interest of both producers and consumers and for the public well-being, the wine company’s goal was to make pure and healthful, low-alcohol table wines of medium grade. They pursued Jefferson’s dream of creating an affordable table wine that would lead to temperate drinking habits.

For a few years, local farmers found a better market in New York City for their table grapes until the transcontinental railroad brought California grapes into the competition. Then they started selling their grapes to the Monticello Wine Company.

By 1878, the company had received international recognition for the quality of its wines. Adherence to high standards led to a continuing string of awards at a variety of state, national and international competitions.

At harvest time, local grapes were transported in wagons down what is now Wine Street, or down Second Street N.E. (on which the Society is presently located) to where both of these roads dead-ended at the edge of town in the mouth of a ravine, next to the old quarry adjoining the present site of the Greek Orthodox Church. This was where the company’s wine cellar was built. At that time, the cellar was surrounded on all sides by pasture land that extended to the tracks of the Virginia Midland Railroad which had a spur line serving the wine company, running almost parallel to Schenks Branch.

Russow’s granddaughter, Augusta, reminisced, “In the summer when the grapes started to get ripe, my grandfather took mother and me to the country to visit his customers. We usually went early on Sunday morning riding on his two-horse surrey. We carried lunch but were always invited to have a good country dinner at one of ‘Big Papa’s’ grape growers.”

When in 1887 the Black Rot destroyed many vineyards here, a lot of the farmers were no longer willing to invest the time, money and care to treat their vineyards. The Monticello Wine Company was forced to buy grapes from other states to have enough to continue making their wines. By 1900, the company was giving away vine roots for free to encourage farmers to invest in grape growing.

The company outlasted other Southern wine companies, most of which folded with the onset of local option in their communities. Russow and the Monticello Wine Company survived the strictures of Charlottesville’s 1907 local option by becoming a mail order business, purchasing licenses and offices in other states. But by 1915, as the number of “Dry” states increased, the company had to close its operations for good. The Monticello Wine Company building burned in 1937.

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Red Hills, 1914 photo

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Red Hills, 1954 photo

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Russow’s Bellevue Vineyards label

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Packing Monticello wine in barrels

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Russow in packing room

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One of Russow’s daughters poses with Monticello wine and cards while in nursing school in Philadelphia

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Monticello Wine Company delivery wagon

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Visiting the vineyards

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Monticello Wine Company building

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Monticello Wine Company label

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Monticello Wine Company label

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Publicity photo for Monticello Wine?

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Russow family portrait

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Russow, Rierson, and Haage, principals of the Monticello Wine Company, ca. 1875


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Russow and unidentified family member


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Train spur along Schenck's Branch


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Russow and dog await the train at loading dock


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Group portrait at Alwood's Stonehenge; Russow and Alwood together, center, back row.

06. “The Savior of the Virginia Fruit Industry”

William Bradford Alwood was working for the Entomology Department of the U.S. Department of Agriculture when he was selected to head the new experiment station at the Virginia Mechanical and Agricultural College (later Virginia Polytechnical Institute, or Virginia Tech), and he directed immediate attention to the grape-growers dilemma in Albemarle. Delivering lectures and demonstrations and writing articles, he helped local grape-growers who were receptive to his ideas. Alwood was hailed in the state as “the savior of the Virginia fruit industry.”

After devoting almost 15 years to teaching, research and writing for the horticulture, entomology and mycology departments at the Virginia Mechanical and Agricultural College, as well as working part-time for the U.S.D.A., Alwood took a leave of absence in 1900 to attend the Paris Exposition and to research cider-making in Europe under the auspices of Harvey Washington Wiley’s Bureau of Chemistry.

Both Wiley and Alwood attended the 1900 International Viticultural Congress in Paris and participated in judging the wine competition there.

Impressed with Alwood’s progress, Wiley offered him continuing financial assistance for his European education and investigations into fermentation processes, which, of course, applied equally to wine as to cider (in Germany called “apple wine”).  Alwood returned to America in 1901 with flasks of yeasts and musts from Europe’s wineries and cideries.

In 1907, with the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act, Wiley appointed Alwood the director of the new U.S. Department of Enology which he established next to Alwood’s home, Stonehenge, on the Rio Road in Charlottesville. Here Alwood through his chemical analysis would establish winemaking standards to meet the requirements of the Pure Food and Drug Act.

According to Wiley, “These investigations of Alwood’s show that the makers of wine in New York and Ohio can no longer scientifically claim the privilege of stretching their wines with sugar. Sugared wines are essentially adulterated, even if labeled as such. The rigid investigations of Alwood have also shown that there is no basis for the belief that the acidity of properly made American wines is excessive. I have lately (1917) tested a bottle of pure Virginia red wine made by Alwood in 1904 and found it has kept perfectly and has qualities which entitle it to rank among the good red wines of the Medoc.”

