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"Montevideo" front door view, near Lincoln (Rich Gillespie)
Welcome, New Members!

Harry Fulwiler
Bonnie Getty
Philip Martin
Amanda Warren

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Upcoming Events
SAVE THE DATE--March 11, 2017 
Commemorate the 200th Anniversary of President James Monroe's inauguration as the fifth President of the United States.  Monroe served as President from 1817 to 1825.  He is locally remembered as Loudoun County's only President.  The program will be held at Church of Our Savior Oatlands (39918 Oatlands Mill Road, Leesburg, VA 20175) followed by a reception at James Monroe's Loudoun County home, Oak Hill.  Speakers at the symposium include Scott Harris, Executive Director of the James Monroe Museum and Memorial Library; Dan Preston, editor of the James Monroe Papers; Sara Bon-Harper, Executive Director of James Monroe's Highland; and, Gordon Kray, sculptor of the James Monroe statue in Williamsburg.  The symposium and reception will last from 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Stay tuned for more details, including how to register for this unique event. 


Thursday, January 12, 6:00 p.m.
The Fireside Mosby: Revolutionary Loudoun, 1774-1784

Caleb Rector House
1461 Atoka Road
Marshall, VA 20115

Join in an intimate conversation with historian and former MHAA intern Doug Breton as he shares stories from Loudoun's Revolutionary landscape.  Participants in the program will receive a free copy of Breton's driving tour of American Revolution sites in Loudoun County.

This program will begin at 6:00 p.m., though refreshments will be served beginning at 5:30 p.m.  The parlor of the historic Caleb Rector House will serve as this setting for this unique look at Loudoun's history.  There will be no charge for admission, but donations will be graciously accepted.  Call (540) 687-5188 or email with any questions.
SAVE THE DATE--June 10, 2017 
MHAA will once again host a reunion for descendants of soldiers who rode with Mosby's Rangers, 43rd Battalion Virginia Cavalry, during the Civil War.  More information will follow in the months to come, but mark the date on your calendars now so you can be with us on June 10, 2017.
Since Our Last Newsletter in Photos
Saturday, November 5
Legends by Lanternlight: Purcellville, A Gangly Village in the Civil War
Members of the Mosby Heritage Area Interpretive Group in the historic Purcellville Train Station (Tracy Gillespie)

Sunday, November 20
Woodrow Wilson and the Coming of World War I, 1916-2016: A Talk, Exhibit, and House Tour
Top to bottom, left to right: Blue Ridge Farm, the post-World War I home of Woodrow Wilson's physician, Admiral Cary Grayson (Jennifer Moore); an interior view of Blue Ridge Farm (Jennifer Moore); George, left, and Cab Grayson, right, greet visitors to the Grayson family home (Jennifer Moore); Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum CEO Robin von Seldeneck answers a question following her program on President Wilson (Kevin Pawlak); Wilson Museum Curator Andrew Phillips shows off the museum's Grayson-related artifacts (Tracy Gillespie); Admiral Cary Grayson's uniform coat and one of President Wilson's golf clubs (Tracy Gillespie); the Woodrow Wilson Museum brought a wide array of artifacts used and owned by Cary Grayson (Tracy Gillespie); an old newspaper covers Wilson's and Grayson's arrival in Europe following the conclusion of World War I (Jennifer Moore)

Tuesday, December 6
10th Annual Heritage Heroes and Educator of the Year Awards
Top to bottom: Heritage Hero Mary Thomason-Morris, archivist at the Clarke County Historical Association, receives her award from MHAA President Childs Burden (left) and MHAA Chairman Wendy Bebie (right); Heritage Hero Al Van Huyck, chair of the Loudoun County Preservation and Conservation Coalition, accepts his award from Burden and Bebie; the Mosby Heritage Area Educator of the Year Award went to long-time Fauquier County high school teacher Richard Deardoff (right), who accepted his award from MHAA Education Specialist Kevin Pawlak (left); Heritage Hero Mary Thomason-Morris (left), Heritage Hero Al Van Huyck (center), and Educator of the Year Richard Deardoff (right)
The Mosby Heritage Area Association is hiring a Public Programs Coordinator
MHAA is looking for a new member of its staff, a Public Programs Coordinator.  This position is a part-time, 32 hour per week position.  You can see the full job description here.  Applications consisting of a cover letter, a resume, and three references can be mailed to:

ATTN: Public Programs Position Opening
           Mosby Heritage Area Association, Inc.
           Post Office Box 1497
           Middleburg, VA 20118

or email the completed application to incoming Executive Director Jennifer Moore at

Applications will be accepted no later than January 13, 2017.  For more information, contact Jennifer Moore at the above email address, or by phone at (540) 687-6681.
Community Engagement Assessment comes to the Mosby Heritage Area
December 1-3 was a busy time at the offices of the Mosby Heritage Area Association.  MHAA's Outreach Work Group brought in outsider John Verrill to conduct a Community Engagement Assessment of the organization.  The purpose of the assessment was to gain a better understanding of MHAA's relationship with the various communities of the Heritage Area and their perception of MHAA.  

