Friends of Green Spring Newsletter
Dedicated to the Opening of a new National Park
Vol. 2, No. 2, Spring 2004
Opening Green Spring feels real at last
After more than eight years of working to open Green
Spring, the Friends are entering the fun part. “The devil is
in the details,” is an old adage. It’s also where the fun is. For
example, members of the Friends board have been talking to
James City County officials to get some estimates to compare
with what the National Park Service says it will cost to open
Green Spring and to indicate how much public and/or private
money we must raise before 2007.
Green Spring Colonial National Historical Park will need
water and sewer lines to service the three small buildings
of the visitor contact station. Lo and behold, JCC Service
Authority General Manager Larry Foster and Planning Director
Marvin Sowers say water is at the north end and sewer lines
at the south. How convenient! Fresh water will flow down
to the visitor station from Alternate Five and wastewater will
flush down to the sewer line on Route Five. Foster says the
cost for both lines will be $50-60,000, depending on the size
of the water pipe.
Next, to Deputy Fire Marshall Mark Hill, who explained
what the Fire Department recommends. A fire hydrant
serviced by an 8-inch water line is best and doesn’t cost
much more than a 4-inch line when the ditch is dug. The new
entry to Green Spring must be at least 20 feet wide and the
parking lot big enough and strong enough to turn and hold
a 75,000-pound fire engine. The woods must be cut back at
least 50 feet from the visitor contact station in case of
a brush fire, which easily could happen during a drought,
as we have seen. Lucky again, the fire station is five
What about dangerous, narrow Centerville Road through
Green Spring? Steve Hicks, Resident Engineer for V-DOT, says
“traffic calming” measures will be put in place, as called for
in a resolution of the JCC Board of Supervisors. Left and right
turn lanes would be built at the new entry about mid-way
on the west side of Centerville at a cost of about $200,000.
But, there is federal transportation enhancement grant money
available. And, we will need support from the JCC Board
Supervisors to be included in the next 6-year road-building
Discussions with prospective contractors for the 300-
foot entry, parking lot and buildings are due next. The parking
lot will have to accommodate cars, busses and a 28-foot fire
engine turning radius. We also expect to have an estimate
from the CNHP of what it says it will cost to open Green
Spring. Soon, we will have two estimates and a mutually
agreed target for fund-raising. All of which makes opening
Green Spring seem real, and fun.
Congresswoman Davis needs help to fund Green Spring
Congresswoman Jo Ann S. Davis again is sponsoring
legislation, termed an earmarked request, for $1.5 million
to fund the opening of Green Spring. A similar request
in 2003 went nowhere. Keep trying, is the counsel given
us. By Washington standards, it is a pittance and it would
amply cover the expected costs. The request is based on
an approximation given to us by the Colonial National
Serious help from Senators John Warner and George
Allen as sponsors eventually will be needed to get anywhere.
As always, the crunch is on for money in Congress, but
other Members get it for their states and Green Spring
is completely worthy from a historic and recreational
standpoint. Friends of Green Spring will staff it, not CNHP.
This is normal, since thousands of volunteers help the
under-funded, under-staffed National Park Service.
All we are asking is funding for Green Spring, which
Congress recognized in 1936 as part of the Colonial National
Historical Monument and a unit of the Colonial National
Historical Park. Addresses of our three Members of Congress
are: Congresswoman Jo Ann S. Davis, 1123 Longworth House;
Office Building, Washington, DC 20510; Senator George Allen,
204 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20515;
Senator John Warner, 225 Russell Senate Office Building,
Washington, DC 20515.
Friend of the Friends, Alec Gould, retiring
Superintendent Alec Gould is retiring June 3 as head of
the Colonial National Historical Park after 41 years with the
National Park Service. Superintendent Gould agreed in 1996
to initiate the process to produce a General Management
Plan for opening Green Spring. Friends of Green Spring was
incorporated in February 1997 as a result of his decision and
a partnership began.
Without Superintendent Gould’s support, Green Spring
would have no prospect of opening. Now, we have a final
GMP needing only a record of decision presentation to the
public, hopefully before his retirement. The National Park
Service, with Superintendent Gould’s guidance, put major
time and money into producing the GMP. Copies were sent
to many Friends of Green Spring and Green Spring Park
Watchers last year.
The choice of a permanent successor to Superintendent
Gould will depend on whether his position is posted
nationally or is filled by non-competitive appointment.
Will Berkeley Explains How A Colony Was Lost
After Capitulating to the Cromwell Government’s Fleet in March, 1652, How did Governor Sir WIlliam Berkeley Explain to King Charles II that he had “Lost” Virginia to the Commonwealth?
