Russell and Betty Bailey
James Russell Bailey and his wife Betty moved to Orange from Washington, D.C. in 1945. They had two daughters. Deborah Gale, who died in 1968, and Barbara (Mrs. Charles D. McBride, Jr. ) of Evanston, IL. They joined Orange Presbyterian Church in 1947.
Russell Bailey was company architect for Snead and Co, (later Virginia Metal Products). After a year, he left that position to open his own firm.
An architect of note
Russel specialized in library design. The chief architect of the National Cathedral in Washington consulted with him about the design of their rare book room. Russell was also involved in the design of the University of Richmond Library.
Russell designed several local structures including OPC's sanctuary, the Orange County Library (c. 1963) and the Orange County Nursing Home.
Service to the church
Russell Bailey was ordained as Elder in April of 1948. In August 1950, he was selected for a committee to draw the tentative plans for the new Sunday School addition. He was an active member of Gideons International and a faithful teacher of the men’s class in the Church School.
Bailey and Gardner
Around 1953, Judson “Bugs” Gardner went to work for Russell Bailey. In 1968, they became partners. Their architectural firm, Bailey and Gardner (later known as Bailey, Gardner, and Gillum). would remain in business for almost 50 years.
Bailey and Gardner designed the sanctuary at OPC that is used today.
In 1980, Russell designed a banner for Hanover Presbytery's 225th anniversary. The design symbolized God and Man.
The banner was used during the anniversary celebration procession at Union Theological Seminary. It now hangs in the OPC sanctuary.
Betty Bailey joined the Women of the Church (WOC). She was soon on a committee to study the budget for the following year. Betty presented the budget proposal at the next meeting. She was then elected Treasurer.
For the year 1949-1950, Mrs. Bailey was selected to be the Historian. The following year, she became Head of Stewardship. Betty faithfully served with the WOC for many years.
About 1966, Mrs. Bailey started teaching a Sunday School class for girls. She created a lovely classroom with a rug and an air conditioner. Betty was very interesting and entertaining and her students loved her.
“She had the class come to her home for a Bible Lands picnic. We dressed in Biblical outfits and ate dates, bread, little fish, cheese, and fruit. One time, Mr. and Mrs. Bailey took us to visit The National Gallery and the National Cathedral in D.C. We stopped on the way home at a Howard Johnson’s for ice cream. Mrs. Bailey was one of my best ever Sunday School Teachers.”
- Martha Finley Taylor Sutton, daughter of Rev. Richard Taylor (Pastor of OPC 1954 - 1963)
The church started a wonderful monthly newsletter, “The Presbyterian Punch.” Betty Bailey was part of the staff.
A lasting legacy
The congregation moved into the new sanctuary in 1973. Russell and Betty donated the Communion Table and Baptismal Font in memory of their daughter Debbie, who had passed away.
Russell and Betty Bailey were wonderful people who shared their enthusiasm and willingness to work, making significant contributions to our church.
- Jennie Hill Robinson
OPC History Team
The Sherman Family
Welford and Irwin Sherman
Welford Ashton Sherman, Jr. was the son of Welford Ashton Sherman, Sr. and Anna Ward Craun Sherman. Welford, Jr. (also known as "W.A.") married Marjorie Irwin Moomaw. They had three children: Rebecca, David and Nancy Gray. W.A. served during WWII, earning a Bronze Star and two. He was discharged with the rank of major.
When he returned home, W. A. Sherman, Jr. supported the Orange community through many organizations. In 1951, he was elected a member of the General Building Committee for the new Sunday School Building. He was elected as a Deacon in 1952.
Mrs. Irwin Sherman joined the Women of the Church. She was soon selected to a committee to paint and redecorate the sanctuary with left over money from the treasury. Irwin Sherman also lead the children’s choir. Not only did she direct them, she made all their robes.
W.A. Sherman Co.
W. A. Sherman Co. was an Orange heating, electrical, and plumbing firm started by Welford Ashton Sherman, senior in 1919. By the 1950s, ownership had passed to W.A. Sherman, Jr. and his brother Frederick ("Fred") Wise Sherman. Through the company, these men were responsible for the HVAC and electrical systems of the church buildings.
Fred and Lulu Sherman
Fred Sherman married Lula ("Lulu") Herndon. They had four children: Rick, Susan, Page, and Benjamin. In 1964, Fred was elected as a Deacon. He oversaw repairs to the church, the Sunday School building and the Manse.
Fred Sherman was part of the Personnel Committee, monitoring church staff, and a member of the Finance Committee. In 1968 he joined the Property Committee. Fred was also part of the Plant Study Committee to research the condition of the older buildings. Fred moved to the Session in 1972.
On Sunday mornings, Fred Sherman went to the church early to unlock the doors, turn on the lights, and either the heat or air conditioning. Many Sundays, you would find “Freddie” Sherman in the back of the sanctuary monitoring the sound system so everyone could hear.
