WSB Smith, Thanks for the helpful information. I ll make it a point to revisit the visitors center today. Note: I am just learning more about the county s ownMessage 1 of 12 , Jan 1, 2002View SourceWSB Smith, Thanks for the helpful information. I'll make it a point
to revisit the visitors center today.
Note: I am just learning more about the county's own rev war hero,
col. Joshiah Parker, who participated in Battles of Trenton and
Brandywine, being singled out and mentioned by Gen. Washington for
his actions there. Tarleton made it a point to raid his farm looking
for the Col.
on his way to Portsmouth. Anyone have more info on col. Parker they
could share? I understand his family grave site a possibly his grave
have been found in the last 2 months here near Smithfield.
Rob: In all of my research on Virginia in the Rev War, Isle of Wight is not mentioned too frequently, however it is full of our period events. You will findMessage 2 of 12 , Jan 2, 2002View SourceRob:
In all of my research on Virginia in the Rev War, Isle of Wight is not
mentioned too frequently, however it is full of our period events. You will
find most references in the County made to places, such as towns, farms
etc.. As to references, I suggest, for the 1781 period (Note: these may
only have a line or two -- some more in detail):
1. (BEST) Selby, John E. The Revolution in Virginia 1775-1783.
Williamsburg, VA: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. 1988.
2. Ewald, Captain Johann. Diary of the American War, A Hessian Journal,
ed, Joseph P. Tunstin. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 1979.
3. Graham, Samuel. "An English Officer's Account of His Services in
America-1779-1781. Memoirs of Lieutenant General Samuel Graham." Historical
4. Simcoe, John Graves. Simcoe's Military Journal: A History of the
Operations of a Parti-san Corps, called The Queen's Rangers. New York:
Bartlett & Wellford. 1844.
5. Ward, Harry M. Invasion, Military Operations near Richmond, 1781.
Richmond Bicen-tennial Commission and Central Fidelity Bank. 1978.
6. Young, Chester Raymond, ed. Westward into Kentucky: A Narrative of
Daniel Trabue, 1827. Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky. 1981.
Happy New Year!
From: va_hstry [mailto:va_hstry@...]
Sent: Monday, December 31, 2001 8:30 PM
Subject: [Revlist] research help
I am currently attempting to research the Rev War history of Isle of
Wight county, Virginia, particularly the town of Smithfield. I have
had some success, but not enough to satisfy my curiosity. I have
found a few seemingly good sources on the internet, but being new at
the research end of things I hav'nt had very much luck. Anyone have
any good advice on sources for the history of the revolution in this
area of Virginia, or possible already have some knowledge of action
in this county or surounding counties in south-side virginia?
Thanks for any helpful hints and advice.
Still hobbling from Trenton,
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... Hello Rob & Liste: By coincidence there is a front page article in the Roanoke Times this morning, Rob, that is relevant to your query. The article wasMessage 3 of 12 , Jan 3, 2002View Source--- In Revlist@y..., "va_hstry" <va_hstry@j...> wrote:
> Dear List,Hello Rob & Liste:
> I am currently attempting to research the Rev War history of Isle of
> Wight county, Virginia..
By coincidence there is a front page article in the Roanoke Times this
morning, Rob, that is relevant to your query. The article was
originally in the Newport News Daily Press and covers a historian
named Tom Finderson who lives in Isle of Wight. The article is too
long for me to retype, but basically Finderson has been researching
Col. Josiah Parker, commander of the 5th VA, for 20 years. Naturally,
he's done lots and lots of research on Parker's home and life in Isle
of Wight County. I bet if you can locate Finderson he'd be happy to
talk with another RevWar enthusiast.
David McKissack, 7th VA
"...those dear ragged Continentals, whose patience will be the
admiration of future ages." Colonel John Laurens, KIA, Combahee Ferry,
SC, 27 Aug 1782.
... Finderson has been researching ... Naturally, ... Isle ... David, Thanks for your reply and info. I may have read that article in a scaled down version inMessage 4 of 12 , Jan 3, 2002View Source
--- In Revlist@y..., "turf12001" <turf1@v...> wrote:
Finderson has been researching
> Col. Josiah Parker, commander of the 5th VA, for 20 years.
> he's done lots and lots of research on Parker's home and life in
> of Wight County. I bet if you can locate Finderson he'd be happy to
> talk with another RevWar enthusiast.
Thanks for your reply and info. I may have read that article in a
scaled down version in our local paper, but I wasnt aware of the man
who wrote it. I will definitly try to track him down and pick his
brain. Incidently, there is a letter to the editor in our paper by
another history lover that gives a brief history of our local figures
who fought in the revolution. I will be contacting her as well for
resources. By the way, it was great to finally meet you and "fight"
side by side at Trenton, I had one of the best times I have ever had.
