Also contained herein, will be the following:
If You Can't Attend for the Whole Week
* First Half of the Week
* Mid Point of the Week
* Last Half of the WeekChurch on Sundays
Information follows for reserving your rooms at the Holiday Inn Express in Ranson, WV. Keep in mind that reservations can be canceled easily without cost if necessary, therefore it might be good to go ahead now and make your reservations. Reserve rooms early so you can get the accommodations you prefer. We may not be able to increase the number of rooms or change room preferences if we wait too long.
There are currently 40 Rooms set aside for the homecoming with arrival dates beginning on Saturday, October 9, 2010 through the evening of Saturday, October 16 for departure on Sunday the 17th. You can book for the whole stay or for any part of the room block.
Rooms available are broken down as follows:
- 5 King Smoking Rooms,
- 10 King Non-Smoking Rooms,
- 5 Double Queen Rooms with Smoking and
- 20 Double Queen Rooms with Non Smoking.
This is a very good rate and especially for a nice new hotel. (To see the long list of amenities, see the Holiday Inn Express website and go to Charles Town, WV facility.) For example: Every room has a microwave, half-size refrigerator, and coffee pot plus more. Three computers, a printer, and photocopier are available 24/7 and are free to use. A very good hot breakfast is included each morning and is served in a spacious great room. Hot coffee is available most all day and we can probably make arrangements for it to be available later if anyone wants it available later.
- call 304-725-1330
- ask for reservations
- give the dates you wish to arrive
- ask for rooms in the Burr Block under the Code for our group: BFR (Burr Family Reunion)
If You Can't Attend for the Whole Week
I have intentionally divided the week into two distinct sections for those who can only attend part of the homecoming. In 2008, some of our participants requested more free time. So this year, we have planned for both well-structured, large-group activities (first 4 days) and a Menu of Options for shorter field trips, workshops, and free time with new-found family and friends (last 3 days).
Sunday through Wednesday will be the well-structured, large-group activities. Those who attended last homecoming already know that I tend to over-plan. That means a lot of "experiential activities" will be stuffed into these four days. And none of the plans will be a repeat of the last homecoming.
First Half of the Week
- Immigrant Jehue Burre, our Puritan ancestor who arrived June 1630 with John Winthrop's famous fleet and who became a part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He was the 12th member of the church at Roxbury and was quickly assigned the responsibility over the building of roads and cart bridges to facilitate transportation. Within the next 11 years he migrated inland twice and was a co-founder of two towns that today are known as Springfield, MA and Fairfield, CT.
- Thaddeus Burr, a close friend of John Handcock and Samuel Adams, was also a spy for George Washington's Culper Spy Ring for gathering and communicating intelligence to colonial troops during the American Revolution. Thaddeus Burr entertained many people in his home in Fairfield, CT and many of these people are well-known in our history books.
- Col Andrew Burr, a renowned military officer and political leader in Fairfield, CT. He was Deputy and Assistant for Fairfield to the Connecticut General Court; commissioned Colonel and commanded the Connecticut 4th Regiment against Louisburg and shared in the hardships of the siege, and the glory of the final victory. He was appointed Commissary on Expeditions to West Indies in 1740 and 1746 just shortly before Peter Burr migrated to the Virginia Colony. Andrew was a member and assistant of the Committee of War, and was a Magistrate and a lawyer of eminence.
- Rev Aaron Burr, founder of Princeton University and son-in-law of the well-known and very influential Rev Jonathan Edwards. This ancestor was a renowned scholar, graduated from Yale and fluent in about 5 different languages. He had a key role in the Great Awakening as the New Jersey College, now known as Princeton, was established to train young ministers according to the new religious movement.
- Vice President Aaron Burr. While everyone has heard the version of Aaron Burr as first told by historians with political agendas, few know of the many well-documented, incredibly-important other things our cousin did. We will explore his life, accomplishments, and motives in context with his culture and political views.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, we will tour three very historic sites that will help us to place Peter Burr in his appropriate culture and setting in time. These tours will focus on the culture of the yeoman farm family in 16th century England (prior to the 17th century great migration) and on life in the buffer zone of the Virginia Colony in the 18th century (during the French and Indian War when the young adults, Peter Burr and wife, were beginning their family). These tours will provide much foundational understanding of who our ancestors were. Even those among us who are not Burr descendants, the info is foundational to who we are as American citizens.Again, the general public will be invited to join us. By including the public, our plans are multifaceted, and hopefully you will understand the rationale after you experience the benefits of the planning.
On Saturday, we will continue to recommend small group tours and site seeing, but we will also provide info for those interested in traveling over to McLean, VA to participate in the Fall Festival at the Claude Moore Farm, a 1771 working farm representative of the tenant farms that existed in George Washington's neighborhood and that were frequently owned by the wealthy plantation owners and operated by worker families for the benefit of the plantation owners. The Claude Moore Farm is in the Tidewater area near Mt Vernon and the location of the plantation owners. These plantations were important in why the Virginia frontier was opened up to settlers who would risk their lives to serve as a buffer between the French and Indian activity and the tobacco-growing plantation owners who needed more land for expansion purposes.
While Thursday-Saturday schedule will be less structured and full of options for small group activities, we will plan for some casual gatherings in the evenings as a method for keeping the group connected and informed.
Church on Sundays
Peter Burr helped to found two Presbyterian Churches that continue to exist in the area. All who are interested in attending services at either or both of these churches will be able to do so. Plans will be made for the two Sundays that open and close the homecoming. More on those plans later.
For those who plan to fly, begin now to check prices and schedules. The news indicates that air fares may be very good right now. Also, look ahead toward deals on auto rentals for the week. There is no mass transportation in Jefferson County, WV and the train (MARC) only stops in the area (albeit in walking distance to the Peter Burr House) twice a day (morning and evening) and possibly only on weekdays. Auto rental or driving personal vehicles is strongly recommended. Otherwise, contact me if some of you prefer that I try to link you up with someone else who plans to drive.
I look forward to meeting new family and friends as well as seeing everyone again from the 2008 homecoming. Many plans are coming together and more are in process. Email me if you have any ideas or suggestions. This is your event. Let's make it the best it can be.