Washington County

A Community History

By Mrs. Alexander Stuart


Washington County is agricultural in its interest and there are very few factories or other industries in the county. There is a large plaster mill at Plasterco, an extract plant and lumber mill at Damascus, a large lumber plant at Konnarock, and other smaller mills in the county, hut in the main the business of Washington County is farming and stock raising. The young men who did most of the work on the farms were called to the army and their places were taken by others, unaccustomed to such work, but who were able to carry it on by use of improved machinery and so kept the crop production normal. Owing to the strict observance of the conservation law, under judge John J. Stuart, local Food Administrator for Washington County. as much food was available for government use as if there had been no labor shortage. The conditions produced by increased use of modern machinery on farms still exist, making crop production in the county greater than before the war.

There were no aliens in Washington County at the time of the war, no race problems ot moment with the negroes and there has been no appreciable decrease in the negro population since the war. There was no pro-German nor anti-English sentiment, or, if any, so little as to be neglible, and there were verv few avowed pacifists. In fact, the population of Washington County was practically united in patriotism, and in a desire to exert every effort to aid the government and stand by the soldiers.


The Churches of the county were a help and inspiration throughout the war. Every patriotic effort had not only their sanction, but their active co-operation. All the churches in Abingdon and many elsewhere in the county had service flags and an honor roll of members serving in the army, for whom earnest prayer was made. The first Red Cross drive was inaugurated by a union service in the Methodist Church at which a representative of each organization of each church presented a purse with a liberal contribution to open the subscription. Frequent religious services were held during the war, and the day of fasting and prayer proclaimed by the President was observed in Abingdon by all-day services, closing the day with a vesper service at Martha Washington Chapel. The ministers of the county were active in all war work and encouraged their people by their interest and labors. Contributions were made through the Sunday Schools to the Near East Relief, exact figures for which cannot be obtained. Two French orphans were supported by the teachers of the Methodist Sunday School and one of the classes at Abingdon. The auxiliaries of the Episcopal and Presbyterian Churches made comfort bags, refugee garments and other supplies for use in hospitals. The contributions of the churches were many and varied, but at this date they cannot be given statistically; only the spirit of the churches can be recorded as helpful and patriotic.

On the day of the burial of the “Unknown Soldier” a very solemn union service was held in the Methodist Church at Abingdon. The American Legion, all ex-service men and the Auxiliary to the Legion attended in a body, and the church was filled to overflowing by the other citizens of the town. After the service, the Auxiliary to the Legion served dinner in the annex, to the soldiers of the county.


The children in the public schools were organized in Junior Red Cross work, and were taught the meaning of patriotism by talks, songs and concrete examples of helpful work.

Through the schools and Sunday schools the children were trained to love their country and to desire to do something to help its cause. In addition to work done for the Red Cross, some of the grades at William King High School supported French orphans. All credit is due the teachers of the public schools, who added this work of training the children to their schedules which were already heavy.

There are three colleges in the county-Emory and Henry College for boys, located at Emory; Martha Washington, and Stonewall Jackson Colleges for girls, located at Abingdon.

All of these colleges did excellent war work and were full of the spirit of patriotism and service. Owing to the fact that the presidents and personnel of the faculties of all three colleges have changed since the war, exact records canot be gotten of the work done, so it will have to be given in a general way.


This college was recovering from a disastrous fire which destroyed all the school buildings just before the war and the rebuilding was not completed. In spite of this handicap work for the Red Cross was organized in the school under the direction of Miss Carrie Timberlake, who, assisted by Miss Bayless, another member of the faculty, made many garments for the Washington County Red Cross Chapter and did other work at headquarters. Mrs. Dobyns, wife of the president, was a member of the executive committee of the chapter.

An entertainment was given by Dr. Fisher and his Glee Club, the proceeds of which were given to the Red Cross, but the record of the exact amount cannot be obtained. The college made good response to the roll calls and to the various drives. The members of the faculty bought War Savings Stamps, and one girl organized a War Savings Club on her return to her home, which bought $1,100.00 worth of stamps. Miss Timberlake supported a French child. Much of the work of the college was unrecorded, so full justice cannot be done to it.


The faculty and student body of this college were active in war work, contributing both money and labor to the Red Cross and the other activities of the war period. They made a donation of $100.00 to the Red Cross for supplies, to be used for surgical dressings, and the proceeds of all entertainments were given to some phase of war work.