By May of 1652 Sir William Berkeley found himself in early retirement, the Governorship of Virginia having passed to Richard Bennett, one of Parliament’s three Commissioners. He also faced the unpleasant prospect of telling his Sovereign, young Charles II, why he had been forced to retire. In the following remarkable letter, Berkeley offers a rambling and obsequious apology for his failure to preserve Royal control of the Colony of Virginia.
GOVERNOR SIR WILLIAM BERKELEY’S APOLOGY TO KING CHARLES II FOR DELIVERING UP THE COLONY OF VIRGINIA TO THE REBELS (May 4TH, 1652)
May it please your Sacred Majesty
I must humbly throw my self at your Majesty’s feet imploring your Majesty’s
pardon for delivering up your Majesty’s Colony into the hands of your Enemies;
which pardon I should never have the confidence to beg if there had been the
least possibility of resistance: yet may it please your Majesty most confessedly
true it is, that I could have destroyed the country with those forces I had,
but preserve it I could not, for your Enemies took advantage of such a fatal
conjuncture as animated all those who before were inclined to charge disheartened
the Loyal party and made those that were indifferent fearfully and furiously
cry out for any accommodation. This added to the uncertainty of where or in
what condition your Majesty’s Person was, which then we had not the least knowledge
of, though since to out inexpressible joy we hear God has miraculously preserved
from the hands of your Enemies and undoubtedly rescued your Majesty for most
glorious fortunes, this uncertainty, may it please your Majesty, made the Council
even petition me to consent to Articles of Surrender, lest as they said by destroying
it your Majesty might lose those great businesses you will have from it when
please God to restore your Majesty to your other Kingdoms: Because I am yet
alive I dare not say twas in my wish rather to die than deliver up any thing
your Majesty hath committed to my trust into the power of the Enemy but this
I will most humbly and everlastingly profess that I will rather fly to your
Majesty’s justice for punishment if I have offended beyond pardon than live
under or within the power of your Majesty’s Enemies. Colonel Lovelace, who long
and faithfully served your glorious father was an actor in and assistant to
me in my last necessity. He will not dare to tell your Majesty any thing for
or against my justification but what is of manifest truth: to his relation,
I refer my innocence or guilt, ever praying God to preserve your Sacred Majesty,
to give you Victory over your Enemies, to restore you to your Kingdoms and give
you more in recompense of those your Majesty hath been so long kept from by
your Enemies, thus ever prayeth
Your Majesty’s most humble
Most obedient servant,
Subject, and Creature
Virginia, May the 4TH, 1652
*The original copy of this document is in Oxford University’s Bodleian Library, and is available via microfilm from the Library of Virginia’s Colonial Records Project (SR07379/Reel 636/Fikui 111)
Sir William knew that this letter would be personally delivered to the “Late King of Scots” now exiled in France by the Colonel (Francis) Lovelace mentioned in its text. A distant cousin and political ally of Berkeley’s, Lovelace had been sent to Virginia by the King two years earlier to foment resistance against Cromwell’s demands for the Colony’s surrender. Berkeley undoubtedly believed that Lovelace, who would later serve as the second Royal Governor of New York (1668-1673), would provide Charles the Second with both credible and favorable first-hand testimony.
First Baptist Church guides Friend’s tour
Trustee Charles Purnell explains historic items to members of the Friends board and others during a tour of the First Baptist Church of Williamsburg.
Among its many historic laurels, Green Spring is believed
by First Baptist Church members to be the site of the first
African-American Christian congregation in North America.
Slaves were forbidden to hold Christian worship in the 18th
century, so they met secretly at Green Spring Plantation.
Teachings of the Bible that all people are children of
God, therefore, co-heirs with Christ, condemned ownership
of one people by another. To slave owners that was
revolutionary and unacceptable – and downright dangerous.
In January, five members of the Friends board of
directors took advantage of a new tour program offered by
the church under the direction of Deacon Robert Davis and
Trustee Charles Purnell. Members welcome everyone to
worship at the church and see its historic displays.
Early explorers scratched the surface of Green Spring, but secrets remain
Installment Three of a report by CNHP archaeologist, Dr. Andrew Veech, reveals
deposits from the Ludwell manor house, trash from the late 17th century and
more about the terraced garden that fronted the manor.
In Spring 2002, a small excavation block was dug atop the Ludwell manor
house’s southwestern corner, at the junction of the manor house itself
and several of the plantation’s garden wall’s. Several important observations
were made as a result of this excavation:
- Intact archeological deposits sill exist in this area of the site, despite
the earlier extensive diggings by both Dimmick and Caywood. This means that
there is still potential for important archeological insights to be made near
to the manor house itself.
