DVHSS 2021 Reunion in Winchester Postponed

Unfortunately, as it was a yer ago, our DVHSS Reunion scheduled for June in Winchester, VA has been postponed due to the continuing Corona Virus Pandemic. The DVHSS Board of Directors and the Reunion Committee are evaluating potential alternatives, including rescheduling for fall of this year or conducting some form of on-line event, with the Winchester reunion held over till June of 2022. As decisions are made regarding these or other options, additional info will be posted here and on our Facebook page.

2019 DVHSS Annual Reunion

DVHSS 28th Annual Reunion
2019 Newark, Delaware

April 25 - 27, 2019

For the first time in several years, DVHSS members gathered together in New Castle County, Delaware, where our Hollingsworth journey in America began. Nearly 337 years after our ancestor Valentine Hollingsworth Sr. first stepped foot on American soil, his descendants were back where it all started to celebrate his and his children's  legacy. This was to be a reunion jam packed with places that were rich in Hollingsworth tradition

Day 1: April 25th

Reunion Group at Valentine Memorial
House Containing Thomas Cabin
House Containing Thomas Cabin

Registration started Wednesday evening, April 24th at our headquarters hotel, the Embassy Suites in Newark, DE. The following morning found us on the bus bound for our first stop at Newark Union Cemetery, where Valentine and his wife were buried. We all gathered around Valentine's Memorial Marker to commemorate our return to honor our immigrant ancestor. We were also able to see the inside of the Newark Union Church on the cemetery grounds, and were privileged to listen to a talk by Ann Daly, owner of a home adjacent to the cemetery that was originally one of the buildings on Valentine's 960 acre plus property.

Our second stop was at the gorgeous home that today encloses the one room cabin originally built by Valentine's son Thomas. For the second time, owners Mitzi &

Blake graciously welcomed our reunion group to their home and allowed us to marvel at the preservation of Thomas's cabin, originally built in 1699.  From there, it was on to the Friends Centre Meeting House. Valentine's son Thomas was a founder of this meeting and is buried there along with numerous other Hollingsworth family members. At Center Meeting we heard a short talk by one of its current members regarding the history of the Meeting. After Centre Meeting, we moved on to lunch at Buckley's Tavern in Centreville.

Reunion Group at Kennett Meeting House
Reunion Group at Centre Meeting House

Following lunch, it was on to the Old Kennett Meeting House. This Meeting was the successor to the Newark Monthly Meeting, and Valentine's sons Samuel and

Old Kennett Meeting House
Old Kennett Meeting House

Valentine Jr. and their families were members of this meeting. Both Samuel and Valentine, Jr. along with several family members are interred at the Old Kennett Burial Ground. Our day finished with a short visit to the Brandywine Battlefield Visitors Center. It was in the days leading up to this battle that our ancestor, Col. Henry Hollingsworth, was wounded.

After returning to the hotel, the day was capped off by dinner at the Docklands Restaurant in Wilmington.

Day 2: April 26th

Our second day began with a tour of St. Mary Anne's Episcopal Church and grounds in Elkton, MD. St. Mary Anne's was the church the Valentine's oldest son Henry belonged to after he parted ways with the Quakers. We were provided a talk by a church staff member on the history of the church and what the area was like in the early days.  From there, it was on to historic Elk Landing, built by Henry's grandson Zebulon Jr. around 1800.  Also on the property is

St. Mary Anne's Church
St. Mary Anne's Church

the earlier Stone House, built sometime around 1783 based on tree ring dating. Our group heard an interesting talk regarding the rich history of Elk Landing and were able to explore both the Hollingsworth House and the Stone House. Of particular interest were the displayed Hollingsworth Quilt and Bible on loan to Elk Landing from DVHSS.

After Elk Landing, we headed to Partridge Hill in Elkton, the home built in 1768 by Col. Henry Hollingsworth, and now the local American Legion Post. After lunch, it

Hollingsworth Quilt at Elk Landing
Hollingsworth Quilt at Elk Landing

was time for our annual Business Meeting, which included in addition to our normal reports a short presentation on Col. Henry Hollingsworth and his critical role in the American Revolution.

Day 3: April 27th

Our reunion final day kicked off with a bus ride to Philadelphia, our destination, the newly opened Museum of the American Revolution.The museum is state of the art, taking visitors on a chronological tour of the events leading up to the revolution and through the war itself. The museum features numerous period artifacts, including Washington's Tent, General Washington's traveling office and sleeping quarters for much of the war. We were fortunate to have a guided tour, with our host providing a fascinating commentary as we moved from gallery to gallery, including areas that replicated the famous Liberty Tree, Independence Hall, and a privateer ship. All in all a remarkable museum and one that we could have spent hours more at!