Miss Lida McCormick, aunt of Prof. Chas. Parks, of the music faculty, taught the .girls to knit and did a large amount of knitting herself, making dozens of sweaters and innumerable pairs of socks. The contribution of knitted articles from Martha Washington to the Red Cross was a considerable factor in its report. Mrs. M. S. Brady, a member of the faculty and a member of the executive committee, of the Red Cross, worked at headquarters in the surgical dressings room did a great deal of knitting and assisted Miss McCormick in teaching the girls to knit. The president, Dr. S. D. Long, and his wife co-operated in all the war work undertaken by the girls. They had a son, James Long, in the army. He served with a hospital unit in France.

The Comte de Chambrun visited the college when he made a tour of this country and planted a tree on the campus. Many patriotic meetings were held in the chapel of the chapel of the college, which inspired the girls to greater efforts in their work. The response to Red Cross roll calls was always good, being at times 100 per cent. Contributions to the various drives were liberal, but exact figures cannot be secured. Two sororities supported a French child each. The members of the faculty and many of the girls made considerable investments in Liberty Bonds and War Savings Stamps. The spirit and record of the college were excellent throughout the war, and it is to be regretted that fuller records are not now available.

Prof. Charles Parks volunteered for service in the in the Y.M.C. A. and received a leave of absence from the college.

He was detailed as one of a party of twenty-five for work with the British troops in Mesopotamia, worked in British “Y” huts in and near London and in the aviation camp at Netherwallop, Hants, near Winchester. After two weeks at Bangalore, India, he was assigned to the Soldiers’ Club at Madras.


Students of Martha Washington and Stonewall Jackson Colleges Show Proper Spirit

The Martha Washington students are rising with the of true womanliness to meet the call of the hour-which is sacrifice. By eliminating many things that they have heretofore thought to be necessities in college life, they have contributed to the college Y. W. C. A. War Fund $1,282. addition to this, they are supporting for the year five little French children at the cost of $36.00 for each. This excellent work is made possible by the senior class giving up their college annual, by girls foregoing candy, ice cream, trips, expensive dress accessories, special entertainments and many other acts of self-denial that are left for each girl to work out for herself. These young women are determined to show themselves worthy daughters of a country whose sons are laying their all upon her altars. Stonewall Jackson College has done no less nobly according to the number of pupils. By the same methods of self-denial, these young women have contributed $256.70.

October, 1917.

The Patriotic Tea Room of Martha Washington College will be open to the public on Monday from 4 to 7:45 P.M. Entertain your friends there. This Saturday there will be an unusually attractive menu. The proceeds go alternately to the Red Cross and War Relief Funds.

December 21, 1917.

Before leaving for the Christmas holidays, the girls of the domestic science class at Martha Washington College, under the direction of Miss Beach, made a large quantity of beautiful candy which they turned over to the Red Cross Chapter to send to the Washington County boys at Carri secretary of the chapter sent it to Captain Adams, knowing that many of the boys were in his command, and she received an enthusiastic letter of thanks from him.


Emory and Henry College entered heartily into the activities of the war. The college community was organized for the purpose of promoting the work of the Red Cross, War Savings Stamps, Liberty Bonds, etc. Mrs. Mattie Bishop Price served as president of the Red Cross and the organization is reported to have raised approximately $300.00. This organization was also instrumental in setting a flag pole on the campus in front of the administration building.

One very interesting feature in connection with the work of the college is the fine showing it made in the drive for the sale of Victory Bonds. In this particular drive Emory and Henry College was the sixth college in the United States in total amount of sales, or, in other words, only five colleges in the United States sold a larger amount of Victory Bonds than Emory and Henry.

The same patriotic spirit which impelled Major William E. Jones, a professor in the college, and almost the entire student body to enter the Confederate Army in 1861 prevailed on the graduating class of 1917, since almost the entire class went immediately into the service. More than one hundred graduates of the college were in the war service. Of this number, approximately ten served as commissioned officers, Major William A Stuart, of Abingdon, . and Lieutenants T. T. and Bolling H. Handy being among the number. Lieutenant Handy was afterwards promoted to captain, and won the Distinguished Service Cross and the French Croix de Guerre.

There were 183 students of the college members of the S. A. T. C during the war, and 104 members of the R. O. T.C. after the war.

On April 22, 1918, Count Charles de Chambrun, great-great-grandson of Lafayette, in company with Congressman C. Bascom Slemp, and in the presence of the members of the faculty and student body and members of the community, planted a tree on the campus of Emory and Henry.

Six Emory and Henry graduates and former students lost their lives during the war. Three were killed in action and three died in the service. Harry Clay Williams, of Pearisburg, Va., a graduate of the class of 1910; John M. Paxton, then of Wise, Va., and Edgar Albert, of Lebanon, Va., were the three killed in action. Earl C. Lane, M. M. Armbrister, and Tate I. Bruce died in service.