Though the investigations of Alwood’s wine laboratory were transferred to the Internal Revenue Department in 1913, (as Prohibition forces increased), Alwood continued to receive honors for his distinction in wine research and other fruit processing investigations both nationally and internationally, culminating in his election as president of the International Congress on Viticulture in San Francisco in 1915.

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William Bradford Alwood

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Harvey Wiley

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At the Paris Exposition

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At the 1900 International Viticultural Congress

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Alwood inspects vineyard in Elciego, Spain

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Grapery at Dept. of Agriculture

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Alwood in his laboratory at VMAC

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"Something good at GebruderHoehl Co. $1 worth of wine, $3 dollars worth of bubbles"


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Department and Division Heads of the Federal Bureau of Chemistry, Washington, D.C.; Alwood at far right


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Alwood's "Stonehenge" (house and lab on hill)


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"Stonehenge" and lab in rear


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Alwood's entymology lab, 1897

05.  Other Early Local Advocates of Modern Viticulture

Henry Minor Magruder, a leader in the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors and the Virginia Pomological Society, fought hard to enact legislation on behalf of the grape-growers whose vineyards were devastated by the fungoid diseases. As an adjunct professor at the Virginia Mechanical and Agricultural College in Blacksburg Magruder travelled throughout the state to educate farmers.

Albert Holliday lived at Eastham on the Stony Point Road. When his vineyards were attacked by anthracnose, mildew and rot in 1886, Holliday participated in a three-year experiment with the U.S.D.A., observing the effect of various fungicides on these different pests.

Trained in New Jersey as a medical doctor, Dr. Charles E. Hedges (shown here at his home at the end of Park Street) moved to Charlottesville in 1883, retiring from medicine and pursuing horticulture, as his health required he spend more time in the fresh air. Trained in inspecting human pathogens under a microscope, Dr. Hedges was reportedly the first horticulturalist in the Eastern U.S. to observe plant pathogens that had threatened to spread and destroy the local fruit industry. He was the type of skilled observer and consistent note-taker upon whom U.S.D.A. agents relied to assist in their projects.

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Magruder house


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Albert Holiday's house on Stony Point Road


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Albert Holiday's house on Stony Point Road


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Dr. Charles Hedges


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Hedges family

04.  William Hotopp and William Ward Minor: Post-Civil War Pioneers of the Grape

Wine production in America, scarcely a million gallons in 1850, reached about 50 million gallons, in good years, by century’s end. Central Virginia shared in this growth. The post Civil War agricultural challenge was to find productive ways of using the land. Local farmers were obliged to do so, while outsiders came here with speculative opportunities in mind.

Among the most important figures in local winemaking, in the decades after the war, were William and Henry Hotopp, wealthy New Jersey industrialists whose Middle Atlantic survey persuaded them to plant vineyards in the Piedmont, and the local Minor family, who turned to vineyard production on their own lands and later helped establish the Monticello Wine Company.

After fighting for the Confederacy in the Civil War, William Wardlaw Minor II returned to his father’s estate at “Windieknowe” and started his first vineyard on Rich Mountain a mile away (with Mr. Hotopp across the river at Pen Park to give him advice.)

The Minor family and their kin lived on adjoining estates along the forks and both sides of the Rivanna River. They shared equipment and labor as they cooperated in the grape-growing venture.

Many of the African Americans who had served as W. W. Minor’s father’s slaves were still in the neighborhood after the war. Minor used two of them, Isaac Ross and Tom Flannagan, to do most of his specialized vineyard work. Minor’s sister, who lived at the adjoining Key West estate, remembered, “We girls were not allowed to go about with any of the ‘hands’ except Tom and Uncle Isaac,” the family’s most trusted and loyal “hands.”

W.W. Minor wrote in Sept of 1879, “I lent Albert Holliday my wagon and barrels today to haul his Nortons to the wine cellar. They are the finest sent there.” Holliday’s house at Eastham on the Stony Point Road is shown below.

“In the late summer the grapes were gathered and though most of these were carelessly thrown in barrels and carried to town to the wine cellar, some fancy varieties were carefully packed for shipment to the northern markets. All of the family helped in this packing and it seemed like a protracted picnic to me, for the packing house was about a mile from our house and we often did not go home for dinner,” wrote Minor’s cousin of Key West.

Minor found his rough and infertile rocky lands ideal for grape growing as the agricultural journals had predicted. Keeping a diary of his grape-growing venture for almost 50 years, Minor survived the economic downturns of the grape market by continuing to raise other crops and by his part-time legal practice.

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19th Century wine press


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William Wardlaw Minor II in his 80s


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Minor estates (map detail)


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Minor family in 1899. W. W. in back row, third from left.


