Revolutionary War soldier honored during Memorial Day service


Representatives from the Culpeper American Legion Post 330 place wreaths during the Memorial Day commemoration May 29. The keynote speaker was Retired US Army Lieutenant Colonel O. H. Perry Cabot. A veteran of the Vietnam War, during his long career Lieutenant Colonel Cabot served in a variety of locations where his duties alternated between military intelligence and political-military affairs.
Photo by Ian Chini

The Society for Preservation of Culpeper History participated in the nation-wide “Wreaths-across-America” Memorial Day Commemoration with a solemn wreath-laying at the historical site of the home of John Spilman.

Spilman was a revolutionary soldier.  His family’s homesite is now preserved as part of Culpeper County’s Spilman Park on Colvin Road near Jeffersonton.  He was a descendent of the German colonists who pioneered in the Little Fork area of what is now Culpeper County in the early 1700s.

Wreaths were laid in front of the stone chimney remains of the Spilman house site by representatives of Society for Preservation of Culpeper History and of the Culpeper Minutemen Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.  Mike Dennis, Leonard Cowherd and Charles Jamison presented the wreath on behalf of the Culpeper Minutemen Chapter.  Peter Stetson and Ron Bird presented the wreath on behalf of the Society for Preservation of Culpeper History.

Taking time to remember our past is important for maintaining the sense of community that we need to survive the challenges of today,” said SPCH member Frances Byrd Goddard, of Boston, Va.

Following the wreath-laying, an overview of the history of early settlement in the Little Fork area was presented by Col. O.H. Perry Cabot (U.S. Army, Ret.).  Col. Cabot displayed a map showing the interconnections among the early settlers’ land grants in the Little Fork area.  The Little Fork area is centered by the community of Jeffersonton and comprises much of the Jefferson Magisterial District of Culpeper County.  The term “Little Fork” describes the area between the conjunction of the Rappahannock and Hazel Rivers in Culpeper County.

“Remembering our history and preserving historic places is essential for maintaining America’s greatness,” said Peter Stetson, resident of nearby Roseland Farm.

Mary Jo Browning, on behalf of the Little Fork Episcopal Church Preservation Foundation, led the group in prayer for the nation.  Little Fork Church served as the established center of worship for the area in colonial times.  Located in the same vicinity as the Spilman historic site, the current church building was constructed in 1776, and is the oldest serving church building in Culpeper County.

Society for Preservation of Culpeper History is a non-profit, non-partisan research and educational organization.  SPCH’s mission is to promote knowledge and appreciation of the historical heritage of Culpeper County.