John Moore Paxton was a student at Emory and Henry College and in his senior year when America entered the World War. On April 5, 1917, the student body held a patriotic meeting, and the next day John Paxton and John David Orr, a freshman, went to Abingdon to the recruiting officer and enlisted. These were the first two boys to volunteer from Emory and Henry College. John Paxton was sent to Columbus, Ohio. Two months later he was sent to Gettysburg as a private 1st class, in the infantry, where he acted as corporal and taught a night school. September 5, 1917, he was sent to Camp Upton, made first sergeant Company A, 305th Infantry. January 5, 1918, he entered officers’ training camp, from which he received a commission as second lieutenant March 25th, standing’ thirty-fourth in a class of 500. He sailed for France April 16, 1918, with the 77th Division. June 1st he was transferred to the 28th Division, Company H, 109th Infantry. On September 3rd he was struck by shrapnel and his thigh was crushed. He was hurried to an evacuation hospital and sent from there to Paris on September 12th to Hospital No.3, where he died October 13, 1918. He was buried in the American Military Cemetery at Suresnes.

A beautiful memorial gateway, built out of Tennessee marble, a memorial to Harry Clay Williams, now graces the main entrance to the college campus.


The Draft Board for Washington County was composed of P. J. Davenport, clerk of the county,
John E. Miller, sheriff of the county,
Dr. Geo. E. Wiley, examining physician.

More than 2,000 young men were in the service from Washington County. This includes those who were in the draft and also the volunteers who enlisted through the recruiting station in Abingdon and those who were in the Reserve Officers’ Training camps.


“Registration Day, June 5, 1917.”

“Washington County Offers 2,363 of Its Young Men for Service August 10, 1917.”

Out of one hundred and fifteen men called for examination in the selective draft before the board for Washington County and city of Bristol on August 8th, only sixteen have been rejected on account of physical disabilities. “Black Jack” Hall, colored, living at Fractionville, on the outskirts of Abingdon, was the first man who refused to claim exemption. Hall passed a fine physical examination, and upon being asked if he wanted to claim exemption, simply stated, “No, I want to go!”

The second one hundred and fifteen men were called August 10th, and they will be called in additional hundreds every day until the quota from Washington County and the city of Bristol has been reached.

August 24, 1917.

Washington County Board finds 236 men fit for war service. This number has been secured in the examination of 632 men. To fill the full quota of Washington County and city of Bristol, at least 300 more men will be called.

September 5, 1917.

Fourteen men left Wednesday morning for Petersburg, which completed the first five per cent of the Washington County quota. The Exemption Board has issued a call for a hundred men to report for examination September 10th.

When the fourteen young men left for Petersburg, each one was given a comfort bag by the ladies of the Episcopal Church, and each a box of lunch by the Red Cross. Mrs. A. L. Barrow was at the train representing the ladies of the Episcopal Church, and Mrs. W. E. Mingea and Mrs. Alexandder Stuart were there representing the Red Cross. A box of lunch will be prepared for each soldier leaving, and the Red Cross will call on all the ladies of the town to help in the preparation of these boxes.

September 22, 1917.

The second quota of young men, numbering 114, left today for Camp Lee.

October 10, 1917.

Twenty-one young men left this morning for Camp Lee.

October 27,1917.

Forty colored men left for Camp Lee today.

November 15, 1917.

One hundred young men leave tomorrow. On Friday evening at the Opera House, a large assemblage of the ladies and gentlemen of the town and county gathered to bid farewell to the last contingent of this county’s quota for the war. The Opera House was decorated with many flags, and appropriate exercises were held. The meeting was presided over by Mayor George F. Grant, and suitable addresses made. Music of a patriotic character was furnished, by the Stonewall College Orchestra, and Miss Senab Bryant, of Martha Washington College, and Mrs. P. J. Davenport sang inspiring solos. At the conclusion of the exercises, the local chapter of the Red Cross delivered to each soldier a comfort bag.


The Home Guard was organized October 25, 1917. Captain R. R. Campbell; first lieutenant, R. H. Gist; second lieutenant, Conley Ireson.

The Home Guard was disbanded June 28, 1921, and the National Guard was organized June 30, 1921. Captain, R. R. Campbell; first lieutenant, Ernest Grubb.


The following men from the county are named in Virginia’s Distinguished Service list

Captain Tom Troy Handy, Emory, Va.–D. S. C. French Croix de Guerre, with Gilt Star.
Thomas T. Price, Abingdon, Va.-D. S. C.
Robert W. Pendleton, Glade Springs, Va., -cited by commander-in-chief.