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Windieknowe

03.  Antebellum Scientific Viticulturist:  John Patten Emmet

Early American colonists did not like the “foxy” taste of wines made from the hardy native grapes (Vitis labrusca), so they kept importing both their wines and vines. Chance pollination of native grapes with imported vinifera vines together with the efforts of amateur viticulturists led to the creation of a number of American hybrid grapes. One of the first was the “Alexander” developed by James Alexander in Philadelphia in 1740.

In 1830, Dr. D. N. Norton of Richmond produced a popular wine grape that combined American hardiness with some European flavor. The “Norton” (sometimes called “Cynthiana”), perhaps a cross with a European grape, was said to soften the “foxiness” of the American grape. Norton became the main component of prize winning wines produced in this agricultural area in the late 1800s, was replanted locally in the 1930s after Prohibition, and is now being grown in nearby vineyards.

In the 1830s many scientists tried to create better grapes for wine making. Among them were John Patton Emmet, first Professor of Natural Science and Chemistry at the new University of Virginia.

Thomas Jefferson selected John Patten Emmet as the University of Virginia’s first Professor of Natural History, a discipline that then included Zoology, Botany, Mineralogy, Chemistry, Geology and Rural Economy.

At first Emmet lived on The Lawn, but bought the Morea property in 1834 to raise his growing family and to pursue his keen interest in horticultural experimentation.  According to his relative, George Tucker, “Emmet was constantly planning improvements, making experiments on manures and introducing delicate fruits, new species of esculents and above all rare flowers.”

Emmet dined with Jefferson when he could, and it is likely they shared wine together. Like Jefferson, Emmet experimented with grape and silk culture. Emmet imported vinifera plants and employed persons familiar with their culture to graft the foreign stock onto the native grape. He had a vineyard of some seven acres and began producing wines and brandies at Morea.  Emmet even wrote, “My farm is so close to the University that without omitting the discharge of any professional duties, I shall be enabled to ride my silk and wine hobbies to death even, should I choose to do so.”

No records have been found to indicate that others experimented with hybridization of vinifera and American grape plants after Emmet left Charlottesville in 1842.

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John Patten Emmet


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Emmet's home, "Morea," as drawn by his son Thomas Adddis Emmet. Magazine of Albemarle County History, Vol. 13.


02.  Thomas Jefferson and Filippo Mazzei

In Thomas Jefferson’s time it was still necessary to import good table wine, and Jefferson did so with great enthusiasm. He believed that everyone should drink wine, since “in countries which use ardent spirits drunkenness is the mortal vice; but in those which make wine for common use you never see a drunkard”.

To make European wines more affordable, Jefferson as President prompted Congress to lower their import duties. Nearly twenty years earlier, as Ambassador to France, he had taken time off to study winemaking. And earlier still, in 1773, he had undertaken a visionary program of viticulture at Monticello.

Jefferson had doubts about the economic viability of winemaking in Virginia, especially in view of tobacco’s then dominant role in agriculture, but decided that the experiment should be carried out nonetheless. He encouraged his friends and neighbors to do the same.

Filippo Mazzei, a Tuscan from Poggio a Caiano, near Florence, oversaw Jefferson’s experimental vineyards. Working in London as a wine importer and exporter, Mazzei had met Thomas Adams, a Virginia merchant. With Adams’s financial backing, Mazzei agreed to come to Virginia to establish a plantation of 4000 acres for the production of silk, olives, and vineyards. Upon Mazzei’s arrival in late 1773, Adams introduced him to Jefferson, who offered him 2000 uncleared acres as well as 50 acres adjoining Monticello on which Mazzei would build his home, Colle (“hill,” in Italian). Mazzei’s crew of winemakers, ten indentured servants from Tuscany, were summoned from Williamsburg upon his acceptance of Jefferson’s offer.

The point of Mazzei’s enterprise was to “jump-start” the Virginia wine industry by making wine from vines of the best vineyards in Europe, leaving the cultivation of native grapes—essential, both Mazzei and Jefferson thought, to the future of wine production in Virginia—to the future. The project failed. Frost killed the majority of the vines the first year, and Mazzei, never a farmer himself, was swept up in revolutionary fervor and abandoned cultivation.

In 1779 Mazzei rented Colle to Baron von Riedesel, a Hessian officer recently captured at Saratoga. According to Jefferson, “Riedesel’s horses in one week destroyed the whole labor of three or four years; and thus ended an experiment which, from every appearance, would in a year or two more [!] have established the practicability of that branch of culture in America.”

Jefferson’s interest in winemaking did not end with Mazzei’s departure and the destruction of the vineyard at Colle. One of Mazzei’s Tuscan workers, Antonio Giannini, stayed on at Monticello where, as Jefferson’s estate manager from 1778 until 1786, he continued to experiment with vines despite repeated failure. Jefferson was still importing cuttings as late as 1802, despite the fact that none of them lived for long. An 1807 version of Giannini’s vineyard at Monticello was restored in 1985.

