It was beautiful on Sunday, July 16. The air was clear and warm, and the sky was lightly dotted with clouds as I listened to dozens of birds chirping and flitting around the trees. The raspy bark of a small housedog echoed down the street as the subtle sweet smell of pine wafted on the breeze. I could hear the sound of the Reverend Dr. John Fountaine from inside the brick Gothic Revival style church through the stained glass windows as I waited for the congregation to finish their worship service and join me outside for the dedication of a historic highway marker for their church.

Last year, The First Baptist Church in Heathsville celebrated their 150th anniversary and Kathy Schuder, Executive Director of Northern Neck Virginia Historic Society, encouraged Sister Algeria Tate to commission a highway marker to commemorate the occasion.

Jim Hare, the Director of the Division of Survey and Register at the Department of Historic Resources, also attended and explained the process of getting a historic marker. Each marker costs about $1600, and have not been state funded since 1970, so must be paid for by the community. Each sign only has space for a maximum of 107 words on it, so it is very important for the text to be concise and often abbreviations are used to save on space.

Read the full story in the July 19 edition of the Northumberland Echo