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#WritePhoto, Half Shining Armor

January 26, 2017 11 Comments



Beneath the staircase of the palace, lurking silently in the dark
The master’s old Tudor dynasty armor stands guard as if alive
Little has changed in the basement rooms since jousting was the sport
The aristocrat concerns himself with wealth and status in the court
Royal drifters follow in the entourage of holy soldiers and servant slaves
In service of some magic majesty that never showed up when expected
We thought time would both heal wounds and protect us from the ravages of injustice

The clock of destiny has not been kind to the greedy crusaders

Marking time with the shattered bones of their broken glory

There are no knights left to tell the end of this frightening story

Their legacy has been buried, lost all meaning of chivalry and grace

The names fade fast in history’s book, vanishing without a trace

Don’t trust armor from an ancient time to protect you from the storm

It may be impenetrable and conductive, but it is anything but warm

The photo prompt comes from Sue Vincent’s blog and is used as inspiration for writing short fiction and poetry.  Try your own hand if you like.  Please visit Sue, or use the hashtag #writephoto on twitter to find other interpretations of this image.  Thanks for visiting, gentle reader.




Col Augustine II Warner, 10th Great Grandfather

January 10, 2013

Colonel Augustine Warner II (1642-1681)

Colonel Augustine Warner II (1642-1681)

Colonel Augustine Warner II succeeded his father and became political friends with Nathaniel Bacon, who was educated at Oxford and a Barrister in London. Bacon staged the first actual American Revolution in 1676, as he organized an army of three hundred to four hundred pioneers to cope with the Indians North of the York River. He was involved in a private fur deal spanning the entire Virginia frontier. By the end of the decade, Bacon’s troops had taken care of all the Indian tribes. They marched on Jamestown as Governor William Burkeley fled, and sailed to the Eastern Shore. Nathaniel Bacon and his troops soon set up their headquarters at Warner Hall after the burning of Jamestown in 1676. This Virginia Colony was in charge of matters North of the York to the Potomac River. Beyond the Potomac, lay the Maryland Colony. It was at Warner Hall, where he sent notices for the people to assemble to take the “Oath of Fidelity” of his fellow countrymen. Bacon contracted Malaria and died within a year his troops then fleeing the Colony.
Augustine Warner II inherited Warner Hall at the death of his father in 1674. He married Mildred Reade, the daughter of George Reade, founder of Yorktown, and after her death, Elizabeth Martian. Augustine II was speaker of the House of Burgesses during Bacon’s Rebellion in 1676, and also was a member of the Council.
When Augustine Warner II died, he left three daughters his son dying June 19, 1681. Mary became the wife of John Smith, of Purton, on the York, and their son Augustine Smith was said to have been one of the Knights of the Golden Horseshoe with Governor Spotswood, on his famous expedition across the Blue Ridge in 1716. Mildred, another daughter of Augustine Warner II, married Lawrence Washington, of Westmoreland, and her second husband was George Gale. Her three Washington children were John, who built Highgate, Augustine, father of George Washington (first President of the United States), and Mildred. Augustine Washington married Mary Ball, and named his son George for his great grandfather, George Reade, who founded Yorktown.
Elizabeth, the third daughter of Augustine Warner II, became the wife of John Lewis and inherited Warner Hall. Their son, John Lewis II was a member of His Majesty’s Council, and was prominent in the county. For generations the Lewises lived here, and members of the family emigrated to all parts of the United States. Their descendants built Belle Farm, Eagle Point, Abingdon, Severby, and Severn Hall, all in Virginia. Elizabeth and John Lewis I’s grandson, Colonel Fielding Lewis, of Belle Farm, married Catherine Washington, and after her death married Elizabeth Washington, also known as Betty, sister of George. He built beautiful Kenmore for her, in Fredericksburg.

Colonel Augustine II Warner (1642 – 1681)
is my 10th great grandfather
Mary Warner (1664 – 1700)
Daughter of Colonel Augustine II
Augustine Warner Smith (1689 – 1756)
Son of Mary
Martha Cary (1682 – 1738)
Daughter of Augustine Warner
Mary Jacquelin (1768 – 1843)
Daughter of Martha
Johannes John SCHMIDT SMITH (1742 – 1814)
Son of Mary
Henry Smith (1780 – 1859)
Son of Johannes John
Swain Smith (1805 – )
Son of Henry
Jerimiah Smith (1845 – )
Son of Swain
Minnie M Smith (1872 – 1893)
Daughter of Jerimiah
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
Son of Minnie M
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
Son of Ernest Abner
Pamela Morse
I am  the daughter of Richard Arden

Ideally situated at the head of the Severn River in Gloucester County, the manor house at Warner Hall stands on a neck of land that has been occupied and built upon continually from the mid-17th century. Referred to as “Austin’s Desire” in the 1642-land patent, the original six hundred-acre plantation site was established by Augustine Warner as a “land grant” from the British Crown. Augustine Warner received the acreage in exchange for bringing twelve settlers across the Atlantic Ocean to the Jamestown Settlement, a colony desperately in need of manpower to survive in the New World.
The two families associated with the property from this early period until well into the 19th century, the Warners and the Lewises, were among the most prominent families in Colonial Virginia. Over the years, Warner Hall Plantation thrived, as did the descendants of Augustine Warner. Some of the most recognized names in American history are direct descendents of Augustine Warner – George Washington, the first president of the United States, Robert E. Lee, the most famous Civil War General and Captain Meriwether Lewis, renowned American explorer of the Lewis & Clark expedition. George Washington was a frequent visitor to his grandparent’s plantation.
Queen Elizabeth II, the current monarch of England, is a direct descendent of Augustine Warner through the Bowes-Lyon family and the Earl of Strathmore. In England, Warner Hall is referred to as “The home of the Queen’s American ancestors”. In 1957, in conjunction with her trip to Jamestown, VA, for the 350th anniversary of the settlement, Queen Elizabeth II visited Warner Hall Plantation. The Queen was photographed placing a wreath on the grave of Augustine Warner.
Warner Hall is also significant for the part it played in the drama of Bacon’s rebellion, one of the most important events in early Virginia history. After leading a 1676 rebellion against the British governor and burning Jamestown, Bacon retreated to Warner Hall Plantation. At the time, Augustine Warner II, who was Speaker of the House of Burgesses and a member of the King’s Council, was in residence and very likely agitated that his plantation was taken over by opponents of the Crown.
Today, Warner Hall consists of a Colonial Revival manor house (circa 1900) which was rebuilt on the earlier 17th and 18th century foundation. Like the previous structures at Warner Hall, all of which indicated the prominence of their owners, the Colonial Revival core is a grand architectural gesture. The original 17th century west wing dependency (the plantation schoolroom and tutor’s quarters) has been completely restored and offers a rare glimpse into the past. Historic outbuildings include 18th century brick stables, a dairy barn and smokehouse. The Warner-Lewis family graveyard, maintained by the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, offers a remarkable collection of 17th and 18th century tombstones.

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