Reverend William M Jackson (1809 - 1855)

Mr. George Wythe Feild & Mrs. Laura Jane Bingham Feild


Our History 


1855       The Reverend William M Jackson (1809-1855) founded the “Jackson Orphan Asylum” in 1855 after a break out of Yellow Fever. He stayed to care for the sick, bury the dead and comfort the bereaved. He was so touched by the plight of the orphaned children, that he converted the Lecture Room of Christ Episcopal Church into a temporary home for them.  He was the last Clergyman to die of Yellow Fever, and at one time the only one able to minister to the suffering people. In the words of the Rev. Jackson; "What is faith, what is life, what is strength, if not to be exercised and employed in such times as these." 


1856       The General Assembly chartered an organization on February 26, 1856 “Jackson Orphan Asylum”. Mr. Jacksons name was given it to honor the memory of this unselfish, dedicated man of God. For the next 70 years the orphanage would provide a home for needy children throughout the region, its staff working to find adoptive parents as its board of managers defied the conventions of the day, refusing to let females under the age of thirteen or males under fifteen be “bound out,” or sold into indentured servitude, as was the custom of most orphanages of the period. Jackson Orphan Asylum, Norfolk, Virginia, Records, 1859-1922.


1859       The first Board of Trustees is formed which consisted of five church members as well as the rectors of St. Paul's and Christ Church, Norfolk, Virginia.


1860       The Board of Women Visitors was established to supervise the affairs of the Orphan Asylum. As well, the Orphanage Asylum was moved to Free Mason Street in Norfolk, Virginia. 


1864       In May, it was decided that they would move to the building occupied by the Norfolk Female Institute due to the lack of funds.


1870       The A resolution was passed so that the children could learn a useful trade. 


1889       In January, they again relocated to 72 Charlotte Street, Norfolk, Virginia.


1990       In reviewing the 1900 Census, it says the land where Walnut Grove is "excludes Emporia town. Which, bounded on north by the Nottoway River on south by the Three Creeks (Northern ranch) beginning at the Brunswick County line, and following said creek to where the Atlantic Coast Railroad crosses the line of the town of Emporia. On the east by the counties of Sussex and Southampton. On west by Brunswick County. Belfield became part of Town and later the Independent City of Emporia."


There are currently hundreds of communities in Virginia that could be considered unincorporated towns. Most of these simply lost their identity through name changes, or growth and absorption into other municipal entities. Magisterial districts are defined by United States Census Bureau as a minor civil division that is a nonfunctioning subdivision used in conducting elections or recording land ownership, and are not governments. Greensville County is divided into four, Belfield, Hicksford, Nottoway and Zion.


1902       The children started spending summers elsewhere. They first visited Miller School in Albemarle County and then started spending summers in Bedford City. It was also voted by the Board that school age girls would attend public school.


1904       There are a few letters written by Margaret Poe Fisher to Marian N. Fisher while she was a teacher at Jackson Orphan Asylum. In the 1909 Norfolk and Berkley City Directory published by Hill Directory Co. lists Marian N. Fisher as Matron of the Jackson Orphan Asylum located at 112 Charlotte, Norfolk, Virginia.


 1918       The Orphan Asylum again moved to Park Place which was located at 30th and Debree Avenue, Norfolk, Virginia.


 1919       Prior to the opening of Jackson-Feild Episcopal Home for Girls in Greensville County, it was an era of economic expansion for the area. Emporia was filled with bustling streets with an odd mixture of wagons, early automobiles and the sound of chugging steam engines at the train depot echoing above the cacophony of car horns, nays and the clip pity clop of horse-drawn traffic.


During this time, the Reverend Norman F Marshall at the age of 61, was the Rector of Meherrin Parish, Purdy, Virginia and he started a movement to establish an orphanage for girls due to the Nation-Wide Campaign of the Protestant Episcopal Church.


Grace Church in Purdy had its beginnings in a barn owned by Mrs. Ann Catherine Wyatt Feild (DOB 3-23-1802); the grandmother of George Feild for who the Home is named. The girls from the Episcopal Home for Girls made up a large part of the choir and of the Youth Group of the church. They shared in many of the activities of the Parish. There has always been a close relationship between the members of Grace Church and the people of Jackson-Feild Home.


1920       July 1, 1920 the official “Episcopal Home for Girls” was opened in a house built for a Rectory by Grace Church, but never used as such. Dorothy Louise Hart was the first girl to arrive. At the end of 1920, there were 6 girls in residence. And a very young and inexperienced Miss Edith Gage had volunteered to help and was employed as Matron.


1921       In June, the Norfolk Episcopal Churches ends 86-yearsof support so the Orphan Asylum now becomes a diocesan institution.