“Lulu” Sherman joined the Women of the Church and organized many meals to be served in the Fellowship Hall. She also served as President of the Women of the Church (WOC). Lulu was involved in the WOC’s Service Project. The project raised money for the Building Fund. Lulu helped by making pies and pecan tarts to sell.
Lulu Sherman was the first woman to serve as a Deacon. Freddie and Lulu took charge of setting up communion on the appropriate Sundays and continued it for many years. Lulu also has been vigilant helping the Property Committee keep the grounds trimmed and neat.
Two of their children continued to be a part of OPC. Susan Southard was Office Administrator for awhile and now serves on the Board of the OPC Weekday School. Rick Sherman followed his father’s footsteps. He's president of W.A. Sherman Co., and quietly takes care of the church's heating, cooling and electrical needs.
Mary Anna Sherman and Courtney Lawler
Fred and W.A.'s sister, Mary Anna Sherman, married Courtney Franklin Lawler. They had two sons, Ashton and Stuart.
Mary Anna served with the WOC. She participated in the building fund Service Project by making salads, rolls and cakes to sell.
On January 1964, Courtney Lawler was elected a Deacon member and served as Chairman of the Board of Deacons in 1966. He later went on the Session.
Mr. Lawler was Principal of Orange Elementary School for many years. Mary Anna was also involved with education. She taught 2nd grade at Grymes Memorial School for over 35 years.
Orange Presbyterian Church has been blessed by this family and all they have given.
- Jennie Hill Robinson
OPC History Team
OPC History: The Moore Family
John Goodwin Moore and his wife, Barbara Hughes Moore, were admitted to the Orange Presbyterian Church in 1947. The Moores had four children: Ann Grey, James Brent, Pamela Louise and Mary Goodwin.
Goodwin Moore, contractor and grower
John, known by his second name Goodwin, was born Sept. 27, 1917, son of Latter Grey Moore and Ethel Mills Moore. He founded Moore, Kelly & Reddish Inc., a highway construction firm that he led until the late 1970s. At that time he took over operation of Moormont Orchards in Rapidan. His father had started the business in the 1940s and Goodwin grew it into Virginia's largest pick-your-own orchard.
Each year, Goodwin welcomed the thousands of visitors to Moormont and always ended every visit with "come back to see us.” He could grow anything, as evidenced by the beauty of all the flowers, vegetables and fruit there.
Barbara Moore and the OPC
Barbara Moore helped manage the orchards, along with raising her four children. She was a member of the Orange Garden Club, winning ribbons with prize roses from Moormont.
Barbara was a member of one of OPC’s Women’s Circles. The Moores hosted summer picnics for the Presbyterian church members, supplying freshly cooked fried chicken.
Building the Education Wing
Goodwin Moore was ordained as a Deacon in OPC in 1949. In 1950, the Session discussed plans for the new Sunday School addition. Goodwin Moore was present, representing the Deacons. A committee was formed to draw tentative plans for the addition and to present them to the congregation. Goodwin Moore was elected chairman of the committee.
At the Session meeting November 1950, a report from the committee was read and explained by Goodwin Moore. The report was accepted and a new committee, including Goodwin Moore, was appointed to raise funds for the new addition.
In April of 1951, Mr. Moore was on the General Building Committee. The committee's job was to make arrangements with an architect and finalize plans for the Sunday School building.
Building the new sanctuary
Goodwin Moore was elected and ordained as Elder in 1956. In 1959, he was elected as Clerk of Session. Goodwin also was Chairman of the planning council for the new church built in 1971.
A lasting legacy
Goodwin Moore passed away in 2007, preceded in death by his wife, Barbara, and daughter, Pamela Louise. He is survived by his son Brent and wife, Glenda, of Orange; his daughter Ann Grey Saputo, and her husband, John of Montclair; and his daughter Mary Sandridge and her husband, Derek, of Crozet. There are eight grandchildren and five great grandchildren.
We, the members of Orange Presbyterian Church, are grateful for the work Barbara and Goodwin Moore did for all who follow them.
- Jennie Hill Robinson
OPC History Team
A Pastor's Playlist
This summer I have been preaching on each verse of the hymn "For the Beauty of the Earth." But did you know that I have been using other songs for inspiration as well? Here is my summer 2021 sermon playlist!
OPC from 1978 thru 1989
Jackie Maddox was ordained and installed as the first female Elder elected to serve for the class of 1983. Lulu Herndon Sherman was ordained as the first female Deacon. Roscoe Berry was the first African American to be installed as Elder.
In May, Deacon and Session members approved the plans of Eleanor Vasquez and Gene Berckman for a nursery school for the Orange community. They also reviewed proposed development plans for the church basement.
The annual statistical report showed 422 active members and church school enrollment of 116 pupils with 12 teachers. It also reported a total income of $99,094 and total expenditures of $96,558.
The weekend of October 30-November 1, revival services were led by Dr. Pickard. Oct 30 - Nov 1. Invitations to these evangelical services were placed in the local paper and on the radio.