Hubert Hagy, Abingdon; Reece Maiden, Marion Starks, Liew Scott Dixon, William Ramey, Elbert J. Honaker, and Major McKinley Thompson (“Major” not a title, but a name.)


A community service flag was presented to the town of Abingdon by the ladies of the town. The local paper stated that this was the first community service flag presented to a town or city in the South. It was made by Misses Florence Clark, Lizzie Kreger, Eleanor Potts, Carolyn Rector, Ethel Snodgrass and June Smith from funds contributed by the National Service League. The flag had eighty-three blue stars and two gold ones. Judge P. W. Campbell presented the flag for the ladies, and it was accepted by Mayor George F. Grant. The exercises took place at the County Courthouse.



Loan Maximum Apportionment Amount Subscribed Subscribers
Second Liberty Loan $363,300 $335,700 1,142
Third Liberty Loan 295,800 435,800 2,303
Fourth Liberty Loan 632,000 695,150 2,702
Victory Liberty Loan 493,000 576,850 2,151
Total for all Liberty Loans
exclusive of the First*.
$1,784,100 $2,043,500 8,292

War Savings Stamps were bought to the amount of $34,736.24.


This chapter was first organized April 10,1917, as a branch of the Bristol, Va.-Tenn., Chapter, A. R. C., but was made a separate chapter by order of national organization June 26, 1917, with the name of the Abingdon, Va., Chapter and jurisdiction over the neighboring towns of Meadow View, Damascus, and Green Springs. In June, 1918, the chapter was given jurisdiction over Washington County, except for a five-mile strip east of the V. & S. W. Railroad, and the name was changed to Washington County, Va., Chapter. The chapter immediately organized the towns under its jurisdiction and added other branches as soon as it could obtain jurisdiction over the entire county.

It organized eleven branches and auxiliaries in the county and received five by transfer from the Bristol, Va.-Tenn., Chapter. The branches were Meadow View, Green Spring, Damascus, Blackwell, Hayters Gap, Wesley Chapel, Shortsville, Wyndale, Greendale, Alum Wells, Cave City Auxiliary, Bethel, Glade Spring, Emory, Konnarock, and Cleveland.

The number of members when organized was 562; the Christmas roll call, 1917, totaled 821; Christmas roll call, 1918, 2,017; Christmas roll call, 1919, 1,000.

The officers of the Washington County, Va., Chapter, A. R. C., were Chairman, Mrs. W. E. Mingea, April 10, 1917 to date; vice-chairman, Mrs. A. L., Morgan, April 10, 1917 to July 11, 1918; vice-chairman, Mrs. Jno. H. Hassinger, July 11, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mr. W. S. Dodd, cashier, First National Bank, Abingdon, Va., April 10, 1917, to March 31, 1918; treasurer, Mr. Fred L. Davis, assistant cashier Peoples National Bank, Abingdon; Va.; treasurer, Mr. J. W. Bell, July 11, 1918, to date; secretary, Mrs. Alexauder Stuart, April 10, 1917, to date; executive secretary, Miss Eva Kahle, October, 1918, to date.

The following were chairmen of committees Hospital supplies, Miss Annie C. White, April 10, 1917, to date; surgical dressings, Miss Eva Kable, June 26, 1917, to date; membership, Mrs. A. L. Morgan, April 10, 1917, to June 26, 1917; membership, Miss Estelle Penn, June 26, 1917, to December 1, 1918; membership, Mr. Geo. Penn, Jr., December 1, 1918, to date; packing and shipping, Miss Elizabeth Booker, April 10, 1917, to June 26, 1917; packing and shipping, Mrs. R. G. Rogers, June 26, 1917, to date; inspection, Mrs. T. J. Clark, June 26, 1917, to date; canteen, Mrs. Fred T. Davis, April 10, 1917, to June 26, 1917; canteen, Mrs. R. S. Gill, June 26, 1917, to date; junior auxiliaries, Mrs. Jno. H. Hassinger, June 26, 1917, to date; comfort bags, Mrs. R. R. Campbell, June 26, 1917, to date; knitting, Mrs. T. H. Mason, April 10, 1917, to December, 1917; knitting, Mrs. R. L. Gist, December, 1917, to October, 1918; instruction, Mrs. J. H. Hassinger, April 10, 1,917, to July 11, 1918; first-aid classes, three classes held by Dr. G. V. Litchfield; publicity, Mr. R. L. Gist, April 10, 1917, to date; refugee work, Miss Margaret Preston, July 11, 1918, to date; development of branches, Mr. H. E. Widener, July 11, 1918, to date; finance, Mr. J., W. Bell, July 11, 1918., home service, Mr. W. W. Webb, June 26, 1917, to date.