1922       In May of 1922, Mr. and Mrs. George W. Feild gave their ancestral home, “Walnut Grove” and seventy acres of land to the Home. The Reverend Marshall started renovating in July 1923. Miss Gage, with ten girls, moved into Walnut Grove and it was to be the only building until 1963. It became an institution of the Diocese of Southern Virginia and underwent renovation to finish the basement, dining room and kitchen. A water tower and tank with a pumping engine were also added to the grounds behind Walnut Grove but has long since been removed. Walnut Grove is now used for administration offices, reception, classrooms, library, canteen, staff quarters and laundry.


This estate descended to Mr. George Wythe Feild, from the Wyatt family, who were descendants of Sir Francis Wyatt, one of the first governors of Virginia. The house was built in 1825 by slaves. The sills which decorate the ceiling in the basement dining room were hewn by hand. The wainscoting all over the house, which is three feet high, is said to have been sawed from one poplar tree, and one whole board is two feet wide. The mantels, five in number, are hand carved and are always objects of admiration. The house has twenty rooms, four measuring 19 x 21 feet. The basement dining room has seated as many as one hundred people, with space for a stage with curtains, where plays and pageants have been given by the girls. This basement room is also used for a study hall, sewing room and business office.


At that time, Norman Fitzhugh Marshall was Superintendent of the Home and saw to the improvements that were made afterwards. It was under his ministry they renovated Walnut Grove with lighting and heating systems, a large addition was built, the farmers house was completed and seventy-nine acres of land were purchased from Mr. Feild which with the original Feild gift, made a total of almost 150 acres.


Mr. Marshall’s aims for the girls were to " provide a home which would radiate the atmosphere of an ideal natural home; the girls to share in keeping of the home, as they would in one of their own, so that they could learn the skills necessary for homemaking; to give them public school education and as much vocational training as their abilities lay; and to make religion a part of their everyday life".


As more girls arrived they added a wash house which was later converted into a nice little cottage, furnished and used for guests, unfortunately, this charming cottage no longer exists but sat where the Robinson-Withers Recreational Hall is now.


1923         The 1923 Census read: residential care for 10 white girls; under the auspices of the Protestant Episcopal Church; Established in 1920.


1925         In September of 1925 it was decided in the interested of economy, the Jackson Orphan Asylum of Norfolk and the Episcopal Home for Girls should combine their work and pool their resources. It was in total agreement that a country location would be “socially desirable and healthful” for the twelve girls still in Norfolk to move with the twenty girls from Greensville County. For five years the Rectory continued to be used as a home for the six girls whose health necessitated special care.


The hyphenated name "Jackson-Feild" was chosen to honor the memory of the two great men who had the faith to make it happen so the Home was chartered by the General Assembly.


During the great depression the plans for expansion of Jackson-Feild were not realized but due to the discomforts of the original house brought about the construction of the rear and north additions. The large sun porch addition was used to house the girls up until Tucker Cottage was built.


The Capital District Kiwanis received Christmas baskets from schools and churches, and had a tree and distributed gifts for twenty-six orphan girls, and gave them a moving picture entertainment.


1926         The Sacred Healing - The Methodist Conference: The Orphanage Jackson-Feild Home for Girls in Jarratt has residential care for 30 orphan and homeless girls under Protestant Episcopal auspices.


1927         The Capital District Kiwanis gave a Christmas party to the children from the Jackson-Feild Orphanage Home. There was a tree, while each child received a suitable present with a dollar bill attached.


1928 The Kiwanis Club Notes: The children from the Jackson Orphanage Feild Home were entertained at dinner on December 15, and there was a tree and a gift for each of the thirty children present.


1929 The twenty-six orphans from Jackson-Feild Home were given a Christmas party with Santa Claus and presents. The children contributed to the program with songs and recitations. This was an annual affair of the Kiwanis club.


1930'sBy the 1930 Census, it names the land that the Jackson-Feild Home for Girls located as part of the Belfield Magisterial District, East part. The Federal Census also has information on Jackson-Feild but never had a Census Team Transcription to type the information (listed under Sussex County, VA - Microfilm #T626-2461).


In 1931 at Christmas the Capital District Kiwanis club entertained the orphans of the Jackson-Feild Home in Greensville County with a Christmas tree. A present is given to each of the children of the Home by Santa Claus; these gifts are donated by the members of the Kiwanis club.


July 1932 - There is a consecrated Altar, set into the side of a hill, in a spot called "Fairy Glen". The altar was built by Mr. Marshall from stones the girls brought out of the river. The Glen is described as having a large stone flat on one side with a raised back, making an ideal fireplace for summer cookouts. It is on one side of the Glen and the Altar on the other. It was dedicated in July 1932 by Mr. Marshall, who said in his talk;      "This combines worship and play. Play on one side of the stream - the level place - dedicated to the patter of bare feet and the happy abandon of childhood; and on the hill, a reminder of the words "remembers now thy Creator in the days of thy youth". "Miss Gage added, "and God does seem very near in the place that nature has provided for the children".


