This Was Vienna, Virginia – by Mayo & Connie Stuntz
The definitive book on Vienna’s history through the early 20th century, written by Connie and Mayo Stuntz. Newly reprinted hard copies and soft copies are available at the Freeman Store.
On Sunday, August 7, from 2-4:00 PM, longtime Vienna resident .
This Was Vienna, Virginia, written in 1987, is 384 pages long with 413 illustrations including photographs, maps, and sketches, presenting a detailed history of the Vienna area. From the early times of the Native Americans, land grants, and the 1742 Fairfax County Court House near Tysons Corner, the book chronicles the evolution of 14 Vienna area 18th and early 19th century plantations/farms and notes the origins of early roads and mills. Then more general chapters fall into place, covering early 19th century, the Civil War, post-Civil War, Vienna schools, doctors and churches, the 1890 incorporation of Vienna, and up through the first half of the 20th century. The book is a must-have for anyone interested in Vienna’s history, particularly those new to the greater Vienna area. The book is available in hardcover and paper-back versions from Historic Vienna, Inc. (the Freeman Store and Museum).
This 1987 legacy book is filled with nearly 400 pages of history, photos, maps and stories about the Town. Vienna’s history helps define the Town’s sense of place. For more information, call (703) 938-5187.
By Mike Berger
Each Wednesday from June 24 through August 5, Historic Vienna (the Freeman Store and Museum), 131 Church Street, NE, will continue the Stories and Sprinkles program for children at the Historic Vienna Little Library just behind the Freeman Store. The program will begin at 1pm and after the stories, the kids (any age) can enjoy a run through the sprinklers on the lawn of the Vienna Town Green.
Historic Vienna will also be participating in each of the Afternoons on Church Street, the next being Sunday, June 28, from 1-5 PM (the theme will be Stories and Scavengers), and then Sunday, July 26 (the theme that day will be Party on the Porch). At the June event Historic Vienna will offer a wide variety of vintage children’s games (tiddlywinks, hop-scotch, hoops, and more). There will be homemade ice cream to churn and enjoy. On the porch historian John Vrana will host “A Chat with Abram,” a conversation set in the 19th Century with Abram Lydecker, answering questions and talking about the Alexandria, Loudoun and Hampshire railroad, 19th Century agriculture, and issues of the day. The July event will feature Prudence Traut’s quilting display and demonstration at the Freeman Store. From 2-3 PM, Mr. Vrana will again be on the porch presenting “Music of the Civil War”; a program of traditional music of the American Civil War, the Irish, and the 19th century. He will feature mandolin, concertina, harmonica, and other instruments. Events are rain or shine.
Bring your children, listen to stories, play the games, enjoy the presentations and demonstrations, and, of course, peruse our vintage items and used books for sale every time you come to the Store, as well as a wide assortment of gifts and a great selection of old-fashioned candies.
ViVa! Vienna! – a family and community oriented celebration of Memorial Day and the greater Vienna Community spirit.
Amusement rides, food, crafts, vendors and entertainment – fun for all ages!
Vendors include handcraft artisans, retail vendors, professionals, political parties and candidates, and community and non-profit organizations.
50,000 guests and over 300 vendors
100% of proceeds go to charitable, community and humanitarian organizations.
Secession Vote Will Be Reenacted in Vienna
In May 1861, Vienna residents assembled in front of the Lydecker Store (today the Freeman Store and Museum, 131 Church Street, SE), to vote on the referendum for Virginia to secede from the Union. The vote was 76 against the ordinance of secession, 44 for it. Mr. Earnest Birdsong, the first to cast a vote said, “We are now a separate nation, my vote is for secession from the Union.” However, another, United States federal sailor Nathaniel Bosworth, said that while his allegiance was with Virginia, he believed, “The South will lose the war, and I vote to reject the ordinance.”
On May 16, 2015, at 1:00 p.m., a reenactment of the 1861 vote will take place at the exact same location, the steps of the Freeman Store and Museum. Civilians from the 19th century will cast their vote, for or against seceding from the Commonwealth of Virginia, an event that was repeated in 1861 at more than a dozen other locations in Fairfax County, as well as across Virginia. While the majority of Fairfax County and Virginia, as a whole, voted to leave the Union, Vienna voted against secession and in favor of remaining in the Union. The public is invited to attend and participate in the reenactment.
Date: December 13 and 14
Time: 1:30-3:30 PM
Location: The Freeman Store and Museum
In addition to officially opening the holiday season in Vienna with his arrival at the Church Street Stroll on Dec. 1st, Santa Claus and his elves will welcome visitors to the Freeman Store at 131 Church Street, NE, Vienna, on Saturday Dec. 13 and Sunday Dec. 14, 2014, from 1:30 to 3:30 pm each day.