The executive committee consisted of the officers of the chapters, chairmen of committees, chairmen of branches, and the following additional members: Mrs. Brady, Martha Washington College; Mrs. Dobyns’, Stonewall Jackson College; Mr. S. J. Latture, Dr. Phil Smith, Dr. Geo. V. Litchfield.

Officers of Meadow View Branch: Chairman, Miss Vivian Aston, July, 1917, to October, 1918; chairman, Mrs. W. H. Aston, October, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mr. A. W. Aston, July, 1917, to date; secretary, Miss Rhea Hendreth, July, 1917, to date.

Damascus: Chairman, Mrs. F. G. Clements, July, 1917, to April, 1918; chairman, Mrs. S. C. Legard, April, 1918, to date; secretary-treasurer, Miss Lillian Mock, July, 1917, to date.

Green Spring: Chairman, Mrs. G. C. Aven, July, 1917, to 1918; chairman, Miss Maggie Lee Carpenter, June, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mr. G. G. Preston, July, 1917, to date; secretary, Mrs. G. G. Preston, July, 1917, to date.

Wyndale Branch: Rev. J. E. Guthrie, December, 1917, to date; vice-chairman, Mrs. Jno. Miller, December, 1917, to date; treasurer, Mr. G. I. Miller, December. 1917. to date; secretary, Mrs. B. E. Aker, December, 1917, to date.

Greendale Branch: Chairman, Miss Katherine Stuart, February, 1918, to January 31, 1919; chairman, Mrs. Chas. Cunningham, January, 1919, to date: vice-chairman, Mrs. Chas. Hagy, January, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mrs. Chas. Hagy, February, 1918, to date; secretary, Mrs. Elizabeth Whiteaker, February, 1918, to January, 1919; secretary, Mrs. Arthur Butt, January, 1919, to date.

Cave City Auxiliary (colored): Chairman Mrs. Mary Gray, December, 1917, to November, 1918; chairman, Arthur Williams, November, 1918, to date; vice-chairman; Miss Roeny Taylor, December, 1917, to November, 1918 treasurer, Mrs. H. H. Longley, December, 1917 to November, 1918; treasurer, Mrs. Ruby Cunningham, November 1918, to date; secretary, R. B. Goode, November, 1918 to date.

Hayter’s Gap Branch: Chairman, Mr. W. E. Johnson, June 15, 1918, to date; treasurer, Miss Pearl Sisk, June 15, 1918, to date; secretary, Miss Mabel Litton, June 15, 1918 to date.

Alum Wells Branch: Chairman, Mrs. C. M. Fleenor, May 15, 1918, to date; treasurer. Mr. J. C. Dixon, May 15, 1918, to date; secretary, Mrs. O. B. Hamilton, May 15, 1918, to date.

Blackwell Branch: Chairman, Mrs. James Scott, June 16, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mr. G. W. Herndon, June 16, 1918, to date; secretary, Mrs. P. H. Lambert, June 16, 1918 to October 1918; secretary, Miss Gay L. Scott, October, 1918 to date.

Bethel Branch: Chairman, Mrs. D. A. Duff, June 15, 1918, to date; treasurer, Miss Myra Shearer, June 15, 1918 to date, secretary, Mrs. B. G. Berry, June 15, 1918, to date.

Wesley Chapel Branch: Chairman, Miss Rachel Bailey, July, 1918, to date; treasurer, Miss Sarah Dunn, July 1918, to date; secretary, Miss Mary Cuddy, July 1918 to date.

Shortsville Branch: Chairman, Rev. E. C. Buck, July 1918, to date; vice-chairman, Mrs. E. W. Lester, July 1918, to date, treasurer, Mr. R. L. Talbert, July, 1918, to date; secretary. Mrs. Walter Grubb, July, 1918, to date.

Glade Spring Branch (by transfer): Chairman, Miss Edna Jones, July, 1918, to date; treasurer, Mr. S. W. Keys and B. H. Morris, July 1918, to date; secretary Mrs. H. B. Dunn, July 1918, to date.

Emory (by transfer): Chairman, Mrs. Mattie B. Price, July 1918, to date; vice-chairman, Mrs. Jas. S. Miller, July 1918 to date; treasurer, Prof. A. G. Sanders, July 1918, to date; sectary, Miss Jessie Yost, July, 1918, to date.

Blacksburg-Auxiliary to Emory (Colored).

Konnarock (by transfer) : Chairman, Mrs. L. C. Hassinger, July, 1918, to date.

