Friends of Green Spring Newsletter
Dedicated to the Opening of a new National Park
Vol. 2, No. 3, Summer 2004
Historic Green Spring goes to Hollywood!
Crew sets up near the old well to film video on the history of Green Spring, thanks to the generosity of Riverside Health System.
Thanks to the technical and financial support of
Riverside Health System, a ten-minute fund-raising video
tentatively entitled “Voices of Green Spring” is in the final
stages of production. Designed to convey both the unique
atmosphere and historical significance of the HGS site, the
film will fulfill its unique purpose – a provocative visual
experience designed to gain the attention of potential
corporate and wealthy individual donors. If the film
succeeds in its mission, and follow-up questions and
meetings take place, it will become a major weapon
in the HGS fund-raising arsenal.
A wide variety of talents have been brought to bear to
produce this “mini-movie.” The script was written by actor
and public relations specialist Ron Reid and incorporates
suggestions by Professor Warren Billings and others.
Voice-over and on-camera work is by veteran local actor
Alan Sader, well-known for his TV spots for The Christian
Childrens’ Fund and The Haynes Furniture Company. Legacy
Communications, LLC is in charge of production, and on two
occasions last month fielded a four-person team (camera,
sound, and makeup technicians, plus a Creative Director) to
shoot footage on Green Spring’s 308 acres.
Dressed in period costumes rented from Colonial
Williamsburg, HGS Board member John Hamant and Kristina
Downs were filmed walking the HGS site as Governor
and Lady Berkeley in the aftermath of Bacon’s rebellion.
Half a dozen reenactors carrying muskets and dressed in
Continental Army uniforms were filmed forming up at Green
Spring on their way to battle during the Revolutionary
War. In addition, Legacy’s film crews have obtained useful
“background” shots of Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown
Island, and Yorktown Battlefield. This action footage is
being edited and combined with still pictures and maps to
produce an exciting final product.
We plan to organize a special showing of the completed
film (accompanied by some wine & cheese) for the film’s
creators, HGS donors and HGS volunteers sometime in the Fall.
HGS’ new website will be our window to the world
There are many good reasons for a 501 (C) (3)
organization to create a site on the Worldwide Web, but the
most important is that global access to information about
your project vastly increases the number of people likely
to give your non-profit political and financial support. This
is especially true if your organization, like Historic Green
Spring, has something unique to offer those who visit its
A successful website is a two-way street. If people find
your website useful, they will probably find ways to support
your cause. The HGS website being designed by Elaine
Chou of WebXemplar will attempt to strike this necessary
balance. We are starting out small, with just six pages
following the “Home” page (covering such topics as “About
Us,” “Education,” “Resources,” “Membership.”
Volunteer,” and “Donate”), but with a host of illustrations and “imbedded”
materials (such as Martha McCartney’s books and back
issues of the Newsletter) and lots of “links” to related sites
dealing with 17th and 18th Century Virginia history. Thanks
to suggestions made by Board member Loretta Hannum, the
“Education” page will be especially valuable as a resource for
Virginia’s public school students and teachers.
The website’s fund-raising functions will be conducted
by using the GuideStar Organization’s “Network for Good”
program, which allows website visitors to donate money to
The Friends of Green Spring using their credit cards, but at
a much lower transaction service rate than that charged by
PayPal. If all goes well, we expect to have the HGS website
up and running by the end of this month. The website’s URL
will be: historicgreenspring.org.
Golf Tournament aids historic Green Spring
Historic Green Spring was recently the beneficiary of a Captains Choice tournament
for “The Battle of Green Spring Cup” held at Williamsburg National Golf Club. Sponsored by
Sheeran Associates Reality and C. Lewis Waltrip Developers. The event involved
about sixty golfers and raised $1500 for HGS. The photo above shows HGS President
Daniel Lovelace receiving the generous check from Bob Sheeran, who hinted that
competition for “The Battle of Green Spring Cup” may become an annual
Friends honor Goulds at retirement dinner
Retired CNHP Superintendent Alec Gould and wife, Kristy, were honored by the
Friends at a dinner June 12 at Patriots Colony. They were given a replica of
an “Angry Rooster” bowl used by colonists to eat soup and cereal.
The original was unearthed by Louis Caywood during archaeology in the 1950s
and is now part of the Jamestown collection. Since retirement. Mr. and Mrs.
Gould have joined as members of the Friends of Green Spring and will continue
to live in Williamsburg.
Green Spring to Be Invited To The Dance; Maybe, More
Conceptual layout for Green Spring entry, parking lot and three buildings: visitor contact center, artifacts display, and restrooms on the west side of the property.
The history of Green Spring and its relationship
to Jamestown will be included in 2007 celebration
presentations, Sandy Rives, interim CNHP superintendent,
told Friends’ board members, Jane Yerkes, Dan Lovelace and
Cliff Williams at a meeting May 27 in Yorktown with him,
retiring Superintendent Alec Gould and Skip Brooks, who has
become Chief of Operations.
Prospects of Green Spring’s inclusion in 2007 festivities
also are detailed in the final General Management Plan
Record of Decision signed on March 31 by Superintendent
Alec Gould and NPS Regional Director Marie Rust.
If money becomes available, construction will begin
before 2007, Rives said. He stated his hope for starting
work at Green Spring to have something open by 2007, but
made perfectly clear that his number one priority must be
readiness for the commemoration and the thousands who
will participate. A great deal remains to be accomplished in
the short time before 2007.