The 1933 Census read: 27 dependent white girls age 4 to 12 lived at Jackson-Feild Episcopal Home for Girls. 


Mr. Marshall resigned in 1933 just prior to his 75th birthday but moved to a lovely little cottage in sight of the Home where he still found opportunities for helping. He passed away at the age of 91 and is buried at Grace Church and considered “Jackson-Feild” the outstanding accomplishment of his life.


Ms. Gage was then made Superintendent and during her forty years of devotion during her tenure, the Episcopal Church women of the Diocese of Southern Virginia began to support the home and the Bishop of Southern Virginia was appointed to the Board of Managers as an ex-officio member. Keeping in mind the aims, as set forth by Mr. Marshall, she supervised all the canning and preserving of the farm products and saw to it that the girls learned how by helping. They were all taught to be homemakers, as well as given the opportunity to study for a career if they wished. She made Jackson-Feild, not an institution, but a HOME.  It is a fitting tribute to say her name is the synonym for Jackson-Feild Home and that her girls used more affectionate titles than superintendent - often that of Mother or Mama, or Ma Gage.


Also during the 1930's there was a small farm house for the farmer who worked the land and supervised the girls in the fields. He was in charge of the cow barn, chicken coop, the pigs, the horse barn, woodshed and the washhouse. The girls continued to work the fields to bring in the fruits and vegetables for canning and serving with meals. Mr. Robert C Talley had a new brick home built behind Darden Cottage in late 1960's. During these years, Jackson-Feild remained nearly self-sufficient by growing and preserving all its food. In 1934 the home received national attention in "The Living Church" which related a wonderful homelike situation described in the Annual Report of that year: "During the summer we put up 1,500 quart jars of vegetables and meats. The latter included port, sausage and veal. We have killed three "fatted calves" and one cow, though it took some of us some time to get accustomed to the idea of eating "Laura", the kind old cow, on whom many of the girls had learned the art of milking. We corned three-fourths of Laura."


The rich tradition of using agricultural resources to help defray expenses continues through the 1970's. In addition to leasing farmland for planting tobacco and peanuts, the girls at Jackson-Feild are successfully doing experimental farming with pepper plants. In the late 1970's as a major part of the home's work-for-pay program, the girls earn funds from the pepper sales to help meet personal expenses. They also gain valuable experience in budgeting, management and the work ethic.


In 1936 Thirty-six girls lived on campus. The older girls were housed on the 2nd floor and the younger ones on the main floor as well as on the "sleeping porch". The "sleeping porch" was an addition on the right side of Walnut Grove and had no heat source; so Ms. Gage would heat bricks on the old stove to provide warmth for the girls.


Miss Gage also instituted the Annual Homecoming. During this time, the Home concentrated on teaching housewife and trade skills to its young residents. The Home also cared for tuberculosis victims during these years.


1940       During the 1940's a normal day for the girls was to start at 5 AM. Each girl was given a daily chore which needed to be done before school so the day usually started at 5 AM. Each would do their chores, eat breakfast and then off to school in Emporia on the school bus.


As always, they dressed in their Sunday best and continued to attend Grace Church in Purdy, Virginia. Each girl was given money for the church offering (in the 1960's and early 1970's); we were each given a nickel to donate.


1950’s      In 1952, the Episcopal Youth began an interest in the Home. It was in the early fifties that the nature of the residents began to change as many of the girls placed there in the fifties were not orphans, but were placements primarily from the Departments of Social Services due to family hardships. This is not to be confused with the later placements in the very late 1970's when Jackson-Feild became more of a "residential treatment center" than a "home".


In 1952 a Sprinkler System was put in the house. In June of 1956 they got a telephone and with a $500 donation secured a private line.


Ms. Lona Belle Weatherly came to Jackson-Feild in the summer of 1959 and Ms. Gage trained her to take over when she retired later that same year.  Ms. Gage went to live in nearby Callaville and died early in 1963 and never got to see the expansion that she had dreamed of for so long. During this time there was no interruption in the running of the home.


1960’s     Jackson-Feild began to expand in the 1960's. The Maria Washington Tucker Cottage (housed the younger girls) and Gage Dining Hall was built in 1963. The Rectory was built 1965 to house a Clergyman (Rev George J Smith) and his family, but is now the Training Center. The Lallie Darden Cottage which housed the older girls followed in 1967. With these additions to Jackson-Feild, the staff then utilized Walnut Grove with offices and living space as they had grown to between 40-60 girls on campus.


