Duval Family Association Projects
Claiborne and Elizabeth (Pope) DuVal Grave Restoration (2009)
The site as it appeared after restoration in 2009. The original marble grave markers were set in new granite markers and inscribed on the reverse side.
Daniel DuVal Monument (2001)
Monument Chairman Joseph Stephen Hays’ Comments
Ladies and Gentlemen:
It is indeed an honor to see this many faces gathered here today. Today, we mark an anniversary that will not be seen again for another ten generations. Hopefully, it will not be another 300 years before our descendants gather here again as we have. I do not believe that Daniel, whom we honor here today, would have ever envisioned such a gathering of his descendants, a gathering I feel he deserves and would be proud of.
Some of you have traveled from very far away to witness this event. It is not easy to make such a journey, but consider Daniel’s journey, the deprivation he must have endured and the sacrifices he must have made in order to reach this new country.
As chairman of the Monument Committee, I was given the charge of overseeing the erection and inscription of a memorial befitting our ancestor. The committee has tried not to stray from we know to be factual and substantiated by the records that have been uncovered to date.
We chose the Huguenot Cross; as we know Daniel was proud of his French ancestry and his religious convictions. (Recently, I found a letter a grandson of Daniel’s wrote to Thomas Jefferson petitioning the government to implement a proposal he had drawn up to encourage emigration, settlement and employment of his kinsmen in France so they could enjoy the religious freedom Grandfather Daniel had provided for his progeny.)
Daniel prepared in the winter of 1700 in a section of London, England near the well known shipping port of Blackwell to take passage aboard a ship known as “Nassau of Poole.” After many delays and under the command of Captain Tragian they set sail and in March of 1701 Daniel had arrived upon the York River just to our South.
It was not until the year 1704 when we find Daniel established here in Ware Parish of Gloucester County in the Colony of Virginia. He was an architect and builder and I am certain as you today wander the streets of Gloucester Court House and travel the County of Gloucester the results of his diligence and workmanship in an effort to build for himself, others, and the future generations a new life in a new world where he could enjoy religious freedom as we do today 300 years later. This is what we chose to state to honor Daniel DuVal. It is through his hard work and foresight we are gathered here today.
This is what we chose to state to honor Daniel DuVal. It is through his hard work and foresight we are gather here today.
In 300 years maybe our descendants will not only gather to commemorate Daniel’s coming to this country but also they will commemorate our honoring him here today with this monument.