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Museum offers preview of Deltaville Centennial

Last Saturday’s season opening of the Deltaville Maritime Museum unveiled for the first time two plaques, one for the founding members and the other for supporters of the “Explorer” project. In years to come, new contributors will be added to both plaques to recognize their new or continuing support.

Thanks to Vera England and the Friends of the “F.D. Crockett,” there is an updated display on the restoration with some beautiful new photos.

Roland Griffin, master model maker, contributed two lovely models to the museum’s collection of working boats of the Chesapeake: a ¾” scale version of “Old Point"—a log bottomed buyboat and near sister ship to the “F.D. Crockett,” and a round-sterned deadrise representative of the boats for which Deltaville is famous.

“If you are a model fan these and our other new models are worth the visit,” said a museum spokesperson.

Willard Norris is the museum’s featured builder this year with a new biography and additional photographs. The exhibit has biographies for Buddy Sable and Dewey Norton as well as a new photo of Hugh Norris.

Anyone with more information or photos on any Middlesex boatbuilders, are asked to come prepared to the next Deltaville Centennial meeting on May 10 and share this information with the group.

The museum boatbuilding room has a display of the three major museum boatbuilding projects thus far: “Explorer,” John Smith’s shallop; “Apprentice,” the tender to the schooner “Virginia”; and “Lady’s Slipper,” a James River bateau.

In the final exhibit room is the beginning of the Deltaville Centennial exhibit that includes pictures by Lewis Wright, James Ware, Bowdoin Wake and Fannie Blair Walden. The Centennial Committee is actively soliciting for additional Wright and Ware art, particularly the presidential portraits done by Wright and some of the more off-beat subjects painted by Ware (“High-rises on Jackson Creek”).

Memories have been shared about the Samore Hotel and the Medical Center. The area’s old country stores are featured in another display.

Photos and information are needed about the following: Lambert Harrow’s store, the Stop & Shop, and any other country store in the Deltaville/Amburg area.

Histories of local churches also are included. The Centennial Committee needs a photo or information about Tabernacle Gospel Chapel (was next to the old firehouse). 

“We need all Deltavillians, past and present, to come out and see what we have and what we need,” said Centennial spokesperson Raynell Smith. “July 4th will be here before you know it.”

The final exhibit will be on Heritage Day, July 4th, in the Deltaville Community Center.

The next meeting of the Centennial Committee will be Sunday, May 10, between 1 and 4 p.m. at the museum. The museum proper is open Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Leave messages with Raynell Smith (804-815-3102).

posted 05.11.2009

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