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Graves Family Association


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Minutes of the Second Meeting of the GFA Mid-Atlantic Chapter, Nov. 18, 2006

Graves Family Association Mid-Atlantic Chapter (GFAMAC) Minutes of Meeting, Saturday, November 18, 2006.
The second meeting of the Chapter was held at the Army Navy Country Club (ANCC), Arlington, VA 22202, (703) 521-6800, on Saturday, November 18, 2006. The meeting began at approximately 2:00 pm. John Graves, Coordinator of the Chapter, conducted the meeting. Attendees: John Graves, West River, MD; Joseph Rowe, Orange, VA; Doug Graves, Graves Mill, VA; Ernie Graves, Arlington, VA; Emily Graves, Alexandria, VA; Asa Wesley Graves VI, Harrisonburg, VA; Glenna Graves, Harrisonburg, VA; Frances Graves Wilson, Barboursville, VA; Lindsey Scoggins, Caswell City, VA; E. Clark Graves, Jr., Alton, VA; Pat Ellerbee, Stafford, VA; Mike Coleman, Stafford, VA; Nancy Fearheiley, Arlington, VA.

The next meeting, at which Ken Graves will address the group, will be at 3 pm on Sunday, January 28, 2007, at the ANCC. Other meeting dates in 2007 will be: Saturday, March 17th, Saturday, May 19th, Saturday, September 15th, and Saturday, November 17th. Unless otherwise specified in the Meeting Announcement, all meetings will be held at the ANCC. Unless otherwise specified in the Meeting Announcement, Registration paid in advance of each meeting will be $15; at the door $20. Send check made out to John Graves to 612 Lavender Court, West River, MD 20778. Dues for the Graves Family Association (GFA) should be paid to Ken Graves, www.gravesfa.org, (508) 369-5217. Members of this Chapter should be registered members of the GFA with their membership dues paid up to date. There are no separate dues required to be a member of the GFAMAC.

This new Chapter still needs some dedicated volunteer staff. If you would like to help, we can easily construct a “position” around what you would like to do!

  • Coordinator: plans and organizes the meetings and interfaces with Ken Graves. John Graves
  • Secretary: prepares the minutes of the meeting. Emily Graves
  • Arrangements Chair: interfaces with the meeting facility. Ernie Graves
  • Treasurer: keeps track of the Chapter finances, pays bills out of the Chapter funds, etc. (needs to be someone other than John Graves)
  • Publicity Chair: plans actions aimed at drawing in folks who know nothing about the GFA. Suggested activities include press releases prior to meetings, general articles in regional magazines, radio publicity, liaisons with other genealogical societies, and library announcements.
  • Registration Chair: develops and maintains the Master Contact List, interfaces with Ken Graves regarding the Master Contact List, and collects Registration monies before and during the meetings. (Ernie Graves maintains the email list)
  • Program Chair: plans the meeting Program, locates speakers, etc.
  • Chapter Genealogist: guides the Chapter research efforts and helps Chapter members with specific Graves family genealogy questions.
  • John Graves of Madison, WI, father of Tim Graves and Linda Graves Shaughness, passed away on Tuesday, November 14th, 2006. John, a lineal descendent of the 18th Century immigrant John Graves of Frederick County, VA (gen. 116), was 88 and had been in good health until recently. The members of the Chapter wish to express their condolences to Tim and Linda and their families during this time of sadness.

    Other news and business:

  • Chapter financial report: $681.20 expenses of first meeting offset by $370.00 income; $311.20 debit balance.
  • Ron Graves is establishing a chapter in Texas, and a chapter may form in Seattle, WA.
  • John Graves showed us the beginnings of our chapter library with documentation about the Mid-Atlantic region Graves.
  • The group was pleased to see a map of MD/DE/VA/DC on which John Graves charted all Chapter members. Those present could see how many/who lived near their own homes.
  • Clark Graves was recognized as having traveled the farthest to this meeting: 5 hrs via motorcycle from Alton, Halifax Co., VA.,
  • Regarding last meeting’s inquiry about the lack of information about female Graves lineage, John learned from Ken Graves that this is not intentional – Ken welcomes all information he receives and discovers via research.
  • Ken Graves succeeded in getting Lancastershire, England, DNA that matches gen. 116.
  • Interesting references John discovered: Dating Old Photographs 1840-1929 and More Dating Old Photographs 1840-1929 (Family Chronicle publications, www.familychronicle.com, (416) 491-3699)
  • Program change due to death of Tim and Linda’s father: Joe Rowe presented information about his decent from Verlinda, daughter of Cpt. Thomas Graves, and Doug Graves gave a presentation about the Grist Mill in Graves Mill, VA.