The Friends made a complete presentation on the origin of the organization,
its mission and determination to stay the course to see that Green Spring joins
Jamestown, Yorktown and the Colonial Parkway as an open unit of the Colonial National Monument,
as designated by Congress in 1936. As always, the historic credentials of Green
Spring were unquestioned. As always, too, it’s a matter of money and the lack of it
Beginning nine years ago, the Friends aimed for opening Green Spring by 2007.
Forced from office, Berkeley focused on Green Spring farm
This is how Governor Berkeley’s house and grounds may have looked in 1660, according to a report my M. Kent Brinkley of CW for the Colonial National Historic Park. Friend’s money helped pay for the domestic landscape study published in December 2003.
Forced out of office in 1652 and replaced by a series of Puritan Governors
approved by Oliver Cromwell’s regime in London, Governor Sir William Berkeley
spent eight years in retirement from Virginia politics until his recall to power
by newly-restored King Charles II in 1660. During this hiatus he focused much of
his energy upon improving his expanding plantation at Green Spring, and especially
upon agricultural experiments designed to develop new cash crops that he and
his neighbors could sell overseas.
Berkeley’s efforts at agricultural diversification at Green Spring predated
his “retirement,” as evidenced by a 1649 letter which noted that Berkeley
was already producing a small rice crop, and “…The Governour in his new orchard
hath 1500 fruit-trees, besides his Apricots, Peaches, Mellicotons, Quinces, Wardens (winter
pears) and such like fruit.” At least four likely botanical descendants
of these orchard trees can still be seen flowering in early Spring on the HGS site to this day.
According to M. Kent Brinkley’s new book on the probable evolution of
the domestic landscape at Green Spring, during his “retirement” years,
Berkeley “… turned Green Spring into an experimental farm by producing lumber, flax, potash,
hemp, silk, and rice. However…he was unsuccessful in weaning his fellow planters
away form growing tobacco, largely because they did not possess the financial
resources or the luxury of experimentation that the Governor obviously did.”
In a similar vein, Professor Warren Billings has concluded that “But for a
mere handful of wealthy Virginians, few of Berkeley’s fellow planters matched his fortune,
his knowledge, his network of markets, and sources of skilled laborers, let alone
his resolute commitment to diversifying the Virginia economy.”
Berkeley went on to serve as Virginia’s Governor for another seventeen
years. In spite of efforts to find profitable alternative exports, tobacco continued
as Virginia’s dominant cash crop (indeed, frequently subsituting for “cash”
in legal, tax, and business transactions) for more than a century. As the Colony’s
tobacco plantations grew in size, the demand for a larger, more exploitable agricultural
labor force led Virginia’s planters to begin the large-scale importation of
African slaves, which by 1705 resulted in the development of institutionalized chattel slavery.
*For more detailed discussions of this topic, see. Warren M. Billings. Sir
William Berkeley and the Diversification of the Virginia Economy,” in The Virginia Magazine of
History and Biography, Vol. 104, no. 4 (Autumn, 1996), and M. Kent Brinkley. The Green Spring Plantation Greenhouse/Orangery And the Probable Evolution of the Domestic Area Landscape. A research report prepared
for the Colonial National Historical Park, National Park Service, United States Department of
the Interior, December, 2003.
CNHP publishes important new book on Green Spring
With matching funds it allocated in response to a
$30,000 grant provided by The Friends of Green Spring for
archaeological work at HGS during 2002-2003, the National
Park Service has created an important new book about
Historic Green Spring’s landscape architecture. Researched
and written by M. Kent Brinkley of the Colonial Williamsburg
Foundation, the profusely illustrated 197- page book is
entitled The Green Spring Plantation Greenhouse/Orangery
and the Probable Evolution of the Domestic Area Landscape.
Because only sixty copies of the book have been published,
The Friends plan to donate two copies to the Williamsburg
CNHP to the rescue
While maintaining Jamestown Island, the Colonial
Parkway, Yorktown battlefield and Green Spring, Skip Brooks
and small crew are pressed to the limit. Somehow, they come
through when the Friends need help, as we did before the
filming of the Green Spring video. Green Spring was nicely
mowed just in time to prevent actors and crew from having
to wade through chest-high grass and abundant ticks and
Pilot lands on Green Spring
Out of the blue, the Virginia Pilot called President Dan
Lovelace to do a feature on Green Spring and our effort to
open the park. A wonderful long article on the front page of
the Hampton Roads section followed, complete with photos
and a map locating Green Spring. The writer, Diane Tennant,
and photographer did a superb job after visiting Green
Boy Scout Venture Crew will help with cleanup
Members of the Green Spring Park Watch have picked up
litter on Centerville Road through the park property in the
spring and fall since 1998. Over time, the most loyal pickers
have aged to the point that they are wobbly in the ditches.
Youth to the rescue! Boy Scout Venture Crew 180,
senior Scouts, will do the picking on Saturday, September
18 beginning at 10 A.M. in back of the real estate office at
Greensprings Road and Route 5. The Friends will contribute
to their camping fund and do our best to insure safety by
slowing traffic on Centerville Road. Snacks and soft drinks
will be available to the entire crew after the cleanup.
Board of Directors
M/G Archie S. Cannon, Jr. (Ret.)
Daniel D. Lovelace
Donald S. Buckless
Robert W. Hershberger
Clifford W. Williams
Advisory Board Chair
Professor Warren M. Billings
Emily S. Evanow
Loretta J. Hannum
Nicholas M. Luccketti
Trist B. McConnell
Samuel G. Poole
Gayle K. Randol
Marc B. Sharp
Richard G. Smith
Carol D. Tyrer
Friends of the National Park
Service for Green Spring, Inc.
P.O. Box 779
Williamsburg VA 23187
Phone: (757) 221-0800