It was doing this time that changes were most noticeable as Jackson-Feild now provided a temporary separation from a young women and her family. The home worked with parents providing quarterly trial home visits and extended semi-annual visits by their daughters. Those that did not have families to go to during the holidays went to private homes of families of churches in the surrounding areas such as Thanksgiving. During the summers the girls were able to go home for 2-weeks as well as taking a 1-week trip to Sandbridge, Virginia and to a lake cottage along the border of North Carolina.


1970’s     The expansion continued with the addition of the Robinson-Withers Recreational Hall in 1971, the swimming pool in 1977 (which has now been filled in), and All Saints Chapel completed in 1979. During the mid-seventies, the board of managers, realizing that the need for traditional orphanages had all but disappeared, began to re-evaluate the program to better meet the needs of a changing society. In the late 1970's they steered the focus of Jackson-Field to meet the changing needs of children from one of providing shelter to one with a residential treatment focus. There were three directors during the period: The Rev. George J. Smith (1966 – 1975), The Rev. Robert O. Johnston (Aug 1975 – Feb 1979) and Stephen J. Martin (1979 – 1983). Their new purpose was to provide a young woman temporary separation from her family for the purpose of eventual reunification and to learn to adopt a system of positive values which will help her become a contributing member of society. The renunciations normally occurred within 12 to 18 months so the traditional stay had shortened considerably with the changes of our society. Before this, the girls lived there for several years at a time and attended public schools in Emporia and Greensville County. The institution continued to change with the times as the first African-American residents came to live at Jackson-Feild during the late 1970's and the Home became fully integrated.


When Mr. Martin became the Director in 1979 there were only eight girls in residence, but the Home was catching up with the "Changing Times," there were now twenty-eight girls and a waiting list. During those last eighteen months, programs had been developed to serve teenage girls with slight to moderate behavioral and/or emotional problems. "The emphasis is not that these are problem girls, but rather that they are girls with problems.


1980’s     Mr. Stephen D. Ankiel became Director of the Home in 1983. The treatment focus was enlarged to include a family services program to meet the growing demands of society and those in need of its unique services. Placements began to come from juvenile courts as well as from social services. In 1984 they hired a full time chaplain seeking to improve the spiritual care of the girls. Until then they attended the church of their choice in the surrounding area. A new on-campus education program began in 1986. Jackson-Feild also took on Eleventh House, a facility in Richmond, Virginia, which offers preparation for independent living and provides prenatal care for pregnant girls, a service not offered on the Main Campus. With the addition of the other facilities, the name is officially changed from "Jackson-Feild Home" to "Jackson-Feild Homes".


During his tenure at Jackson-Feild, he graciously worked with Linda Sue "Hall" and our Alumnae Group to let us continue to have access to the grounds to hold our annual "Homecoming" which included the girls that were currently there. In the meantime, the older generation chose to hold their own at a local home in Jarratt, Virginia. As of 2009 we have combined forces and hold it at Grace Church in Purdy, Virginia with a scheduled visit to Jackson-Feild to include a guided tour. It is during this tour we are able to reach out and speak of our own stories in hopes of letting the girls know that life is in fact what you make of it and you can overcome obstacles and be a productive adult in today's society.


In 1980 Margaret Dillard Johnston wrote "The history of Jackson-Feild Episcopal Home", a home for girls at "Walnut Grove". It was researched and edited by Mrs. Lewis Zirkle Johnston, Jr. It is listed in the online catalog at the Library of Virginia.


1990’s     September1990 the Jackson-Feild Homes Foundation is established and receives IRS approval as a non-profit Entity. The Gwaltney Cottage and Gwaltney School, a fully accredited educational facility, were added to the campus in 1991. In December 1993, Robert E. Nicholls became Executive Director.


In 1994 a school was added to the existing campus programs. The Gwaltney School began graduating students with various diplomas in June 1998 and continued doing so until the present.


Gwaltney School, an institution created by Jackson-Feild Homes for educating troubled young ladies in residence at its Jarratt, Virginia facility, specializes in working with regular students and students with ED, LD, OHI, ADHD, or ADD classifications.


First Step cottage was constructed in 1996.


The Jackson-Feild Homes Foundation was established in 1997. It is now a Virginia non-stock corporation organized and operated exclusively for charitable and educational purposes supporting Jackson-Feild Homes. The Foundation provides financial support for programs, special and capital projects assisting neglected, abused and at risk girls in a residential setting.


Their current Mission Statement:  To provide at-risk adolescent females and their children with basic human services, counseling and education in a caring residential environment. To encourage behavior that is respectful of the freedom and dignity of each individual and for the betterment of society. To minister to the families of the girls in order to restore the family unit.


1998 - The Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) launched a public awareness campaign to direct attention to the tragedy of violent child deaths as part of a national initiative to reduce child mortality. This has also been part of the "White House Conference on Children and Youth" as an effective way to accomplish this goal. Jackson-Feild is one of six agencies or organizations in Virginia that participate in this project. The centerpiece is simple - a red flag depicting blue, paper-doll-like figures of children holding hands. In the center, the white chalk outline of a missing child symbolizes the thousands of children lost to violence. The flag is flown on the fourth Friday in April to raise public awareness about this continuing problem.