    Joe’s presentation:
    Verlinda married Gov. William Stone of Accomack County, MD, which became part of VA later with a boundary change. It is at the southern tip of the Delmarva peninsula. Cpt. Thomas was a Burgess from Accomac County for the 1629-30 and 1632 sessions after having moved to the Eastern Shore some time after 1619. Joe discussed the true meaning of the word, “aristocrat”: one with good taste and good manners not necessarily relevant to how much money he has. Below is a reproduction of Joe’s handout showing his lineage: (This doesn't display properly below, but a correct copy is available from GFAMAC.)
    Capt. Thomas Graves m. Katherine Crosher ? | | | | | | John Thomas Jr. Ann Verlinda Graves Katherine Francis m. Gov. William Stone | Mary Stone m. Robert Doyne | Verlinda Doyne m. Samuel Taylor | Samuel Taylor, Jr. m. Mary Wight (distinguished MD family from Isle of Wight) | Susanna Taylor m. Joshua Naylor (b. 1745 d. 1816; his grandfather was an indentured servant at age 14; land given and in family for almost 300 years; VA aristocrats) | James Naylor m. Priscilla Wilson | Anna Susanna Naylor m. John Thomas Young | Joseph Henry Young m. Margaret Virginia Gibbons | Maude Young m. John Downs Rowe | Joseph Young Rowe, b. 1922 Joe also talked about another line of his cousins, descending from Verlinda and Gov. Stone: John Stone m. Elizabeth | Thomas Stone m. Martha Hoskins | David Stone m. Elizabeth Jennifer | | | Thomas Stone John Stone Michael J. Stone m. Margaret Brown m. Mary Couden m. Mary Briscoe | Michael J. Stone, Jr. m. Mary Somervell | | | | | | Thomas Fred Mary (only one married) Terry Nellie Grace m. Walter Colton | | Sue Anna Madison m. Robert Craycroft | | Grace (sent to Annapolis to find a husband as USNA) Anna Lee m. Adm. Carney (became Chief of Naval Operations) m. Jeremiah Turner | Betty m. Adm. Taussig (also became CNO)

    Doug’s presentation:

    Doug Graves (line from gen. 169: Capt. Thos – Thos – Thos – John – John – Thos – John – Abraham – Morgan – Abraham Franklin – Lucian – Louis – Doug) gave the group an interesting slide presentation about the Grist Mill in Graves Mill, Madison Co., VA. Due to Doug’s work, the Mill has become a National Historic Landmark/placed on the National Registry of Historic Places effective August 30, 2006, #06000754, as it satisfied the requirements in three areas:
  • Architecture: The property embodies the distinctive characteristics of a type, period, or method of construction or represents the work of a master, or possesses high artistic values, or represents a significant and distinguishable entity whose components lack individual distinction,
  • Industry: The property is associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad pattern of our history, and
  • The National Historic Landmarks are nationally significant historic places designated by the Secretary of the Interior because they possess exceptional value or quality in illustrating or interpreting the heritage of the United States. Today, fewer than 2,500 historic places bear this national distinction.
  • Architecture (no nails, pegs only in its main structure); Industry (associated with events making significant contribution to regional economy); National impact. Doug is also involved in trying to raise funds for restoring the structure, which is privately owned. The current owner supports his efforts and use of the Mill for educational purposes. The internationally known mill right Derek Ogden is acting in an advisory position.

    The first owner, David Jones, was issued 350 acres of land in June, 1741. He sold to Thomas Buckner, whose sons & wife sold the Mill to Thomas Graves. It contained the first documented post office in that area, 27 Feb 1828, with Asa Wesley Graves as Postmaster. Carved on the door is “AG 1797”. The milling industry was America’s 2nd most important (farming was first), and millers with their mills were at the center of the community. Accordingly, Thomas Graves was very involved in building and organizing Madison Co. Mills were also the first truly sophisticated technology. Current photos of the Mill show the voting booth with latch and shelf. The earliest nails date to the 1780’s, but the main structure is all wood post & beam construction. One locust wood window frame is identical to another one in VA dated to 1730.

    Records account for Thomas Graves traveling to Fredericksburg, which was a major deep water port then, to sell tobacco and flour. Doug has a letter from Thos. Graves to Murray, Grimm & Mundell of Fredericksburg. This company shipped flour to domestic and foreign markets in other colonies, the West Indies, and Europe. American flour was superior and American agricultural products very popular in Europe. Flour was shipped in casks not sacks. The Madison Co. Order Book shows a request by Thos. Graves to build a mill, 22 June 1797. They must have reused wood and pegs from the earlier mill, as visible in the remaining structure. The Graves home (mansion) was the first board (not log) house in the area. The Graves Mill Grist Mill (30x40 feet) operated until the 1930’s and presently has three levels (counting the basement). It is currently in an advanced state of deterioration with a less steep and lower (by 17 feet) roof than it originally had. It may have had 5 stories (counting the basement) originally. The reason why so many mills were 5 stories high is unknown, but it is thought to be related to the 5 grades of flour.

    Doug described the milling process and the different types of water wheels to explain the grist mill construction. Graves Mill Grist Mill was an overshot wheel, as opposed to an undershot wheel, due to how the water flowed over the wheel. The water turned the water wheel, thus generating the power needed to turn the millstones. The top 48” millstone (runner stone) rotates, while the bottom stone (bed stone) remains stationary. The rotation of the runner stone causes the grain to be sheared with the resulting bran and flour being fed out of the stone by following the furrows cut into the stones. The resulting bran/flour was then sifted to obtain the final product--flour! It is believed that the earliest sifting process was to use a hemp cloth that allowed the flour to pass through its fibers while holding back the bran. Seven water wheel rotations per minute generated about 120 revolutions per minute of the mill stones. The technical adjustments (called Tenter) between the top runner and stationary bed stones required great expertise. Wheat is the hardest grain and corn the softest. As the mill aged and the technology changed, it became a corn meal grist mill. The Graves Mill heavy stones were shipped from France in segments. It has a Hurst frame (that physically supports the entire milling equipment) and an English drive (19th century design of the milling equipment). The Graves Mill has elements of an earlier Ellicott drive (18th century design of the milling equipment), as shown by the mortised beam.

    The 2nd meeting of the Chapter adjourned at approximately 4:00 pm.