Cleveland (by transfer) : Chairman, Miss Hannah Thomas, July, 1918, to date; secretary-treasurer, Miss Julia Keyes, July 1918, to date.

In regard to the personnel of chapter and branches it may be said that the officers and committee chairmen are all representative people in their communities, and are people who have always been interested in any work for public welfare.

Committees were formed and they functioned as directed by division headquarters, the only special committee being that on comfort bags which committee saw that each soldier going from Washington County was provided with a comfort bag when leaving. The chapter also gave 194 sweaters to soldiers leaving from Washington County and the City of Bristol. The Damascus branch supplied its own soldiers with sweaters in addition to the sweaters sent to chapter headquarters and already reported.

Owing to the troop trains making no stops in Abingdon, the work of the Canteen Committee consisted in providing soldiers leaving for camps with lunches, sending preserves, jellies, jams, etc. to the camps, and conducting pantry sales, etc. for raising funds for chapter use. The committee also furnishing food for the community kitchen at Damascus during the influenza epidemic.

The membership numbered 2,017, and three work rooms were maintained. Two rooms at Abingdon in the Federal Court House were given for the use of the chapter with lights, heat and janitor furnished through the kindness of Judge H. C. McDowell. One room was at Damascus, and all the surgical dressings were made in these rooms at Abingdon and Damascus. All the branches did their full share of the work.

The following supplies were sent to Bush Terminal and Potomac Division: Hospital supplies and refugee garments, 10,536; Surgical dressings, 31.906; Knitted articles, sweaters, socks, etc., 4,340; Victrola records, 6, and comfort bags, 2,160. Each comfort bag contained housewife, button bag, tooth brush, tube of tooth paste. cake of soap, tablet, pencil, several post cards and a copy of the Gospel of St John.

In addition to the bags sent to the Potomac Division, each soldier leaving Washington County was given one.

The supplies sent to Camp Lee included one emergency cot and equipmnet, and box of hospital supplies, articles included 90; repaired socks, 1,793 pairs; sweaters for Washington County soldiers at Camp Lee, 25; jars of preserves and jam, 123; sweaters given to Washington County soldiers, 194; to Company 10, C. A. C., sweaters, 27; sent to Battleship “Virginia,” knitted articles, 75; given to Washington County soldiers, comfort bags, 648; lunches to Washington County soldiers, 372; Belgian relief quilts, 31; clothing, Belgian relief, 2,300 lbs.; Christmas boxes sent to soldiers, 1917, 140; Christmas boxes sent to A.E.F. through chapter, 1918, 250; Christmas boxes sent through Roanoke Chapter, 1918, 100.

The chapter was financed chiefly through monthly contributions from individuals. There was only one salaried officer, an executive secretary, who served on a salary for only six months of the time. The following money was raised: Drive of 1917, $1,000.00; drive of 1918, $5,905.88; drive, of 1919, $800.00 total amount collected by chapter, $11,950.90; total amount expended by chapter, $11,036.29; remaining in treasury, $914.61.

This is not a complete report, as some of the branch treasurers failed to make regular financial reports and therefore have not received credit for all that was actually expended by them.

The chapter gave to the George Ben Johnston Memorial Hospital: Scrap books, 31; wash rags, 32; gauze rolls, 50; operating gowns, 1; bed pads, 36; canton flannel night gowns, 3; pajama coats, 2; pajama sets, 3; foot warmers, 1 pair; canton flannel night shirts, 25; twill night shirts, 95; wool for knitting, 1 crate; sweaters, 3; helmets, 2; pairs of socks, 12 ; scarf, 1; comfort bags, 50 and Gospels of St. John, 50.

During the influenza epidemic conditions in Abingdon were never such as to require the work of a community assistance was given Damascus by sending bread there daily long as need of it existed. After the war, during as influenza epidemic in Abingdon, Damascus did the same community kitchen at Abingdon.

The Canteen Committee served cakes and pies to fifty members of the Artillery Recruiting Company encamped in town and the Comfort Bag Committee gave these soldiers fifty comfort bags.

When news of the signing of the Armistice reached Abingdon a religious service of thanksgiving was held on the lawn at “Mont Calm,” home of Mrs. W. E. Mingea, chapter chairman. An address was made by Mr. Otis Meade, rector Christ Episcopal Church, Roanoke, Scripture reading by Mr. Taylor, of the Baptist Church of Abingdon, and prayer by Dr. J. R. Brown of the Methodist Church, of Abingdon. Hymns of thanksgiving and patriotic songs were sung by a choir -of Red Cross members.