2000’s     With Mr. Nicholls' retirement in 2001, Mr. Brent Sinnett was appointed Interim Executive Director. A search committee led by Carol Dickinson conducted a national search and D. Rebecca China was called as the new Executive Director of Jackson-Feild Homes.  Ms. China resigned in 2008 and Ms. Tricia Delano was named as Executive Director.


February 11, 2004 Norfolk (posted by Robert Turner) The Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia has slashed its budget by about $400,000 this year to offset a drop in contributions caused largely by parishes upset with the national church's endorsement last summer of a gay bishop. Charles G. Pfeifer, the diocese's treasurer, said the diocese also eliminated contributions to the Jackson-Feild Home; last year the dioceses gave $50,000 to the girls' home, which assists abused girls.


In September 2004, responding to needs expressed by agencies throughout the Commonwealth, Jackson-Feild Homes expanded its vision to include the Mothers' & Infants' program on the Jarratt campus. The program serves girls age 13-20 who are pregnant or are teen mothers and their babies.


Christmas of 2005 - The Ann Mason Guild of Pohick Church in Lorton, VA generously gave holiday items to the twelve girls of Marshall Cottage. A request for a microwave oven to be used in their newly renovated cottage was also honored.


2006 - The Commonwealth Health Research Board (CHRB) provides grant funding for creative and innovative research projects that have scientific merit and hold promise for maximizing human health benefits for citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The CHRB supports both new research efforts and the expansion for continuation of existing research. They granted $100,000 in funding to Jackson-Feild a nonprofit organization.


February 13, 2006 - St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Newport News, VA - 2006 Annual Congregational Meeting - The Episcopal Church Women Circle 1 - Members individually participate in St. Andrew's various Christian Formation opportunities, Circle 1 continues its focus on Outreach. While Biblical history will always remain important to them, many feel a special need, as Jesus did, to identify with people surrounding us who are too easy to ignore, because of differences in race, addictions, lack of jobs, education and without safe housing, regardless of weather conditions. This year they supported Jackson-Feild Homes. (Esie M Duval) Circle 2 - Is a ministry. Their focus has been outreach to their local community and to sharing their journeys with other women of the church. They begin meetings with prayer and devotion and end with prayer requests and prayer. Their members describe themselves as "Fishers of Women." Circle 2 provides a way to be involved in the church and to be part of the greater Episcopal Church. Jackson-Feild Home in Jarratt was a Beneficiary of their Outreach Funds. (Melissa Saunders). The Vestry approved an annual budget for Jackson-Feild Homes at $2,500.


July 2006 - Becky China writes, we are changing our image on paper to better reflect the positive and bright future waiting for our girls upon leaving us here at Jackson-Feild Homes. If you check the cover page of our newsletter you will see a view of the girl with the sun shining over her. That is the image we want to create for each young lady who enters our doorway. That is the reason we exist!


December 12, 2006 - The Prince Edward County Board of Supervisors held their regular meeting at the Courthouse and upon the motion of Mr. Moore approved payment under the Comprehensive Services Act payment of $4,384 to Jackson-Feild Homes.


December 27, 2006 - Style Weekly "Giving Back", compiled by Jason Roop.  A week after Christmas it is time to figure out where to put all your new stuff; but before you do how about choosing just one more present for someone who needs it. For the fourth year Style Weekly - with the help of nonprofit networks resource Connect Richmond - asked local nonprofits to send them their wish lists. Those gifts ranged from $5 to $150,000 that would make a difference. Listed under Education and Training is Jackson-Feild Homes (in Richmond and Jarratt, VA). A residential and educational option for at-risk girls 13-21. Their gift pick was a scholarship for a pregnant teen to receive education, therapeutic services and behavioral support on campus during her pregnancy and after her child is born, enabling her to complete schooling and learn parenting skills. Price: Up to $50,000.


2007 - Again, The Commonwealth Health Research Board (CHRB) granted $100,000 in funding to Jackson-Feild a nonprofit organization.


April 2007 - St. Matthias' Episcopal Church in Midlothian, VA listed in their newsletter "The Channel" that the members generously made a $1,500 donation through their "Next Step" Budget. This indeed "God's compassion at work in the world."


November 2007 - Christmas Gifts for the Girls of Marshall Cottage - The Jackson-Feild homes are special homes for at-risk girls between the ages of 13 and 18 years. The Ann Mason Guild with Pohick Church, in Lorton, VA sponsors the girls residing in Marshall Cottage which houses approximately 10 girls at one time. In most cases, the girls remain at Jackson-Feild for about one year. This Christmas season, as in years past, the Guild is planning to purchase a variety of gifts for the girls. Particularly popular have been nightshirts, bathrobes, slipper socks, phone cards, novels, Playstation games, crafts, personal care items, and journals. The gifts must be in the mail prior to Thanksgiving. Therefore, the collection of monetary donations will begin immediately so that the requests can be fulfilled.