... of ... this ... Here s the original article from the Daily Press. Inspiration found in unsung hero IW man uncovers history of Revolutionary War officer ByMessage 5 of 12 , Jan 3, 2002View Source--- In Revlist@y..., "turf12001" <turf1@v...> wrote:
> --- In Revlist@y..., "va_hstry" <va_hstry@j...> wrote:of
> > Dear List,
> > I am currently attempting to research the Rev War history of Isle
> > Wight county, Virginia..this
> Hello Rob & Liste:
> By coincidence there is a front page article in the Roanoke Times
> morning, Rob, that is relevant to your query. The article wasHere's the original article from the Daily Press.
> originally in the Newport News Daily Press and covers a historian
> named Tom Finderson who lives in Isle of Wight.
Inspiration found in unsung hero
IW man uncovers history of Revolutionary War officer
By Patrick Lynch
Published December 28, 2001
ISLE OF WIGHT -- A mere mention of the phrase -- "the Revolution" --
sets Tom Finderson turning.
"Unlike Massachusetts," says the Isle of Wight resident, "Virginia
never wrote her Revolutionary War history."
Here Finderson doesn't mean that the details of Yorktown are lacking.
Quite the opposite. He is frustrated that the headline-grabbing
battles and names have obscured the stories about men who weren't
For the past 10 years, Finderson has been intent on knowing the life
of Col. Josiah Parker, a man whose story, Finderson says, has been
kept only by history-minded stalwarts within Isle of Wight and the
Finderson has pored over the correspondence of Revolutionary War
officers, scouring for mention of Parker or for letters he wrote. He
has put his hands in the soil of Parker's old plantation,
Macclesfield, in Carrollton, in an attempt to find the "lost" Parker
family cemetery. With some help, Parker found the cemetery near the
plantation earlier this year. He and others are working to buy the
property and make it a memorial park.
He has compared primary accounts, newspaper accounts and historical
accounts of the major battles Parker fought -- Trenton, Princeton and
Brandywine, all in New Jersey -- searching for Parker's name.
"Most of the accounts only mention the big names," Finderson
says. "There's a group of names throughout Revolutionary War history.
But the history books don't tell you what individual units did.
"That's what's so wonderful about the story of Col. Parker. He is so
prominent in those first three decisive battles."
Those "first three decisive battles" would be Trenton, Princeton and
Brandywine. George Washington's still-shocking victories at these
places in the winter of 1776-77 came after a series of retreats from
New York, after legions of his New England troops left for home.
The victories also coincided with the arrival, Finderson likes to
point out, of Virginia's Fourth, Fifth and Sixth regiments, troops
from south of the James River. Josiah Parker, then a lieutenant
colonel, commanded the Fifth.
Finderson, a 61-year-old retired teacher, computer programmer and
electrical engineer, arrives at an interview to talk about Parker and
makes one ... two ... three trips to the car in order to carry all of
his binders, books and photocopied documents that, together, detail
Describing the action at Trenton, an early turning point in a war
that Washington and the Continental Army were badly losing, the
official military history books don't reference Parker. For instance,
two popular accounts, "The Crossing," a dramatized version also made
into a screenplay by Howard Fast, and "The Winter Soldiers," by
Richard M. Ketchum, do not note Parker's role.
This is Finderson's complaint, but also his dilemma. How to generate
enthusiasm among even Isle of Wight folks if the subject's life isn't
glorified in the history books? How to show Parker's modern day
"This is all very relevant, for all times," he says. "War doesn't
change. Human nature doesn't change.
"I didn't know who Parker was 20 years ago. Now, I can draw
inspiration from him."
Parker is a "hero," Finderson says, without knowing exactly what he
did in these battles. He points to several pieces of evidence:
A 1938 story in The Norfolk Ledger-Dispatch says that the famous
painting of Washington crossing the Delaware River, by Emmanuel
Leutze, depicts Parker as the man standing next to Washington, who is
braving the icy river, one foot propped up, one arm over his chest.
Finderson hasn't been able to confirm this, though historical
accounts do show that Parker's regiment was one of the first to cross
the river in the early morning attack.
Parker received the "sword of surrender" at Trenton from Hessian Col.
Johann Rall, after the British and the Hessian mercenary forces
conceded defeat. This is a symbolic act that does not necessarily
imply the recipient was the most important figure in the battle.
Finderson maintains, though, that this is an important sign of
Parker's significance in the battle.
After Princeton, Washington singled out Parker, saying, "Parker, you
have gained more honor today."