In the end, Jefferson seems to have given up on growing European grape varieties, which he said in 1809 “will take centuries to adapt to our soil and climate”. He turned instead to the Alexander grape, possibly a chance hybrid between the American Vitis labrusca and a plant of Vitis vinifera; by 1811 his vineyards had been replanted with 165 cuttings of the Alexander. Jefferson seems to have become reconciled to the “foxy” taste and smell of American grapes, a taste that few wine-drinkers have ever liked. It may be, as Hugh Johnson has suggested, that Jefferson in his seventies was “perhaps forgetting the taste of French wine.”

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Pietro Leopoldo, Grand Duke of Tuscany (1747-1792), He granted Mazzei permission to take “all kinds of plants, such as vine-shoots, pear, filbert and other plants, with their respective grafts and seeds, except, however, mulberry plants.” In return, the Grand Duke would receive “three deer and a live rattlesnake, fifteen years old and packed in sawdust” and shipped from the American Colonies. He did not grant permission to take workers from Tuscany, but Mazzei found willing helpers in the surrounding provinces. Leopold I would become Holy Roman Emperor in 1790.

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Filippo (Philip) Mazzei


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A Jefferson-designed fruit press. Although it is known to have pressed apples, it is also possible the press was used in wine production at Monticello.


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Grand Duke Leopoldo's permission for Mazzei to take people and plants out of Tuscany.


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Port of Leghorn during the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. Mazzei, Giannini, and the other Italian servants sailed from Leghorn to Williamsburg, September 2, 1773 aboard the large frigate, "Triumph."


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Crafted by G. Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu (1687-1744), this violin belonged to Antonio Giannini. He and his sons played the violin, drum, fife, and flute for Jefferson and others.

01.  Beginnings

A thousand years ago, Leif Erickson came to North America and found so many wild grapes that he called the new world “Vinland.”

Four hundred years later Virginia was found to have vines in abundance, too:  in 1606 Captain John Smith’s men produced nearly twenty gallons of wine from their uncultivated grapes.

Early settlers drank wine and other fermented beverages—water quality was unreliable—consuming, on the average, about forty gallons per capita each year.

Nearly all the wine had to be imported, mostly from France and Italy, a dependency that the British government early on hoped to reduce by creating vineyards on the seemingly hospitable Virginia soil. Rather than trying to make wine from the native grapes, however, the colonists imported European vine cuttings and brought in French vignerons to oversee winemaking operations. Other European crops, such as wheat and apples, had been successfully brought to these shores, but the Vitis vinifera plantings repeatedly failed, succumbing to frosts, pests, and diseases, and so this 17th-century experiment was abandoned.

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Vineyard in Albemarle County, by Rufus Holsinger ca. 1885; courtesy U.Va. Special Collections.


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"High stakes" in local grape nursery, 2004. (Jane Myers)


3 Elliewood Avenue:  “The Copy Shop; Headliners: Great Haircuts, Super Perms!”

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"Elliewood"; (a tree ); "The Copy Shop; Headliners: Great Haircuts, Super Perms !"


1415 University Avenue:  “Espresso Royale Caffe”

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633 West Main Street:  (dancing girls)

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700 Harris Street:  “D.G. Dery, Inc., Silk Mills”

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Silk Mills


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NY Office ____ ____


515 Water Street:  “Pepsi Cola”

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C & O Restaurant; Pepsi; Chris'; We Specialize In Home Coo(king); Hot Dogs With Chili, Barbeque, Roast Beef, Hamburgers


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515 Water Street:  “Wheeler Real Estate”

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515 Water Street:  “Call Tox-Eol, Bonded Termite Control, Pest Control Service”

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Waterproof With Thoroseal


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Waterproof With Thoroseal


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410-418 East Water Street:  “Chas. King and Son Co. Inc., Wholesale Grocers”

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313 Water Street The Hardware Store, Restaurant - Boutiques - Gallery Promenade

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401-405 South Street:  “Michie Grocery Co.”

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401-405 South Street:  “Norcross Transfer & Storage Inc.; Office; Agent; North American Van Lines”

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Security Storage & Van Lines, Inc., Agent for Allied Van Lines


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Antique & Modern Upholstery, Inc.


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Charlottesville Warehouse Corp." (over "Michie Grocery")

310 Second Street SE:  “Matacia Fruit Co.”

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Number Nothing Court Square:  “H. Benson and Bros. Auction Rooms”

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106 South Street W:  “Office”

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H.H.Hankins Hay/Grain


418 East Jefferson Street:  “Monti-(cello Saloon)”

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420 East Main Street:  “Grand Piano and Furniture Co.”

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