Parents often comment that this is the perfect “Santa Experience,” low-key, no-hassle, non-commercial and fun for all ages. Santa’s special chair is positioned next to the gorgeous Historic Vienna tree in the upstairs parlor of the Freeman Store.
Santa is a master at calming the jitters of first-time visitors and welcomes the many annual returnees with his best “ho-ho-ho.” Children who may be a bit nervous are encouraged to sit and watch for awhile – and most end up enthusiastically telling Santa their Christmas wishes!
Free and open to the public, no reservations, the perfect setting, the jolliest Santa, the very best photo opportunity – we have it all!
Questions? Call (703) 938-5187.
The Fall Membership Meeting of Historic Vienna, Inc., will be held on Thursday, November 6 at 7:30 pm in the Council Chamber of Vienna’s Town Hall, 127 Center Street South. There will be a brief business meeting, during which elections will be held for Board of Directors positions. The meeting is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.
Our speaker for the evening will be Kathleen Bartoloni-Tuazon, who will discuss her newest book, “For Fear Of An Elective King: George Washington and the Presidential Title Controversy of 1789.” In a day when harsh and even ugly rhetoric clashes with effusive, over-the-top praise in our daily political dialogue, it is somewhat strange to think that in the early days of our country, the Senate and House debated how to address the new President, considering over thirty titles. What could easily be dismissed as a minor etiquette issue had far-reaching implications as the new Republic struggled with how to implement the details of the Constitution, the role of everyday people and Washington’s own deep understanding of the implications of the chosen title. Not so simple a question as at first glance!
Dr. Bartoloni-Tuazon is a Visiting Scholar at the First Federal Congress Project and has extensively researched the Early National Period in American history. Her lecture is a must for students and for lovers of history.
Date: December 1
Time: 6:00-9:00 PM
Location: Church Street
Program of Events:
Church Street closes at 5:45
Santa arrives at 6:15
Santa and Mayor light the tree at 6:20
Music at the Showmobile Stage:
- Wolftrap Elementary Singers
- Louise Archer Elementary Singers
- Green Hedges School Jazz Ensemble
- Emmanuel Lutheran Church Revelation Ensemble
- Fairfax Jubilaires
- Vienna Community Band
- Vienna Falls Chorus of Sweet Adelines
Historic Structures will be open:
- Freeman Store and Museum
- Little Library
- Train Station
- Knights of Columbus (formerly First Baptist)
- Vienna Presbyterian’s Old Chapel
Other drop-in activities:
- CHO Canned Food Collection (No expired food, please! Boxes Located by the Freeman Store Porch)
- Supervised bonfires with marshmallows for roasting
- Hot chocolate
- Petting zoo
Historic Vienna, Inc.
Merchants of Church Street
Town of Vienna Department of Parks & Recreation
Questions? Call us at (703) 938-5187!
Green Hedges School, Historic Vienna Inc., The Friends of Patrick Henry Library and the Town of Vienna are excited to unveil the Little Free Library at the Little Library of Vienna and dedicate it to the memory of Jane Seeman.
Tuesday September 23, 2014 at 4:30 PM in front of the Little Library of Vienna, 131 Church Street NE, Vienna VA 22180.
Flyer for event:
Little Free Library Announcement Flyer 3
Entertainment by students from Green Hedges School, Thoreau Middle School and Madison High School
Meet the Cat in the Hat and visit the children’s crafts table
Refreshments courtesy of Whole Foods and Café Amouri
Call 703-938-0405 for more information
In the event of rain the dedication will take place at Patrick Henry Library, 101 Maple Ave. East in Vienna
*What is a Little Free Library? It is a “take a book, return a book” gathering place where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book (or two) and bring back another book to share. Read more at
Time: 10:00 AM
Date: Saturday, September 13
Location: Flint Hill Cemetery in Oakton
Local historian Jim Lewis will lead a tour of historic Flint Hill Cemetery in Oakton on Saturday, September 13 at 10 am. He will share interesting aspects of the cemetery, including stories of prominent Vienna residents and some of the 27 Civil War era military veterans, 4 of them Mosby’s Rangers, who are interred there. Sponsored by Historic Vienna, Inc., free and open to the public, no reservations required. Meet at Flint Hill Cemetery at the corner of Chain Bridge Road (Route 123) and Courthouse Road, next to the Church of the Brethren. For information call 703 994 9054.
Historic Vienna, Inc. would like to remind Scout leaders, organizers of school field trips, and program/activity chairs of any group that we offer tours of the historic Freeman Store, customized to the age, size and interests of the tour group. Our docents use anecdotes and objects from HVI’s collections to make the history of Vienna and the Freeman Store come alive.
The free tours are by appointment only, open to any group. For more information, call Mike Cheselka at (703) 483-0369, or call the Freeman Store at (703) 938-9157!