There were a number of distinguished speakers in Abingdon during the war, all of whom were entertained by the chapter president, Mrs. W. E. Mingea, at her home.

The Fourth of July, 1919, was observed as Welcome Home Day for the soldiers and sailors of Washington County, and the chapter and its branches had the pleasure of participating largely in this. A bountiful lunch was provided by the contributions of the members of the chapter and branches and arranged and served to the soldiers and hundreds of visitors by the Canteen Committee.

The chapter was represented in the parade by a beautiful float and handsomely decorated car, both of which received prizes.

The chairman of the home service department was Mr. W. W. Webb. This department expended $87.20. The chairman has been most efficient. Owing to his promptness in investigating cases, securing adjustment of claims, etc., it has not been not been necessary for the department to expend very much money, assistance being given until such time as claims were settled.


Number of schools organized, 8; amount of money raised, $191.66; amount of money expended, $171.66; balance on hand $20.00.

Work of Juniors: Gun wipes, cotton quilts, scrap books, knitted ambulance covers, and layettes.

Those receiving service badges for 800 hours or more work were:

Abingdon branch: Mrs. J. H. Hassinger, Mrs. W. H. Smith, Mrs. R. H. Gist, Mrs. W E Mingea, Jr., Mrs. R. T. Stephenson, Miss Susie Phipps, Miss Janie Penn, Mrs. James Collier, Mrs. J. W. Bell, Mrs. Jack Clark, Mrs. R. G. Rogers, Mrs. Fred Davis, Miss Annie White, Mrs. E. F. Kable, Mrs. R. S. Gill, Mrs. M. H. Honaker, Mrs. R. B Vance, Miss Madge White, Mrs. S. S. Ballance, Mrs. Jeff Clark, Mrs. R. R. Campbell, Mrs. Alexander Stuart, Mrs. W. E. Mingea, Mrs. Geo. E Penn, Mrs. Frank Hutton, Miss Nancy Booker, Miss Margaret Preston, Mr. H. E. Widener, Mr. F. L. Davis, Mr. D. A. Preston, Mrs. W. W. Webb, Dr. G. V. Litchfield, Miss Gay White, and Miss. Eva Kable.

Glade Spring: Mrs. Lou Buchanan, Miss Bertha Carmack, Mrs. M. M. Morriss, Mrs. Olivia Thurman, Miss Laura Groseclose, Mrs. Groseclose, Miss Marnie Widener, Mrs. Maggie Wright, Mrs. A. L. Painter, and Mrs. Fount Barker.

Green Spring: Mrs. C. F. Keller, Mrs. Belle McCauley, Mrs. W. T. McConnell, Miss Maggie Lee Carpenter, Mrs. John Lowry, Mr. John Lowry, Mrs. Franke Parke, Mrs. Grover Aven, and Mrs. Geo. G. Preston.

Those receiving service badges for 400 hours or more were:

Glade Springs: Mrs. Brack Clark, Mrs. M. K. Kelly, Miss Nancy Smith, Mrs. J. M. McKee, Mrs. Juin S. Kelley, Miss May Correll, Mrs. W. L. Dunn, Mrs. Martin Rosenbaum, Miss Viola Clark, Mrs. W. H. Buchanan, Mrs. C. W. Gilmer, Mrs. M. L. Allison, Miss Lena Beattie, Mrs. Harry Dunn, Mrs. Harvey Robinson, Miss Annie Wilson, Miss Annie Vaughn, Mrs. Ray Clark, Mrs. Claud Clark, Mrs. W. R. Preston, and Mrs. White Ryburn.

There were fine and devoted workers in other branches, but owing to their making no claims for badges their names do not appear on this list. This is especially true of the Damascus branch, which did the largest amount of work of any branch except Abingdon, but whose members did not send in their names for badges.

After the war, the Red Cross established a public health branch program which is functioning most efficiently in Abingdon and vicinity under Mrs. L. M. Home, Red Cross nurse. Mrs. Horne, then Miss Lou Martin, served overseas during the war. Miss Carico, another Red Cross nurse, has been at the head of the public health work at Clinchburg, Washington County. There have been practical nurses at Konnarock and Damascus employed by the company or community to look after public health work at these places.

The chapter has also subscribed its quota to national calls, such as the Japanese Relief.

The following figures show the amounts subscribed to this fund: From Abingdon, $65.50; Glade Spring, $69.25; Damascus, $25.00; Konnarock, $25.00; Meadow View, $25.00; Wesley Chapel, $10.00; total, $219.75.

The report gives no details since 1920, but the chapter has continued active, having the regular roll call each year and through its nursing committee having the responsibility of the public health work.