And at Brandywine, according to an account Finderson found in the
Virginia Gazette, Parker's regiment "stopped the onslaught of the
British." The Gazette called Parker a "hero."
"His recognition is long overdue," says Frank Dwyer, a Parker
descendant who lives in Winter Springs, Fla. He is speaking of his
ancestor, but he could have been talking about his opinion of
"Tom has been irreplaceable," says Dwyer, who met Finderson about six
years ago. The two quickly became correspondents, often apprising
each other of their latest developments in Parker research.
Dwyer has specialized in Parker's contributions to Congress. In 1789,
Parker was one of the first U.S. Congressmen to decry slavery in
session, according to Dwyer. And as chairman of the Committee on
Naval Affairs, he was instrumental in getting the building of the
Constitution and the Constellation battleships started, Dwyer said.
Finderson focuses on Parker's wartime role -- trying to draw it out
in more detail than what's given in the highly regarded local history
books by Segar Cofer Dashiell and Helen Haverty King.
Finderson is particularly interested in Parker's actions in and
around south Hampton Roads later in the war. Though not as dramatic
as the early battles, Finderson believes Parker, who commanded all
south Hampton Roads militia beginning in 1781, made important
contributions in the critical months leading up to Yorktown.
South Hampton Roads sustained three British landings, including one
by Lord Cornwallis, who bivouacked in Isle of Wight in July 1781
before moving on to Yorktown. Parker and about 300 men pressed the
British stationed at Portsmouth, keeping them, Finderson believes,
from moving on to central Virginia to engage Marquis de Lafayette's
troops prior to Yorktown.
Perhaps Finderson's interest in this period and these actions best
represents his interest in Parker. No major battles were fought in
Isle of Wight. No glory was bestowed on the Americans who fought
skirmishes for months, spied on British troops and then managed a
supply chain to troops at Yorktown.
Still, leaning back in his chair with a content smile on his face, he
says, "We can be very proud of what happened here. You really learn
what a few people can do.
"You can see it all if you really try. The sun glinting off the
bayonets, the red coats marching through the fields."
Patrick Lynch can be reached at 357-4138 or 247-4926 or by e-mail at
... Isle ... Sir, Thank you so much for providing this article! It is great and adds a few more bits of info to my slowly growing stack. I have already emailedMessage 6 of 12 , Jan 3, 2002View Source--- In Revlist@y..., "billburks" <billburks@y...> wrote:
> --- In Revlist@y..., "turf12001" <turf1@v...> wrote:Isle
> > --- In Revlist@y..., "va_hstry" <va_hstry@j...> wrote:
> > > Dear List,
> > > I am currently attempting to research the Rev War history of
> > > Wight county, Virginia..
> > Hello Rob & Liste:
> > By coincidence there is a front page article in the Roanoke Times
> > morning, Rob, that is relevant to your query. The article was
> > originally in the Newport News Daily Press and covers a historian
> > named Tom Finderson who lives in Isle of Wight.
> Here's the original article from the Daily Press.
Thank you so much for providing this article! It is great and adds a
few more bits of info to my slowly growing stack. I have already
emailed Mr. Lynch in an effort to contact Mr. Finderson. Now my
interest is "really" peaking!! I was not aware that our own Col.
Parker had so many historic moments, and being from this area since
birth I never heard of the man! This is why I feel what we do is so
important, it gives us a chance to get this info out through our
living history events.
hello all i have this paper to write for my college writting class and my topic is late 18th century military taticts. any thoughts on where a good place toMessage 7 of 12 , Apr 15, 2002View Sourcehello all
i have this paper to write for my college writting class and my topic is
late 18th century military taticts. any thoughts on where a good place to
get information is?
King's Reg. Detroit
MSN Photos is the easiest way to share and print your photos:
... From: Joe Smith To: Sent: Monday, April 15, 2002 7:56 AM Subject: [Revlist] research help ... YouMessage 8 of 12 , Apr 15, 2002View Source
----- Original Message -----
From: "Joe Smith" <wlc_history@...>
Sent: Monday, April 15, 2002 7:56 AM
Subject: [Revlist] research help
> hello all
> i have this paper to write for my college writting class and my topic is
> late 18th century military taticts. any thoughts on where a good place to
> get information is?
> thank you
> Pvt. Smith
> King's Reg. Detroit
You could start with Brent Nosworthy's 'Anatomy of Victory' and follow up
with his 'With Musket, Cannon and Sword: Battle tactics of Napoleon and his
enemies', which has a discussion of the origins of Napoleonic tactics in the
practices of the late 18th century. (Also check his bibliography and go from
Visit the recreated Infanterie Regiment von Donop at: