Brandy Station Foundation

2007 Annual Report


Any comments or inquires concerning this report should be directed to: Brandy Station Foundation
P.O. Box 165
Brandy Station, Virginia 22714




Letter to the Membership

January 1, 2008  


“ALL THINGS CONSIDERED …                                      … IT WAS A VERY GOOD YEAR!” 

Many of you are regular listeners of the National Public Radio and are familiar with the continuing segment entitled “All Things Considered”.  On November 23, 2007 our very own Graffiti House was featured in a 10 minute segment featuring an interview with our President, Bob Luddy, and our graffiti conservator and preservationist Kirsten Travers.  The NPR broadcast segment may be heard by accessing:

That broadcast segment provided Graffiti House and the Brandy Station Foundation with national exposure which should equate to increased visitation in 2008 and beyond and to an increased awareness to the local community of the Lecture Series, Driving and Horseback Battlefield Tours, and the continuing living history programs offered by our outstanding volunteer staff.

June saw the implementation of a major fundraising campaign, PARTNERS IN PRESERVATION, launched with a gala cocktail reception kickoff held at the Germanna Community College Technology Center. Three distinct components were identified where our members and friends can specify their contributions: Partners in Preservation for Land; Partners in Preservation for Graffiti House; and Partners in Preservation for General Support.  Over $8,000 has been received to date.

In 2007, we experienced an increasing volume of visitors to the Graffiti House with 2840 signing our guest book.  That record number of visitors contributed $7,321 toward the Foundation’s expenses (another record).  Relocating and enlarging our Gift Shop enabled us to set another record with sales of $6,633.  To better service our members and our visitors, we installed the necessary equipment to process credit cards for donations, dues, and merchandise.

The Community Services class at Warrenton High School continues to volunteer their services for a variety of maintenance projects at Graffiti House and the battlefield sites at Kelly’s Ford, Saint James Church and Fleetwood Heights.

2007 saw our first grant awarded by the Commonwealth of Virginia for $15,000 to be matched by local contributions.  We completed the matching by July 1st and have since hired Dalgliesh, Gilpin, and Paxton of Charlottesville to perform an architectural review and analysis of the Graffiti House.  We also contracted for the services of Kirsten Travers to conduct a Graffiti Exposure and Preservation Assessment. This project yielded significant amounts of ‘new’ graffiti, drawings, dates and names here-to fore unknown to us and unseen by our visitors.


For the Board of Directors,

Robert L. Jones, Treasurer

Brandy Station Foundation (BSF) 2007 Annual Report

Strategic Goals:

The Board of Directors has formulated four strategic goals which focus all of the activities of the BSF.  These are to:

  1. Conserve, protect and nurture the historic rural character of the Brandy Station area within Culpeper County, Virginia;
  2. Preserve and protect the Brandy Station and Kelly’s Ford Battlefields and  related sites of historical significance for the appreciation and education of future generations;
  3. Recognize the courage and dedication of the Confederate and Union soldiers who fought and served here;
  4. Advance knowledge and understanding of the history of the battles, the region and its environment.

2007 Accomplishments towards the Strategic Goals

Historic Preservation:
Graffiti House Interpretation – During the Graffiti Exposure and Preservation Assessment conducted in July, nearly 50 square feet of paint was removed.  Some of the graffiti revealed were a date of August 1863, a herd of horses, and numerous names including President Jefferson Davis, and several military unit designations

The BSF owns 8.0 acres of land located adjacent to Kelly’s Ford on the Rappahannock River.  This land was the location of fighting during the March 17, 1863 (Kelly’s Ford) and November 7, 1863 (Rappahannock   Station) battles as well as the transient point for Federal troops under General David Gregg during the June 9, 1863 Battle of Brandy Station. The land has been cleaned, trails established and signage erected for public education of the history of the Kelly’s Ford area.

The BSF continued the stewardship of the historic St. James Church  site (2.0 acres) from the Vestry of the Christ Episcopal Church of Brandy  Station. The land has been cleaned, trails established and signage updated.


A)  In July, 2007 the BSF was awarded a grant of $15,000 from the Department of Historic Resources of the Commonwealth of Virginia to evaluate the present condition of the Graffiti House, and develop recommendations for the restoration and preservation of both the house and the graffiti contained within.  The firm of Dalgleish, Gilpin, & Paxton of Charlottesville was contracted and will complete their architectural analysis and report by May 1, 2008.

In July 2007, Kirsten Travers spent a week at the Graffiti House to investigate different paint removal methods to determine the most appropriate techniques to safely expose the Civil War graffiti.  Her report was submitted in August 2007.

B)  The BSF requested $68,376 in funding from the Commonwealth Transportation Board for construction of a pull-off area with pedestrian facilities at the Fleetwood Heights property.  The Virginia Legislature’s tentative enhancement allocation provides $50,000 of the funding requested.  This will be a five year project in duration when final approval is announced.

Educational Excellence:
Attendance In 2007 visitation at the Graffiti House rose to 2840; an increase of approximately 7% over 2006.

The Ankers Learning Center named after longtime Brandy Station   residents and friends, Dot and Doc Ankers, features books, papers and other research materials related to the Brandy Station battlefield and area.  The Center houses a large screen TV which presents our 12 minute orientation movie on the Battle of Brandy Station.  Additional Civil War video productions are also available for public viewing. Our library continues to grow with numerous donations of period books/periodicals.

