The Colonel Abram Penn Chapter met on May 8 for a baked chicken luncheon at Landmark Center. The group of 11 members and one prospective member also enjoyed dessert.
Regent Louise Hansen called the meeting to order and ask for the program to be presented.
The program entitled “Bob White Bridge Dilemma” was presented by a member Elva Haden. She caught everyone’s attention immediately with the four-part prop of photographs that she compiled and displayed. The first part was about the beginning construction in 1920. The covered bridge had a span of 80 feet with fresh Smith River water flowing underneath. The bridge was owned by Patrick County and later was on the National Register of Bridges.
The second part showed pictures of the use of the bridge. It was a big part of the community. People enjoyed driving or riding bikes through it. The area was used as a background for weddings, picnics, children’s playground, fishing and as an added scenic attraction.
The third part of the program was about the destruction of the bridge. In 2016 rain continued for five days The river overflowed and kept rising. The road was blocked, so no one witnessed the bridge washing away at around 11 a.m. September 29, 2015. Part of the bridge was later found downstream. If anyone knows the whereabouts of the plaque, please notify Haden or a DAR member. This needs to be preserved.
The fourth part was about the future. At a board of supervisors meeting in March, four of the five supervisors voted to support a resolution to build a replica of the Bob White Covered Bridge. A fund has already been started for the bridge. A DAR Chapter member then moved to contribute to help with replacement of the bridge. The concrete supports have been checked by engineers and will be used for the new bridge.
The chapter business meeting continued with the Pledge of Allegiance and the American Creed. The NSDAR President General message was read by Mary Ann Franklin.
Committee reports were given as follows:
Catheryn Vaughn in the flag minute displayed a book of former President George W. Bush’s paintings of veterans who he had become acquainted with and admired. Her Indian Minute was about the “United in Protest” of the Lakota Indians in North Dakota against the pipeline going through their reservation.
In the Conservation Minute Onie Vaughn talked about the benefits of native plants which benefit wildlife with food and shelter.
The Health Minute by Flo Bell was about benefits of Vitamin D. This vitamin helps in cell replication and works against illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis and IBS.
The National Defense Report by Regent Hansen quoted the text on the Lincoln Memorial “We truly do owe the blessings of liberty to all those who went before us to secure our freedoms”.
The meeting ended with reminders of the regent lunch in Roanoke and Fall Forum in Richmond.