After the museum, we were dropped off at the Reading Terminal Market in downtown Philly, a veritable smorgasbord of eating and shopping options. Many of the food venues were operated by folks from the nearby Pennsylvania Dutch Country and the food was universally great. From the Terminal, it was on to Valley Forge, where we first stopped at the Visitor Center, and then on to Washington's Headquarters for a tour of the building. We can take pride that our ancestor, Col. Henry Hollingsworth, was one of those who managed to keep the soldiers of the Continental Army supplied despite the difficulties in getting materials through to the camp despite winter weather, barely navigable roads, and the need to avoid British troops.

Our group at the Museum of the American Revolution
Our group at the Museum of the American Revolution

Our reunion came to a close with our bus ride back to the hotel. It was a great reunion and everyone had nothing but praise for the reunion team that put together this terrific event. For those that missed it, we hope you will be able to

join us for next year's reunion.


2017 Hollingsworth Reunion - Dallas / Ft. Worth

2017 Hollingsworth Reunion - Dallas / Ft. Worth

Attendees gathered in Dallas at Embassy Suites, Dallas DFW Airport South. The first full day,  Thursday, began with a tour of Fort Worth, stopping at the Fort Worth Water Gardens and Sundance Square. The next destination was20170427_113300_resized1.jpg the Fort Worth Stockyards featuring the historic  cattle drive. After lunch on our own, we departed for a self-guided tour of the U.S. Bureau of  Engraving and Printing. Greenwood Cemetery and Oakwood Cemetery were the next stops  where five descendants of Valentine, Sr. are buried in each cemetery. Dinner was awaiting our  group at Joe T. Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant.

Dallas/Fort Worth National Cemetery with four burials of veterans who were descendants of  Valentine, Sr. was our first stop on Friday morning. Next was the John F. Kennedy Memorial and  a self-guided tour of the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. Lunch was at the revolving  restaurant atop Reunion Tower. A self-guiding tour of the George W. Bush Presidential Library  and Museum was our next event. A visit to Sparkman-Hillcrest Memorial Park was a tribute to  one of Valentine, Sr.’s descendants buried there. Our seats had been arranged for dinner and a  jousting tournament at Medieval Times.

Saturday morning we traveled to Tom Bean, Grayson Co., Texas, to visit White Mound Cemetery.  Carey Hardy provided stories about his ancestors buried there. Lunch had been prepared for us  at Rick’s Chophouse in McKinney, Texas. The county seat of Collin Co., McKinney was named for  Collin McKinney, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence. Rick’s Chophouse is located  in an historic hotel that dates back to 1885. The restaurant is decorated with restored repousse  (pressed tin) ceilings, leather, and dark mahogany wood. The ambiance is enhanced with  wrought-iron chandeliers, Western pictures, limestone walls, and wood floors.   Back at our headquarters hotel, we had a couple of hours to relax before the hotel’s  barbecue buffet dinner. The final event of the reunion was the Annual Meeting at the hotel.

20170427 184132 resized1To honor some of our Hollingsworth veterans buried in Dallas and Fort Worth, a small bouquet  of flowers was placed at a veteran’s gravestone (or at the cemetery entrance if the burial location  was unknown). Placing a bouquet at Oakwood Cemetery was Dewey Hollingsworth, at  Sparkman/Hillcrest Memorial Park was Kathy Hutchison, at Greenwood Cemetery was Betty  Hebert-Reese, and at Dallas/Fort Worth National Cemetery were John P. Hollingsworth, Pat Neal,  and Boyd Hollingsworth.

DVHSS 27th Annual Reunion - South Carolina & Georgia

DVHSS 27th Annual Reunion - 2018 South Carolina & Georgia

The Hollingsworth cousins gathered once again during the first week of May for a great reunion, visiting sites in both South Carolina and Georgia. We headquartered in Columbia, SC, and our first DVHSS Reunion 2018 1RMurphrey-Hollingsworth Cabin at Hagood Mill Site day of adventure on Thursday was to Pickens County, SC, where we initially visited the Pickens County Museum of Art & History for a taste of the local culture . Lunch was on our own in Pickens before boarding the bus to head to the Hagood Mill and Murphrey-Hollingsworth Cabin. We were met at the site by our guest speaker Billy Crawford, who filled us in on the history of the mill and the cabin, once owned by an early pioneer Hollingsworth family. After exploring the site, we returned to Columbia for dinner on our own.