Battlefield Tours –Sixteen (16) foot   tours were conducted from spring to fall on segments of the battlefield - about ninety (90) people attended. We also initiated a new battlefield tour program - horse riding tours - and cumulatively we experienced the highest battlefield tour program visitation since we began our programs in 2003.
Driving Tour Schedule for 2008:

Beverly Ford & St. James Church:    April 5, May 31, July 26
Kelly’s Ford & Stevensburg:             April 19, June 14, Aug. 9
Fleetwood Hill:                               May 3, June 28, Aug. 23
Buford’s Knoll & Yew Ridge:             May 17, July 12, Sept. 6

Horseback Tour                               June 21
School Groups – The Graffiti House was visited by several student and teacher groups during the year.  Students came from Warrenton High school, Liberty High School, Culpeper High School and PACE and REACH home school groups.

Bus Tours – Eleven (11) bus tours were conducted during this year enabling two hundred forty one (241) people to tour the Graffiti House.  One of the tours was composed of Congressional staff members and Journey Through Hallowed Ground  Board of Directors.

Speaker Series – The BSF sponsored a speaker series at the Graffiti House on the last Sunday of each month from June through October 2007. Five (5) speakers lectured and the cumulative attendance was in excess of one hundred forty four (144) people.
2008 Lecture Series - Graffiti House from 2:00 to 3:15 p.m.

March 30          The Music of the Civil War
April 27            Jubal Early’s Threat on Washington
May 25             The Atlanta Campaign
June 29            Cavalry Fights in Fauquier County
July 27             West Point at the War’s Outset – Class of 1862
Aug. 31            The Union Executions at Beverly’s Ford
Sept. 28           Col. & Mrs. J. Egbert Farnum
Oct. 26             Recovering the Remains of Capt. Farley

Living History Programs – A series of Living History events were held during the year on the grounds of Graffiti House and on our property across the roadway.  Our tentative 2008 schedule includes:

April 18 – 19      17th Virginia Cavalry, Co. D and Little Fork Rangers
May 17              23rd Virginia
June 7 – 8         145th Anniversary of Brandy Station
Sept. 13 – 14     2nd U. S. Infantry and 4th U. S. Infantry

Come join in the fun and interact with the re-enactors, their families and friends.

Special Events – Several new activities were initiated in 2007 and are scheduled again for your enjoyment in 2008.

September 27            BSF Picnic at Rose Hill (Stevensburg)
October 25                A ‘Spirited’ Evening in Brandy Station
November 8              Antique Appraisal show
December 6              Annual Holiday Party at the Graffiti House


The Foundation is composed of members who are committed to the inspiration of current and future generations to honor the sacrifices of the past by the creation of a living battlefield memorial.  It is this membership, represented by the elected leaders on its Board of Directors and appointed Advisory Panel, which forms the heart of the Foundation.  During 2007, our membership grew by 22% to 589 members.

Membership Percentages


Board of Directors

Executive Council: President – Robert Luddy, Vice-President – Ed Gentry, Treasurer – Robert Jones,  Secretary – Mary Tholand

Board members: Michael Block, Jane Brookins, Wally Bunker, Richard Deardoff, Della Edrington, Helen Geisler, Rich Gossweiller, Peggy Misch, Gardiner Mulford, Dan Painter, Bob Pfile, Shirley Pfile, and Anthony Seidita.


The resources of the BSF consist of five pieces of property - the Graffiti House, the (1 acre) lot on Old Brandy Road, Gregg’s (Wyndham’s) Approach (14 acres), the Fleetwood Hill Overlook (18.9 acres), the Kelly’s Ford Overlook (8 acres) and the financial holdings shown on the 2007 Financial Summary.  Additionally, the BSF has leased and maintains 2 acres encompassing the site where the Saint James Church stood.
Plans for 2008:
Highway Signage.  New VDOT signage denoting “GRAFFITI HOUSE” will be installed on Route 29 at Route 663; on Route 762 at Routes 633 and 669; and in front of Graffiti House itself on the Civil War Trails signpost.

The Graffiti House.  Using the funding obtained from a $15,000 grant from the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, the BSF has conducted a thorough evaluation of the Graffiti House. The product of the (Spring 2008) evaluation will be a plan for the protection and preservation of the House and its graffiti.  This assessment study will then be used as the foundational document for obtaining additional funding for the continuing preservation of the Graffiti House and its contents.

Kelly’s Ford  The BSF will implement a plan for the full historic and tourist potential of this property through historic preservation, signage, interpretative displays and walking paths.  The plan will be partially financed through a Commonwealth of Virginia Transportation grant in 2008.  The project will entail the construction of an entrance from State Road 620 to enter a 50 X 100 foot parking area.  A  series of historical markers and maps will  be erected on an overlook facing the Rappahannock River detailing the history of the land emphasizing developments within a pre-colonial phase, colonial and early 19th century phase and last, a Civil War phase. Special emphasis will be given to the remnants of the Rappahannock River canal system and the remnants of the industrial center of Kellysville.

Fleetwood Hill Overlook.  The BSF continues development of a plan for the integration of the 18.9 acres of land located at the western foot of Fleetwood Hill with the  existing 14.0 acres (Gregg’s Approach) into a visitor friendly battlefield park. As the plan develops, the BSF will work to establish signage, Interpretative displays and walking paths.  Much of the above activity is expected to be funded by a Virginia Transportation grant.

St. James Church.  The BSF will continue to develop the full historic and tourist potential of the property while honoring the sacred religious nature of the site.  The BSF will further develop a historic plan for the property, clean out natural debris and erect appropriate signage.

Fiscal Year 2007 Treasurer's Report






Opening Balance: $698.48



Income: $246,766.16



Expenses: ($243,079.33)







Income minus Expenses:







Closing Balance: $4,385.31











Opening Balance:
















Deposits minus Withdrawals:








Closing Balance:







Petty Cash:








Brandy Station Foundation Total Assets: $40,158.53



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