In the State of Virginia three committees were formed by this Society and the one at Abingdon, Washington County, Virginia, had all of Southwest Virginia and part of Southern Virginia as its territory, Its officers were:

1916-1917-Mrs. Alexander Stuart, chairman, Mrs. J. W. Bell, treasurer.
1917-1918-Mrs. Alexander Stuart, chairman, Mrs. W. E. Mingea, Jr., treasurer.

Chairmen of sub-committees formed were as follows: Meadow View, Washington County, Mrs. C. W. Roberts; Damascus, Washington County, Mrs. T. Blackadder; Bristol, Virginia Mrs. Kate Wheeler; Pulaski County, Mrs. Joseph Eckman; Tazewell County, Miss Jessie O’Keefe; Wythe County, Mrs. James Kelly; Wise County, Mrs. H. H. Alexander, and Martinsville, Virginia, Miss Maria Pennill.

The total number of children supported through the Abingdon committee and its sub-committees was 212; total number of children supported by Washington County, 67.

The following Washington County citizens supported French children:

Abingdon: Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Bell, Miss Rachel Bell, Mrs. Alexander Stuart, Mr. S. J. Latture, Dr. G. V. Litchfield, Miss Carrie Timberlake, Stonewall Jackson College; Mr. and Mrs. W. E. Mingea, Miss Lelia Smith Cocke, Mrs. A. L. Morgan, Mrs. John O. Booker, Mrs. John H. Hassinger, Mr. Emory Widener, Miss Janie Penn, Miss Nannie Booker, Mr. and Mrs. P. J. Davenport, Misses Annie and Madge White, Dr. W. A. Maiden, Mr. Hugh Potts, Misses Ellen, Margaret and Gilbert Preston, Mrs. C. F. Cocke, The Abingdon Committee (7), The S. A. S. Sorority, Martha Washington College; The D. B. T. Sorority, Martha Washington College; Sunday-school teachers, M. E. Church, South: Mr. Geo. Penn, Jr’s. S. S. Class, M. E. Church, South; Odd Fellows Lodge, William King High School Senior Class, The Booklovers Club. The Masonic Lodge-total number supported, 38.

Meadow View: Mr. R. J. Smyth, Mr. George Stuart, Mr. and Mrs. V. Kendrick, Mr. W. M. Maiden, Miss Mary Aston, Miss Mary Wiley, Prof. J. W. Cole, Mr. and Mrs. D G. Ritchie, Mr. A. W. Aston, Mrs. W. H. Aston, Junior Missionary Society M. E. Church, South; Juvenile Missionary Society M. E. Church, South; Young Ladies’ Missionary Society M. E. Church, South-total number supported, 13.

Damascus: Mrs. C. A. Backer, Mrs. F. G. Clements, Mr. J. L. Meade, Dr. Chas. Clendenen-total numbered supported, 4.

Konnarock: Mrs. L. H. Barnes, Mrs. Luther Hassinger, Mrs. Umbarger, Christian Association, The High School, Baraca S. S. Class, Laviel Sunday school-total number supported, 7.

Emory: Dr. H. M. Henry and Prof. A. G. Sanders, Junior Red Cross-total number supported, 2.

Green Spring: Mrs. G. C. Aven, Mrs. John Parks-total number supported, 2.

Greendale: Rebecca Lodge, one.

Glade Spring: Miss Mary Home, one.

Others subscribing through Abingdon Washington County Committee: Mr. Hugh McNutt, Nashville, Tenn.; Mr. Fred Peoples, Memphis, Tenn.; French Class, Randolph-Macon College, Lynchburg, Va.; Randolph-Macon College, Lynchburg, Va.; Miss R. Hammerton, Randolph-Macon College. Lynchburg, Va.; Y. W. C. A., Randolph-Macon College, Lynchburg, Va. Mrs. L. G. Bell, Lynchburg, Va.; Powhatan Chapter, U.D.C., Powhatan, Va.; Miss Frances Stausberry, Norfolk, Va.; Mr. and Mrs. F. M. Lee, Alpoca, W. Ya.; Miss Gladys Berry, Johnson City, Tenn.; Mr. B. Sprinkle, Saltville, Va.; Mr. and Mrs. W. T. Ashe, Roanes, Va.-Total number supported, 15.


Washington County contributed liberally to the Red Cross the Near East Relief, the Society for the Fatherless Children of France, the Y.M.C.A., the Salvation Army, and a carload of clothing was sent to Belgium.

This is a brief and incomplete report of the work of Washington County during the war. Owing to the difficulty of obtaining statistics and records at this date, full justice cannot be done the patriotism or activity of the county.