The staff and board spent many hours with Verrill, who also interviewed members of other historical organizations within the five county region as well as local elementary, middle, and high school teachers.  It proved to be a helpful exercise for MHAA, giving the staff and board members a look at the opportunities for the organization to increase public involvement and grow our footprint in the many communities of the Heritage Area.
Assessor John Verrill meets with staff and board members of MHAA
From the Window of MHAA's Executive Director, Rich Gillespie...
It is a cold, dreary December day with a wind rattling the ivy bushes that frame the browning grass out my steamy window.  These final days of autumn are perhaps days to turn inward; unless the light is just right they don’t lend themselves to showcasing our Mosby Heritage Area at its best.  Yet there is this:  the Mosby Heritage Area is truly a gem.  It is Virginia at its best, with a distinctive architecture in its preserved villages, market towns, and farmhouses; a pleasing lay of the land; twisting dirt roads used by generations; reminders of our memorable past at every turn from which to learn, and always in the distance, our beloved and steadfast Blue Ridge.
On a day like this, it is easy to find the fact that I’ve chosen to retire from the Mosby Heritage Area Association after twelve years a depressing prospect.  I step down as your Executive Director at the end of the month.  Upcoming on July 2nd, I’ll have been working in the public history, preservation, and history education fields for fifty full years, so I feel it is a good time to make the move.  The heartening aspect of this—and this is very important to me—is that I will step into a newly created MHAA position, Historian Emeritus.  Staff and board hope to make this a useful position and a perfect way for me to remain useful to the organization I’ve come to love.   I am very pleased with this prospect.   [Now mind you, here at the MHAA headquarters, we’re already calling me “emmer-eye-tis”, but then we joke about almost everything, even a newly discovered disease.]
But I have, may it please the court, a few words to say before I mount and ride off on the final raid.  First, it has been a pleasure to work with the Mosby Heritage Area Association’s board and with our many enthusiastic members.  We all share a passion for passing on this handsome, preserved region intact and telling its tales.  We feed on each other’s excitement—and I love that.
When the Mosby Heritage Area and MHAA were created a generation ago, we were creating a tool to augment our existing tool kit.  We wanted citizens, families, students, and visitors to understand the value of the historical landscape that thus far had amazingly been preserved.  We wanted people to know our important sites and viewscapes.  We wanted them to be cognizant of the crucial Virginia and American stories that had played out here.  We wanted people to understand why it was important these still existed.  And we wanted citizens old and new—and our young—to appreciate how these sites and landscapes had come to be preserved for future generations.   In 1994-95, we had organizations to stand up and be heard on the immediate issues that would threaten the natural and historical landscape.  Both those organizations and a number of forward-looking individuals wanted a heritage area that would be devoted to the long view—through education, to create a milieu in which a stewardship ethic would better take root.
Here we are more than two decades later, and the dream of a local heritage area is a reality, and it chugs away at building that citizen-steward mentality.  Indeed, the Mosby Heritage Area itself serves as a celebration of the possibilities of historic preservation.  This is not something that the Mosby Heritage Area Association did alone.  It has been and continues to be a collaboration of a variety of history, preservation, and conservation organizations, historic sites, individuals, and local government entities, all through their efforts providing a model of preservation activity for the region, for the Commonwealth, for the nation, and for the commonwealth of nations.
As I step down now to rejoin the ranks, I want to pay tribute to all of you out there who educate and preserve—who have the foresight to care about future generations in a time of intense “NOW-centricity” and selfishness.  You value community just as you do family and your own individuality.  For preservation is a community-centric act.  Public history education is a community-centric act.   Local history research and helping others to do so is a community-centric act.  Curating our historic sites and artifacts—both public places and your own homes your fellow citizens see daily—is a community-centric act.   You do not do it just for you.
Thank you to all of you who have such faith that these endeavors are worthwhile!  Your efforts make our region a deeply richer society in which to live, and a far more fascinating place to visit and gain inspiration. 
Copyright © 2016 Mosby Heritage Area Association, All rights reserved.

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