December 11, 2007 - The Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP) the Dance for Delegate Roselyn donated $125 for community goodwill.


2008 - The Commonwealth Health Research Board (CHRB) provides grant funding for creative and innovative research projects that have scientific merit and hold promise for maximizing human health benefits for citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The CHRB supports both new research efforts and the expansion for continuation of existing research. They granted $100,000 in funding to Jackson-Feild a nonprofit organization.


2008 - St John's Episcopal Church in Hampton, VA has many opportunities through their Mission & Outreach Commission for their congregation to help people in need in their community and the world.  A great deal of our funding comes from the Nickerson Fund and the Charitable Trust, which have been dedicated to outreach concerns.  From these funds, St. John’s annually contributes to Jackson-Feild Homes.


2008 - St. Matthias Episcopal Church in Midlothian, VA - the members of the Outreach Commission gave a generous pledge of $1,500 to Jackson-Feild Home from their Next Step Mission Fund. All monies go into a restricted fund that can be used for nothing else except into the community to help those in need.


In October of 2008, the http://jacksonfeild.org/ website was designed through the VCU School of Mass Communications "Createathon on Campus" where they rally local non-profits with little to no marketing budget and for 24 hours would do pro-bono work for them. Their assignment was to make for them a promotional video. Patrick Benbow who participated said, "That it was rough at times, but it was really cool to see a bunch of people rally together and use the gifts and talents we have to help the non-profit companies help other people. It was an awesome feeling to know that I was helping to impact dozens of lives, maybe even more".


On October 11, 2008, Steven G. Vegh (757-446-2417, steven.vegh@pilotonline.com) with "The Virginia-Pilot" wrote that it announced on Friday that Grace Church in Purdy joined the Anglican District of Virginia, which includes 23 parishes that quit the Episcopal Church. The ordination of a gay man as bishop in 2003 has caused a rift within the denomination. The Episcopal Church has seen an internal split over denominational leaders' endorsement in 2003 of the ordination of a noncelibate gay man as bishop. Traditionalists denounce gay ordination and say the denomination is drifting from orthodox interpretation of Scripture. Rev. Colin C. Cooper who led this congregation criticized the denomination's "general approach to Scripture that seems to say, if we come to Scripture and find something that doesn't fit with the way we think, we'll just reinterpret it." The Purdy congregation has about 40 members and was established around 1840. They formally quit the denomination in June and now give allegiance to the Anglican Church of Uganda and remain part of the worldwide Anglican Communion, the 77 million-member church that includes Episcopalians.


2009 - The Commonwealth Health Research Board (CHRB) again granted $100,000 in funding to Jackson-Feild.


January 5, 2009 - The Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP), the Armstrong for Delegate Ward donated $100, purpose not determined.


May 6, 2009 Richmond, VA (Market Wire) - Boddie-Noell (Hardees) is named major sponsor of the 14th Annual Go Golfing for the Girls tournament. Hardee's restaurants across Virginia have joined Jackson-Feild homes for the 14th consecutive year as a major sponsor of the annual Go Golfing for the Girls tournament. "Jackson-Feild Homes provides invaluable services in our Hardee's communities," said Nick Boddie, co-founder and Vice Chairman of Boddie-Noell Enterprises, the largest Hardee's franchisee in as well as the US Boddie-Noell operates more than 180 restaurants across Virginia. "We believe in the mission and values of Jackson-Feild Homes and have donated over $60,000 since this tournament began. We are proud to be a part of it again this year. The tournament has raised over $260,000 for scholarships and programs since its inception in 1996.


May 25, 2009 - Emmanuel Episcopal Church located in Delaplane, VA held their "Delaplane Strawberry Festival to raise money for the ministries of Emmanuel and their outreach partners to help improve their lives. Jackson-Feild Home for Girls was elected as an outreach partner.


August 2009 - The BB&T Emporia Branch team members considered a number of worthy organizations who are doing good work in the community and chose Jackson-Feild Homes. The team was excited and willing to accept this challenge and Mark Owen, City Executive notes that "Our employees take the welfare and protection of our children very seriously. We want to make a meaningful impact to ensure that at-risk children have the resources they need to succeed." The BB&T Lighthouse Project shined their light on these children by participating and ensuring that all the children were ready to start school with everything they needed. The team went shopping the weekend of August 7th to take advantage of the VA Tax-free moratorium and visited the campus on August 20th to have an ice cream social at which time they presented the school supplies to residents. An article ran in the Emporia Extra on Wednesday, August 26, 2009.