Day two saw us boarding the bus for our trip to Augusta, GA. First stop was the Augusta Museum of History, where we had a guided tour that walked us through years of Augusta history. Following our tour, we were treated to presentation on the Hollingsworth Candy Company, a treaured fixture in Augusta for most of the 20th century. Speaker Bill Baab kicked DVHSS Reunion 2018 2RSpeaker Julie Berry & Past President Jo Hollingsworththings off with a history of candy making in Augusta, followed by a terrific presentation by Julie Berry, daughter of the company's chief engineer, on the history of the company with lots of pictures from the company while in operation. From there, we travelled a few blocks to the Augusta Canal Discovery Center, for our Canal Boat ride. For the next hour we motored up the canal and back, learning about its vital role in the history of Augusta and the surrounding area. After a boxed lunch at the on-site Fat Man Cafe, we boarded the bus for a Sardis, GA and the Sardis Baptist Church. The Church was co-founded in 1803 by Jacob Hollingsworth, and pastored in the 1950's by Rev. Troy Hollingsworth, bookending the long history of the church. Our VP Randy Hollingsworth and Georgia Hollingsworth researcher Lillian Talbert gave a presentation on the history of the church and on the ongoing research into DVHSS Reunion 2018 3RRiding the Augusta Canal Boatthe genealogy of the early Georgia Hollingsworths in the area. It was then on to the beautiful General Elliott Inn in Akin, SC, where we had a terrific dinner amidst the rolling countryside of the self-proclaimed polo capital of the USA.

Day three started out at with a carpool to Newberry County and the Newberry County Museum, which is located in the Coppock House and also includes the Gaunt house a few steps away. The museum has an impressive collection of artifacts and displays, relative primarily to the history of Newberry County and the Gaunt House provides a glimpse into the setting of a dwelling typical of the county in the early 1800's. Following lunch on our own, the group drove to the Bush River Quaker Cemetery. We were fortunate to have Judy Russel speak to us about the history of the cemetery and the efforts starting in 2002 to reclaim the cemetery from nature after years of neglect. Today this final resting place of many of our groups' anccestors is a well maintained DVHSS Reunion 2018 4RReunion attendees at New Berry County Museumand peaceful setting. After the drive back to Columbia and dinner on our own, our reunion concluded with our annual business meeting, which was kicked off by an inspiring talk by James Willbanks, author of the recently released biography of Lt. General James F. Hollingsworth, call sign Danger 79er.

DVHSS Reunion 2018 5RBush River Cemetery TalkThe reunion was a great opportunity to catch up with cousins we have known for years and also to meet new cousins attending for the first time. For those not able to make this year's reunion, we hope you will join us next year in Delaware, where it all started, for our 2019 reunion.

2015 Hollingsworth Reunion

DVHSS 22nd Annual Reunion

June 17–21, 2015, Winchester, Va.

Harpers Ferry Lower TownThe 2015 DVHSS reunion in Winchester, Va., will be remembered for the number of new members that attended and their integration with the group’s other members. The members became close during the unplanned meals that were attended en masse. The Out Reach Committee located several of the newcomers, and other neophytes came from DVHSS member’s extended families. A big thank you goes to Carey Hardy, Randy Hollingsworth, and Jo Hollingsworth for their efforts in attracting new members. A total of 61 Hollingsworths attended the reunion.

Several groups deserve special mention. Kathy Hutchison brought her daughter and son-in law, Kiersten and Coleman Wooldridge (Ohio), and Dewey and Harpers Ferry ReenactorsDonna Hollingsworth brought their daughter Lynn from Texas. Ohioans Kathryn Ripper Smith and her father and mother, Richard and Betty Smith, were delightful additions. Probably the most raucous new group was the “West Coast Gang,” consisting of Jim Hollingsworth (Spokane, Wash.), his son Erik from Montana, Jim’s brother, Stephan (San Raphael, Calif.), and Stephan’s son, Jeffrey from Los Angeles. The presence of youth to our group is important for our Society’s future health.

Wednesday’s activities started with a morning excursion to Harper’s Ferry, site of the famous  pre-civil war raid by anti-slavery advocate  John Brown.  The lower town is maintained as it was in the mid-1800's and is staffed Hollingsworth Quilt at Waterfordby volunteers in period costumes that did an excellent job of explaining the workings of each shop. The morning culminated, for most, with lunch in Harper’s Ferry. The group dispersed to other local attractions and ended up in the Hampton Inn’s lobby. An improvised dinner at Piccadilly Public House saw the group get together and discuss the day’s events.

