William and Mary is the 2nd oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Do you know the oldest one???? It's Harvard.
Now--you might be wondering what this college had to do with my 8 Great Grandfather, Thomas Ballard. WELL----Thomas Ballard owned the land where William and Mary now stands. AND---he sold part of this land to the college trustees.
Thomas Ballard was a wealthy man (wish I had some of that wealth now!!! ha) and owned a large amount of land around the Middle Plantation area. (Note: Middle Plantation is now called Williamsburg.) Thomas Ballard purchased the land from the Honorable Thomas Ludwell, Secretary of State from 1660-1678. In 1693, Ballard sold that land (330 acres) to the Trustees of the College. Now--only about 30 acres remain as part of the college. The remainder of the land was sold.
William and Mary educated future Presidents: Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, and John Tyler. The college also educated several Supreme Court Justices, as well as Henry Clay.
When the United States declared their independence in 1776, the college of William and Mary severed formal ties to England. However, the college's connection to British history remains as a distinct point of pride. Queen Elizabeth II has visited William and Mary twice.
They determined that the structure was there between 1634 and 1699. After much research, the archaeologists said that the house may have belonged to the wealthy and prominent Thomas Ballard, who sold the land to the college's founders.
How 'bout that????? I am not sure what they have done with that foundation since 1997, but the next time I go to Williamsburg, I want to see if I can find it. It would be so neat to see something which may have belonged to my ancestor that long ago. Can you see how interesting and exciting this genealogy research is???? I love it!!!!
All pictures/illustrations came from the internet.
Also, just wanted everyone to know that the storm missed us on Tuesday night/Wed. morning. The only thing which woke us up about 4:30 a.m. was a HUGE (I mean HUGE) clap of thunder... We had some lightning and thunder and a little rain. BUT--the worst went south (and north) of us. We got lucky AGAIN. Thanks be to God.