The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

The Laurel Foundation - October, 1986

By Bob Heafner © 1986

Issue: October, 1986

Dear Readers:

Last month we told of our goal of forming a nonprofit foundation to provide a means of capturing on film the memories and personalities of our older mountain residents. Photojournalist and friend, Jim Waters of WFMY-TV-2 in Greensboro, North Carolina has stated he hopes to devote his time to travelling throughout the Blue Ridge and filming the people and places that exemplify the character and beauty of these mountains.

We believe the end of an era is rapidly approaching and if it is ever to be recorded for future generations to witness it must be soon. Our dream includes someday creating a museum of mountain memories where, for example, the people that once carried grain to a grist mill could be shown on video retracing their steps and sharing their memories of that special time and place.

Shortly after the September issue was mailed we received a call from Ms. Nellie Newkirk of Hampton, Virginia who said she wanted to be the first to support our dream. She was the first. Thank you Ms. Newkirk. Since then the following persons have pledged or contributed their financial support to the fledgling Laurel Foundation:

Nellie Newkirk
Hampton, Virginia

Frances Lockwood
Hersey, Michigan

Mary Ann Hedgecock
Winston-Salem, North Carolina
With this note, "I will keep a prayer in my heart and faith with you that soon your dream will become a reality."

Martinsville, Virginia

Richmond, Virginia

Martinsville, Virginia
With this note, "From a friend of the past generation, with the present generation, for future generations."

Mr. & Mrs. John Augustson
Virginia Beach, Virginia

"A friend of the Blue Ridge"
Patrick County, Virginia

The support of the folks listed above have provided The Laurel Foundation with a base of $1190.00 to begin building a dream on. When we announced the hopes we had for the Laurel Foundation last month we were no less scared than when we carried the first issue of The Mountain Laurel around to the 14 local stores that had agreed to "try an sell 'em". On both occasions you have demonstrated your support of our efforts and the thanks we've so often felt have not always been verbalized as well or as deeply as we have felt in our hearts, due to our lack of adequate words. Now once again you are rallying to our cause and sharing the dream, thank you again from the heart.

There is still a long way to go to reach the $30,000.00 necessary to begin but a journey around the world begins with the first step. Thank you for making the first step possible.