Martha

Marha Roberts

My landlady, Martha Richford Roberts, photo circa 1910. I rented from her for three years in 1970’s, on Foster’s branch, a chestnut log cabin + 100 acres in the Southwestern Mountains, $100/mo. She called the place Roundabout. The rumor is that someone in the Dave Matthews organization owns it now. Dunno. Haven’t returned in 35 years.
Martha danced as a youngster. This photo titled “The Comet”, taken by Count Jean De Strelecki.
Martha wrote poetry and fed many cats. She had a housemate, Martha Mabel Moore.

Rock Hill

Bob Fenwick, Rock Hill
The Thomas Jefferson Chapter of Preservation Virginia has given its 2011 Annual Preservation Award to the Monticello Area Community Action Agency and community volunteer Bob Fenwick for their work preserving the Rock Hill Estate Gardens. Designed and built in the 1930s by Reverend Henry A. Porter, the minister of Charlottesville’s First Baptist Church, the Rock Hill Estate Garden is the most ambitious and complex private garden landscape in Charlottesville. Long overgrown, the distinct parts of the garden—the garden terraces, the northern woodlands section, with its switchback trails, and the extraordinary garden wall surrounding the entire site had disappeared from public view. By marshalling hundreds and hundreds of hours of volunteer effort, using United Way’s Days of Caring and more informal work days, the Monticello Area Community Action Agency, guided by community volunteer Bob Fenwick, has made substantial progress in renewing this significant cultural landscape. The Preservation Virginia award celebrates this impressive community project in historic preservation and community renewal.

God’s Poem Writer

Harold Jerome Arnold GPW
Bumped into God’s Poem Writer, Harry Jerome Arnold, Saturday. He is still writing, pursuing his ministry, trying to explain that there are consequences for behaving badly…
Anyone with a small publishing firm is encouraged to contact Harry. He has a catalog of poems on the subject. He is not looking for riches, he is working to warn people. There is love and there is fire.
fragment, letter from hell 001
A fragment, more of his work is visible here.

Jim Lehrer-Tension City

Jim Lehrer
PBS NewsHour executive editor Jim Lehrer was in Charlottesville speaking at UVA’s Miller Center about his book, Tension City: Inside the Presidential Debates, from Kennedy-Nixon to Obama-McCain.

Over a twenty year period Lehrer talked to all the Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates with three exceptions about their debate experiences.
Lehrer arranged the interviews well after the moment of decision, the elections, had passed. He said, bottom line “They loved talking about it, they were like a bunch of bus drivers sitting around talking about driving… in fact Bill Clinton, if he had his way, he’d still be talking about it.”

the watch thing

Lehrer said “George H.W. Bush was the most fun to interview because he hates this stuff.” Bush senior evidently not afraid to stray from politically correct answers. Lehrer recounted Bush’s response regarding the watch incident.

The Texas Way

Lehrer fielded 40 minutes of questions from the audience.

q: Of the debates you’ve moderated, which candidate do you think gave the best performance?

Communicating in the world of today
squeaking gravitas


Lehrer mentioned local boy Th. Jefferson. in relation to the first amendment. Later in his remarks, Lehrer wondered whether Jefferson could be elected now. Stronger than wondered…

Thomas Jefferson would have played hell getting elected as president of the United States if he were running now because…

Bush Gore debate
bus dispatch


Gerald L. Baliles, 65th Governor of Virginia, former Chairman of the board of PBS and current director of the Miller Center closed out the question period pointing out that the Miller Center and the NewsHour both started 36 years ago and that both are dedicated to civil discourse.

Despite having eaten dinner with Jim Lehrer in the room for twenty years there are lots of things I didn’t know about him. He has written many books and he is a bus enthusiast.