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March 31, 2022 / Joanne Yeck

Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part I

This photo of Radford K. Ranson, life-long councilman in Dillwyn, was taken by Mrs. R. J. Wojnicki, who often wrote about Buckingham County for The Daily Progress.

Photo courtesy of The Daily Progress.

In 1960, Charlottesville’s Daily Progress printed Lulie Patteson’s short history of Dillwyn, Buckingham County, entitled “Dillwyn Grew Up as Lumber Town.” As always, Lulie’s style is engaging, leaving the reader wanting more. The article begins:

It was the night of April 6, 1892, and from a little stream beside a lonely road the frogs, recently released from icy prisons, were telling the world that spring had come.

But no seer among them could foretell what the morrow would bring. For it was on April 7, 1892, that a band of workmen began clearing the road into a site of what then was planned as a temporary lumber town.

This little railroad tie-producing town one day would mean a great deal to Buckingham County. The town eventually was named White Hall and later was renamed Dillwyn.

Pulpwood alone one day would feed, clothe, school, and even provide luxuries for hundreds of families. This temporary town in a backwoods section of Buckingham County years later ended up not only permanent but became the business center for the entire county.

H. M. White, whose name always will be associated with the beginning and early development of Whitehall, had been in the county for some months looking over timber resources. He and Mrs. White were boarding at Buckingham Courthouse while he fostered the railroad tie business and the building of the Buckingham branch of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad from Bremo to Rosney, not White Hall, was to be the main business location.


For more about “Rosney” (aka Rosny), click here: Buckingham Houses: Rosny, 1959, Part I


Coming next: Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part II


Leave a Comment
  1. mamcrozet / Mar 31 2022 5:48 am

    My father was from Buckingham County and his birthplace (1921) was Ransons. I wonder if it is the same family.

    • Joanne Yeck / Mar 31 2022 6:12 am

      Thanks for your comment. If you share your father’s name, perhaps a Slate River Ramblings reader can comment.


      • mamcrozet / Mar 31 2022 12:51 pm

        I was interested in the Ranson family. They must have been prominent to have a place named after them.


  1. Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part V | slate river ramblings . . . .
  2. Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part IV | slate river ramblings . . . .
  3. Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part III | slate river ramblings . . . .
  4. Dillwyn, Buckingham County: A Short History, Part II | slate river ramblings . . . .

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