November 12, 2009 - Todd Wetherington wrote an article about Jackson-Feild Homes: Historic institution lends helping hand to troubled youths.


November 20, 2009 Delegate Howell Visits Campus in Jarratt - Delegate Algie Howell, D. 90th District, visited the students of Jackson-Feild Homes' Gwaltney School. Delegate Howell proved much insight and understanding about the many challenges so many young people face in life. He related to the students in a very personal style reaching out to involve their participation in a lively exercise about setting the right priorities in life while encouraging the girls to be open to changing their priorities to help them succeed in achieving their objectives. The visit was part of the Legislators' Series called "The Campaign for Awareness" to encourage our Legislators to learn more about residential treatment options for at-risk girls in the Commonwealth.


January 14, 2010 - Iluka is a world-wide company headquartered in Australia. The US office is located in Stony Creek. They have partnered with Jackson-Feild several times this year donating needed items which are used in the day-to-day operations of the Home. Most recently they donated a 2001 Nissan Pathfinder sports utility van. Matthew Blackwell of Iluka said "Iluka is very proud to be able to support the crucial work of Jackson-Feild. As a local business it provides employment in the county, as charity, it touches the lives of people well beyond this county and the counties where Iluka operates. This SUV will be pressed into service immediately and will replace a van with over 300,000 miles. The fact that it has four-wheel drive is especially valuable during times of inclement weather. Iluka sponsored several girls at Christmas, purchasing gifts from their holiday wish list. The company also donated furniture and household items, as well as audio visual equipment, for the benefit of Jackson-Feild.


February 26, 2010 - Virginia General Assembly 2010 Session - Legislative Information System, House Joint Resolution Number 363: Commending Carson United Methodist Church on the occasion of its 100th anniversary for providing assistance to Jackson-Feild Homes for Girls as well as other facilities.


June 2010 - Calming the Inner Storm. An article written by Tina Eshleman about borderline personality disorder. Studies show that many borderline cases involve a history of abuse, neglect, or separation as young children and 40 to 70 percent of people affected by this disorder have been sexually abused according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). http://richmondmagazine.com.


July 1, 2010 - The Progress (Petersburg, VA) - Iluka Resources Inc. donates SUV. Iluka is a world-wide company headquartered in Australia. Their United States office is located in Stony Creek. Iluka is a major company in the production, sales and marketing of titanium mineral products and zircon. It is the largest producer of zircon in the world. They partnered with Jackson-Feild Homs, a 155-year old residential treatment program for needy and at-risk girls located in Jarratt on several fronts to ensure that the Home fills its mission of service to needy and at risk girls.


July 15, 2010 Colonial Heights Rotary is a small club based in Colonial Heights, Virginia and is always looking to contribute to their community. They sponsor scholarship programs and numerous other charities in the Tri-cities area and had a speaker come and discuss the needs of Jackson-Feild Homes. It was noted that even though they are in need financially, they could also use help doing some clean-up/maintenance around their home. Since they have been looking for service projects to contribute to, they are certainly considering Jackson-Feild as a possibility.


On October 8, 2010, the http://jacksonfeild.com/ Alumnae website went live. The website was the brainchild of Linda Sue "Hall" Payne and Deborah "Hall" Loudermilk who found Jackson-Feilds legacy disappearing before their very eyes. Linda and Deborah donated prizes and held a raffle at the 2010 Homecoming to raise the necessary monies to accomplish their goal of keeping our wonderful childhood alive and hope to continue raising the funds to keep it running each year. In the beginning, it was their goal just to reconnect with some of their sisters, but in doing so found there was some discontent of what Jackson-Feild was and has now become. In this era when relationships between the old and new are so strained, we often forget that the "Jackson-Feild Mission" remains unchanged. With that in mind, it inspired them to find some of the history of Jackson-Feild Episcopal Home and let the world know what a great place it was in previous years and continues to be now that it is known as Jackson-Feild Homes. Therefore, the website was created to raise awareness of our annual "Homecoming" as well as to reconnect, catch-up with the latest reminisce, share memories and just enjoy our sister from days gone by.


On October 9, 2010 a small ceremony was held on the grounds of Jackson-Feild in the Recreation Hall to commemorate 155 years of service where five Distinguished Service Awards were given. This award is the highest award that can bestowed. It is presented to an individual, church or organization for recognition of their exemplary service or significant contribution in advancing what is now called "Jackson-Feild Homes". The recipients were, Grace Church - Purdy, The Rev. Dr. William G. Christian, Christ and St. Luke's Episcopal Church - Norfolk, Manakin Episcopal Church - Manakin, St. Paul's Episcopal Church - Norfolk and Cheryl R. Gerhart (the creator of Eleventh House).