The Youth Presbyterian Fellowship worked to complete the church basement as a youth center.
Building debt was reported at $120,800. Church officers expressed concern over declining church school and morning worship attendance.
In May, fifty church members traveled to Richmond for the 225th celebration anniversary of the formation of Presbytery (1755).
At a congregational meeting, the church voted to combine Deacons and Elders into one board with one group of church officers. But in November, Session voted NOT to proceed with a unified system of deacons and elders.
South Koran missionaries John and Virginia Somerville presented a program, reporting on their work. The Session voted to designate $2000 to missionary salary support program.
The International Missions Committee approved a one-year trial for “Multiply a Miracle.” This was a 2-cents-a-meal program to raise funds for the alleviation of hunger (July Session minutes reported $451.00 collected.)
That program continues through today as “5-Cents-a-Meal.” It continues to be collected on the last Sunday of the month and continues to feed families both locally and in the greater world.
In June, Rev. William Peters accepted a call to Hanover Presbyterian Church in Mechanicsville starting July 15, 1984.
The church accepted a gift of $3,000 in November for the establishment of a bell choir. Gladys Lax served as the director without compensation.
The Pulpit Nomination Committee’s unanimous selection - William W. Nickels from Norfolk Presbytery -- was recommended to the congregation. The congregation voted to extend the call to Rev. Nickels, which he accepted.
The Community Christmas candlelight dinner planned for mentally challenged citizens was held at OPC. It was served jointly by members of Orange Presbyterian Church and other local churches.
The Lutherans broke ground for their new sanctuary on Sept 27. They had been worshiping in OPC’s Fellowship Hall. The OPC choir participated in the groundbreaking ceremony.
A revised committee structure, which included combining Session and Deacons, was approved.
In November, the Love Outreach Food Pantry reported that 215 families (total 611 people) were served in October.
Session approved $10,000 for air-conditioning for the educational building.
Presbytery recognized OPC’s hunger program with an award in June.
A gift of stock in October to the church resulted in opening of the church’s account at Merrill Lynch. Those investments are still serving the church.
Elders reduced the church budget by $5,606 for 1989.
Orange Presbyterian Church became a member of the new Presbytery of the James.
The Session came to the congregation with a proposal to raise or borrow $300,000. This would purchase architectural plans and proceed with renovation work.
The first phase took down the old library, replaced the old flat roof with a hipped roof, and stabilized the old sanctuary. The congregation approved the proposal in May.
The church gave $1000 to Children’s Home of the Highlands.
The Session accepted a bid of $7,000 to remove the old library building. Work began August 1.
It was reported that possibly as many as 100 students would participate in the fall Sunday School session.
- Jennie Hill Robinson
OPC History Team
The Holladay Family, Part 3
Lewis Holladay, Jr. returns to Orange
Lewis Holladay, Jr, (1904-1986) was the third child of Dr. Lewis and Helen Holladay. He married Mildred F. Craghead and they had two children, Mildred Littlepage and Lewis III. Mr. Holladay worked at Randolph-Macon Academy in Front Royal, VA for 22 years.
The couple and their son, Lewis III, moved to Orange and were admitted to OPC in 1955. Lewis Holladay worked at Woodberry Forest School in Madison County for 17 years. In 1956, Lewis Holladay, Jr. was elected to serve as Elder of OPC.
Lewis, Jr. and his sister Louise inherited the Holladay House. Louise continued to live in the home until 1984, when she gave her interest to her brother. It was Lewis' son that would make the property a landmark.
Pete Holladay and the B&B
Lewis "Pete" Holladay III, like his father, attended Randolph-Macon Academy. He also studied at the University of Richmond. Pete Holladay returned to his alma mater, and worked at Randolph-Macon Academy for 11 years.
In 1988, Pete and his wife, Phebe, returned to Orange. He was employed by Woodberry Forest School. The same year the couple began renovating the family home. After renovations, they established the Holladay House Bed and Breakfast.
The Holladays attended Waddell Memorial Presbyterian Church in Rapidan. They ran the bed and breakfast until the year 2000, when they retired and moved away.
Aubrey Holladay and the house next door
To the west of the Holladay House is a small brick home. Aubrey Price Holladay, the youngest of Dr. Lewis and Helen's children , married William B. Hamilton about 1934. They moved into that brick house, which she inherited from her parents.
“Billy” Hamilton was admitted to OPC in 1937 and he served as an Elder to OPC until 1959. Aubrey was Chairman of the Business Women’s Circle with Miss Phyllis Sanford.
The Circle had 17 members. It was composed mostly of the younger women of OPC. Aubrey was also the Physical Education Teacher at Orange County High School.
Billy and Aubrey were faithful and devoted members of Orange Presbyterian Church.
Four generations of the Holladay family, all loyal and self-sacrificing members of the Orange Presbyterian Church. We are forever grateful.
- Jennie Hill Robinson (Miss Louise Holladay’s former student)
OPC History Team