Thursday morning found the group in historic Waterford, Va. Waterford, a village founded by Quakers, includes many homes resided in by early Hollingsworths. The morning started at the Waterford Foundation with an introduction to Waterford by Bronwen Souder. The highlight occurred when she displayed a Hollingsworth quilt,DVHSS group photo at Waterford and we discovered that new member Barbara Suhay (Birmingham, Mich.) had relatives that had worked on the quilt. Bronwen then directed a walking tour of the village, noting the Hollingsworth residences and their history. As usual, our merry group set off to do their own investigation of the town.

Thursday’s lunch kicked off at Susan and George Webber’s home in Leesburg, Va. The catered lunch was well attended with newcomers Alan, Joyce, and Abigail Brower from Sterling, Va., and Cathryn Lynch of Orlean, Va., attending. George Webber introduced Rich Gillespie of the Mosby Heritage Foundation, who gave an extremely entertaining and well-informed discussion on John Singleton Mosby. Mosby, a Civil War cavalry officer under Jeb Stuart, was leader of the Confederate cavalry known as Mosby Raiders, which operated in the Loudon Co., Va., area.

Lunch at Weber'sJames Morgan, of the Friends of Ball’s Bluff and author of the Battle of Ball’s Bluff, then took our group on a tour of the Ball’s Bluff Civil War Battlefield outside of Leesburg. James’s in depth description of the battle was shortened by a sudden thunderstorm that soaked many of our intrepid travelers. Dinner at One Block West was well attended.

The Gettysburg National Battlefield tour was Friday’s scheduled event. The trip saw “The Green Team” (Valentine Hollingsworth, Jr.’s descendants) take over the back of the bus. Green Team newcomers Rich and Cathy Hollingsworth (Ellisville, Miss.), Pierce and Vicki Hollingsworth (Wheaton, Ill.), and Debbie and Todd Arnold with their daughters Madison and Megan (Kemblesville, Pa.) joined us for the Gettysburg tour, as did our good friend Cora Anne Ferrara (Md. ).

The tour included a visit to the Cyclorama and museum in the morning, lunch at Pickett’s Charge Buffet, and a ranger-guided bus tour of the battlefield. As expected, our guide was outstanding in the details of the battle and Devil's Den viewed from Little Round Top at Gettysburggave us a clear picture of how the battle evolved. After a dinner stop at the Shamrock Inn, we returned to the Hampton Inn.

Saturday’s DVHSS annual meeting included the election of officers. The meeting saw Jo Hollingsworth (Ohio) step down after eight years as president of the DVHSS. During her tenure our group has continued to expand in areas too numerous to mention. Good job, Jo, and thank you for your tireless efforts.

Harry Hollingsworth (Ga.) was awarded a Hollingsworth medallion for his long attendance and support.

The meeting ended with Dewey Hollingsworth’s (Texas) rollicking auction of Joanne Powell’s (Fla .) two handbags made from Hollingsworth tee-shirts by the Hoosier Ladies (Barbara Copeland, Sandra Profant, and much missed friend Shirley Lashbrook).

Abram’s Delight gave our members a guided tour following the annual meeting, which was followed by lunch at Brewster’s Pub. The afternoon activities included a visit to Centre Meeting House and a historical review by Jim Riley (Va.). Jim led some of the group on a tour of the Hollingsworth-Parkins Cemetery.

DVHSS group at Abram's DelightSaturday’s finale was a sumptuous dinner at the Strasburg Inn where Kristen Laise from the Belle Grove Foundation gave an enlightening talk on the early history of the Winchester area. New members Steve Hollingsworth (Woodstock, Va.), Charles and Ruth Ford (“Green Team” members from Hockessin, Del.), Cathrine Cashwell (Va.), and Boyd and Deena Hollingsworth (Falls Church, Va.) joined the group for dinner.

Sunday was the day for departure with some of our members attending the Hopewell Meeting. As always, departing is an emotional event as we say goodbye to our friends and relatives. Any reunion is a function of contributions by unsung heroes.

Thanks should go to Susan and George Webber (Va.) for opening their home to our members. Susan and George were also instrumental in lining up our four outstanding speakers. Cathy Copeland’s (Ind.) name cards were, once again, professionally done. John R. (Ala.) and Randy Hollingsworth (Iowa) did a yeoman job at indoctrinating our new members. Special thanks go to those of you that manned the vehicles that took our crew safely  around the Virginia landscape.