On March 28, 2019, the Germanna Foundation Time Capsule was immured inside a wall in the the new Hitt Archaeology Center, next to the Fort Germanna Visitor Center in Locust Grove, VA. The capsule will be opened in 50 years, in July of 2068, during the Foundation’s 111th annual reunion. Skip Poole, Germanna Foundation Trustee […]
PRESS RELEASE- Historic Germanna Initiates Removal and Restoration of Iconic Weathervane
Historic Germanna Initiates Removal and Restoration of Iconic Weathervane
Locust Grove, VA - October 18, 2023 – Historic Germanna, a nonprofit dedicated to preserving and sharing Virginia's rich history, is embarking on an exciting journey to preserve a symbol of the past that has graced our visitor center for decades. On October 19th, 2023, the iconic copper ship weathervane adorning the Brawdus Martin Historic Germanna Visitor Center, was carefully removed from its post where it was set in 2000.
The decision to remove this cherished weathervane stems from the recognition of a pressing issue: a persistent leak in the roof caused by the continuous turning of the weathervane. The Visitor Center's architect, Doug Harnsberger, a Germanna descendant who generously donated the weathervane in 2000, made the insightful recommendation to safeguard the roof from further water infiltration by removing the cause. Harnsberger oversaw the copper ship’s removal and the temporary capping of the roof to prevent further water infiltration. W.A. Lynch Roofing removed the ship. The Charlotteville-based company has previously worked on Monticello, Highland, UVA’s Rotunda, and the Virginia Capitol.
Additionally, Mr. Harnsberger emphasized that “the fragile nature of the weathervane itself, needs delicate conservation work to ensure its preservation for future generations.” The weathervane was meticulously crafted after a 17th-century barque, a three-masted vessel that may have been similar to the ship that brought the 1714 and 1717 German colonists to Virginia. Harnsberger further stated, “This intricate metal object has become a treasured emblem of the historic journey of the German colonists to Virginia.”
Historic Germanna is taking this opportunity to develop a comprehensive conservation plan for the weathervane and explore options for its future display inside of the Visitor Center. Historic Germanna is committed to preserving the essence of this historic symbol by identifying an appropriate new location for it to be displayed to the public and the generations of Germanna descendants that cherish this icon of their family’s journey from Germany to Virginia. Careful consideration is being given to ensure that the weathervane continues to tell the story of Germanna's rich history.
With the leak in the roof now effectively sealed, Historic Germanna is actively exploring alternatives to top the Visitor Center with something that is both symbolic of the organization's mission and representative of the region's heritage. The weathervane's removal marks a significant step towards ensuring that Germanna's history remains accessible and intact for generations to come.
The public is invited to stay tuned for updates on this exciting preservation project.
The Germanna Foundation’s annual trip to Germany is an exceptional experience. The ancestral villages of the participants become the itinerary for each year’s trip. The next trip takes place 17-29 June 2019. One of the tour guides is a Germanna trustee, descendant, and expert on Germanna genealogy and the other is a German native who […]
During a short break in the weather of Hurricane Michael barreling through Virginia on Thursday, October 11, 2018, the Germanna Foundation held the ground-breaking ceremony at the future site of the Hitt Archaeology Center. This new facility, made possible by a generous gift from Russell and Joan Hitt, will be built next to the Fort […]
It was a great honor to have Ambassador Henne Schuwer from the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the Fort Germanna Visitor Center on Saturday, March 24, 2018. Germanna Foundation President Marc Wheat welcomed him and gave him a tour of the visitor center/museum/library. Germanna has a deep and unusual connection with the Kingdom of the Netherlands: […]
It’s the Germanna Event of the Year! The annual reunion and conference where Germanna “cousins” from all over the country and world come back to where it all started in Virginia at Fort Germanna. A full four-day schedule of events is planned for socializing, learning and having fun. This year’s 61st reunion is called “Germanna […]
Germanna descendant and Germanna Foundation Membership Development Manager Ashley Abruzzo will present an overview on the history of the Germanna Colony, how the Germanna Foundation was created, and its present-day mission to preserve, protect, and educate the public on Virginia’s early German-American heritage. The event will be held at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library Salem Church […]
Looking for a fun summertime activity for your kids or grandkids ages 6 to 14 years old? Have them attend a one-day only Kids Colonial Camp at Saturday, July 15, 2017 from 8 am to 4 pm at the Fort Germanna Visitor Center on 2062 Germanna Hwy (Route 3) in Locust Grove, VA. The Visitor Center […]
On Saturday, July 15, 2017 from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, the Germanna Foundation will be holding its annual Historical Conference at the Germanna Community College Daniel Technology Center located at 18121 Technology Drive in Culpeper, VA. There will be many vendors at the conference focused on area history, books, historical memorabilia, clubs/organizations, parks, and much […]
Madison, VA — The Hebron Lutheran Church Foundation joins in the celebration of 300 years of a Lutheran church in the hills of the Virginia Piedmont, and asks that well-wishers on both sides of the Atlantic participate in the work of the Foundation to ensure the church’s continuity in the centuries to come. “In this […]
As we prepare to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Second Colony arriving at Germanna at the Germanna Foundation’s 60th annual conference and reunion this July, we are also celebrating the 300th anniversary of Hebron Lutheran Church in Madison, Virginia – all during the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation. At Hebron, many of our […]