History took a front seat at the Botetourt Board of Supervisors October meeting.
The board appointed the 13-member Greenfield Historic Preservation Commission, named four persons to the Botetourt County Sesquicentennial Committee and approved the installation of three new Lewis & Clark Eastern Legacy Trail signs that will go up at county-owned sites.
Botetourt County will celebrate its 250th anniversary in 2020 and the supervisors have been planning to have a committee to work with county officials on an appropriate celebration.
Donna Vaughn of Eagle Rock, Lois Switzer of Fincastle, Angela Coon of Fincastle and Wendy Wingo of Blue Ridge were appointed to the committee that will work with County Administrative Assistant Cody Sexton on plans for the celebration.
The committee is charged with promoting, publicizing and encouraging commemoration activities and events by community organizations, businesses, schools and churches associated with the county’s 250th anniversary.
Supervisor Steve Clinton will be the ex-officio member of the Greenfield Historic Preservation Commission that he recommended earlier this year as the group that will oversee the development of the Historic Preservation Area set aside at Botetourt Center at Greenfield.
Seven of the members approved by the supervisors are Botetourt residents and six are non-residents but are affiliated with historic organizations that have ties to the county.
Besides those associated with historic or preservation-related organizations, the supervisors also each appointed a “citizen” member, although most had ties to an historic group.
The members and the organizations they represent are:
• Lynne Bolton, Botetourt County Public Schools
• Judy Morris, Friends of Greenfield Preston Plantation
• Wendy Warren, Col. William Preston Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (non-resident).
• Roblyn Brand, Botetourt County Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution.
• John Rader, Botetourt County Historical Society
• Edward Preston, Historic Fincastle Inc.
• Curtis Brown, The Countywide League
• John Bradshaw, Fincastle Resolutions Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution (non-resident)
• Jim Johnston, Mountain Valley Preservation Alliance (non-resident)
• Eugene Journiette, Supervisor Steve Clinton’s appointee (non-resident).
• Danny Kyle, Supervisor Jack Leffel’s appointee (also a member of Friends of Greenfield Preston Plantation and former member of Greenfield Preservation Advisory Commission)
• David Marcum, Supervisor Billy Martin’s appointee (non-resident, chaired Greenfield Preservation Advisory Commission)
• Rupert Cutler, Supervisor Mac Scothorn’s appointee (non-resident, former member of Greenfield Preservation Advisory Commission)
• Warner Barnett, Supervisor Ray Sloan’s appointee.
Lewis & Clark Legacy Trail Signs
Cody Sexton told the supervisors that grants for three Lewis & Clark Eastern Legacy Trail sites in the county have been approved and signs for the sites may be erected. Two are county-owned sites— the Botetourt County Courthouse and the Botetourt Historical Museum— and one is private— at Santilane— all in Fincastle.
The Lewis & Clark Signage Program was developed to promote Meriwether Lewis’ and William Clark’s connections to historic sites along and near the Virginia Lewis & Clark Eastern Legacy Trail.
The signs are designed to increase awareness and appreciation of life events of the Lewis & Clark Expedition both prior to and after the journey into the Louisiana Purchase in the early 1800s; to enable scholarship by marking new documented Lewis & Clark historic sites, and to honor the heritage and culture of individuals who built, maintained and protected the historic sites.
Virginia’s Great Valley Lewis & Clark Eastern Legacy Trail organization and the Lewis & Clark Trail Heritage Foundation approved the signs in Botetourt. Those organizations pay for the signs, but they must be erected and maintained locally.
A fourth sign did not get approval in this round of applications that were due October 1, Sexton said. That sign was planned for Greenfield Plantation. He said to qualify for a sign there must be an interpretive marker.
Sexton said third parties pay for the sign installations and maintenance, so there will be no county funds involved.
Botetourt County Historical Society Executive Director Weldon Martin told the supervisors once the signs are installed, the sites will be listed on the Lewis & Clark Heritage Foundation website so people will know where they are.
Sexton also told the supervisors that Friends of Greenfield Preston Plantation are working on establishing a Virginia Historical Highway Marker at Greenfield.
In other business, the supervisors:
• Reappointed Sam Foster as the Blue Ridge District representative to the Botetourt Planning Commission
• Reappointed Amy Baker as the Fincastle District representative and Barbara Hawkins as the Valley District representatives on the Botetourt Library Board of Trustees
• Approved a memorandum of understanding (MU) with Virginia Western Community College (VWCC) regarding the use of Greenfield Education and Training Center. The county will now have use of the whole upstairs of the center and some of the spare downstairs area. The county will contribute $30,000 for utilities over the course of the agreement that runs into 2020.
The Virginia Community College System used part of the center as a data center, but that has been moved to its new Shared Services Center in Daleville, and the county is in need of data center space.
Some of the space the county will assume control over is leased to others right now and those leases will stay in effect until June 30, 2019.
VWCC’s lease with the county runs through May 2020. The MU notes there is value in continuing a lease with the college for workforce development.
• Agreed to hold a public hearing on amendments to the county’s agreement with County Waste on what can be taken to the county landfill.
• Passed a resolution supporting I-81 corridor improvement funding.