November 1, 2010 - Colonial Heights Rotary Club - The four Rotary Clubs in Area 7 of Rotary District 7600 (Emporia, Petersburg Breakfast, Petersburg and Colonial Heights) were awarded a District Simplified Grant from the Rotary International. District Simplified Grants are a tool for Rotary districts to support short-term humanitarian projects that benefit the community. The Area Governor, Dr. Jeff Jacobs was the impetus behind this grant and project. This grant of $7,338.00 will fund technology needs of the Hayden Gwaltney School at Jackson-Feild Homes. Article in Independent Messenger, Wednesday, November 3, 2010.


2011 Jackson-Feild Homes has changed and updated their website to best show what they represent for now and the near future.


January 21, 2011 Virginia's Legislative Information System - 2011 Session


Senator L. Louise Lucas (D) - Senate District 18 / email: district18@senate.virginia.gov

Senate Joint Resolution No. 275 


Commending Jackson-Feild Homes on the occasion of its 155th anniversary.


Agreed to by the Senate, January 13, 2011


Agreed to by the House of Delegates, January 21, 2011


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes celebrated 155 years of exemplary service to the children and adolescents of the Commonwealth in 2010; and


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes was established in 1855 as the Jackson Orphan Asylum by charter of the Virginia General Assembly to serve girls left orphaned by the yellow fever epidemic; and


WHEREAS, the organization was named after the Reverend William N. Jackson, who had heroically worked through the epidemic and ultimately died of the disease himself; and


WHEREAS, in 1920, Mr. and Mrs. George W. Feild generously donated their ancestral home as a home for children; and


WHEREAS, in 1925 the Jackson Orphan Asylum merged with the Feild Home to become Jackson-Field Homes; and


WHEREAS, over the past 155 years, Jackson-Feild Homes has emerged as an outstanding multiservice adolescent service organization and today provides three distinct programs on two campuses; and


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes has faithfully served girls in need by providing them a safe, supportive, nurturing, and caring home as well as supportive services; and


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes has served over 15,000 girls in crisis since its inception in October 1855; and


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes is recognized as a leader in the field of adolescent services with national accreditation and demonstrated best practices in its program and services; and


WHEREAS, Jackson-Feild Homes has been a guiding light and source of inspiration for the development of new and emerging services for adolescents; now, therefore, be it


RESOLVED by the Senate, the House of Delegates concurring, That the General Assembly commend Jackson-Feild Homes for its service to the children and adolescents of the Commonwealth on the occasion of its 155th anniversary; and, be it


RESOLVED FURTHER, that the Clerk of the Senate prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to Tricia Delano, Executive Director, as an expression of the General Assembly's congratulations and gratitude for the services that Jackson-Feild Homes provides.


May 2011 - Wal-Mart donated plants from their Garden Center to be planted at Jackson-Feild Homes as stated by the Independent Messenger.


August 2011 - Hurricane Irene, the fifth costliest United States Hurricane, was a large and very destructive tropical cyclone, which affected much of the Caribbean and East Coast of the United States during the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season. Due to development of atmospheric convection and a closed center of circulation, the system was designated as Tropical Storm Irene on August 20, 2011 and dissipated on August 28, 2011. Unfortunately for us it took out one of our old trees as well.


 

 

 Our Mentors...

Rev William M Jackson – Founder of “Jackson Orphan Asylum” - 1855

Mr. & Mrs. George Wythe Field – Donated their ancestral home “Walnut Grove” 1922

Mr. Norman Fitzhugh Marshall – 1st Superintendent (1922 – 1933)

Miss Edith Myra Gage – Matron & Headmistress (1920 -1933) / Superintendent (1933-1959)

Miss Lona Bell Weatherly – Superintendent (Jan 1, 1960 – 1966)

Rev. George Joel Smith – Director (1966 – 1975)

Rev. Robert O Johnston – Rector (Aug 1975 – Feb 1979)

Mr. Stephen J Martin – Director (1979 – 1983)

Mr. Stephen D Ankiel – Director (1983 – 1993)

Mr. Robert E Nicholls – Executive Director (Dec 1993 – 2001)

Mr. Brent Sinnett – Interim Executive Director (2001)

Ms. Rebecca China – Executive Director (2001-2008)

Ms. Tricia Delano – Executive Director (2008 – current) 

 

Honorable Mention...

Rev. William Gerow Christian, who was instrumental from 1962 to 1979 in raising funds and promoting Jackson-Feild all over the state, and in other states as well.

Martha Isabelle Webb (11-14-1914 to 06-05-1973), beloved housemother.    

Louisa “Weesie” Jefferson Holloway, born May 15, 1921 and came with her sisters as a very young woman in the mid-1930's, married George Holloway at Walnut Grove and continued to work there until about 2006. She passed away at age 87 on May 18, 2008.

 

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