- A layer of domestic trash was found directly atop the construction debris
for the initial Ludwell manor house wing. This trash dates to the 1680s
and 1690s, placing the construction of the manor house wing at a point
just prior to that time. A likely scenario is that this manor house wing was
built jointly by Frances Berkeley and Philip Ludwell I — shortly after
their marriage and before their departure for Rich Neck plantation.
- The northernmost, terminal pier of the grand, curlinear garden wall was
found to abut, rather than adjoin, the colonnade of the Ludwell manor
house wing. If we assume the colonnade to have been the brainchild
of that wing’s initial creators (i.e., Frances Berkeley and Philip Lubwell
I), then the curvilinear garden wall must have been the product of some
subsequent generation living at the estate. This strengthens assumptions
that the grand, enclosed terraced garden described above was created by
Philip Ludwell II, sometime between 1697 and 1727.
New members and renewals needed to fund $45K budget for 2004
Dr. Veech points to a map of 2001 and 2002 excavations at Green Spring carried on with funding assistance from the Friends of Green Spring. Dr Veech has requested and will be given additional money by the Friends for archaeology.
Operating expenses for 2004 and a request from Dr. Andrew Veech to fund
another William and Mary primary archaeology field school remind us that renewals
and new memberships in the Friends of Green Spring are needed. Budget requirements
for the year total $45,000.
One hundred supporters gave $35 to $2,000 for memberships in 2003. The
gifts enabled the Friends to publish four newsletters reaching more than 500
on its mailing list, employ an administrative assistant, retain grant writing counsel,
hold two major events and meet everyday expenses associated with opening Green Spring.
This year, our focus in on estimating the cost of opening Green Spring, raising
the necessary money, obtaining cooperation from local, state and federal officials
and supporting the final step in the General Management Plan for the park. As always,
the Friends will attempt to broaden support for opening Green Spring by 2007.
Sign raises same old questions
As few have noticed, a historic sign at Richmond Road and
Centerville reads: “On this road, five miles south, is Green
Spring, home of Governor Sir William Berkeley. Bacon, the
rebel, occupied it in 1676. Cornwallis, after moving from
Williamsburg by this road on July 4, 1781, was attacked by
Lafayette near Green Spring on July 6, 1781. Anthony Wayne
was the hero of the fight.” All of which raises the question:
Why isn’t Green Spring open to the public?
True believer continues support
When Friends of Green Spring had scarcely any money, Mrs.
Lucretia Ottaway, national president of the National Society
Colonial Daughters, stumped chapters throughout the nation
to fund primary archaeology at Green Spring. She raised,
and the Colonial Daughters sent, the Friends more than
$31,000! The money later was provided to Dr. Andrew Veech
and matched by the National Park Service. Mrs. Ottaway,
who lives in Wichita, sent the Friends her personal check in
February to continue the work at Green Spring.
Historic Route 5 Association and motherhood
Friends of the National Park Service for Green Spring, Inc.
was born in February 1997 as an offspring of HR5A and drew
its early sustenance from the association. This February the
organization’s Council sent a check for $250 to the Friends,
representing a significant part of its small bank account.
Friends board members and others also sent checks in
January and February to supply 2004 operating money.
Riverside Health System support is crucial to recent HGS public relations initiatives
With the technical and financial support of Riverside
Health System, the Executive Committee of The Friends
of Green Spring is developing two long-anticipated fund-
raising and outreach resources. The first of these is an 8 to
10 minute videotape to be shown to potential corporate and
private donors, and the second is a professionally-designed
“Historic Green Spring” website which will contain basic
information about our project, as well as unique digitized
data and “links” that will be of value to teachers and students
of Virginia’s history. During March and April a subcommittee
of HSG EXCOM will be reviewing the draft of a videotape
script prepared by Riverside public relations specialist
Ron Reid, and will hold meetings with the managers of
WebXemplar, the local firm that will be designing the
Board of Directors:
Daniel D. Lovelace
Donald S. Buckless
Robert W. Hershberger
Professor Warren M. Billings
M/G Archie S. Cannon, Jr. (Ret.)
Loretta J. Hannum
Trist B. McConnell
Gayle K. Randol
Marc B. Sharp
Richard G. Smith
Carol D. Tyrer
Clifford R. Williams
Sean K. Fitzpatrick
Hon. Jay T. Harrison, Sr.
Dr. James Horn
Hon. Thomas K. Norment, Jr.
Hon. Melanie L. Rapp
Friends of the National Park
Service for Green Spring, Inc.
P.O. Box 779, Williamsburg VA 23187
Phone: (757) 564-0255
Clifford R. Williams